Common Nutrient Deficiencies in People Over 50

Turning 50! This milestone can bring worries and apprehensions which could be a bit upsetting for some people. Surprisingly, there are many things that make turning fifty the best time of your life! Yes, fifty bestows you with a wealth of experience, reliable friendships, and a deep appreciation of life! With improvements in modern day science, people live well into their 90’s. That being said, much of your health is still in your hands.

No matter the age, staying active and eating healthy will always remain the core components of a healthy life. Since the time you were born, your body’s nutritional needs have constantly changed, and the change continues well into the fifties and beyond. Factors like retirement, a slower lifestyle, along with changes in digestion could increase the chances of taking a diet that is less varied. Also, there is a tendency to eat less because of appetite changes. Given that our body’s ability to absorb nutrients also begins to diminish, it’s easy to fall short on key nutrients. Keeping up with these specific nutrients could be a game-changer in terms of better energy levels, sharp memory, and in some cases reducing the risk of certain diseases and illnesses.  Here are some crucial nutrients you will need in your fifties and beyond.

Focus on these nutrients

Vitamin B 12: Vitamin B12 helps to improve cognitive performance, break down homocysteine (a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases)  . Low levels of vitamin B 12 cause fatigue, weakness, problems with balance and increases the risk of cognitive decline . Due to age-related changes in the gut, most adults over 50 have decreased levels of stomach acid, which impairs the ability to absorb vitamin B12 from food  . Besides, people on a vegetarian or a strict vegan diet do not consume B-12 rich animal sources compounding the problem . The recommended daily dosage for adults over 50 is B12 2.4 mcg (micrograms)per day. You can easily meet the recommended daily B12 requirement by adding a vitamin B 12 supplement to your diet. Since B12 is water-soluble vitamin, it is not stored in the body hence daily supplementation helps avoid a deficiency. If you are taking other medications, consult your doctor about adding B12 supplements.

Vitamin D: Sunshine is the best source of vitamin D, and our bodies make vitamin D with the help of UV-B rays of the sun. Although you do get vitamin D from food sources such as milk, egg, and other dairy products most people consume less than the recommended amounts for vitamin D. It is estimated nearly more than half the population is low in vitamin D. Factors such as staying indoors most of the time, use of sunscreen and age-related changes to make vitamin D  from sun can exacerbate vitamin D deficiency for people in their fifties and over.

Vitamin D is important for absorbing calcium from the diet, for bone health and muscular strength and lowering the risk of fractures. Besides these reasons, recent research suggests that vitamin D plays a crucial role in a broad range of benefits such as better immune health, improved mood, cognitive function, and lower the risk of depression. Many studies have shown that maintaining optimal vitamin D levels can reduce the risk of diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and neurodegenerative disease.

Antioxidants: Aging leads to depletion of the body’s natural antioxidant levels and increases the demand for antioxidants from food. Besides, other factors such as pollution, environmental conditions, stress, and poor dietary habits can impair optimal antioxidant protection. Research suggests that incorporating dietary antioxidants like flavonoids, carotenoids and other well-known vitamin and mineral antioxidants help fight the oxidative stress and delays the progression of diseases like Alzheimer’s, cataracts and Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD).

Probiotics: Including gut-friendly probiotics in the form of fermented foods and high-quality supplements is beneficial to health in many ways. Probiotics promote better digestion, blood sugar levels, lowers inflammation, and improve regularity among people in their fifties. Studies show that consuming probiotics is a better way to manage age-related shifts and changes to the gut bacteria   . Probiotics help maintain the gut microbe's composition and diversity, which promotes better digestion and immune power. A systematic review study published in 2015 investigated the effects of probiotics among the elderly. The review concluded that based on the available knowledge, probiotics are safe and could represent a useful intervention to prevent or treat antibiotic–associated diarrhea and help manage constipation.

Enzymes: Eating whole foods in their natural forms helps preserve the naturally-occurring enzymes in fruits and vegetables making the digestive process easier.

Digestive issues can occur for various reasons including aging and cholecystectomy (Surgical removal of gall bladder) or a liver malfunction. For this reason, supplementing with digestive enzymes is recommended for conditions ranging from lactose intolerance to cystic fibrosis . Including enzymes such as lipase, protease, peptidase, cellulose, and bromelain helps ease digestive difficulties due to aging. For example, bromelain is a naturally occurring enzyme in pineapple that aids digestion in people with impaired pancreatic juice secretion. Peptidase is another enzyme that helps break down long protein chains into shorter digestible protein molecules. As aging progresses, our body’s ability to digest protein declines resulting in indigestion. Including such favorable digestive enzymes can ease digestion in the body and help assimilate the nutrients from food.

Women’s 55+ Multivitamin by Innate Response Formulas: This multivitamin is exclusively formulated for women over 55 + and it helps enhance strength and improves wellness and quality of life. The supplement is formulated by a leading medical expert Tieraona Low Dog, M.D. who is also a best –selling author on dietary supplementation. The dietary supplement provides the key essential nutrients such as B12, vitamin D, calcium, antioxidants along with B complex vitamins, and other minerals that improve health. The recommended dosage is to take two tablets per day. The supplement can be consumed anytime throughout the day including, when on an empty stomach. What is unique about this formulation is that the minerals are presented bound to S. Cerevisiae (nutritional yeast) and hence are well absorbed by the body. The methylated folate and B12, and the B vitamins support heart and brain health and support normal cognitive function.

Vitamin Code RAW Women’s Multivitamin 50 & Wiser by Garden of Life: Garden of Life Vitamin Code 50 & Wiser Women is a comprehensive whole food formulation. The product offers individual nutrients utilizing probiotic cultivation to produce RAW Food-Created Nutrients™. The nutrients are formulated below 115F to maintain the naturally occurring enzymes and live probiotics in whole foods remain intact. Vitamin Code RAW powders are delivered in capsules, and they are free of fillers, binders, artificial flavorings, and other additives. The formulation contains 706 mg of RAW organic fruit and vegetable blend, 40 mg of RAW Probiotic and Enzyme Blend, and 20 mg of RAW Antioxidant and Immune support complex. The organic fruit and vegetable blend includes apple fruit, beet root, broccoli stalk and flower, carrot, spinach leaf, tomato, strawberry, green bell pepper, brussels sprout, ginger root, garlic, raspberry, blueberry, parsley, cauliflower, cucumber, celery, and asparagus.

The probiotic and enzyme blend consists of lipase, protease, aspergilliopepsin, beta-glucanase, cellulase, bromelain, phytase, lactase, papain, peptidase, pectinase, xylanase, hemicellulose. Lactobacillus bulgaricus, lactobacillus plantarum (500 million CFU), and saccharomyces cerevisiae.

The antioxidant and immune support complex consists of antioxidants glutathione and SOD (superoxide Dismutase) from the culture of S.crevisi. The supplement is gluten-free, GMO-free, vegetarian, and Star – K Kosher certified. The product is available in 120 and 240 vegetarian capsules. The recommended dosage is to take 4 capsules per day or as advised by your health care provider.

Vitamin Code RAW Men’s Multivitamin 50 & Wiser by Garden of Life: If you are looking for a clean, whole-food based, raw formulation, Garden of Life’s Vitamin Code RAW Multivitamin is for you. The supplement is a comprehensive multi-nutrient that is delivered in a whole food base of raw ingredients that are formulated below 115 F, which means the nutrients are intact with their natural cofactors along with love probiotics and enzymes. The formulation is available in packs of 120 and 240 vegetarian capsules. The supplement is specifically formulated to meet the needs of men over 50. Four capsules per day provide the fat-soluble vitamins and the entire B-complex vitamins. In addition to providing the micro-minerals like zinc, boron and selenium, the supplement includes twenty-three fruits and vegetables. The RAW food-created nutrients are blended in a base of 23 fruits and vegetables together with food cofactors. RAW means no high heat, synthetic binders, fillers, artificial flavors, sweeteners, colors, or additives commonly used in tablets. Vitamin Code RAW Multivitamin formulation is non-GMO verified, Star-K-Kosher certified, gluten-free, vegetarian supplement.

No matter what supplements you choose to take, it is important to consult with your doctor before starting a supplement. This is highly important if you take certain medications or have specific health conditions.