Your guide to optimal dosage of vitamins, minerals

June 29, 2020

DURING this coronavirus pandemic, people are always looking for ways to improve their well-being. Observing proper health protocols like wearing of facemasks in public, washing or sanitizing hands regularly and following the one-meter social distancing would help prevent the spread of the virus.

Of course, living a healthy lifestyle is number one rule for everyone.

Healthy living involves eating the right meals, getting enough exercise daily, and taking supplements. While taking vitamins can be a part of a person’s day-to-day life, yet many are still not satisfied with the vitamins they’re taking and still looking for the right variant.

Though admittedly that not all vitamins and minerals are manufactured the same, some contain high dosage of a mineral while others are lacking the required minimum dosage per tablet or capsule.

Better know what exact vitamins and minerals you need and know its Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) your body need for a healthier you.

* Vitamin A. This vitamin is known as retinol and beta carotene. Vitamin A is known to promote good eyesight and supports heart, lung, and kidney function. Lack of vitamin A or beta-carotene can put your children at risk severe measles and blindness.

Too much vitamin A can also have a negative impact on your bones, so make sure that you are getting just enough from both your diet and supplements. This fat-soluble vitamin can be derived from dairy products like milk, butter, and cheese. It is also commonly found in vegetables that are yellow or orange in color like carrots, sweet potatoes, and squash.

The recommended daily allowance is between 700-900 mcg of vitamin A.

* Vitamin C. Also known as ascorbic acid or ascorbate acid, this is an antioxidant vitamin that supports collagen production and boosts your immune system. Taking ascorbic acid is not a solution to get rid of colds, but those who take it regularly may have shorter episodes and milder symptoms. Our body does not naturally produce vitamin C, so we need to take a capsule or tablet of this. But be cautious about taking too much vitamin C as this may cause diarrhea and stomach pain.

If you are regularly eating fruits and vegetables, the RDA for ascorbic acid is 120 mg per day for adults which has a tolerable upper intake (UL) level of 2,000 mg daily.

* Vitamin D. People who are using whitening lotions or cream wanting to maintain white skin are avoiding the sun. But did you know that vitamin D (or calciferol) is known to help with calcium absorption that keeps your teeth and bones strong and healthy.

If you always staying or working indoors, you may not be getting enough sunshine. You need supplements of 15-20 mcg of vitamin D a day for adults. Going beyond the limit could have adverse effect.

* Calcium. This is can be found in dairy products. But spinach and tofu are also rich in calcium.

The RDA for adults may vary from 1,000-1,200 mg, but women may need more of this essential nutrient as they get older to prevent bone disease.

* Vitamin E. The generic name for this is Alpha-tocopherol. Another anti-oxidant vitamin popularly known also as beauty vitamin because this is commonly added in beauty and anti-aging products. Health experts said vitamin E actually protects you from the effects of free radicals on your body. Free radicals are harmful molecules found in pollution and tobacco smoke that can potentially damage your health. Aside from supplements, vitamin E can be found in avocados, nuts, and whole grains. Just take about 15 mg of vitamin E every day.

* Iron. If you feel tired or fatigued most of the time despite getting adequate amounts of rest, then you may be suffering from iron deficiency anemia. Iron helps keep your blood healthy and can be commonly found in red meat and leafy green vegetables. The average adult needs about 8 mg of iron per day while pregnant women need about 18 mg to support a healthy pregnancy.

* Zinc. During this COVID-19 pandemic, vitamins that have (high dosage of) zinc are in demand. This mineral helps reduce common cold symptoms, accelerates wound healing, and boosts your immune system. If you can’t find vitamins with enough amount of zinc, get it from fortified food like cereals, whole grains, and red meat. Adults only need between 8-11 mg of zinc daily.

To better understand each individual’s vitamin requirement, below is a guide on dosage men and women need to take as per RDA:

* For vitamin A, RDA for men is 900 mcg while 700 mcg for women.

* For vitamin C, RDA for men is 90 mg while 75 mg for women.

* For vitamin D, RDA for men and women is 15 mcg.

* For vitamin E, RDA for men and women is 15 mcg.

* For calcium, for men and women aging 31 to 50, RDA is 1,000 mg; while  for men aging 51 to 70 is 1,000 mg while women 51 to 70 is 1,200 mg;

* For iron, RDA for men ages 19–50 is 8 mg while women of the same age group is 18 mg. For ages 51 and above, men and women only need 8 mg.

* For zinc, RDA for men is 11 mg while 8 mg only for women.

Remember, vitamins are just supplements and the dosage may vary on individual’s condition and health.