Dietician Hülya Çağatay gave information about the subject. food supplements; It is the form of food in pill, tablet, capsule and liquid forms. Food supplements also contain vitamins, minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, pulp, various plants and extracts of plants. Food supplements should be used in addition to the normal diet.
Food supplements have many uses. These;
- To supplement the nutrients that are not enough for the body with normal nutrition,
- Complementing the nutrients needed due to various diseases,
- To meet the necessary food groups due to the inability of individuals with food allergy or food intolerance to consume certain foods,
- To eliminate the nutritional deficiencies that may occur in vegetarian people,
- To eliminate the deficiency caused by the use of drugs for a very long time,
- It is for the purpose of supplementing the nutrients that are deficient or needed more than normal in old age, childhood, pregnancy, post-menopausal periods.
Are food supplements helpful?
Proper nutrition is the first step for individuals to lead a healthy life. A healthy and balanced diet is essential both to prevent diseases and to lead a healthy life. There are nutrients that the body needs for its functioning. In cases where the consumed foods are not enough, food supplements are needed.
It is known that when food supplements are consumed in the right amounts and in the right way, they affect the health of people positively.
Vitamins and minerals have an important place among food supplements. Vitamins and minerals are essential substances that our body needs to develop and function normally. The lack of vitamins and minerals in the body makes it difficult to lose weight and can cause some health problems. For this reason, vitamin and mineral supplements that are deficient and cannot be supplemented with nutrients should be taken. Commonly used vitamin and mineral supplements are folic acid, D, A, B12 and other vitamins, iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium.
Supplementation may be recommended for folic acid deficiency during pregnancy. In case of deficiency of folic acid, health problems may occur in the baby born.
People with vitamin D deficiency should take supplements to correct the deficiency. Vitamin D is an important vitamin for maintaining bone and dental health.
Vitamin B12 is necessary for the healthy nervous system and blood cells. 40 research studies were reviewed and found that vegan individuals who do not take vitamin B12 supplements are at increased risk.
Problems such as weakness, hair loss and headache can be seen in iron deficiency, which is more common in childhood and women. People with iron deficiency need to take supplements.
Calcium deficiency can damage bones, muscles, hair and nails. Calcium supplementation is recommended in women during and after menopause to minimize bone loss due to hormonal reasons.
Zinc deficiency can cause problems such as regression in growth and development, and weakness in the immune system. If there is a deficiency, it should be supplemented.
In magnesium deficiency, heart, brain, kidney functions can be damaged, and it can cause problems such as muscle cramps. In case of deficiency in the body, it should be taken with supplements.
In addition to vitamins and minerals, there are some food supplements that athletes can use. Athletes can also recommend some supplements that increase energy, accelerate recovery, and support body composition. A study of 12 long-distance runners during an intense training program found that branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) supplementation reduced muscle soreness and fatigue.
In addition to these, omega 3 is among the recommended food supplements. Supplementation is recommended when it cannot be taken with natural foods. Omega 3 deficiency can cause problems such as depression, heart problems, memory weakness.
Some food supplements can also be taken to help with weight loss. Many supplements such as conjugated linoleic acid, protein powders, ginseng, green tea, chromium can be used. However, it should be noted that more studies are needed on the benefits of these supplements.
Are food supplements harmful?
While dietary supplements are beneficial when taken in the right amount, taking them in excess can lead to some problems such as cellular toxicity or reduced absorption of other nutrients. When using vitamins as a food supplement, it is necessary not to exceed the recommended intake. Excess intake of some vitamins can have a negative effect on the body by creating toxic effects. Unconsciously consumed food supplements can interact with drugs or foods consumed, which can create a dangerous situation. Negative side effects can occur when interacting with drugs. People who will have or have had surgery should also be careful when taking food supplements.
When taking food supplements, care should be taken to ensure that they have certain standards. It should be purchased by paying attention to the fact that it is hygienic and that the nutrients are packaged in a protected way. In order for individuals not to encounter any harmful effects while taking food supplements, they should definitely take food supplements in consultation with a specialist. For the correct intake of food supplements, it must be determined according to the individual's needs.