I have been asked this question a few times over the last couple of weeks, and thought it warranted a blog post about on it, as there seems to be quite a lot of confusion.
The simple answer is no. Supplements are just what their name suggests – supplementation for your diet. They do not replace anything, and there is often very little point in take supplements unless you have a good diet, high in fibre, vitamins, minerals, healthy fats and protein.
Supplementation is used for:
- Adding large amounts of a specific nutrient to your diet for specialzied diets (e.g bodybuilders who want lots of protein but strict calorie control, or vegans who may struggle to get enough protein or vitamin B12).
- Boost nutrient intake to allow your body to remain healthy with a modern lifestyle (increased pollutants, toxins and reduced nutritional value of food all result in a higher demand for nutrients).
- Allow your body to heal and repair quickly from intese exercise, or help performance during exercise.
- Cost effective – especially when it comes to omega-3’s where fish are getting expensive (and also higher in heavy metals).
It is wrong to think that because you are taking a strong multivitamin you don’t have to eat your vegetables, nothing can replace food.