Boosting Energy and Vitality with Vitamins and Minerals
Our body needs energy for us to be able to do anything and everything! Ideally, we should be getting all the essential vitamins and minerals from the food we eat. Unfortunately, given how foods are produced and processed these days, it can be nearly impossible to get the right amounts of vitamins and minerals that our body needs daily.
Take, for example, a pot of honey. If you get it directly from the beekeeper, great! All the goodness is still intact. If you buy it from the store, it has very possibly been heat-treated, and that kills much of the beneficial goodness. So, it will still provide ‘energy’ from the sugars, but little in the way of nutritional ‘vitality.’
This is why taking supplements is often necessary. If our foods are too processed, it can lead to a vitamin or mineral deficiency. Therefore, if you are continually running out of energy, and feeling weak and/or fatigued, it is important to know what vitamins and minerals you may be lacking to boost your energy production.
Side note: It is important to make a distinction about “energy.” From a non-health and nutrition perspective, energy is a measurement of the work any particular thing can do. When applied to humans and food, this means that energy, in this sense, can be measured as the fuel contribution that each unit of food makes. This means that pure glucose and other sugars are right behind it in terms of how much energy they release per unit of volume.
This is very unhelpful when it comes to talking about “energy” in the way that most of us think about ‘energy,’ which is feeling vital and having the power and dynamism to perform at our best, physically and mentally. Most people are aware by now that consuming sugar in all, but small amounts will cause energy slumps in the short term, and major health problems in the long term.
The human body does not consume raw energy like a gasoline-fueled machine; it is much more complex than that. For the purposes of this article, when we talk about energy, we are talking about feeling energetic, as well as the fuel value of the food consumed.
Here are some of the essential vitamins and minerals your body needs to produce useful and useable energy and vitality.
CoQ10, or coenzyme Q10, is an antioxidant that is naturally produced inside the body. CoQ10 is found in every cell in your body, protecting it from oxidative damage. Without enough CoQ10, the cells won’t be able to make energy, which will make you feel tired. When your body cannot produce the amount of CoQ10 it needs, taking a supplement may be beneficial.
Some of the main food sources of CoQ10 are fish, meat, whole grains, and nuts.
B vitamins are critical for making energy because they help turn carbs into usable energy. Vitamin B12, in particular, aids the body’s transformation of the food that you eat into energy that your cells will use. Vitamin B12 also keeps your nerves and blood cells healthy, which keeps you from getting weak and tired from anemia.
Meat, fish, cheese, milk, and fortified cereals are some of the best sources of vitamin B12.
Our bodies can’t work without oxygen, and iron helps make hemoglobin, which moves oxygen around the body. Insufficient iron levels can lead to fatigue and difficulty maintaining body temperature.
A few sources are meat, seafood, spinach, oats, fortified cereals, and beans.
People know that vitamin C is important for the immune system, but new research shows that it may also help you fight fatigue. If you are an athlete or workout junkie, vitamin C raises your pain barriers and improves performance.
Good sources of vitamin C are citrus fruits, papaya, parsley, red bell peppers, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts.
Creatine is a fast-acting source of energy in the body, and taking supplements of this vitamin helps boost your energy stores. It speeds up muscle growth and helps fight various diseases, such as Parkinson’s, diabetes, and neurological diseases.
You can find creatine in red meat, pork, fish, and poultry products.
Biotin, also known as vitamin H, helps turn carbs, protein, and fat into energy and cell-building blocks. Aside from converting food into energy, biotin also helps regulate blood sugar levels and keep your hair, skin, and nails healthy.
Some of the best sources of biotin are beef liver, eggs, salmon, pork, nuts, soybeans, whole grains, and bananas.
Magnesium helps increase energy in the body by activating adenosine triphosphate (ATP). This vital mineral also aids in blood circulation and neurotransmitter function. Taking magnesium supplements can help you relax and get better sleep. When you have a good sleep, you have more vitality the next day to carry out your tasks.
You can find magnesium in dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, fish, whole grains, avocados, dark chocolate, and yogurt.
Several vitamins and minerals are essential for keeping our bodies energized. They help convert food into energy or produce hormones that the body needs. Insufficient amounts of these vitamins and minerals can lead to fatigue and weakness.
Essential vitamins and minerals are ideally obtained from natural resources. When you can’t get enough of these vitamins and minerals from the food that you eat, supplementing is suggested. Just make sure that you are aware of what each vitamin or mineral can do for your body. It is also crucial to know how much you are going to take to prevent undesirable side effects.