Vitamins are essential for the normal functioning of your body. If even one vitamin is missing in your body, you may eventually develop a deficiency-related disease and be more vulnerable to contracting infections.
Current research also has found that vitamin and mineral deficiencies may play a larger role in other chronic illnesses than previously thought.
Each individual vitamin performs a number of important functions, as well as working together with other vitamins and nutrients to orchestrate an amazing number of complex processes in the body.
With few exceptions, vitamins cannot be manufactured or synthesized by the human body. Vitamins and many other nutrients must be supplied in the diet or in vitamin and nutritional supplements.
|Vitamin A||Vitamin C||Vitamin E|
|Vitamin B Complex||Vitamin D||Vitamin K|
Free Radical Antioxidants
Free radical antioxidants are specific nutrients like vitamins A, C, E and others that work together protecting our bodies health by neutralizing “free radicals”, molecules with unpaired electrons which have the power to cause degenerative and life-threatening diseases and increased aging.
Free radicals are produced from exposure to chemicals, pollution, radiation, burns, cigarette smoke, drugs, alcohol, viruses, bacteria, parasites, and more.
Free radical antioxidants work in several ways: they may reduce the energy of the free radical, stop the free radical from forming in the first place, or interrupt an oxidizing chain reaction to minimize the damage caused by free radicals.
Many vitamins and minerals act as antioxidants such as vitamin C, E, beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, B2, coenzyme Q10, and cysteine (an amino acid).
Herbs, such as bilberry, turmeric (curcumin), grape seed or pine bark extracts, and ginkgo can also provide powerful free radical antioxidant protection for the body.
Consuming a wide variety of antioxidant enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and herbs may be the best way to provide the body with the most complete protection against free radical damage.
Independent Testing of Nutritional Supplement Products
ConsumerLab.com is a leading provider of consumer information and independent evaluations of health and nutrition products.
ConsumerLab purchased many of the leading multivitamin/ multimineral products sold in the U.S. and tested them for their quality evaluating them against the most recently recommended Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs).
These products were tested for their amounts of several commonly labeled ingredients, to determine if they disintegrated properly to be successfully absorbed in the body, and if they contained potentially harmful levels of lead.
Out of the 27 products tested, 9 failed to meet the testing criteria of the product review. The most common failure was not containing the amount of certain nutrients as was indicated on the product label.
On the positive side, no products failed to pass the testing because of lead contamination.
With new research coming out about the importance of daily supplementaton in disease prevention, we must be extra cautious about the vitamin and nutritional supplements we use; our future health and well being are at stake.
Choosing an Antioxidant Health Supplement
So how does one know what makes a good multivitamin? For starters, if possible, buy from a company you trust and do your best to know what you’re buying.
Multivitamins provide a convenient way to take a variety of supplemental nutrients from a single product to prevent vitamin or mineral deficiencies, as well as to achieve higher intakes of beneficial nutrients. So one of your first steps should be to check to see if the product you’re considering contains 100% of the daily value(DV) for the main nutrient groups.
Companies willing to give a full disclosure and description of their ingredients have usually put more effort and research into their product.
For example, instead of just saying “Calcium” the label should be more detailed like this: “Calcium (from 2430 mg Citrate, Malate, Ester-C)”. This description indicates that higher quality ingredients and more up-to-date research was used for the product.
Many people have questions about the possibility of vitamin overdose. Is it possible to get too many vitamins, and if so, what are the effects of overdose?
Fat soluble vitamins (vitamin A, E, K, D) stay in the body longer than water soluble (C, B complex), so the possibility of developing a overdose with the fat soluble vitamins is increased.
Generally, one can avoid overdose by using common sense, being aware of the RDA of (especially fat soluble ), and using high quality scientifically balanced vitamin formulas.
Because vitamins, minerals and other nutrients work together to produce the greatest health outcome, Total Balance by Xtend-Life Natural Products is an excellent choice for a foundational health antioxidant health supplement.
So just how do we know what and how much we need?
There are several different ways for you to find your current nutritional status. Doctors used to be trained to spot the clues of nutritional deficiencies through a careful physical examination, and with a little luck you might find a doctor who still uses these methods.
Doctors who’ve incorporated nutrition into their practice rely on “eyeball” observations along with medical history, dietary analysis and lab tests to make their diagnosis. Naturopaths and sometimes chiropractors seem to be more familiar with this type of nutritional analysis.
We always recommend working with a professional health care provider who you know and trust before changing any medication or starting a nutritional supplementation program.