Nov 2022

10 Dietary Supplements Seniors need to consider

Published in Tips on November 25, 2022


Remember the days when you were fit and healthy? When you went years without so much as getting a common cold and could dance all night and not suffer from aching joints the following morning? If those days are nothing but a fading memory now that you are moving toward senior status, then perhaps it is time to consider dietary supplements.  

For some older people, they are a vital way to improve and maintain their health. By providing their bodies with the essential nutrients they lack. But what are dietary supplements? And more importantly, which ones should you take? In this article, we will answer both questions, so please keep on reading until the end to find out.  
What are Dietary Supplements?
Dietary supplements are herbal, vitamin and mineral substances which are consumed orally in a capsule, tablet, powder, or liquid. Once you pass 50 years old, your body may require more minerals and vitamins to function as well as it did when you were younger.  

Therefore, these supplements can provide the extra levels it needs and also reduce your risk of health issues like osteoporosis or arthritis.  

There are many different types of supplements available. However, before you take any, you should consult a dietitian or doctor to determine which ones you might need. 
Why are vitamins important? 
Vitamins are vital to help your body grow and function at optimum capacity.  
Overall there are 13 essential vitamins that people of all ages need, to be able to do this effectively. These include vitamins A, C, D, E, and K as well as all the B vitamins - which incorporate folate, biotin, B6, B12, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, niacin and thiamine,  

All vitamins perform different yet equally crucial roles for our well-being. For instance, vitamin A helps with vision, immunity and cell division. While vitamin D lowers the risk of cancer cell growth, as well as controlling infections and reducing the likelihood of inflammation.  
Why are minerals important?  
Similar to vitamins, minerals play a major role in ensuring your body functions healthily. Minerals are found in both our food and on the earth. Our bodies need a regular supply of 15 of them in order to maintain a robust constitution. These include:  

  • Calcium  
  • Chloride  
  • Chromium  
  • Copper  
  • Fluoride  
  • iodine  
  • Iron  
  • Magnesium  
  • Manganese  
  • Molybdenum  
  • Phosphorus  
  • Potassium  
  • Selenium  
  • Sodium  
  • Zinc  

For some of these minerals, our bodies only require tiny quantities. However, the likes of potassium, calcium and magnesium are needed in higher amounts.  
What are antioxidants? 
Antioxidants play a critical role in our bodies and, in particular, those of seniors.  
Again humans need a regular supply of antioxidants, as these molecules attack free radicals within our body. Thus strengthening our immune system, while protecting us from common ailments like colds and other diseases.  
Why should I take supplements? 
There are several compelling reasons why you should consider taking dietary supplements if you are a senior. Firstly, humans get most vitamins, minerals and antioxidants from their food. However, as we get older, our appetites reduce. So it follows that people over 50, and especially those over 75, are not consuming the requisite amount during their mealtimes.  

In addition, as we age, our bodies become less effective at absorbing the major nutrients we rely on in the food we eat. Other factors like lack of natural sunlight, chronic diseases, a greater propensity to brittle bones and certain medications also contribute too.  
Which dietary supplements should I take? 
As previously mentioned, it is probably best to contact your doctor or dietitian before taking any supplements.  However, here are 10 dietary supplements you should think about taking. If you check out Chemist Warehouse you will find most of them there.  

Vitamin C: Thorne Vitamin C with Flavonoids is recognised as being one of the best vitamin C supplements. But Nordic Naturals Vitamin C Gummies are recommended for those who prefer gummies. Pure Encapsulations Liposomal also has a good name for those who prefer liquids. 

Vitamin B6: Popular capsules include Nature’s Way Vitamin B-6, while Best Naturals Vitamin B6 provides an established tablet brand. If you have gluten, wheat or dairy intolerances, you should try Solgar instead. 

Vitamin B9: Both Methyl Folate 400mcg and Folate 400mcg are two of the more popular brands on the market. Although Methylate is preferred by many people who are vegan or vegetarian. 

Vitamin B12: The all-natural Bear Perform tablet and Solgar, Sublingual Methylcobalamin are both highly rated. As is Nature's Own Vitamin B12, which is vegan and vegetarian friendly. 

Vitamin D: If you are after a high dose then consider the Thorne Vitamin D3 supplement. Alternatively, Garden of Life is good for those who want something chewable, while Life Extension ticks the box of vegan too. 

Vitamin E: The likes of Nordic Naturals Vitamin E Complex, Nature Made Synthetic Vitamin E and Pure Encapsulations Vitamin E are among the best-known brands of this supplement. 

Calcium: The Calcium D-Glucarate, Ostelin Calcium and Cenovis Mega B brands are all recommended for those who want to enhance their calcium levels. 

Magnesium: There are many acclaimed brands available such as Nutra-Life Magnesium Sleep, NOW Foods, Magnesium Citrate and Doctor's Best, High Absorption Magnesium. 

Omega 3s: For those wanting to enhance their levels, Carlson – Elite Omega-3 Gems, Evlution Nutrition Omega 3 Fish Oil and Nature Made Extra Strength Burp-less Omega 3 Fish Oil are some of the major players in this market. 

Probiotics: The big names to look out for here are RenewLife Ultimate Flora Probiotic and Blackmores Probiotics + Daily Health. Caruso’s Natural Health is gaining a lot of popularity too. 
Final Thought 

We hope you have found this article helpful in understanding what exactly dietary supplements are and which ones may benefit you. 

Unfortunately, as you age you become more prone to deficiencies in things like vitamin D, iron, vitamin B12 calcium, magnesium and various other crucial nutrients. Thankfully, you can take action to prevent them.

Making a conscious effort to drink lots of water, eat plenty of nutrient-rich foods and take a relevant supplement will go a long way towards helping you stay fit and healthy as you get older.