Surprisingly, many people struggle with symptoms like fatigue and mild depression in the winter, yet few realize that the reason for their problems might be vitamin deficiency.
Oftentimes the assumption is: “I eat normal food and lead a normal life, I´ve always managed without supplements or additional help!”
We've seen this attitude among our own family members and friends as well.
The truth is that the food and the lifestyle we consider “normal” is not always sufficient to keep us healthy and energized - especially if we live in a region with little sunlight during winters, experience stress or suffer from certain health problems that affect the absorption of nutrients.
It's also good to remember that cold weather can affect your entire body in a number of ways adding extra challenges. After all, our body is not a machine!
Here are five vitamins that can put the spring back in your step…
1. Omega 3 Fish Oil - Support your brain, heart & vision
The health benefits of Omega 3 fatty acids are numerous. Health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids that are supported by science include:
Lowering blood pressure
Fighting depression and anxiety
Slow the development of plaque in the arteries
Reduce the chance of abnormal heart rhythm
Reduce the likelihood of heart attack and stroke
Improve eye health
Improve brain health
Omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and lower the risk of diseases. They are also important for brain memory, performance, healthy skin and behavioral functions.
Deficiencies in these essential fatty acids can cause a number of problems, including fatigue, poor memory, dry skin, mood swings, depression and poor circulation . Often these symptoms tend to worsen during the long cold winter months.
One great way to add fatty acids to your diet is using quality oils like cold pressed hemp oil, flaxseed oil or walnut oil.
Another excellent source for omega 3 fatty acids is our Premium Omega Fish oil. Alternatively you can opt for our plant-based Vegan Omega 3. Both products are high in DHA and DPA that are known for their health benefits.
2. Vitamin D - Support for your bones and immune system
In recent months we have spoken quite frequently about the importance of vitamin D. You might think we´re repeating ourselves, but there's a good reason why we keep coming back to vitamin D again and again.
What sets vitamin D apart from other nutrients is the fact that it can be synthesized by the human body through the action of sunlight.
The problem? In our latitudes, sunlight doesn't contain enough UVB radiation in winter (October to early March) for our skin to be able to make vitamin D. As it is difficult to get vitamin D from food alone, it is often recommended to take a supplement during winter months in order to avoid a vitamin D deficiency.
The NHS recently updated its recommendations.
The new advice from PHE is that adults and children over the age of one should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10mcg of vitamin D, particularly during autumn and winter.
People who have a higher risk of vitamin D deficiency are being advised to take a supplement all year round.
SACN's review concluded that these at-risk groups include people whose skin has little or no exposure to the sun, like those in care homes, or people who cover their skin when they are outside.
3. Vitamin C - Support your immune system & healthy skin
Vitamin C has long been known to contribute to normal functioning of the immune system. It is therefore no wonder that many people rely on the power of vitamin C, especially in the winter months when the cold season hits.
The skin benefits from vitamin C as well. When it gets colder, our skin and hair suffer. Usually this shows as dryness of skin or extra sensitivity. Look out for vitamin C-charged skincare products to give your skin the support it needs.
Tip: In nature, vitamin C is found in particularly high concentrations in acerola cherries or rose hips, but also in vegetables such as peppers, cabbage and parsley. There are also some exotics that have a particularly high vitamin C content, e.g. the fruits of the camu camu bush, which is native to the Amazon region.
4. Zinc for colds, rashes and immune support
Zinc is widely recognised as being one of the most essential minerals known to man. It's involved in numerous important bodily processes, supporting normal macronutrient metabolism, immune function, and the maintenance of normal hair, nails, and skin - exactly what you need during winter.
Here at AAVALABS, we wanted to create a Zinc supplement that was easy for your body to absorb and would deliver a high strength dose of this incredible micronutrient.
With Triple Zinc, we did exactly that. Our latest formula combines three of the most bioavailable forms of Zinc into one daily supplement - Picolinate, Bisglycinate and Monomethionine.
To take the nutrient absorption potential to the next level, we added Vitamin C, a natural source derived from Acerola Fruit. Vitamin C contributes to the normal function of the immune system and nervous system.
5. Vitamin B for additional energy in winter
The term "B vitamins" describes a complex of several closely related water-soluble vitamins that are responsible for numerous vital metabolic functions. Among other things, they are indispensable for energy production, normal functioning of the nervous system and regeneration of muscles and skin.
Most vitamin Bs are readily available in foods, but vitamin B12 is not available from plants. For this reason vegetarians and vegans who eat little or no animal products should monitor their vitamin B levels and take a supplement if required.
Why is this important?
Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause a number of serious health problems. These usually develop gradually, but can worsen if the condition goes untreated.
Low levels of vitamin B12 have also been associated with SAD and other depressive symptoms such as mood swings and fatigue.
If you are experiencing symptoms such as fatigue, depression, low energy, brittle hair and nails, cracks in the corners of your mouth or skin problem etc., the best thing is to talk to your physician.
He or she can then run some tests to check our vitamin levels and make sure you top up the right ones. You´ll be surprised how many times people experience noticeable changes in their mood and overall fitness after adding the right nutrients to their diet.
Equipped with the right tools you´ll be able to navigate through winter like a pro!
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