The winter months have finally started to set in, bringing with them the dreaded dark days and infestations of colds and flu. Not to mention the widespread concern about COVID-19. It is more than ever an important time to take care of our body as it weaves its way through the change of seasons. Beauty starts from the inside out and there is nothing like a natural glow. Vitamins are essential in helping body and mind stay healthy throughout the winter. However, we must stress that taking supplements is not a substitute for a balanced lifestyle – they should be taken in addition to a regular healthy routine.
The amount of supplements supported can seem overwhelming. We have compiled a list of the most vital vitamins needed to continue living fully:
Vitamin C and zinc
Vitamin C supports your immune system and is now more crucial than ever while living a pandemic and battling the lingering sniffles of freshers’ flu! Statistically proven to prevent disease – with a supposed 23% reduction in symptom severity – why wouldn’t you try it? Zinc is less known for its immune support, but studies have suggested that zinc also decreases the duration and severity of the common cold within 24 hours.
Due to the dismal darkness it still does in Manchester, we are unable to synthesize enough natural sunlight. We therefore suggest taking vitamin D in the winter. It helps reduce feelings of fatigue and lethargy that we tend to associate with winter, yes that’s right – it’s not just you! This is especially important for people with seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Taking vitamin D supplements is incredibly beneficial for our mental health and has even been shown to reduce the risk of depression.
With the rise of veganism, vitamin B12 has become the new discourse in the city. Found in animal products like fish, meat, poultry, eggs and milk – Vitamin B12 is almost completely absent from a vegan diet. This can cause fatigue as B12 is used in cell division and metabolism. It should also not be taken as a pill. There are also many types of nutritional yeast that can be sprinkled on top of meals if taking the pill is a little too intimidating.
Vitamin B complex
College students are known to drink exorbitant amounts and eat a full diet of pot noodles and chicken nuggets – who knew? This obviously has an impact on our body, so it is recommended that taking eight B vitamins (as one pill) can help maintain the intake of nutrients that you might otherwise be lacking.
Milk Thistle and Probiotics
As the holiday season quickly approaches, we need to start preparing to eat A LOT. In order to avoid mildly bothersome stomach issues (eek!), Milk thistle is extremely popular for relieving stomach aches. Probiotics, a healthy bacteria that supports your gut health, are also recommended. Probiotics can also be found in many types of foods such as yogurt and miso, so if you can incorporate any of these food groups into your Christmas meal, let’s go for an easy trick!
Iron deficiency (anemia) is very common in young people and can lead to fatigue and fainting. Many foods contain iron, such as spinach and red meat, but supplements can provide this extra support to help keep hemoglobin production functioning normally. So, if you suffer from a general lack of energy, or especially anemia, be careful not to overlook the benefits of taking an iron supplement. Get that extra energy to thrive throughout Exam Season!