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Specific Lifestyle Impacts on Nutrition

By now you know that your body is an integrated whole and that to maximize health you must pay attention to the pattern of your life. Yet there are certain activities that we engage in that can present specific nutritional challenges. Use the suggestions below to determine whether your lifestyle might need specific ways to meet your nutritional needs.

If you smoke you know you should quit but there are specific nutrition generalities that apply to smokers as well, among which is vitamin C. Paying special attention to getting enough vitamin C is a good idea and presents little risk from having too much since it is water soluble.

If you are an avid exerciser you will want to make sure you’re getting enough calcium and vitamin D. Because exercise puts stress on your bones, sufficient calcium is critical for those who exercise. Vitamin D helps bones absorb calcium. The occurrence of stress fractures is, according to some research, more common in those who exercise and do not get enough nutritional calcium and vitamin D.

If you exercise a lot you’ll want to make sure you’re hydrated. The popularity of sports drinks is recommended in terms of nutritional needs for athletes because they include sodium which is lost through sweat. Unlike much of the population, more sodium is essential in otherwise healthy athletes.

Athletes often need the inclusion of more fats in their diet to meet nutritional needs because fat is used by the body to absorb vitamins and is used more by endurance athletes. Healthy fat sources such as nuts and olive oil are recommended more often than saturated fat sources such as red meat but both are frequently recommended for endurance athletes.

If you drink a lot of alcohol you can decimate your nutrition status. From vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium to thiamin, your nutritional needs are probably not being met if you’re drinking significant quantities of alcohol.

If you travel for a living you’ll want to make sure you bring along your own healthy snacks. Traveling means eating out a lot. You won’t have accurate information about the nutrition you’re getting; this can be rectified somewhat by purchasing healthy snacks to bring with you when you’re on the road.

If you have gastrointestinal problems or diseases such as Crohn’s, you might be advised to take selenium supplements. Selenium is normally not recommended for healthy adults and children so you should consult with a physician before considering taking selenium.

If you are suffering from constipation as a result of aging or being overweight, you will likely be advised to take more fiber in. This can be accomplished by adding fiber-rich foods to your diet or through the use of fiber supplements.

If you drink more than four cups of coffee a day you may need additional nutritional sources of vitamin B12. The best sources for vitamin B12 are foods that are animal products.

Your nutritional needs will vary with your stage of life and the activities that you engage in. Consider the above tips about common nutritional challenges for specific lifestyles.