Maylin Rodriguez-Paez, RNWe’re not big fans of “dieting”, but we know that many people out there follow them.
So if you're following a specific diet plan or if you know someone who is, this post may help you out big time.
Why? Because no diet is perfect, and some can even lead to nutrient deficiencies.
Now we’re definitely not here to judge your diet, but we do want to give you a few tips that’ll help you make the best of it.
So, below we’ll explore some of the more common nutrient deficiencies that have been associated with popular diets. Ready?
Don’t Forget your Foundational SupplementsBefore we dig into the specifics, let’s review some basic 101-type information.
If you’ve ever wondered which supplements can benefit just about anyone, wonder no more. Almost everybody can benefit from taking these key nutrients:
Now let’s get to the specific diets now, shall we?
Supplements for Paleo DietersThe Paleo diet mimics a hunter-gatherer diet. It’s big on meat.
Now, red meat is not exactly the easiest food to digest. This is especially true once you hit middle age. During this time, the production of stomach acids and digestive enzymes can decrease, making it more difficult to digest that fat, juicy steak.
For this reason, people following the Paleo diet should definitely consider digestive enzymes. In particular, they should look for products that contain proteases and lipases. These can help to break down the protein and fats consumed during your meal, making indigestion less likely.
Yes, you can have your steak and eat it too, but just don’t forget your digestive enzymes. ;-)
Supplements for VegetariansVegetarians can often boast a good bill of health, but they may be at risk for certain nutritional deficiencies. Yes, we used the word “may” there for a reason!
According to one review, 25% of the vegetarians were deficient in iodine,1 an important nutrient required for thyroid and breast health. Other common deficiencies include zinc, iron, and B12.2-4
Vegetarians may also be missing out on the benefits of L-carnitine and carnosine. Both nutrients are typically found in meat and are very important anti-aging nutrients.
Carnosine protects against glycation, a process that accelerates aging, while carnitine promotes heart health. Luckily, both are available in supplement form.
Supplements for Raw DietersRaw dieters eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, but they may not be getting enough calories in their diet. Tough problem to have, right?
According to one study, a group of raw dieters was found to be significantly underweight.5 About 30% of the women under age 45 had amenorrhea (no menstruation), a condition that is often caused by undernutrition.
Don’t get us wrong, it’s awesome when a particular diet helps people lose weight. It’s especially great if plenty of fruits and veggies are part of the menu.
The only issue is that low calorie diets may increase your risk for nutrient deficiencies. For this reason, raw dieters should definitely not skimp on their multivitamin. Get a really good one, and take it every day.
The Bottom Line:We’re certainly not bashing any particular diet here, but we do recognize that all of them have their shortcomings. So, to make the best out of yours, please make sure you’re getting the right nutrients!
- Ann Nutr Metab. 2003;47(5):183-5.
- J Sci Food Agric. 2013 Apr 17. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.6179.
- Available at: http://vegetariannutrition.net/docs/Iron-Vegetarian-Nutrition.pdf. Accessed June 5th 2013.
- Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Jul;78(1):131-6.
- Ann Nutr Metab. 1999;43:69–79
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