Signs of nutritional deficiency and its impact on your immunity

Experiencing chronic exhaustion or getting sick often can be boring. Although these symptoms are easy to eliminate, they can be the result of underlying nutritional deficiencies.

Vitamins and minerals are needed in small amounts but are essential as they assist the body in a range of physiological functions to maintain health. Some of the essentials include Vvitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, vitamin K, calcium, iron, zinc, selenium and chromium. However, with changing lifestyles and eating habits, most people fail to follow a healthy diet.

In India too, there is an increasing trend in the prevalence of micronutrient deficiencies. Studies have revealed that many healthy urban Indians lack vitamins, with vitamin B12 and vitamin D deficiencies and anemia significantly up. Zinc and selenium are also essential trace minerals that many people, especially vegans and vegetarians, lack. The body needs optimal levels of micronutrients for efficient functioning, with different requirements at each stage of life.

The populations most at risk of vitamin and mineral deficiencies are pregnant women, the elderly, or those with chronic illnesses or malabsorption. For example, people with diabetes benefit from vitamin B12, selenium and chromium supplementation. Therefore, supplementation with appropriate multivitamins may be necessary to harness the nutritional benefits.

Deficiencies can weaken our immune system

Optimal levels of micronutrients are needed to boost energy levels and keep our nervous system healthy. B vitamins such as vitamin B9 (folic acid), vitamin B12 (cobalamin) and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), for example, are needed to release energy from food, form healthy red blood cells and maintain healthy skin and nervous system. . Certain vitamins and minerals also help protect our immune system. A deficiency or malabsorption could weaken the immune system, delay healing and make us more prone to infections.

Micronutrient deficiencies can cause unpleasant symptoms such as loss of appetite, slow metabolism, mood swings, reduced concentration, hair loss, numbness and chronic pain, pain and stiffness in the body. In addition to these overt symptoms, deficiencies can cause less noticeable changes such as decreased energy levels, decreased mental clarity, and loss of productivity. The longer the deficiency goes untreated, the more severe the symptoms can be. It is ideal to start a course of multivitamins after preliminary consultation with a doctor. Multivitamin supplements are often available in convenient pill form and can be easily added to our daily regimen.

While most supplements pose few health risks, improper use can lead to side effects. Be sure to consult with your healthcare provider to understand your risk and determine the best supplement for your needs based on your age and requirements.



The opinions expressed above are those of the author.


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