In the ideal world, you would get all your essential nutrients from vegetables, fruits and other unprocessed foods. Eating a diversity of healthy foods is undoubtedly the best way to get the nutrients you need. But as you grow old, hormonal changes in your body make it increasingly difficult to hit your target proportions for certain minerals and vitamins. Your body will begin to weaken gradually and lose the ability to stay free from diseases, fight off infection, produce muscle mass, and run smoothly on its own. That is where nutritional supplements (NS) come in. Diet supplements for the elderly are substances you might use to either lower the risk of health problems or add nutrients missing from your daily diet.
Supplements are essential at any age, but seniors need them more as they face unique difficulties in maintaining proper nutrient levels. Chronic medical conditions and medications may reduce your ability to absorb crucial vitamins even from vitamin-rich foods and drinks. Generally, seniors tend to deficient in vitamins A, C, D, E and K. As far as minerals go, you should focus on minerals like zinc, calcium, iron and magnesium. It would help if you also focused on supplements rich in Omega-3 and glucosamine. Multivitamins are the most commonly used dietary supplements in the United States. By supplementing your diet with these vital nutrients, you will have better health and immunity. Supplements come in the form of capsules, pills, gel tabs, powders, extracts or liquids. You don’t need a doctor’s prescription to buy these products.
There are a variety of issues that can affect the diet of seniors. For starters, changes in the ability to smell and taste food can contribute to loss of appetite. Many senior citizens also spend less time cooking than before, and dental conditions can affect the consumption of certain foods. In the mentioned cases, supplementation can provide an effective way of bridging the gaps formed by avoiding a regular diet.
As we grow old, mineral and vitamins need change. We tend to spend more time indoors, and our skin is less able to synthesize vitamin D. Staying indoors for long means limited sun exposure. The result is a progression of osteoporosis. The sun is responsible for triggering the synthesis of vitamin D. Vitamin D is essential in promoting bone mineralization, strengthening the immune system and absorption of calcium. Vitamin B12 is another vitamin that we don’t readily absorb when we get old. For optimal absorption for this vitamin, stomach acid is needed and at this age, we tend to secrete less of it. Specific allergies and ailments can cause discomfort and adversely affect your ability to digest and absorb nutrients from the foods you eat.
Being aware of likely changes can allow seniors to explore alternatives in supplements and maintain optimal health. Using the correct supplements for the elderly has been proven to improve the overall quality of life. If you choose to follow the supplements route, stick to 50+ multivitamins as they possess the appropriate resources for your age range.
From hormone supplements to anti-aging supplements, we have prepared a list of 10 of the best supplements for seniors in 2018.
This supplement is widely used by many seniors across the United States. Available in many online and physical stores, this multivitamin is rich in Vitamins B12 and D. Vitamin D is vital in preventing osteoporosis. This supplement provides seniors with a balanced source of essential minerals and vitamins to meet their daily needs. A bottle of 400 pills will cost you approximately $13 which is a decent price.
This multivitamin is age-adjusted to suit seniors. It has undergone rigorous testing over the years to confirm if indeed it possesses the ingredients on the label. All the tests have turned out to be positive. It is rich in calcium, zinc and folic acid and contains vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E and K. It contains 25 mcg of vitamin B12, 30 mcg of vitamin K, 500 IU of vitamin D and 200mg of calcium. The antioxidants present in this multivitamin help to fight cellular effects of aging. The supplement is available in chewable pills and regular tablets.
As mentioned, men and women have different vitamins and minerals requirements. One A Day modifies its supplements by tailoring to each gender-specific nutritional needs. They provide separate multivitamins for senior men and women. The Women’s 50+ Advantage formula is
rich in calcium, folic acid, magnesium and vitamins A, C, D and E while The Men’s 50+ Advantage formula boasts zinc, calcium, chromium, and Vitamins A, C, D and E. Both supplements contain ginkgo supplement responsible for improving cognitive function.
This supplement provides plant-based calcium that supports bone health. Available in tablet form, this supplement also boasts additional nutrients like vitamins K and D that are essential to heart and bone health. According to user reviews, many users noticed improved bone density after continued use. If you are looking for calcium in one convenient slim tablet, you should definitely try this supplement.
This easy to digest supplement is designed for active seniors. It combines Lutein, Ginkgo Biloba, CoQ10 and pure USP grade vitamins to make a convenient and potent formula. A tablespoon of this nutrient is enough to give you enough energy and protection for the whole day. If you are tired of multiple pills, try mixing this supplement with fresh juice or a drink of your choice.
Rich in B12, Bluebonnet Liquid is the go-to supplement if you want better cognitive function. This product packs enough B12 vitamin and folic acid to give you improved memory so that you can enjoy life once again. The strawberry taste in this supplement makes it easy to swallow. One bottle equals 59 servings. If you are allergic or vegetarian, the manufacturer has got you covered as the product is soy, dairy and gluten-free. The vitamins in this supplement will strengthen the connection between your neurons and feed your brain cells.
Boost series is an assortment of nutrition drinks suitable for the elderly. The drinks possess options covering complete nutrition, protein and weight loss needs. This drink ships with 3 grams of fiber, 26 different essential minerals and vitamins and 10 grams of protein. Available flavors include strawberry, chocolate and vanilla. To improve your energy and strength, it is recommended you take a bottle or two daily. If you have diabetes, you can try the lactose-free Boost Glucose Control.
This yeast and gluten-free supplement was formulated with senior men in mind. If you are looking for a mineral and vitamins boost, this multivitamin has been tested and proven to improve general health and well-being and to strengthen bones.
The team behind this supplement is renowned for producing high-quality multivitamins sourced from carefully selected ingredients. It is formulated for adults over 50 years and is free from gluten, sugar, milk, yeast and artificial sweeteners. The only downside is that the large size of the pills that make them hard to swallow.
Enough sleep is vital for better health and seniors don’t seem to get enough of it. Besides enhancing creativity and productivity, it is during sleep that your blood and heart vessels repair, hormones balance and immune system strengthens. This supplement has magnesium glycinate that soothes nerves and relaxes body muscles. Lack of enough magnesium in the body can lead to headaches and insomnia. This gluten-free supplement is the solution to restoring a healthy magnesium level to get enough sleep.
The minerals and nutrients needs for seniors are further differentiated by gender. Men and women have different requirements concerning the types and amounts of supplements. Calcium, for instance, is a high priority among women as they become more susceptible to osteoporosis after menopause. To counter this, extra calcium from supplements is needed. The recommended intake for senior women over 50 is 1,200 mg of calcium per day. Women also suffer more from a deficiency of magnesium, and vitamins D3 and K2. Senior men, on the other hand, suffer from deficiency in zinc, calcium, and vitamins D and B12. Older men may not absorb between 10-30 percent of the vitamin B12 in their food according to the Institute of Medicine.
If you have decided to go for supplementation for yourself or your aging loved one, you should note that supplements are not like prescription drugs or OTC medications. The FDA is responsible for verifying the science behind and safety of over-the-counter medications before they are released for sale. The agency does not, however, monitor or approve supplements before they can be sold as they don’t have that authority. Supplement manufacturers are also not obligated to provide information on the safety of a product before they sell it. The FDA will only investigate and take the necessary action if consumers complain about a particular supplement. Avoid taking too many supplements as that can cause your body to flush out the extra compounds. Large doses of multivitamins can cause side effects such as headaches, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, stroke, heart attack and liver or kidney damage.
Our bodies begin to need a little extra help every passing year as we age. From cardiovascular disease to osteoporosis, seniors lose the ability to produce or use essential nutrients, chemicals and vitamins. The key to staying healthy is by taking advantage of the above-mentioned nutritional and dietary supplements. If you are unsure of which supplement to use, work with a registered dietitian to determine the right supplement for you. Some supplements can change how medication you are currently under will work. By discussing with your GP about your supplement use, you can reap the benefits of supplementation while avoiding undesirable side effects.
For more great information about helpful supplements, check out the great blog, The Workout Nut!