Supplements and RDA’s

When you go to the supermarkets or health food shops looking for a multi vitamin/mineral and you pick one up and on the label it says “vitamin A 100% RDA, vitamin D 100% RDA” and so on, so you think “I’ll take this one as it has the full amount of RDA’S for all these vitamins”.
But, the thing is that these guidelines set by the government and health experts are basically the bare minimum for each of these micronutrients to stop diseases such as scurvy (vitamin C deficiency), beri-beri (thiamine deficiency), pellagra nicotinic acid and tryptophen deficiency), rickets (vitamin D deficiency) and so on, although these amount are the bare minimum needed to keep these diseases at bay, it is by no means enough to stay in peak condition, the distance between a diet to prevent these conditions and a diet to stay in the best of health are a million miles apart.(10)
It is impossible to say that such and such is the amount for the RDA’s for everyone on the planet. Every single person needs different and varying amounts of each vitamin and mineral, and this all depends on sex, age, where you live (country or city), what medication you are on, which country you live in, weight, fitness, activity, what exercise you do, your job, anything you suffer from (any conditions, ailments or diseases), family history, allergies, diet, if you smoke or drink the list goes on and on, as there are hundreds of factors that contribute to your well being.
Let’s take a couple of examples:
If you live in a busy city as opposed to out in the country, then one of the things you will need more than the ones who live in less polluted areas are antioxidants. There are way too many antioxidants to list, but whereas RDA,s tell you vitamin A 800ug, vitamin C 60mg and vitamin E 10mg, it really should be more like vitamin A 2,500ug, vitamin C 1,000- 2,000mg and vitamin E 300mg (11) as a much stronger level of anti oxidants will be required to fight all of the extra free radicals from exhaust and pollution.
But increasing your vitamins and minerals is only part of the story. Another thing that people may not realise is that certain vitamins and minerals help each other and are needed in certain combinations and certain ones work against each other. Pretty much everyone knows that calcium is needed for strong bones and teeth, but this does not make the slightest bit of difference unless there are suitable levels of vitamin D, magnesium and phosphorus because these all work together for the maximum uptake by the body. Iron needs vitamin C to increase absorption, potassium needs magnesium to hold it in the cells, sodium works with potassium in order to maintain water balance and proper nerve and muscle impulses, and then on the other side of the coin zinc and copper are highly antagonistic as they stop each other working properly and phosphorus is hindered by high levels of iron, magnesium and aluminum to name but a few.

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