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Digital Subscriptions > Healthy Magazine > June/July 2019 > YOUR ABSOLUTELY DEFINITIVE GUIDE TO VITAMINS & MINERALS


We’ve got the answers to everything you’ve ever wanted to ask about vitamins and supplements – and the questions you didn’t even know you had

The number one question for most people when it comes to supplements is: do I need to take any at all? Generally, says dietician Helen Bond, the answer is ‘no’. ‘You don’t need vitamin and mineral supplements if you’re an average person with no particular needs and you have a great nutritionally balanced diet that includes each of the five food groups and lots of variety. Unfortunately, though, very few of us have that kind of diet. Only a third of us are managing to eat five portions of fruit and vegetables daily – and that’s the minimum we should be having. We’re not getting anywhere near enough fibre, few of us eat enough oily fish and over 50 per cent of the food we eat falls into the ultra-processed category, meaning it contains too much salt and sugar and not enough nutrients. In the UK, there are problems with deficiency in lots of nutrients, including zinc, iron, magnesium, selenium, iodine and vitamin D.’

There are special groups who need supplements because they’re at a certain life stage or have a restricted diet (see When Supplements Are A Must, over the page). For everyone else, there’s no easy way of telling whether you should top up. ‘If you’re tired and keep getting lots of coughs and colds, that can indicate you’re missing out on nutrients’, says Bond. ‘But you might be deficient without any signs like this. People often picture someone who’s low on nutrients as looking thin and pale. But obesity is connected with malnourishment as it usually means someone has a poor diet, high in fatty, sugary foods and low in nutrients.’

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About Healthy Magazine

Ever thought about stripping back your beauty regime? From eco-cosmetics to zero waste routines, we’ve explored all the latest natural beauty innovations in our #NakedBeauty issue. Plus, we investigate the Instagram wellness scammers, question whether the perfect diet exists, and delve into the fitness industry’s issue with inclusivity. Our food sections champions pasta and puds, along with with some seriously tempting ayurvedic recipes, and we learn how to keep our core in good shape in the healthy clinic. Find all this and more in the brand new issue of Healthy!