Why Do Men and Women Need Different Supplements?
Men and women have unique nutrient needs, therefore separate amounts of certain vitamins and minerals, as well as some completely different vitamins are needed for each gender. The Recommended Daily Allowance, or RDA, are guidelines set forth by the Food and Nutrition Board that determine adequate intake of essential nutrients for healthy adults based on gender and age.
Following the RDA guidelines is important as the guidelines are founded in science and give a solid foundation for those looking to optimize their well-being.
When looking for the right supplements to take, one size does not fit all. Men and women not only have varying goals when it comes to wellness, but they also have different health concerns based on age and personal health.
For example, women tend to lose bone density at a faster rate than men after age 30 and may benefit from a supplement that provides more calcium. Men, on the other hand, tend to prioritize muscle growth.
One of the most important things to consider when deciding to add certain supplements to your diet is what vitamins and minerals your body actually needs. Taking supplements for the sake of taking supplements isn’t going to support your wellness or be effective in any way. Knowing exactly what supplements you personally need to improve your well-being should be your goal prior to taking any supplements.
Keep reading to find out how you can know for sure.
What Exactly is a Supplement?
Dietary supplements are intended to add to or supplement the diet and are different from conventional food. Generally, to the extent a product is intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent diseases, it is a drug, even if it is labeled as a dietary supplement. Supplements are ingested and come in many forms, including tablets, capsules, soft gels, gel caps, protein powder, bars, gummies, and liquids.
Common supplements include:
- Vitamins (such as multivitamins or individual vitamins like vitamin D and vitamin C)
- Minerals (such as calcium, magnesium, and iron)
- Botanicals or herbs (such as echinacea and ginger)
- Botanical compounds (such as caffeine and curcumin)
- Essential amino acids (such as tryptophan and glutamine)
- Live microbials (commonly referred to as “probiotics”)
Supplements can help you meet your daily requirements for essential nutrients. Making sure you are investing in quality supplements should be a first concern for anyone considering supplementation.
The FDA has established good manufacturing practices (GMPs) that companies must follow to help ensure the identity, purity, strength, and composition of their dietary supplements. These practices help to ensure the safety of the supplements you are taking.
Why Are Supplements Important to Men’s Health?
There are many factors to consider when thinking about incorporating supplements into your daily routine. As a man, there are various reasons someone might want to supplement certain vitamins and minerals for optimal wellness. Here are some things to consider when thinking about why supplements are valuable to men’s health:
A healthy diet and a good amount of exercise or an active lifestyle are key to leading a life where your wellness is treated as a priority. That being said, there can still be nutritional gaps with eating a balanced diet.
Specific Health Concerns
Certain health conditions might make targeted supplementation more of a concern for reaching optimal wellness. For example, cardiovascular disease, joint problems, immune health, or nutritional deficiencies might lead to the need for certain vitamins or minerals to be supplemented.
While supplements cannot cure or treat prostate-related issues, they may be able to lessen the symptoms associated with prostate problems, generally by reducing inflammation.
Men, on average, participate in leisure sports activities more often than women, and for longer periods of time. Many men taking part in these sports, and things like weight training, are looking to improve their performance as well as their muscle tone and overall fitness. Some protein supplements may provide these muscle-building benefits to men.
Although men are less likely to develop osteoporosis than women, as men age, bone health becomes more important. Supplements can help provide protection against weakening and brittle bones.
Men are more likely to develop heart disease than women and develop it at an earlier age. Guarding against the symptoms of heart disease with supplementation may help provide a better opportunity to reach one’s optimal well-being.
Supplementation isn’t just for men, there are many specific benefits for men in taking supplements. Which supplements to take can be the question standing in the way of building a proactive supplement routine. Keep reading to learn more about how to figure out which supplements are best for you.
Knowing Which Supplements to Take
A lot of people who eat a healthy diet do get the nutrients they need to meet the RDA guidelines, however, more people do not.
If you have a restricted diet, are pregnant, have any chronic or genetic conditions, are over 50 years of age, do not consume a lot of fruits and vegetables every day, are overweight, or do not maintain an active lifestyle, you probably have a nutritional deficiency that supplementation could eliminate.
Finding out For Sure
There are two surefire ways to find out if you have a nutritional deficiency. One is a blood test, the other is a genetic test. Taking both of these tests will identify not only nutrient deficiencies in your body but also genetic mutations that may be inhibiting you from reaching your full potential.
10X Blood Test
The 10X Blood test analyzes over 70 biomarkers in your blood and provides you with a comprehensive report tailored to you, detailing exactly what is missing in your diet. There are three important human elements that the blood test focuses on, they include hormone optimization, glucose control, and nutrient deficiencies. If any of these three elements is imbalanced, you will have a difficult time reading your optimal wellness.
Hormone Optimization: When your hormones are not in balance, you can experience a vast range of issues. From weight gain to mood swings to fatigue and more — hormones regulate these aspects and help you feel like you. If you have a hormone imbalance, hormone replacement therapy may be an appropriate way to get things back on track.
Glucose or Blood Sugar Control: Your body uses glucose, a type of sugar, for energy. If the blood test reveals that your blood sugar is not in balance, recommendations for vitamins and minerals that can help control blood sugar will be given to you.
Nutrient Deficiencies: Without the proper key vitamins and minerals present in your body, you cannot function properly. Finding out what vitamins and minerals your body needs is imperative to establishing a supplement routine that will be effective.
Although you may be experiencing some symptoms of a nutrient deficiency, like brain fog, fatigue, digestive health issues, and subtle aches and pains, most deficiencies do not give glaring signs. Deficiencies are not something that you can diagnose on your own, neither are hormone imbalances or glucose levels.
A blood test can determine these elements and provide a path for you to begin supplementation that is right for you and your body.
10X Genetic Test
The 10X Genetic Test provides you with the most complete and accurate snapshot of your current well-being. Our genetic test focuses on the 5-MTHFR gene that controls the body’s methylation cycle. 44% of the world’s population has a mutation within these five genes, leading to nutritional deficiencies that can deprive your body of what it needs to perform correctly.
The genetic test is easy to take–we send you a testing kit, you use the provided cotton swab to take a saliva sample from the inside of your cheek and mail it back to us in the envelope we provide you. Our experts analyze your sample and supply you with an extensive report, along with recommendations for supplementation that can help you achieve your wellness goals.
Your results are personal to you because they are based on your DNA.
By completing both a blood and genetic test through 10X Health, you are covering every possibility in finding out how your body is functioning, and what it is missing that is preventing it from working its best. The blood and genetic tests will support you in reaching your highest level of wellness by giving you personalized results and recommendations. Knowing this information gives you the knowledge to choose only the supplements that you need and will benefit from.
Most Common Dietary Supplements for Men
Some vitamins and minerals are more likely to be deficient in men than women, so it is important to choose supplements that are most beneficial for men’s health. Of course, the blood and genetic testing mentioned above will give you a personalized approach to supplementation, there are some vitamins and minerals that prove most important to men’s wellness.
The following supplements should be considered by any man who is looking to introduce supplementation to his routine.
If you’re a man, you need zinc. Zinc is a mineral essential for many bodily functions, including the production of testosterone, the primary male hormone. Testosterone is responsible for developing male characteristics, such as muscle mass and strength, bone density, and maintaining sexual health.
As men age, the amount of zinc in the body decreases leading to decreased production of testosterone. Therefore, a zinc supplement can be helpful in keeping testosterone levels where they should be.
Two other important benefits of zinc are improved immune function and helping heal damaged cells. Zinc lozenges have actually been shown to shorten the duration of a cold when taken within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms. Couple with vitamin C for ultimate immune system benefits.
Zinc also plays a major role in regulating every phase of the wound healing process; ranging from membrane repair, oxidative stress, coagulation, inflammation and immune function, tissue re-epithelialization, angiogenesis, to fibrosis/scar formation.
Vitamin D Supplements
Men are at a higher risk for Vitamin D deficiency than women, so it is essential that if you are a man, you’re getting enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D is essential for strong bones and teeth and helps the body absorb calcium. It also affects muscle function, immune function, and cell growth.
Most people get the vitamin D they need from exposure to sunlight. However, some people may not get enough vitamin D because they have limited sun exposure or wear sunscreen or clothing blocking UV rays. People with dark skin also may need more sun exposure to make enough vitamin D.
Epidemiological data have shown that vitamin D deficiency is also associated with erectile dysfunction. Male erectile function depends on many factors and can be perceived as a health indicator of the body. Vitamin D is crucial for overall wellness in men.
Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements
Many of the processes in the human body require omega-3 fatty acids to work, but our bodies can’t make them on their own. This makes them essential. Omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke and improve cognitive function and joint health.
For men, because omega-3 fatty acids help support healthy triglyceride levels, researchers think that omega-3 fatty acids could help with erectile dysfunction caused by arterial hardening.
Omega-3 fatty acids are especially advantageous for men as they help increase the levels of essential nutrients in the body and promote the healthy functioning of various critical systems. Not only do they help ward off heart disease and stroke, as mentioned before, but they also help regulate blood flow pressure, maintain healthy circulation, promote eye health, and help support a positive mental outlook.
Probiotics can help men meet their wellness goals by ensuring that their well-being is well-rounded, with especially strong digestive health. Men can reap some very specific benefits from probiotics, including maintaining prostate health, promoting reproductive health, boosting exercise performance, supporting weight loss, and alleviating anxiety.
One very important advantage for men taking probiotics is the benefit against male-specific digestive issues. Men experience chronic acid reflux more often than women. This may be because estrogen helps prevent chronic reflux in women.
Men’s probiotics can help in the treatment of male-specific gut issues like consistent acid reflux along with their other benefits.
Vitamin B12 Supplements
Vitamin B12 is important for men’s health, as it helps to produce red blood cells and keep the nervous system functioning properly. Also, without enough B vitamins, your body can’t process your DNA properly, which can turn genes on or off. These gene changes can raise your risk for cancer and other problems.
Some other perks of Vitamin B12 include supporting proper nerve function, possibly helping male fertility, and promoting heart health, along with more research being completed on improving energy levels and aiding cognitive health.
Men need more magnesium each day than women do, which leads to men having more magnesium deficiencies than women. Although a magnesium deficiency does not cause problems short-term, a chronic magnesium deficiency can lead to fatigue, numbness and tingling, abnormal heart rhythms, as well as provide a higher risk of developing high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular health issues.
Magnesium can improve testosterone production in older adults, which helps to decrease the threat of diabetes. Cardiovascular health, better sleep, and improved physical performance are all benefits associated with having the proper amount of magnesium in the body as well.
Added benefits also include improved bone strength, exercise recovery, and mental health.
Vitamin K2 Supplements
Vitamin K is a nutrient well known for its essential role in blood clotting, but it also impacts a range of bodily functions, including cardiovascular and cognitive health. Because men are twice as likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease than women, incorporating supplements that support heart health is vital to men’s wellness. One study also found that vitamin K2 reduces the risk of prostate cancer by a large percentage as well.
When vitamin K2 is taken with vitamin D, some amazing benefits are produced. The combination of these two vitamins ensures that calcium is absorbed easily and reaches the bone mass, preventing arterial calcification. This calcification is what leads to heart attacks, making the combination of these two vitamins extremely valuable to men in particular.
How to Improve the Effectiveness of Your Supplements
Now that you know how to find out what supplements your body personally needs, and what supplements are commonly used for male wellness, learning how to improve the effectiveness of your supplements is useful.
Bioavailability is an important term to remember. It refers to the percentage of the substance, such as the vitamin or mineral, which is absorbed into the bloodstream. The higher the bioavailability, the larger the dosage that makes it into the bloodstream.
To maximize the bioavailability of the supplements you are taking, here are some helpful tactics:
- Know when to take supplements with food. Having food in your system helps to maximize the absorption of the vitamins and minerals in the supplements, so establishing a routine of taking supplements after your first meal of the day is a solid way to get the most out of the supplement(s) you are taking.
Keep in mind that some supplements, like iron, should be taken prior to eating anything.
Some other supplements should be taken with food, but not in combination with each other. Reaching out to your doctor prior to starting a supplement routine should be done.
- Be aware of drinking caffeine with supplements. Caffeine can interfere with the body’s ability to absorb calcium, manganese, zinc and copper, as well as vitamins A,C, and B. Waiting an hour after taking supplements to consume any caffeine is a good habit to follow.
- Learn how your supplements work with other medications you may be taking. Some vitamins and minerals can interact with medications making one or the other less effective. Talking with your doctor about possible interactions is recommended.
- Know how and where to store your supplements. Where and how you store your supplements can affect their potency. For example, probiotics should be shipped cold and stored in the refrigerator.
Knowing how and when to take your supplements allows them to work better for you. Researching the bioavailability of supplements ensures that your body is absorbing what you intend for it to absorb. Supplements can improve so much; giving them the chance to work correctly is key to reaping the benefits of them.
A Balanced Diet & Exercise Are Imperative to an Effective Supplement Routine
Taking all the supplements you think you need to achieve optimal wellness will do nothing unless your supplement routine is accompanied by a healthy, balanced diet and some kind of physical activity habit.
Supplements are not a replacement for living a lifestyle where well-being is a concern; supplements are meant to be supplementary to, and enhance the benefits of, an already established healthy eating routine. Supplements can provide the nutritional boost your body needs to support optimal wellness.
10X Health Can Help With your Supplement Plan
Not only can 10X Health provide you with the means to figure out exactly what supplements will work best for your body, but we can also provide you with some of the best supplements available in the market.
We source only the best high-quality ingredients available, we don’t dilute our supplements with any fillers, and we check in with you to make sure you’re making the progress you intended to make.
Protecting and reinforcing your wellness through supplementation is the goal of 10X Health. We offer many different types of supplements both in tablet form and through our IV services.
Creating an effective supplement protocol personalized to your needs is what makes 10X Health stand apart from other supplement sources. Through our genetic and blood testing services, we structure a supplement plan that is meant just for you and provides your body with all the nutrients it needs.
Want to know more about how 10X Health can steer your supplementation routine in the right direction for results? Contact us today.