Supplements vs. Whole Foods

Supplements can replace the vitamins and minerals in the body, but can’t replicate all the nutrients and benefits of whole foods such as fruits and vegetables, which lower risk of many diseases, including heart diseases, stroke, diabetes and cancer.
Some of the benefits of obtaining micro-nutrients from whole foods over dietary supplements are:
  • Whole foods come along with variety of other nutrients. Such as a citrus fruit which provides vitamin C plus other essential nutrients such as potassium, folate, calcium, and variety of phytochemicals. A vitamin C supplement lacks these other micronutrients.
  • Whole grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes, are a good source of dietary fibre. This is very important in prevention of diseases such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, and it can also help manage constipation.
  • Fruits and vegetables have phytochemicals in them, which may help protect you against cancer, heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure.


Who needs supplements?
If you have a vitamin or mineral deficiency, such as iron deficiency, conditions such osteoporosis, then taking a supplement is required. Nutrition guidelines also recommend supplements or use of fortified foods in addition of eating a variety of different foods during pregnancy. Your health care provider should recommend this to you.

Posted by: SSG