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Are vitamins enough?

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Old 04-05-2009, 05:36 PM   #1
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I recently started using FitDay and realized that I am not getting enough of almost every vitamin and mineral. I tried for a bit to find foods to make the difference, but it is hard to change so quickly. I started taking a multivitamin that takes care of all of my deficiencies - gives me 100% DV of just about all the nutrients I was lacking. My question is, is that enough? Is that really all the nutrients I need, or do I need to get them from foods as well? It's not like I'm getting none from my food, but only between 60-80% of most of them. Is the supplement enough, or should I eat different foods?
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Old 04-05-2009, 05:40 PM   #2
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A good quality multi-vitamin is fine for good measure, especially when dieting but the majority of your nutrients need to come from the foods you eat.

Foods contain a lot more things that may very well prove to be extremely necessary for good health and the 'experts' just haven't isolated those things yet and so don't recognize the importance. Also, there may be a certain way that the elements in foods react together that is also of great importance and as yet undiscovered.

Make food your main source of nutrients whenever possible. IMHO, vitamin supplements are not enough.

PS: How many calories are you eating a day? I notice that you are aiming for a goal weight that would be considered a little low for your height and you may be getting fewer calories than the minimum of 1200 recommended for an adult female.
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Old 04-05-2009, 06:13 PM   #3
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I have to say no way. Google phytonutrients. Plants are full of them, there's thousands of different kinds. Anti-oxidants, anti-cancer, etc, etc. No way I'm missing out on all that.
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Old 04-05-2009, 06:54 PM   #4
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I'm trying to eat 1200-1300 calories a day, though counting calories is not my main method of "weight loss" - other than cutting out sweets and sodas, I have not changed my food intake.

My goal initially was not to lose pounds, but to get a lot stronger. The bulk of my "weight loss" effort is strength training and cardio. The only reason my goal weight is lower than my current weight, is to try to get rid of the small layers of fat covering my muscles. If I gain weight from the muscles, but am satisfied with my body, I'll definitely stop! I just think that losing about 5 more pounds would be healthy at this point. I have a very small frame and my mother and brother weigh even less than I do, so I think the weight is a reasonable number.

I just wish that it were easier for me to eat nutritious foods.
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Old 04-05-2009, 10:17 PM   #5
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So I guess the questions is what foods are you eating and what "nutritious" foods is it hard for you to eat. With that info maybe we can help you better.
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Old 04-05-2009, 11:23 PM   #6
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I am an incredibly picky eater... The only vegetable I like is corn, the only fruits I like are peaches and grapes. I eat a lot of protein, basically. I have tried seriously incorporating other vegetables into my diet, but I have a lot of trouble with textures of food. I can eat most vegetables in a soup, but never raw, and it just isn't feasible to make soup every day. I also have very sensitive taste buds, and can't eat anything spicy at all. I'm a meat and potatoes kind of girl. I don't eat Chinese or Mexican or Thai or anything like that.

I would love to eat healthier, but if I limited myself to only superhealthy calories, I would starve myself. I have been doing my best to eat as much of the vegetables I do like as possible, but I don't know what else to do. People say "try a food 100 times" before you like it, but I am sure I have eaten 100 salads and bowls of peas and apples, but I still can't stomach them.

I worry that there isn't anything that can help me, but if you think you can, I'd love any advice...
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Old 04-12-2009, 12:11 AM   #7
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Have you tried using different methods to prepare your veggies? The preparation can change the taste A LOT, and you might find certain veggies to be much tastier with the right preparation.

I'm quite picky about my veggies.... I love asparagus roasted with garlic and dill, but not steamed. Kale makes great baked chips, but I don't like it cooked any other way. Baked sweet potato fries are delicious (especially with some chili powder, salt and pepper sprinkled on them) but I don't care for sweet casserole dishes. Green beans are fantastic roasted with salt and pepper, but they have to be fresh, not canned. Cucumbers must be accompanied by garlic salt and hummus. I'll only eat beets raw, shredded and tossed in a vinaigrette, not cooked. Broccoli is great in a beef teriyaki stir fry, but not on it's own. Coleslaw is only good with honey mustard and mayo dressing. Mashed cauliflower is excellent with butter and chives, but there's no way I'll touch it raw. Split pea soup is 1000x better than cooked peas will ever be.

(By the way, I use olive oil for all of the above.)

The possibilities are really endless... find what works for you. Your health depends on it.

Our bodies don't use vitamins consumed in artificial form very efficiently. In fact, the health benefits associated with vitamins are only gained if you eat them in the food in which they originally came. There are no significant health benefits associated with taking a vitamin supplement. If you're not eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, you're depriving yourself of the nutrients you need to be healthy. For your own sake, make it a priority to find ways to incorporate veggies into your diet every day.
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Old 04-12-2009, 01:24 AM   #8
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Have you tried veggie juices such as V8?Maybe this would work for you since you dont like raw veggies.I think they also have a veggie/fruit combo juice.Just an idea.
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