5 popular nutrient supplements health experts use and recommend

5 popular nutrient supplements health experts use and recommend

Supplements are a multi-billion-dollar industry, and many people take them every day to get adequate nutrients.

However, these products don’t have to be proved to be effective. As customers, we want to know which supplements are worth our attention (and money).

In a recent article published on The Conversation, the authors asked experts in public health and exercise physiology to name a supplement they take each day and why they take it.

This article shares with you the five supplements they mentioned and the most popular brand of each supplement.

All the products receive massive positive feedbacks from users.

Please note: nutrient supplements cannot replace a healthy diet and regular exercise.

Vitamin D

(Used and recommended by Graeme Close, professor of human physiology, Liverpool John Moores University)

The expert uses and recommends vitamin D because it is a peculiar vitamin in that it is synthesized in the body with the aid of sunlight. According to research, people who live in cold countries, or who spend a lot of time indoors, are at risk of vitamin D deficiency.

In addition, people with darker skin tone might have higher risk of a deficiency as melanin slows down skin production of vitamin D. It is estimated that about a billion people are deficient in this vitamin.

Vitamin D is not only critical to maintain healthy bones, but also important for the immune system, muscle function and regeneration, and mood. Besides, vitamin D is one of the cheapest supplements and is a simple deficiency to correct.

Omega 3

(Used and recommended by Haleh Moravej, senior lecturer in nutritional sciences, Manchester Metropolitan University)

The scientist uses and recommend omega 3 supplement because scientific evidence shows that omega 3 could improve brain function, prevent mood disorders and help to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

Two forms of omega 3 are very important for brain development and mental health: EPA and DHA. They can be found in fish. Another type of omega 3 – ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) – is found in plant-based foods, such as nuts and seeds, including walnuts and flax seeds.

A healthy adult should get a minimum of 250-500mg, daily. If your diet is not varied and enriched with omega 3 fatty acids, you may take some supplements.

Probiotic

(Used and recommended by Justin Roberts, senior lecturer in sport and exercise nutrition, Anglia Ruskin University)

The scientist recommends probiotic mainly because it can help people have diverse beneficial gut bacteria, which is important for physical and mental health.

Sometimes the balance of bacterial species can be disrupted by poor diet, being physically inactive and being under constant stress. One way to support the gut health is to take dietary probiotics, such as yogurt.

The scientist first came across probiotics after years of triathlon training, often experiencing gastrointestinal symptoms (e.g., nausea and stomach cramps) after training and races. He has found that taking a probiotic regularly lessens his symptoms after training and benefits his general health.

A recent study showed that taking a probiotic in the evening with food, over 12 weeks of exercise training, reduced gastrointestinal problems in novice triathletes.

Prebiotic

(Used and recommended by Neil Williams, lecturer in exercise physiology and nutrition, Nottingham Trent University)

The expert uses and recommend prebiotics because they are non-digestible carbohydrates that act as a “fertiliser” to increase the growth and activity of beneficial bacteria in the gut.

This can have positive effects on inflammation and immune function, metabolic syndrome, increase mineral absorption, reduce diarrhea and improve gut health.

The expert’s research focuses on the gut microbiota in athletes suffering from exercise-induced asthma.

In his study, the results showed that taking prebiotics for three weeks could reduce the severity of exercise-induced asthma in adults by 40%. Participants also showed improvements in eczema and allergic symptoms.

Turmeric

(Used and recommended by Simon Bishop, lecturer in public health and primary care, Bangor University)

The expert recommends turmeric, which is more familiar as an ingredient in South Asian cooking, adding an earthy warmth and fragrance to curried dishes. In recent years, turmeric has attracted attention for its potential health benefits.

Turmeric is used as a traditional remedy in many parts of Asia to reduce inflammation and help wounds heal.

Recent research suggests that curcumin, a substance in turmeric, may also help to protect against a range of diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular disease, dementia and some cancers.

The scientist takes turmeric each morning, along with his first cup of coffee (another good habit that may help live a longer life).

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