Why 55% of consumers don’t prioritize vitamins

GERMANY - 2020/04/30: In this photo illustration a small plate filled with differently colored medical capsules, some capsules separated, a white spoon next to it, is displayed on a white table. (Photo Illustration by Frank Bienewald/LightRocket via Getty Images)
GERMANY - 2020/04/30: In this photo illustration a small plate filled with differently colored medical capsules, some capsules separated, a white spoon next to it, is displayed on a white table. (Photo Illustration by Frank Bienewald/LightRocket via Getty Images) /

Food is the primary source of vitamins and minerals for the body to function correctly. But lifestyle and technology have changed people’s eating habits, resulting in many Americans having nutritional deficits.

Find out the challenges people face that reduce the priority of taking vitamins and ways to overcome them.

Some of the challenges people face when it comes to taking vitamins

1. Side Effects of Vitamins

Vitamins are generally safe but have minor side effects, especially if taken with prescriptions or before surgery. A significant number of people miss their daily vitamin dose because of this.

People generally take vitamins B, C and D to fill in the gaps in health nutrition can’t supply. Unlike the first two, there are limited food sources for vitamin D. Exposure to the sun helps the body create this compound, but not everyone goes out for a morning walk or jog. The result is a deficiency in almost half of the Americans who don’t take supplements.

Vitamin D supplementation helps but has side effects, like nausea, weight loss, disorientation and kidney damage. It also interacts with anticonvulsants and cholesterol drugs. Your doctor can offset these by adjusting or splitting the dosage or switching to a different formulation — for instance, from capsules to beverages or chewables.

Most supplements can be taken without prescriptions. But consult your doctor if you’re on multiple vitamins or meds to know which ones to avoid taking simultaneously.

2. Pill Fatigue

Pill fatigue happens when you’re prescribed long-term medications and stop taking them after several months. You lose the motivation to adhere to your treatment plan because you feel overwhelmed with the number and frequency of needing to take prescriptions. Deliberate or not, nonadherence often leads to flare-ups, withdrawals and health complications.

It’s prevalent in people with comorbidities who take several daily pills, including vitamins. Pill fatigue is also associated with side effects. As some supplements can make you feel worn out, depressed, weak and sleepy, alternative ways to counter these outcomes are helpful.

Some healthy methods are physical activities and spending time outdoors or in nature. Enjoying the various elements of the park, like walking trails, water features, entertainment and public art displays, can stimulate vitamin D and put you in a better mood.

3. Forgetfulness

One minor but impactful reason people don’t prioritize vitamins is they simply forget about them. It’s an issue among older people with short-term memory loss. Noncompliance with doctor-prescribed supplements can lead to deficiency and possible hospital admissions.

You can solve this concern in several ways. Set daily vitamin alarms on the phone or subscribe to reminder services for a small fee. Keep your vitamins in visible areas, like on top of the dining table or beside the refrigerator, so you don’t miss them.

4. Ineffectiveness

An analysis found exercise to be 1.5 times more effective at minimizing symptoms of depression, stress and anxiety than medication or therapy. The observable changes in health and mood following a few days of exercise can motivate you to stick with it.

Meanwhile, improvements in mood and well-being when taking natural remedies for depression, such as vitamins C, B or D, are sometimes unnoticeable. It makes you doubt whether they’re effective or not.

If you’re diagnosed with vitamin deficiency, keep a symptom journal. Track its effectiveness by documenting symptoms every day. At the end of the period, ask your doctor to redo a blood test to determine whether your specific vitamin levels have improved.

5. Bad Weather

Believe it or not but weather conditions have an impact on when people prioritize supplements. It explains why people boost their immunity and prioritize vitamins C foods and supplements during cold and flu season.

For a similar purpose, good weather also promotes healthy habits. A survey revealed that 45% of respondents tend to take vitamins D, C, B, A and iron during summer. Hotter months also make them more likely to exercise, eat nutritious foods and look after their health.

The faster rate of metabolism and exhaustion experienced during the scorching season affect your skin and body condition. Taking your daily dose of vitamins is necessary.

6. Costly

Many people don’t prioritize vitamins because they’re expensive. The notion that costly vitamins are better than cheap ones isn’t always true. But since it’s how they’re marketed, you’ll naturally think brand vitamins are more effective and safe.

Americans spend almost $36 billion on dietary supplements, including vitamins that promise better sleep, healthier weight and glowing skin. This number can be reduced if you choose cheaper brands with good quality. For this, learning how to read the label is critical.

How do you know if a brand is of quality with its label? Look for recommended dietary allowances (RDAs) and choose options with more vitamins than fillers like flavorings, sweeteners and artificial colors.

Taking the Right Vitamins To Promote Overall Health

If you’re on the go or too busy to think about what to eat, you instinctively reach for what’s convenient, affordable and easy to grab — like fast foods and unhealthy take-outs. These foods are rich in fats, salt and sugar. They merely satiate your hunger but don’t nutritionally replenish your body, leading to deficiencies.

Getting all your dietary needs from food is possible, but this requires meal planning and conscious efforts in picking what to eat. If this is challenging for you, supplementation may be an option. But talk to your doctor first to avoid medication interactions and side effects. Stay on the safe side by getting your doctor’s advice.

Next. 8 top vitamin C-rich foods you should be eating to reduce inflammation. dark