By Dr. Kate Rhéaume, ND, Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine & Whole Earth & Sea Expert.
By definition, vitamins are nutrients that are always necessary at all stages of life because our body can’t make them. That said, it is worth paying attention to some macro and micronutrients a little more than others at different stages of life, due to biological shifts that happen with age. Here is a quick look at changing nutritional requirements by decade of life:
An active lifestyle makes protein a priority. Lean animal protein and/or a plant-based protein supplement will check that box. It’s also time to think about prenatal nutrients, even if you aren’t thinking about kids yet! For both women and men this means getting extra folate, calcium, and iron.
The first signs of ageing start to creep in. Keep fine lines at bay with nutrients that protect collagen, such as vitamin C, zinc and biotin. Magnesium helps manage the stress that can come with the career path and keeping up with kids. It also helps to promote restful sleep when taken at night. Iodine is essential for the thyroid to maintain metabolism, which can start to slow down in this decade, or after having kids.
Energy starting to lag? B vitamins make a big difference in this department! Also, hormonal shifts for women and declining testosterone for men mean that vitamin E and omega-3 essential fatty acids are even more important than ever.
Preserving bone health becomes paramount for women, prostate health for men and heart health for both women and men. Vitamins D and K2 are critical to address these concerns. Additional antioxidants, such as lycopene, lutein and the mineral selenium also lend a helping hand. As a bonus, these nutrients will help preserve health of the eye’s macula, which can start changing in this decade.
Keep joints moving easily with vitamin K2 and omega-3 essential fatty acids. Calcium comes into play if bone density is declining. Vitamin B12 is important for memory and nerve health, however, absorption can be more challenging at this stage, making a supplement very useful.
Can’t be bothered keeping track of which nutrients at which stage of life? Look for a high-quality multivitamin supplement that is tailored to either men or women as well as stage of life, such as under and over the age of 50.
Want more? Click here for the Five Things A Nutritionist Eats Every Single Day For A Healthier Gut.