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The Emergence of Natural Vitamins

For centuries, natural ingredients have been used for medical purposes in countries like India, for bringing about a healthier lifestyle. Nowadays the world has awakened to the advantages of these natural herbs, vitamins, and nutritional supplements, which are becoming increasingly popular.

Categories of natural supplements

Natural health supplements are generally categorized as herbal supplements, food-based supplements, dietary supplements and antioxidants. Herbal supplements are made from natural herbs and extracts such as aloe vera or ashwagandha. These supplements can include ayurvedic herbs, Chinese herbs and herbal teas.

Food based supplements consist of everyday food ingredients and provide excellent health benefits. These include natural vitamins and minerals. Antioxidants are protective elements which have the ability to counter the free radicals in the body, a common cause of heart disease, premature ageing, and cancer. Beta Carotene, turmeric and green tea are some of the rich sources of natural supplements.

Natural health supplements – growing in popularity

With the popularity of herbs, ayurveda and other natural medicinal substances increasing rapidly, natural health supplements are also becoming increasingly popular. Known for fast and long-lasting effects, these supplements are harmless, producing minimal or no side effects. Harnessing the qualities of various natural components, these supplements are extensively used in beauty therapies and other medicinal applications.

According to experts, the ideal way to consume natural health supplements is by combining a variety of supplements into a single capsule, pill or powder. Many pharmaceutical companies are engaged in the manufacture of these supplements under various brand names to meet the ever-increasing demand.

What is natural vitamin supplements made of?

Natural vitamin supplements consist of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and other ingredients which are needed by the body for various processes. These can include cell building, the immune system, brain function, sight, skin and even DNA construction. Folic acid, for instance is required for the construction of DNA and that is why you may see women being advised to take folic acid supplements if they are planning on falling pregnant in the near future.

Natural vitamins are derived from food sources. Vitamins that are found naturally in some types of food come with different components like enzymes, co-enzymes and co-factors. All these components work together and produce their intended biologic effects. Bioflavonoids for instance are co-factors found in Vitamin C.

Are synthetic vitamins dangerous?

The majority of vitamins sold in pharmacies, grocery stores and vitamin shops are synthetic vitamins. They are isolated portions of the vitamins that occur naturally in food.

In the last decade, research has revealed that synthetic vitamins are dangerous, whereas natural vitamins from foods show no evidence of harm. In 1995, a direct connection between consumption of synthetic vitamin A and birth defects was established in a four-year study involving 22,748 pregnant women. The results confirmed a 240% increase in birth defects when the women took 10,000 IU per day and a 400% increase in risk from taking 20,000 IU per day of synthetic vitamin A. No birth defects or other risk were found in women taking actual foods containing natural vitamin A. No amount of consumption of natural vitamin A, even liver containing as much as 30,000 IU in three ounces, showed any evidence of contributing to birth defects.

The right way to take natural vitamins

It is always best to use nutritional supplements that list actual foods as an ingredient. While some synthetic and isolated vitamins have been shown to provide minimal health benefits, on the whole, most of them may cause more harm than good. Most doctors nowadays recommend natural vitamin sources for their patients.

It is best to get natural vitamins from whole foods since they provide complete vitamins rather than fractions of them. In most cases, whole foods also provide the minerals that are necessary for optimal vitamin activity. For instance, sunflower seeds are excellent whole food sources of vitamin E and the mineral selenium, which work together to optimize health benefits.

How do you identify quality natural vitamin supplements?

Natural vitamin supplements are a great way to provide your body the nutrients it needs and which are not being supplied by your food intake.

For a variety of reasons, people do not always receive all the ural vitamins and minerals they require solely from food. Generally this is due to poor eating habits or simply not knowing which foods to eat and in which quantities.

A high quality natural vitamin supplement only contains natural ingredients. It is made up of a mix of amino acids, trace minerals, macro minerals, bio-elements and vitamins. Because it is almost impossible to receive all of these supplements in your daily dietary intake, quality natural vitamin supplements help you fill in the gaps.

There are thousands of natural vitamin supplements on supermarket shelves today so it is easy to become misled by the choices. Be sure the natural vitamins supplement you choose is truly all natural. Be sure to read the label carefully. If it sounds like a chemical, it most probably is. Chemicals may be all right for fertilizers, but not for human consumption.

To benefit from natural vitamins begin to research the natural vitamins that will be helpful for your specific needs. Consider your age, gender, activity level, and your individual health requirements. It is never too late to make the switch to natural vitamins. The health benefits can however be enormous.