The mere idea that vitamins and supplements might extend our lives is seductive, especially since the market is packed with such nutrients. Although some of them can help us boost the vitamin intake our body needs so desperately to stay strong, no other source of vitamins is more powerful than food. And still, fitness aficionados and bodybuilders who want to get in shape can’t help their muscles grow with food only. Supplementation is required, yet it’s important to know exactly what to take if you want to increase your longevity. Some of the most common supplements people should take to get in shape and stay healthy are:
Implicated in the creation of blood cells and neurotransmitters, vitamin B6 has proven to lower homocystene levels (the status of the body linked to decreased risks of stroke and heart disease). Researchers performed numerous studies on the matter and to some extent, they managed to prove that vitamin B6 might prevent the appearance of the mentioned conditions, and thus improve one’s longevity.
Vital for the production of certain neurotransmitters and collagen, vitamin C is additionally a potent antioxidant. It was intensively studied for its great benefits in the domain of cardiovascular health. Some researchers found that vitamin C has an impact on various aspects of one’s health, starting from endothelial health to blood pressure, and it was seen as a key factor against certain aspects of cardiovascular disease.
For several years, scientists warned people against the unsafe plaque buildup in the arteries that might lead to stroke or heart attack, and currently they’re trying to find a way to prove that the vitamin does have a major role in diminishing the appearance of those health conditions.
Selenium is a base element just like chromium and iron, and it’s necessary for the proper heath of one’s body. Apart from antioxidant properties, selenium levels inside the system are closely monitored, as too much can have a negative impact on your health. The trace mineral is used to make antioxidant enzymes meant to wipe off damaging byproducts of environmental toxic exposure and cell metabolism.
Beta-carotene is a specific form of vitamin A that is found in fruits and vegetables (particularly colorful ones), and diets rich in this vitamin have proven to have some connections to lower risks of cancer. While vitamin A is a fat-soluble nutrient that might have toxic effects on the health when taken in increased amounts, beta-carotene is 100% safe even if it is ingested in high quantities. Food sources include sweet potatoes, leafy greens, broccoli, carrots, and squash. Fitness adepts who want to start their day energized often use these foods to make themselves smoothies and shakes before starting their workout routine; for complete benefits, women should include about 700 mg/day of beta-carotene and men around 900 mg/day.
Leaving aside the connection of beta-carotene to vitamin A, the nutrient is also a powerful antioxidant. Increased intakes of food that are rich in carotenoids have been linked to reducing heart disease and cancer risks.
DHA (docosahexaenoic acid)
DHA is a fatty acid that can be found in fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel, cod liver, tuna, and more. The supplement must not be confused with EPA; although they’re both fish oil, their contents are not the same. DHA is converted in EPA once it reaches the body, and it is used for a myriad of conditions such as: prevention of heart disease, cancer, lung disease, systemic lupus, and kidney disease. DHA additionally promote the healthy function of the brain and the creation of synaptic pathways. Simply put, it helps the brain function properly and it boosts mental agility.
Apart from a healthy diet, the body needs extra supplementation to stay strong and energized, particularly in people who are working out daily. Fitness gurus and bodybuilders can’t ingest the right amounts of vitamins from food only if they want to boost muscle mass growth, particularly since most essential vitamins and minerals are water-soluble. Hence, they are required to look for alternative. Prior to starting to take supplements based on essential nutrients to help you stay strong and healthy, ask for advice from a nutritionist, who will analyze your muscle mass and tell you exactly what your system needs.