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Best supplements for the over 50s: Four vitamins and minerals you need in your diet

If you eat a healthy, varied diet day-to-day, you should be getting all the vitamins and minerals you need. However, in practice, this can be hard to achieve everyday.

The National Institute of Ageing (NIA) explained: “People over age 50 may need more of some vitamins and minerals than younger adults do.”

One supplementation an older adult may want to consider is calcium, which can strengthen bones.

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In men and women, bone loss can lead to fractures, which can be painful and timely to heal.

Another supplementation to consider is vitamin D, which works alongside calcium to fortify bones.

The NIA suggest vitamin B6 too, which is needed to “form red blood cells”.

One other supplement you may benefit from is vitamin B12, which helps to keep the red blood cells and nerves healthy.

People may not be able to absorb vitamin B12 as efficiently as they used to, hence why this supplementation is recommended.

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When it comes to vitamin B6, men need 1.7mg whole women need 1.5mg each day.

Calcium

The NHS added that calcium also helps to regulate muscle contractions, including your heartbeat.

In addition, calcium is needed to make sure blood clots normally – and without adequate amounts of the mineral, osteoporosis can occur.

Food sources of calcium include dairy foods, green leafy vegetables – such as kale, okra and spinach – and pilchards.

Vitamin D

As well as regulating the amount of calcium in the body, vitamin D also helps to regulate levels of phosphate.

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Without adequate amounts of vitamin D in your diet, it can lead to bone pain known as osteomalacia.

The NHS recommends taking 10mg of vitamin D supplement daily between the months of October to March.

“It’s difficult for people to get enough vitamin D from food alone,” attested the national health body.

B vitamins

Vitamin B6 is also known as pyridoxine, which hooks the body to use and store energy from protein and carbohydrates in food.

Vitamin B6 is available in: chicken, turkey, soya beans, wheatgerm, oats, and bananas.

Vitamin B12 also helps to release energy from foods; good sources include fish, meat, milk and cheese.

A lack of vitamin B12 can lead to vitamin B12 deficiency anaemia – so make sure you’re getting what you need.

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