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7 Extremely common nutritional deficiencies and their sources of supply

Study guide




Many nutrients are essential for our health. We can get most of these nutrients with a healthy diet, but because we often do not have proper and healthy nutrition, we become deficient in these nutrients. Among the nutrient deficiencies we are exposed to, 7 are much more common. Knowing the essential nutrients for the body and how to supply them is very important, so we decided to address this issue in this article. Stay with us.

1. Iron deficiency

We all know that iron is one of the most important and essential minerals for the body. This mineral is an important part of red blood cells that binds to hemoglobin and carries oxygen to the body’s cells. The most common consequence of iron deficiency is anemia; This reduces the number of red blood cells and the blood’s ability to carry oxygen.

Symptoms of iron deficiency are usually:

  • Fatigue;
  • Weakness;
  • Weak immune system;
  • Brain dysfunction.

There are two types of iron in food:

  • Heme iron: This type of iron is well absorbed and is only found in animal foods. Red meat contains a lot of this type of iron.
  • Non-heme iron: This type of iron is found in animal and plant foods, but iron is not easily absorbed.

It is interesting to know that iron deficiency is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in the world, affecting more than 25% of the world’s population. Unfortunately, this figure rises to 47% in primary school children. About 30% of women who menstruate also have iron deficiency due to the loss of large amounts of blood each month. Forty-two percent of young pregnant women also have iron deficiency. In addition, vegetarians and vegans are more at risk for iron deficiency than others because they consume only non-heme iron, which does not absorb heme iron well.

The best food sources of iron

  • Red Meat: 85 grams of minced meat provides about 30% of the recommended daily allowance of iron.
  • Shell: Oysters are excellent sources of heme iron, and 85 grams of cooked oysters provide about 50% of the recommended daily allowance of iron.
  • Canned sardines: 106 grams of canned sardines provide 34% of the body’s daily iron needs.

The best food sources of iron etc.

  • Beans: Half a cup (85 grams) of cooked beans provides 33% of the body’s daily iron needs.
  • Dark leafy vegetables: Broccoli, kale and spinach are high in iron. 28 grams of fresh kale provides 5.5% of the body’s daily iron needs.

Interestingly, vitamin C can increase iron absorption. Eating foods rich in vitamin C such as oranges, kale and peppers along with iron-rich foods can maximize iron absorption.

Iron supplements should be prescribed by a doctor. Never take iron supplements arbitrarily. Excessive iron intake can be very harmful.

۲. Iodine deficiency

Iodine is essential for the normal functioning of the thyroid gland and the production of thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones are involved in many body processes, such as:

  • Growth;
  • Brain development:
  • Maintaining bone health;
  • Regulation of metabolism.

Iodine deficiency is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies, affecting almost one-third of the world’s population. The most common symptom of iodine deficiency is an enlarged thyroid gland, also called a goiter. It may also have other symptoms, including:

  • heart beat;
  • Shortness of breath;
  • Weight Gain.

Severe iodine deficiency, especially in children, can cause serious harm. Some of these injuries include mental retardation and developmental disorders.

The best food sources of iodine

  • Fish: 85 grams of cooked cod provides 66% of the body’s daily iodine needs.
  • dairy: One cup (245 grams) of plain yogurt provides about 50% of the body’s daily iodine needs.
  • egg: A large egg contains 16 percent of the body’s daily iodine needs.
Some countries have required the enrichment of table salt with iodine, which has had positive results and has been able to reduce iodine deficiency.

3. Vitamin D deficiency

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that acts like a steroid hormone in the body. Almost all cells in the body have receptors for vitamin D. Vitamin D is produced from your skin’s cholesterol after exposure to sunlight, so people who live far from the equator are more likely to be deficient unless they get enough vitamin D from their diet or take a vitamin D supplement.

Adults with vitamin D deficiency may have these problems:

  • Muscle weakness;
  • Bone resorption;
  • Increased risk of bone fractures.

This deficiency in children causes growth retardation and osteoporosis (rickets).

The best food sources of vitamin D.

  • Fish liver oil: One tablespoon (15 ml) of it provides 227% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin D.
  • Fish: Salmon, mackerel, sardines and trout are rich in vitamin D. 85 grams of cooked salmon provide 75% of the daily vitamin D needed by the body.
  • Yolk: A large egg yolk contains 7% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin D.

People who are deficient in this important vitamin, it is better to take supplements with a doctor’s prescription or increase exposure to sunlight. Getting enough vitamin D through your diet is difficult.

4. Vitamin B12 deficiency

Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin. This vitamin is essential for hematopoiesis as well as neurological function. Every cell in the body needs this vitamin to function normally, but the body itself is not able to produce it, so you should get it through food or supplements.

B12 is only found in sufficient quantities in animal foods, so people who do not eat animal products are at risk of deficiency. Studies show that 80 to 90% of vegetarians and vegans may be deficient in vitamin B12. More than 20% of older people may also be deficient in this vitamin, as the absorption of this vitamin decreases with age. Absorption of vitamin B12 is more complex than other vitamins because a protein called “intrinsic factor” aids in the process of absorption.

One of the most common symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency is a blood disorder called megaloblastic anemia. Other symptoms include impaired brain function and elevated homocysteine ​​levels, which are a risk factor for several diseases.

The best food sources of vitamin B12

  • Shell: Oysters are rich in vitamin B12.
  • Meat: 170 grams of beef provides 150% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin B12.
  • egg: A whole egg provides about 6% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin B12.
  • Lion: One cup (240 ml) of whole milk contains about 18% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin B12.

5. Calcium deficiency

We all know that calcium is essential for the health of our bones and teeth. In addition, calcium acts as a signaling molecule, meaning that without it, the heart, muscles and nerves can not function.

The concentration of calcium in your blood is regulated and the extra amount is stored in the bones. If your calcium intake is low, your bones will release calcium. This is why the most common symptom of calcium deficiency is osteoporosis, which is characterized by softer, more fragile bones.

The best dietary sources of calcium

  • Bony fish: A 92-gram can of sardines contains 44% of the body’s daily requirement of calcium.
  • dairy products: One cup (240 ml) of milk provides 35% of the body’s daily calcium needs.
  • Dark green vegetables: Cabbage, spinach, buckwheat and broccoli are high in calcium. 28 grams of fresh cauliflower provides 5.6% of the body’s daily calcium needs.

6. Vitamin A deficiency

Vitamin A is an essential fat-soluble vitamin. This beneficial vitamin helps to form and maintain healthy skin, teeth, bones and cell membranes. In addition, it produces eye pigments that are essential for vision.

There are two different types of vitamin A in foods:

  • Vitamin A precursor: This type of vitamin A is found in animal products such as meat, fish, poultry and dairy products.
  • Pro Vitamin A: This type of vitamin is found in plant foods such as fruits and vegetables. Beta-carotene, which your body converts to vitamin A, is the most common form.

Vitamin A deficiency can cause temporary and permanent eye damage and even blindness. In fact, this deficiency is the main cause of blindness in the world. It can also suppress immune function and increase mortality, especially among pregnant or lactating women and children.

The best dietary sources of vitamin A precursor

  • Beef liver: 60 grams of beef liver provides more than 800% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin A.
  • Fish liver oil: One tablespoon (15 ml) provides approximately 500% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin A.

The best dietary sources of beta-carotene (Pro Vitamin A)

  • sweet potato: An average boiled sweet potato (170 grams) contains 150% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin A.
  • Carrots: A large carrot provides 75% of the body’s daily vitamin A needs.
  • Dark green leafy vegetables: 28 grams of fresh spinach provides 18% of the body’s daily requirement of vitamin A.

Getting enough of this vitamin is important, but taking too much of the precursor vitamin A can cause poisoning.

7. Magnesium deficiency

Magnesium is one of the essential minerals for the body. This mineral is essential for bone and tooth structure, in addition to being involved in more than 300 enzymatic reactions. Deficiency of this mineral may be due to disease, medication, decreased gastrointestinal function or insufficient magnesium intake.

Magnesium deficiency can cause the following diseases:

  • Type 2 diabetes;
  • Metabolic syndrome;
  • Heart disease;
  • Osteoporosis.

The main symptoms of severe magnesium deficiency are:

  • Abnormal heartbeat;
  • Muscle cramps;
  • Restless Legs Syndrome;
  • Fatigue;
  • Migraine.

The hidden symptoms of magnesium deficiency that you may not notice are:

  • Insulin resistance;
  • High blood pressure.

The best food sources of magnesium

  • Whole grains: One serving (170 grams) of barley contains 74% of the magnesium needed by the body daily.
  • Nuts: 20 almonds provide 17% of the body’s daily magnesium needs.
  • Dark Chocolate: 30 grams of dark chocolate provides 15% of the magnesium needed by the body daily.
  • Dark green leafy vegetables: 30 grams of raw spinach provides 6% of the body’s daily magnesium needs.

Concluding remarks

Everyone may be deficient in different nutrients in different situations, but the deficiencies mentioned in this article are the most common deficiencies. Children, young women, the elderly, vegetarians and vegans seem to be at greater risk for these deficiencies.

The best way to prevent essential nutrient deficiencies is to eat a balanced diet that includes whole foods that are rich in nutrients. Taking supplements may also be necessary for those who can not get these vitamins through diet alone. Of course, your doctor should prescribe these supplements, and you should never start taking any pills or supplements arbitrarily.

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Warning! This article is for educational purposes only and you need to consult your doctor or specialist to use it. more information

Source

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7 Extremely common nutritional deficiencies and their sources of supply

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