A lot of men are experiencing a nutrition crisis that they’re unaware of – most are overfed but undernourished. And while we all know how vital vitamins and minerals are, most of us underestimate its effects on our health. But what are the most important nutrients for the average man?
Vitamin C and E
Men should eat foods that are rich in vitamin C and E since these 2 are rich in antioxidants. These can boost a person’s immune system and give an extra level of energy to help people remain physically active longer. While antioxidant rich foods are beneficial for both sexes, it’s doubly important for men to get their daily dose of vitamins C and E to maintain good prostate health. Eating 6 to 8 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables every day is ideal.
With all that scary talk about skin cancer making the rounds, it’s no wonder that people are wary of the sun. However, people with naturally darker skin and those 50 years old and above should make sure that they’re getting their daily dose of vitamin D. A recent research showed that a 1/3 of American men, even young, healthy bucks living in sunshiny states, aren’t getting the recommended intake of 600 IUs. A vitamin D deficiency often doesn’t exhibit any symptoms but sometimes manifest itself as fatigue or body aches. Aside from exposing yourself to sunlight a few minutes every day, one way to get your vitamin D fix is to swap that chicken breast for a small piece of wild salmon.
This nutrient is essential to keep our immune system and our vision at optimal levels. To add more of this vitamin into your diet, go for orange, red and yellow vegetables. Add peppers to your omelet or munch on carrot sticks. Be creative and find delicious ways to incorporate more of those brightly colored vegetables in your dishes, especially since most of the time you’re only getting half of the vitamin A you require.
Potassium is a key component in helping muscles contract and in controlling blood pressure. Men need about 4,700 mg of potassium everyday but only get half of that. Luckily, fruits like avocadoes and bananas are rich in potassium. A bake potato and a cup of white beans can also augment your potassium intake.
Men 19-50 years old should get about 38 grams of fiber per day, but most would only be able to eat 15g. While it might seem like a tall order to get your daily fiber fix, remember that fiber helps with digestion, keeps your heart healthy, controls cholesterol levels and protects you from developing diabetes and high blood pressure. Having fruits instead of chips for snacks is an easy way to introduce more fiber in your diet. Eating more nuts, beans and vegetables is also a good idea.
Most men would think they have this area covered, but not all proteins are the same. While red meat is an easy source of protein, substituting it with leaner cuts like chicken, turkey or fish will give you the protein you need but without the fat.
Proper nutrition is not just for people who’re interesting in losing or maintaining weight, it’s also about getting the essential nutrients you need to avoid health problems.