In today’s day and age, it can be hard to know exactly what to do to keep healthy. Whether it’s the latest fad diet we’re being shown or the newest exercise trend, we all can fall foul to health myths. Of course, we undertake any attempt to better our health with good intentions, but with so much conflicting information out there it can be hard to know exactly what we’re doing. Vitamins and minerals are one area of our daily health that is frequently contested by both professionals and the public. A lot of people swear by them and take regular supplements, others don’t believe they are important to our health at all. It is true that a lot of supplements found in shops can be a bit of a con – after all, we should be able to get all the nutrients we need simply by eating well. If you’re worried you’re not getting the essential minerals you need in your diet, follow these easy tips to increase your intake.
We are told from a young age that we need calcium for strong bones, teeth, and nails. After all, how many times did you see a white fleck in your nail, only for your mum to tell you that it’s because you don’t drink enough milk? While it’s true that large amounts of calcium can cause us to put on weight, we need a certain amount in our day-to-day lives to ensure a healthy body. Plus, as well as building strong bones, calcium also helps to regulate our muscle contractions and helps our blood clot naturally. The obvious way to get more calcium into your diet is to increase your intake of dairy products. This can be anything from drinking milk itself, to eating yoghurts and cheese. But if dairy isn’t your thing, you can also get calcium from certain leafy vegetables and from nuts and seeds.
Magnesium plays an important role in the general running and regulating of our bodies. It is involved with nearly every organ we have, and as we can’t produce it ourselves like we can with some vitamins, we need to get it from our diet. Consuming too little magnesium can lead to a myriad of health problems, including high blood pressure, seizures and even depression. Eating lots of leafy green vegetables is a great way to get magnesium into your diet. This is because the chlorophyll that makes these vegetables green is packed with the mineral itself. Other food sources of magnesium are nuts, avocados, and peanut butter. If you would rather drink your way to greater magnesium levels, try having a cup of redbush tea every day.
Similarly to calcium, phosphorus plays an important role in maintaining the health of our bones and teeth. However, it also aids us in many other ways too, such as filtering out waste from the kidneys and helping us turn food into energy. In fact, adults need about 550mg of phosphorus per day. Try eating more meat, fish and brown rice if you feel you may need to increase your phosphorus intake.