The best way to ensure that you’re getting all the vitamins your body needs to function properly is to eat a healthy and balanced diet. In fact, one of the main reasons many people suffer from deficiencies, according to Mercola.com, is that they don’t eat the way they should. But even if you eat a healthy and balanced diet, the way your food is stored, a lack of freshness and processing can greatly affect the vitamins your body is able to absorb.
The list below describes how certain vitamins are essential to your health, some symptoms you may recognize if you’re suffering from a deficiency and the foods you should eat to get your vitamin levels back on track. There are supplements you can take, but usually the best source is the all-natural way through food.
It’s important to note that you cannot diagnose a vitamin deficiency on your own, so if you recognize any of these symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor. Under your doctor’s guidance and supervision, you can get a deficiency under control in a way that works for you and any of your pre-existing conditions.
1. Vitamin B12
Everyday Health explains that vitamin B12 plays a vital role because it aids the production of DNA and helps make new neurotransmitters in the brain.
Common symptoms include: numbness in the hands, feet or legs; difficulty with walking and balance; anemia; fatigue; weakness; a swollen tongue; memory loss; paranoia and hallucinations.
Doctors say there’s an increase in this deficiency because more people are going vegan and undergoing weight-loss surgery. B12 is commonly found in animal sources, so if you have a deficiency, you should consume more meat, poultry, fish and milk products. If you’re vegan, Everyday Health suggests nondairy milk, meat substitutes and breakfast cereals to help increase your intake.
Mercola.com says magnesium helps detoxify your body of environmental toxins and prevent migraines and cardiovascular diseases. Some studies show it could even reduce the risk of developing diabetes for those who are high risk. But despite its incredible benefits to our bodies, Mercola says 80 percent of us have a magnesium deficiency.
The symptoms of a magnesium deficiency include: decrease in appetite, nausea and vomiting, fatigue and weakness. A severe deficiency can cause numbness, muscle cramps, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms, changes in personality and low levels of potassium or calcium.
To get your magnesium levels back on track, you don’t need to resort to supplements. Instead it’s important to consume dark-green leafy vegetables like seaweed, spinach, or Swiss chard. Some kinds of beans, nuts, and seeds — like pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds — are also great sources of magnesium, as are avocados.