The Most Important Vitamins & Minerals for Older Adults (& How to Get Them Naturally)
As bodies evolve, adults should be aware of ways to stay physically healthy and active, maintain and build muscle mass, improve skin vitality, and maximize nutrition. Vitamins and minerals are a key to maintaining health and longevity. Below is an overview of the most crucial vitamins and minerals for seniors, including information on how to ensure you’re getting enough of them.
The Most Important Vitamins & Minerals for Seniors
Vitamin A plays a vital role in maintaining healthy vision and skin. It is also essential for the proper functioning of the immune system, as well as cell growth and reproduction.
How to get more vitamin A: Good sources of vitamin A include eggs, sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkin, spinach, and beef liver.
There are 8 B vitamins, including thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, biotin, folate (a.k.a. folic acid), and vitamin B12. These vitamins work together and separately to support energy production, metabolic function, and nervous system health.
How to get more B vitamins: Good sources of B vitamins include peas, dairy products, meat, fish, avocado, leafy greens, broccoli, whole grains, kidney beans, and dairy products. This article has a great breakdown of how to get more of each B vitamin.
Vitamin C plays a vital role in the health of our immune system by protecting cells from free radicals. It is also essential for repairing and growing new cells and helps the body absorb iron when you’re taking an iron supplement.
How to get more vitamin C: Good sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits, bell peppers, kiwi, broccoli, strawberries, and Brussels sprouts.
Calcium is crucial for building and maintaining strong bones and teeth, but it also serves other purposes. This mineral helps with blood clotting, muscle contraction, and heart and nerve function as well.
How to get more calcium: Good sources of calcium include dairy products, spinach, kale, collard greens (and other leafy greens), almonds, and tofu.
Vitamin D is important for our bones, immune system, and overall health because it helps the body absorb calcium from food. Vitamin D may also help prevent certain diseases like osteoporosis and cancer.
How to get more vitamin D: Good sources of vitamin D include fatty fish, eggs (specifically the egg yolk), and fortified dairy products.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the body from oxidative stress and damage. It also plays a vital role in immune function and heart health.
How to get more vitamin E: Good sources of vitamin E include almonds, sunflower seeds, wheat germ, spinach, asparagus, pumpkin, and avocados.
Vitamin K is necessary for the health of our bones, as well as blood clotting and other metabolic functions.
How to get more vitamin K: Good sources of vitamin K include leafy greens like kale, spinach, collard greens, and Swiss chard.
Magnesium is another important mineral for senior adults, as it plays a key role in muscle health and metabolism. It also helps maintain proper heart and nerve function.
How to get more magnesium: Good sources of magnesium include almonds, cashews, dark chocolate, oatmeal, spinach, soybeans, and raisins.
Last but not least on our list, potassium helps maintain our cells’ fluid levels. Potassium supports muscle function and healthy blood pressure levels as well.
How to get more potassium: Good sources of potassium include bananas, dried fruits, avocados, lentils, tomatoes, oranges, beans, yogurt, spinach, and broccoli.
Should You Take Vitamins?
The answer to this question depends on several factors, including your overall health status and dietary habits. Many people get enough of the vitamins and minerals they need from their diet alone, without a need for supplements. However, some people may benefit from taking vitamin and mineral supplements, including those at risk of vitamin deficiencies due to poor dietary habits or taking medications that interfere with nutrient absorption.
If you are curious about taking supplements, consult your healthcare provider to discuss your individual needs and risk factors. With a little research and careful planning, you can ensure that you are getting the vitamins and minerals you need for optimal health and well-being.
Roland Park Place Can Help You With Your Nutritional Needs
Looking for a place to call home that can help you stay healthy and active as you age? Roland Park Place offers a wide range of services and amenities to support your health, wellness, social, and emotional needs. From nutritious meals and fitness classes to transportation and social activities, we have everything you need to live life to the fullest. Contact us today to learn more!