Four Important Vitamins and Minerals that Fight Aging

As your body ages, good nutrition becomes even more important for living a healthy, long, and pain-free life. Certain vitamins and minerals in particular are especially important for older people. Here are four that will help aging and info on how you can get them in your diet.


Calcium
Calcium is the most important mineral for bone health; it helps maintain bone density and prevent brittle bones. As people age, especially women, their bodies lose bone density, and they’re prone to osteoporosis, broken bones, and other issues. The recommended daily intake of calcium is 1,000mg for women ages 19-50, and 1,200mg for women ages 50 and up.
Where to Get It
You can get calcium from dairy products. Fat-free yogurt and milk are especially good sources of calcium. Salmon, calcium-fortified orange juice and cereals, cheese, and tofu are other potential sources of calcium. One serving of milk has about 300mg of calcium. You can also take a 500mg supplement of calcium citrate, or a 600mg supplement of calcium carbonate daily.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are incredibly important for brain health. The fatty acids help maintain the structure of your brain, and not enough can lead to memory loss and decreased brain function. Omega-6 fatty acids aren’t good for our bodies, and they’re found in notoriously fatty foods, like processed foods. We often get too much of omega-6, and not enough omega-3, which is essential for counteracting the effects of bad fats.
Where to Get Them
You can get omega-3 fatty acids from foods like walnuts, ground flaxseed, salmon, herring, sardines, or halibut. For fish, wild-caught is better. You can also consider taking a supplement of 2,000mg of fish oil every day, and a 1,000mg supplement of combination DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosaentaenoic acid).
Potassium
Potassium is essential for fighting high blood pressure. Too much salt in your diet can raise your blood pressure and lead to damaged blood vessels. Potassium helps to stop too much salt from wreaking havoc in your body. When your kidneys try to remove salt from your system, you also lose potassium, making more potassium even more important on a high-salt diet.
Where to Get It
Potassium comes from bananas and many other fruits and vegetables. Eat about seven to nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day, and you should get enough potassium. At the same time, however, you must consume no more than 1,500mg of salt every day. There are potassium supplements, but they are not generally recommended because they can lead to heart arrhythmia or other issues.
Manganese
Manganese can help your body maintain joint cartilage, and a lack of it can lead to joint deterioration and pain. By increasing manganese in your diet, your body can repair damaged joints and prevent more damage.
Where to Get It
Manganese can come from foods like nuts, spinach, and beef. It’s unlikely that your diet will include enough manganese to really help your joints, however, so take a supplement of 5mg of manganese every day.

Jennifer Hawkins is a professional chef and health fanatic who specializes in recipes with nuts. She loves to write and blog about diet and nutrition and how it can help you live a longer, healthier life.


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