Do Seniors Need to Take Vitamins?

senior-vitaminNobody is immune to aging. We’re all familiar with how the more advanced in age we become, the weaker and more vulnerable our body gets.  One option we have to help protect ourselves from the adverse effects of aging is vitamins. In this post, we’ll examine some of the vitamins that every elderly person should get enough of and why.

Vitamin D

The older one gets, the weaker one’s bones become. This of course means that the risk of suffering from fractures significantly increases. Vitamin D has conclusively been proven to reduce the risk of bone breakage and fracturing among the elderly. Lack of sufficient vitamin D also contributes to muscle degeneration and consequently general body weakness which could eventually lead to disability.

With regard to the above, some parts of the body that take the most beating include the hands and knees. The good news is that the negative effects of vitamin D deficiency can easily be corrected. Basically, what the affected individual needs to do is consistently take vitamin D for a period of about 5 months, and they will begin to see significant changes in muscle and joint strength.

Vitamin B12

Another area of the body that is affected by old age is the brain. It usually begins with slight memory loss which may then progress to complete dementia.  Alzheimer’s Disease is also quite common among aging persons and in some cases it can commence early on, when a person is in their 40s.

Most conditions that result from old age have detectable symptoms, which makes it easier to tackle them early on. Vitamin B12 is one of the most powerful weapons in the fight against mental degradation. According to medical experts, the earlier a person starts treating their symptoms with vitamin B12, the better. In fact, if the symptoms are comprehensively dealt with within 6 months after they start to show, the condition will have a much smaller chance of developing into something more severe.

Vitamin B12 is also effective for depression, which is common amongst seniors living alone.   Vitamin B12 can prove quite helpful in the alleviation of mental anguish because it facilitates the production of serotonin which is the neuro-chemical responsible for making people feel happy and relaxed.

Sleep and rest, in general, are essential for senior citizens. The hormone that helps make it possible for people to get a proper sleep is known as melatonin. The older one gets, the harder it becomes for the body to produce this hormone. Vitamin B12 aids in the process of melatonin production.

Vitamin C

With old age also comes a weakened immune system. As a result, the elderly have an increased risk of falling ill than younger people. Vitamin C is one of the best immune system boosters on the planet. An increased intake of vitamin C when suffering from a cold will significantly reduce its severity and speed up healing.

As mentioned, the skin also takes quite a beating when old age sets in. It becomes more vulnerable to damage caused by the sun, increasing the likelihood of cancer developing. When applied on the skin, vitamin C may offer protection from the damaging ultraviolet rays. But it’s not just the skin that can benefit from vitamin C’s anti-cancer properties. Extensive research has shown that vitamin C also reduces the likelihood of DNA and cellular mutation occurring within the body. In addition, it also blocks the synthesis of carcinogenic compounds.

Creating a Routine for Taking Vitamins

To make vitamins a part of your life, you can often include them as part of your daily routine.  If you take medications, you can include the vitamin intake at that time.  Otherwise, it can be part of your breakfast ritual.  When selecting which vitamins to take, seniors should consult a professional.  Seniors can discuss their options if they receive nursing care, or with a doctor during a scheduled visit.

For More Information

Here is some additional reading on the benefits of a selection of common vitamins:

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