What is Optimal Nutrition: Learn How To Achieve Optimal Nutrition‡
Learn the benefits of multiple vitamins for maintaining optimal nutrition.‡
Optimal nutrition is eating the right combination of nutrients at the right time to achieve the best possible overall health and wellness.1It takes a carefully balanced nutrition strategy combining food and vitamin and mineral supplements to maintain optimal nutrition daily.‡
Food should be the foundation for your nutrition intake. While the benefits of multiple vitamins can help fill in any gaps, helping to support wellness on top of a healthy diet.2 ‡
Reasons such as food intolerances, health conditions, athletic or fitness demands, age, gender, and lifestyle habits mean you might not get everything you need from just food. This is where multivitamins and the benefits of multiple vitamins can support your health goals.2 ‡
Multivitamins are designed to provide essential micronutrients that may be missing from your diet. There’s often a misconception that vitamins aren't only needed for certain phases of life or health conditions, but multivitamins can be beneficial for anyone.3Keep reading to learn:
- What optimal nutrition is
- The impacts of suboptimal nutrition on health and wellness
- How cruciferous vegetables help your body detox
- The multiple vitamin benefits for overall wellness and optimal nutrition ‡
Before making changes to your diet, nutrition, and exercise routine, consult your healthcare practitioner. Always discuss any vitamin and mineral supplements you are taking or plan to take, since these may interact differently with medications and health conditions.As always, feel free to contact us with your questions about our vitamins, supplements, and other products.
What is Optimal Nutrition?
Optimal nutrition is eating the right combination of nutrients at the right time to achieve optimal health and wellness.1 The concept of optimal nutrition is different for every individual, based on age, gender, health status, athletic and fitness levels, stress, sleep patterns, food intolerances, and general lifestyle habits such as smoking, alcohol consumption, and more.1
A great deal of research has been done into what constitutes a balanced or optimal diet and the effects of a diet lacking in key nutrients or overly processed foods.4 In general, optimal nutrition relies on these 5 pillars of nutrition and dietary strategy:
Nutrient density: it’s important to think beyond the calories in the foods and beverages you consume and focus on the nutrient value. Nutrients include macronutrients (carbohydrates, fat, and protein), micronutrients (essential vitamins and minerals). The nutrient density of a food is the amount of nutrients in the food in relation to the number of calories it gives you.4
The caloric value of a food does not determine if a food is nutrient dense. High calorie foods are not necessarily bad for you and low-calorie foods are not necessarily good for you. It all comes down to the nutrients in the food. Foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans, fatty fish, eggs, and lean protein sources are examples of nutrient dense foods.4
- Diet diversity: eating a wide range of foods or a diverse diet helps support healthy gut bacteria, can support healthy weight management, and may protect against some health conditions.4
Ratio of macronutrients: your diet should provide a balance of carbohydrates, protein, and fat. These macronutrients are the main nutrients you get from food. By eating a varied and nutrient dense diet, you can likely achieve the right balance of macronutrients.4
Some diets do recommend cutting carbohydrates or increasing fat or higher levels of protein. It’s important you are not missing out on key micronutrients in these food types, causing new health symptoms such as constipation or muscle cramps, or that you are not putting undue stress on organs due to the processing of extra protein or fat.5
- Limiting highly processed foods: these foods tend to include ingredients such as artificial sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, and other additives. Highly processed foods contain few whole food ingredients. Foods in this category include soda, candy, chips, sugary cereals, factory-produced baked goods, and some boxed foods such as snack foods, pizza, and meal kits.4
Recommended amounts of micronutrients: the vitamins and minerals in the foods and beverages you consume all serve different essential functions. It’s important you get the recommended daily amounts of vitamins and minerals to support body functions, organ health, immune system health, muscle and bone health, brain health, digestive health, and more.6 ‡
Eating a nutrient dense and diverse diet generally provides you with the recommended levels of micronutrients. However, for people with food sensitivities, health conditions, athletic or performance needs, or those who struggle to eat a balanced diet, vitamin and mineral supplements can fill micronutrient gaps.2 ‡
Optimal nutrition is about more than simply ensuring adequate levels of beneficial micronutrients. It means you’re getting the right combination of nutrients to not just keep you alive but to thrive.‡
The Impacts of Suboptimal Nutrition on Health and Wellness
Suboptimal nutrition habits and patterns include over-and under-eating, not eating nutrient dense food, eating too many highly processed foods and drinks, or following a highly restrictive diet eliminating key macro and micronutrients.7
These poor nutritional habits have direct impacts on the amounts of macro and micronutrients available through diet. Many people do not realize they are missing out on vital carbohydrates, fat, protein, fiber, essential fatty acids, water, vitamins, and minerals.7
The impacts of suboptimal nutrition on health and wellness include:7
- Fatigue, low energy, and tiredness.7
- Stress, trouble focusing, and poor sleep.7
- Contribute to developing some health problem and conditions.
- Weight gain and weight-associated conditions.
The challenge with suboptimal nutrition is that it can occur in people without them knowing. For example, a diet high in processed foods, low in fruits and vegetables, or that restricts entire macronutrients can slowly cause suboptimal nutrition and the residual health and lifestyle impacts. 8
It is not always obvious that there are low circulating levels of a micronutrient. For example, measuring and detecting suboptimal levels of magnesium may go undetected because serum measurements may be normal even when levels in tissues are not. It’s possible that many cases of suboptimal magnesium levels will go undetected because serum measurements can appear normal when the body’s levels aren’t.11
An analysis of studies examining multivitamin supplementation and the effect on mood for people with no known nutrient deficiencies found that supplementation supported improvements in mood and perceived stress, especially B vitamins.11 ‡
Similar results were seen in a clinical trial where healthy adults who were given a multivitamin had noted improved moods compared to the placebo group.12 ‡
How Multivitamins May Help You Achieve Optimal Nutrition
Multivitamins may help you achieve optimal nutrition by filling in nutritional gaps created by food sensitivities, health status, athletic or fitness demands, age, gender, and lifestyle habits.2 ‡
Getting an optimal balance of nutrition is a challenge for every person. And many of us do not realize we may be low on specific micronutrients and even macronutrients. This is how multivitamins, and the benefits of multiple vitamins may support your health goals.2 ‡
Even if you don’t follow a specific dietary pattern and follow a generally healthy diet, you may still be missing your target intake for certain foods and key nutrients.13 For example, most people know they should eat at least 3-5 servings of produce a day but still don’t consume this daily recommended amount. In fact, a recent review of global vegetable consumption found that 88% of the 162 countries studied had intake below public health recommendations.14
The composition of your diet or the way food is cooked may also impact the accessibility or amount of nutrients you absorb. For example, most of the vitamin C in broccoli is lost during cooking, for all methods except for steaming.15
Because you likely use variety of food preparation techniques such as steaming, frying, boiling, roasting, baking, or eating some foods raw, the nutrient accessibility varies based on how you prepare your food on meal-to-meal basis.16
This is where a daily multivitamin specific to your age, gender, health status, and other lifestyle goals may help you get the micronutrients you need and don’t realize you’re missing, even when eating wide variety of foods with high nutrient density.2
Supporting Your Health and Wellness Goals
There are no one-size-fits-all answers for nutrition. Instead, it’s important to tailor your diet and supplements to match your individual needs. To that end, multivitamins are a great place to start if you’re trying to fill in the gaps in an otherwise nutrient-rich diet.‡
Your diet should always be the foundation - a multivitamin does not replace real food. But supplementation can be the insurance policy that supports optimal nutrition.‡
Before making changes to your diet, nutrition, and exercise routine, consult your healthcare practitioner. Always discuss any vitamin and mineral supplements you are taking or plan to take, since these may interact differently with medications and health conditions.Use our Purely For You personalized supplement plan to provide you with tailored wellness recommendations to meet your specific nutritional needs.
Remember, we are here to support you in achieving optimal personal wellness. Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with the latest news, promotions, and nutritional/lifestyle content Purely For You.
1. Krehl, W. A. “A Concept of Optimal Nutrition.” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 4, Issue 6, November-December 1956, Pages 634–641, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/4.6.634
2. Nutr, J. “Addressing nutritional gaps with multivitamin and mineral supplements.” Nutrition Journal 13, no. 72. (July 15, 2014) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4109789/
3. Do multivitamins make you healthier?: Harvard Health Publishing – Harvard Medical School. (Accessed September 14, 2021) https://www.health.harvard.edu/mens-health/do-multivitamins-make-you-healthier
4. The Definitive Guide to Healthy Eating in Real Life: Healthline.com (Accessed September 14, 2021) https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-to-eat-healthy-guide
5. Low-carb diet: Can it help you lose weight?: Mayoclinic.org (Accessed September 14, 2021) https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/low-carb-diet/art-20045831
6. 5 Essential Nutrients to Maximize Your Health: Everydayhealth.com (Accessed September 14, 2021) https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/guide-to-essential-nutrients/simple-guide-to-good-nutrition/
7. The Risks Of Poor Nutrition: Government of South Australia – SA Health. (Accessed September 15, 2021) https://www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/wps/wcm/connect/public+content/sa+health+internet/healthy+living/is+your+health+at+risk/the+risks+of+poor+nutrition
8. Forouhi, Nita G. and Nigel Unwin. “Global diet and health: old questions, fresh evidence, and new horizons.” The Lancet 393, no. 10184 (May 11, 2019): 1916-1918 https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(19)30500-8/fulltext
9. Rosanoff, Andrea, Connie M. Weaver, and Robert K. Rude. “Suboptimal Magnesium Status in the United States: Are the Health Consequences Underestimated?” Nutrition Reviews 70, no. 3 (March 2012): 153–64. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1753-4887.2011.00465.x.
10. DiNicolantonio, James J, James H O’Keefe, and William Wilson. Open Heart 5, no. 1 (January 13, 2018). https://doi.org/10.1136/openhrt-2017-000668.
11. Long, Sara-Jayne, and David Benton Psychosomatic Medicine 75, no. 2 (March 2013): 144–53. https://doi.org/10.1097/PSY.0b013e31827d5fbd.
12. White, David J., Katherine H. M. Cox, Riccarda Peters, Andrew Pipingas, and Andrew B. Scholey. “Effects of Four-Week Supplementation with a Multi-Vitamin/Mineral Preparation on Mood and Blood Biomarkers in Young Adults: A Randomised, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial.” Nutrients 7, no. 11 (October 30, 2015): 9005–17. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu7115451.
13. Misner, Bill. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 3, no. 51 (June 5, 2006): 51-55 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2129155/
14. Kalmpourtzidou, Aliki, Ans Eilander, and Elise F. Talsma. “Global Vegetable Intake and Supply Compared to Recommendations: A Systematic Review.” Nutrients 12, no. 6 (May 27, 2020). https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12061558.
15. Yuan, Gao-feng, Bo Sun, Jing Yuan, and Qiao-mei Wang. “Effects of Different Cooking Methods on Health-Promoting Compounds of Broccoli.” Journal of Zhejiang University. Science. B 10, no. 8 (August 2009): 580–88. https://doi.org/10.1631/jzus.B0920051.
16. How Cooking Affects the Nutrient Content of Foods: Healthline.com (Accessed September 15, 2021) https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/cooking-nutrient-content
‡ These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.