Veggies Are Usually the Smallest Serving on Your Plate
Although you’re taking the steps you need to improve your eating habits, the small side of veggies you’re eating or the smoothie you’re having daily just isn’t going to cut it. The FDA recommends that adults eat 3-5 servings of vegetables (1/2 cup to 1 cup depending on the vegetable) and 2-4 servings of fruits daily. I generally recommend at least 4 servings of both vegetables and fruits daily. With the quality of soil decreasing, I wouldn’t stop at 4 servings if you can manage because the amount of nutrients we used to be able to get in our produce has declined along with the quality of soil they’re being grown in. Even more of a reason to consider purchasing local produce to have with your multivitamin.
You’re New to the Fruits and Vegetable Scene
No one is more excited for you than me for getting some produce into your eating regimen, but odds are your biomarkers (measurements of your nutrient levels) were already low to begin with and adding the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables won’t balance your nutrient levels if they were already low. Eating the recommended servings along with taking a multivitamin would help you restore your nutrient levels to their optimal state and maintain them.
You Live An Extremely Busy LIfe
You eat the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables, but you work 12 hour days and sleep less than 6 hours daily. Maybe you don’t work 12 hour days, but you work out 5 days per week and sometimes you’re working out twice daily. In either scenario, the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables won’t get you the amount micronutrients (minerals and vitamins) you need to meet the levels of nutrients you need to match the heavy load you’re putting on your body. A multivitamin can help add to your nutrient stores, so you’re not operating from a state of depletion.
We’ll get into more detail with each individual micronutrient in the coming months, but just know that not all brands and forms of supplements are created equally. In the perfect world, you’ll search for a multivitamin that’s food-based, additive-free, with the most bioavailable forms of each micronutrient mentioned. I’d stay away from big store brand vitamins because the quality of their supplements can vary.
I enjoy pure encapsulations vitamins as they’re a reputable brand with quality supplements and a few other nutritionists I know swear by emerald labs. If you’d like to do more research on micronutrients on your own, check out Oregon State University’s micronutrient site, it’s one of my go-tos for information on individual micronutrients.
Macpherson, H., Rowsell, R., Cox, K. H., Reddan, J., Meyer, D., Scholey, A., & Pipingas, A. (2016). The Effects of Four-Week Multivitamin Supplementation on Mood in Healthy Older Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM, 2016, 3092828.
The Use of Multivitamin/Multimineral Supplements: A Modified Delphi Consensus Panel Report - Clinical Therapeutics. (n.d.). Retrieved February 11, 2019, from https://www.clinicaltherapeutics.com/article/S0149-2918(18)30089-4/fulltext