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Are You Missing These Nutrients?

By Sara Butler

Most people understand the building blocks of a healthy diet. You need protein, fat, and carbohydrates in order for your body to function at its best. But what about other nutrients that can be a little more difficult to keep tabs on? Studies have found that people often don't get enough fiber, potassium, and calcium in their daily diets and that can take a toll. Here's what you need to know about these missing nutrients and what you can do to ensure you're getting what your body needs to function optimally.

Calcium

Calcium is an important nutrient. Your body needs it to build healthy and strong bones, yes, but that's not all. Your body also needs calcium in order for nerves and muscles to function, for the blood vessels to stay healthy, and for hormones to be balanced. Steady levels of calcium in the diet are crucial.

If you aren't getting enough calcium, milk isn't the only source to reach for in order to up your daily dose. In fact, many different types of foods are full of calcium. Tofu is one plant-based option, as is bok choy, broccoli, and kale. Chia seeds are also a great option since they're easy to throw into foods such as oatmeal, smoothies, or yogurt.

Fiber

Fiber is important. It does work to help you feel fuller for longer but also plays an important role as a vehicle for a healthy microbiome in your gut. Eating enough fiber reduces your risk for heart disease, which is why getting the 15 grams you need each day is essential.

To up the fiber content in your diet, reach for whole grains, beans, lentils, and legumes. But don't forget to drink plenty of water with them and not ramp up the fiber in your diet too quickly. Otherwise, there could be some unpleasant side effects.

Potassium

If you don't eat enough vegetables and fruits, then you may be suffering from a lack of potassium in your diet. Potassium helps your body to maintain an important electrolyte balance and also helps to fuel muscles. Without enough of it, you could suffer muscle cramps.

Bananas a the most famous source of potassium but they're not the only food to turn to. You can up potassium in your diet by adding beans, spinach, avocados, and sweet potatoes to your diet.

Make sure you're getting enough nutrients to stay healthy!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Des Peres, Mo.

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