The Top Nutrient Deficiencies and How to Address Them

Nutrient Deficiencies

Good health is dependent on the nutrients we take in and how well those nutrients are absorbed and utilized by our bodies. Unfortunately, many people are lacking essential nutrients and key vitamins that are required to stay healthy. To help optimize your health, it is important to be aware of some of the top nutrient deficiencies and how to address them.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A deficiencies are particularly common in countries like India, Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. This essential micronutrient is necessary for immune health, vision, skin health, and for growth and development. Good sources of Vitamin A include sweet potatoes, carrots, eggs and dark leafy greens.

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Iron

Iron is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in the world, due to its role in transporting oxygen around the body. Iron deficiencies can lead to anemia, fatigue, and poor concentration. Iron is found in red meat, dark meat poultry, pulses, tuna, cereals, spinach, and fortified bread.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is also known as the “sunshine vitamin”, and is necessary for the efficient absorption of calcium and phosphate, maintaining healthy bones and muscles. A deficiency in Vitamin D can lead to poor bone health, rickets and even depression in some cases. Vitamin D can be found in fatty fishes, oats, mushrooms, fortified foods and eggs.

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Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 helps support the normal function of the brain and nervous system and is important in the production of red blood cells. Its deficiency can lead to tiredness, poor memory, anaemia and even depression. Sources of Vitamin B12 include dairy products, eggs, beef and fortified grains.

Zinc

Zinc is the second most common nutrient deficiency. Zinc supports proper hormone balance, healthy skin, and immunity. Additionally, it helps to metabolise macronutrients and is important for growth and development. Zinc can be found in chickpeas, pumpkin seeds, capers and mushrooms.

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How to Address Nutrient Deficiencies

The best way to address nutrient deficiencies is to make sure your diet is diverse and nutritionally balanced. Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes, whole grains and lean proteins, while supplementing your diet with vitamins and minerals as needed, will help to ensure you are getting the proper nutrients necessary for optimal health. Additionally, it is important to get adequate rest and exercise. Ultimately, by eating a balanced diet and adhering to a regular physical activity routine you will be well on your way to achieving optimal health and mitigating any potential nutrient deficiencies.