#3 Antioxidant-rich, High-potency Multi-nutrient

Over the years, the National Academy of Sciences has created and refined a list of basic vitamins and minerals and their respective dosages that all adults should consume on a daily basis. These guidelines are now referred to as dietary reference intakes (DRI), but were called recommended daily allowances (RDA) in the past.

DRIs have been established for the following vitamins and minerals:

Vitamins:      Minerals:
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
Vitamin D
Vitamin E
Vitamin K
B-Complex Vitamins:
Thiamine (B1)
Riboflavin (B2
Niacin (B3)
Pantothenic Acid (B5)
Pyridoxine (B6)
Biotin (B7
Folate (B9)
Cobalamin (B12)

mutli-vitaminsThe adult DRI levels of these vitamins and minerals established by the NAS are considered to be “adequate” for 97 percent to 98 percent of our population. (You can view the specific recommended daily DRI dosages by clicking here.) Most one-a-day type multi-nutrients provide 70 percent to 100 percent of these DRI levels, so one would think this would be sufficient for most people when combined with additional vitamins and minerals consumed in food.

But here’s the problem: When scientists look at blood plasma levels of many of these basic vitamins and minerals in adults with chronic health conditions, they find a significant portion of the respective populations are deficient in one or more nutrients. (To be clear, these studies consider “insufficient” to mean a little lower than adequate, while “deficient” means much lower than adequate.) We noted some of these research-reported deficiencies in the introduction of this report.

We know what you’re thinking — if one consumes a diet that contains the government-recommended level of five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, and if one participates in a regular exercise program 30 minutes a day, three to five days a week, how are these deficiencies possible?

Well, for starters, a significant portion of our population does not consume an optimal diet nor exercise on a regular basis. And beyond poor exercise and dietary habits, there are other lifestyle factors that conspire to scavenge our available nutrients, leaving us in a deficit position, including:

  • The existing presence of chronic health conditions
  • The efficiency/effectiveness of the digestive tract
  • Use of one or more prescription medication on a regular basis
  • Inadequate exposure to direct sunlight
  • Cigarette smoke and industrial pollution
  • Excessive alcohol and/or illegal narcotics

That’s why, in our opinion, it is of value to consider taking a high-potency multi-nutrient that provides daily dosages in excess of the DRI for a number of the core vitamins and minerals categorized by the NAS.

When selecting your multi-nutrient, look for one that provides, at minimum, higher than 100 percent of the DRI for key nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, selenium and zinc. Some formulas will also have more than 100 percent of vitamin A, folate, and other B-complex vitamins. There is no perfect combination of these higher-than-DRI dosages (at least no study has been published demonstrating such), and one should be wary of formulas with individual ingredients that are more than 1,000 percent of the DRI for that ingredient. In general, most high-potency multi-nutrients that are not targeted for a specific health condition will provide 100 percent to 500 percent of the DRI for the ingredients highlighted here.

In our opinion, the most critical vitamin found in a multi-nutrient is vitamin D. Reams of recent research reveal strong links between vitamin D deficiency and chronic health conditions (see our introductory section for study citations supporting this point). And vitamin D deficiency has become widespread as people spend less time in direct sunlight.

OK, so we’ve dealt with improving your digestive function and providing an adequate amount of supporting basic vitamins and minerals to complement your program of regular physical activity and a Mediterranean-style diet. Now it’s time to talk more in depth about oxidative stress, inflammation and antioxidants, and in particular, N-acetylcysteine (NAC), coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), omega-3 fatty acids (sometimes referred to as fish oil or EPA/DHA fatty acids) and resveratrol. These four antioxidants are incredibly powerful, widely and easily processed/used by the human body, have significant bodies of published research showing their effectiveness, and yet, unbelievably, are not part of the current DRIs.

Next: 4 Powerhouse Antioxidants Everyone Can Benefit From

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Disclaimer: Statements on this page have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Information found on www.peakhealthadvocate.com regarding dietary supplements is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Further, the information found on www.peakhealthadvocate.com is not intended to replace professional medical advice or treatment. Please consult your physician before ingesting any dietary supplement to ensure there are no counter-indications with your particular medical status.