Over 50? You Might Not Be Getting Enough of These Two Vital Vitamins

Feeling weak and totally exhausted are just two of the side effects.

By Maria Masters, Mar 16, 2019

Prevention | There are a lot of great things that come with age, like wisdom and more freedom (hello, retirement!).

But there are also things that become more challenging, like absorbing certain nutrients.

Chief among them: vitamin D (a major immune system bolsterer) and vitamin B12, which helps regulate our metabolism and keeps us energized, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Older adults often experience a decrease in the production of stomach acid, which can make it harder to absorb vitamin B12, explains Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, author of the Belly Fat Diet for Dummies.

Coming up short on the nutrient can lead to fatigue and weakness, and has been positively associated with cognitive decline, according to the NIH.

The body also becomes less efficient at converting sunlight into vitamin D, Palinski-Wade says.

Not getting enough of the nutrient can put your bones at risk of becoming weak and soft, and the odds of this happening are even more likely for older folks.

“After menopause, women experience a drop off in certain hormones that accelerate bone loss,” Palinski-Wade notes. With Age, Women Become Smarter Than Men: Study

The best way to help ward off nutritional shortcomings (and the potential health consequences) is to add more foods rich in D and B12 to your diet.

Here, easy-to-make options that you can fit into your daily meals and snack times.

Breakfast: Whole eggs 

Per large egg: 10% DV B12, 10% DV vitamin D

Sure, egg whites are a low-fat, low-calorie food, but if you remove the yolk, you’re also tossing out a healthy dose of both vitamin D and B12.

That’s why we recommend eating the entire egg (sans shell).

You can also hard-boil a dozen at the beginning of the week for easy morning munching. Read more. 

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