However, men’s diets can often be lacking in certain nutrients. “A quarter of men are deficient in vitamin D, yet only one in ten takes a vitamin D supplement as recommended in many countries, ” says Dr Ruxton. As an alternative to a comprehensive multivitamin, she says it’s worth targeting these specific vitamins and minerals:

  • Vitamin A for skin and eye health.
  • Vitamin D with regard to optimal immunity.
  • Magnesium regarding muscle function and preventing fatigue.
  • Potassium for normal blood pressure.
  • Selenium intended for its powerful antioxidant properties and cell protection.

Registered nutritionist Rhiannon Lambert, the author of  The Science of Nutrition , insists a balanced and varied diet should negate the need for a dietary supplement.   However , she says, for adults living in the UK, a daily 10-microgram calciferol supplement taken between September and April when sun exposure is low can help avoid deficiency.

“Alongside vitamin D, women who are pregnant or trying to conceive are advised in order to take folic acid, ” she adds. “If you are a vegan you should also ensure you are taking adequate vitamins, such as the vegan multivitamin, to cover deficiencies. ” In particular, look for a supplement that includes vitamin B12 which is primarily found in meat, fish plus dairy.  

What’s the difference between vitamin D2 and D3?  

Along with reinforcing the immune system, Supplement D helps keep bones, muscles and teeth healthy by regulating levels of calcium and phosphate. When it comes to supplements, it is typically available as either vitamin D2 or vitamin D3 – but what are the key differences?  

Vitamin D2 is known as ergocalciferol and is found within plants plus fungi, making it suitable for vegetarians and vegans. Supplement D3 is called cholecalciferol and it is found in animal products, including oily fish like salmon plus mackerel. Vitamin D3 will be generally thought to be more effective at improving overall supplement D levels.  

“While vitamin D2 is always derived from a vegan source, vitamin D3 is often sourced from lanolin, which comes from sheep’s wool, ” explains Alex. “Vegan-suitable versions of vitamin D3 do exist, including those derived from lichen, which is a type of algae. ” If you see D 3 in a formulation listed because vegan or even vegetarian it will likely be in this vegan-safe form.  

As mentioned above, the  NHS recommends 10 micrograms per day between Sept and 04 in the particular UK. It’s worth noting that the word microgram is sometimes written with the Greek symbol μ followed by the particular letter g (μg). It can also be expressed as International Units (IU). One microgram is equal to 40 IU. So ten micrograms associated with vitamin D is equal to 400 IU.

Which vitamins should a person not take together?

Most vitamins and minerals are safe to take together –  so long as you follow the correct advice on dosage.   “Some combinations can even boost absorption, ” says Doctor Ruxton, “such as taking vitamin C or drinking a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice with iron, getting fat-soluble nutritional vitamins (A, D, E, K) with the fat-containing meal, or zinc with a protein-rich meal. ” 

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