Nutritional supplements: Here's when your body necessarily needs diet supplement | Health - Hindustan Times
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Nutritional supplements: Here's when your body necessarily needs diet supplements

ByZarafshan Shiraz, New Delhi
Jun 15, 2023 01:38 PM IST

Wonder what are the factors that make diet supplements necessary? Read on to know from fitness expert

Nutritional supplements are products that contain concentrated amounts of vitamins, minerals, herbs or other beneficial substances as they are intended to supplement the diet and provide additional nutrients that may be lacking or needed in higher amounts. For the uninitiated, there is a wide range of nutritional supplements available including multivitamins, vitamin D, vitamin B12, omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics, protein powders, herbal extracts and more where each supplement is designed to address specific nutritional needs to fill nutrient gaps in the diet.

Nutritional supplements: Here's when your body necessarily needs diet supplements (Photo by Michele Blackwell on Unsplash)
Nutritional supplements: Here's when your body necessarily needs diet supplements (Photo by Michele Blackwell on Unsplash)

They can be beneficial for individuals who have specific dietary restrictions, limited food choices or nutrient deficiencies as supplements can help ensure that essential vitamins and minerals are obtained in adequate amounts. However, while supplements can provide additional nutrients, they should not be considered a substitute for a healthy diet and it is important to prioritise a balanced diet rich in whole foods including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins and healthy fats where supplements should be used to complement a healthy lifestyle, not replace it.

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IMPORTANCE OF PREVENTIVE CARE FOR A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Praveen Chirania, Founder of Muscle and Strength India, shared, “The pandemic has transformed our connections with health and nutrition, and words like wellness and immunity have taken new meaning. This demonstrates the increasing health consciousness among consumers, further triggering a shift from curative care to preventive care, for a healthier lifestyle. The signs of people having greater awareness about health concerns are the increasing focus on gyms, meditation and yoga, fitness amongst others. Today consumers have understood that proper nutrition and hydration is vital for the human body to thrive. Hence, dietary supplements are growing in popularity and are now a multi-billion dollar industry.”

CONCEPT OF WELLNESS GAINING PROMINENCE

He revealed, “The concept of wellness has been around for a long time. However, consumers now view wellness through a much broader and more sophisticated lens, encompassing not just fitness and nutrition but also overall physical and mental health and appearance. Nutrition is becoming mainstream and people are migrating to healthier choices. While the pandemic brought its challenges to the world, however, amidst all these, it made every individual more responsible towards their health. Whether it’s healthy food alternatives, gyms or personalized nutrition, consumer awareness is at an all-time high.”

FACTORS THAT MAKE DIET SUPPLEMENTS NECESSARY

Echoing that people take dietary supplements to maintain their general health, Praveen Chirania said, “Supplements are also consumed to build a strong immune system and support sports-related performance. Stress can also increase the body’s need for certain nutrients, and these can be easily obtained from supplements. It is also a well-known fact that if a body works more, it needs more nutrition as well. People who exercise or have an active lifestyle require more nutrition than people who don’t. This is the reason why you will find a lot of athletes or people who regularly exercise consume protein and vitamin supplements. This helps their bodies recover and stay healthy in the long run. Also, most importantly, as the name suggests, dietary supplements are to supplement the basic main diet and not a replacement to the daily diet.”

According to him, the rise of the health-conscious consumer has been the primary factor driving the dietary supplements market. He highlighted, “Other factors driving this market also include rising disposable incomes and improving distribution networks etc amongst others. Dietary supplements and their consumption depend on a lot of factors like age, physical activity, pre-existing nutritional levels, pre-existing diseases etc. Ultimately, consult experts before going in for diet supplements as professional guidance ensures good judgement about the nature of dietary supplement that needs to be consumed. Given that the market is flooded with fake supplements, hence making the distinction between genuine and fake diet supplements is vital. One should buy from genuine dealers of reputed brands because investing in health is top priority.”

The fitness expert concluded, “Maintaining good health and being fit is a modern-day need among all generations today. If the pandemic has taught us one thing, it’s that physical and mental health will remain a priority for millions of people across the globe for a long time to come. There is no doubt that the health and wellness industry has increased the customer’s attention and interest. The industry is witnessing phenomenal growth and is only poised to rise in the near future.”

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