Boost your vitamin intake
Not fan of fruit and veg? It’s still essential to boost your vitamin and mineral intake, especially ahead of summer, when we all want to be fighting fit and feeling fine on the beach,
Dr Marilyn Glenville, nutritionist and author of Natural Alternatives to Sugar, said: “We used to be told to ‘eat our greens’, but it is better to eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables because different antioxidants are found in differently coloured foods. For example, green leafy vegetables, berries, carrots, beetroot and so on all contain different antioxidants.”
“We should actually be eating more vegetables than fruit. Vegetables give you the most benefits for your health but it is often easier just to pick up a piece of fruit. Buy organic if you can, and then only scrub the skins, don’t peel them, as you’ll lose valuable nutrients, which are close to the skin. Enjoy a wide variety of vegetables but remember that potatoes do not count as one of your five a day; they are classed as a starch so will be high GI.”
Try a multivitamin. Natures Plus Source of Life Garden Women’s Multi (£23.16, Revital.co.uk) provides the energising power of real fruits and vegetables as well as delivering essential vitamins and minerals.
If you’re following a particular diet, it may be wise to add in a targeted multi to ensure you aren’t cutting out any important nutrients.
Nutritionist Cassandra Barns said: “Low-carb and ketogenic diets are increasing in popularity – not just for weight loss, but also for a variety of other health and fitness goals. So, it’s good to see a multi that provides special support if you’re following one of these eating plans. I recommend Keto Living Daily Multi by Natures Plus (£37.95, naturesplus.co.uk). It is a good multivitamin to take if you’re following a low-carb or ketogenic diet. As well as providing vitamins and minerals for everyday health, it contains targeted nutrients such as alpha lipoic acid and N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) to support blood sugar balance and encourage ketogenesis.”
Try some simple food swaps to boost your energy. Dr Glenville suggests trading in your white bread and pasta for healthier, wholegrain alternatives, which release energy slowly.
“The carbohydrates in wholemeal bread are broken down slowly over several hours and so do not give any sudden flooding of sugars into the bloodstream. Also, this gradual release helps you to feel full for longer, suppressing your appetite and stopping you craving sweet foods because you are not on the blood sugar rollercoaster.”
Barns also adds: “If you’re deficient in vitamin B12, then taking a B12 supplement can be beneficial, if not essential, to keep your energy levels up. I recommend Natures Plus Source of Life Garden Vitamin B12 (£17.50, naturesplus.co.uk) to keep your energy levels healthy this summer. It provides an effective dose of B12 in the active form of methylcobalamin, meaning the body can easily use it. It also provides a range of other B vitamins, which work together with vitamin B12 to give us energy. And it’s certified organic, so you know you’re getting a good-quality product.”
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