Liquid Multivitamin For Senior Women
Although most multivitamins cater to everyone regardless of gender or age, there are some ingredients that you may want to prioritize according to your demographic. As the body ages, for example, it experiences changes and a good deal of wear and tear that may lead older individuals to need more of a few particularly important nutrients. In this article, we will review some of the most essential ingredients that any liquid multivitamin for seniors, especially senior women, should have as well as what benefits they provide for your body.
Selenium is one of the trace minerals that you should look for in your multivitamin. Your body only needs small amounts of trace minerals, but they are equally as important as nutrients that are needed in higher quantities. Selenium’s role in the body has to do with selenoproteins, which are enzymes that contribute to the production of DNA while helping to prevent cell damage (1). Its ability to combat oxidative stress and free radical damage means that it also has some powerful antioxidant qualities. It is most commonly found in the following foods: brazil nuts, shellfish, organ meats, eggs, whole wheat bread, and beans.
This potent mineral is essential to women (and all seniors) for another reason besides just cell protection: thyroid health. Selenoproteins help your body metabolize the hormones produced by your thyroid gland. Thyroid hormones play a role in reproductive health, digestive function, metabolism, and mood regulation. Thyroid conditions are often more common in older adults, with hypothyroidism occurring in up to 25% of nursing home patients (2). Selenium deficiency may put one at a higher risk of developing hypothyroidism, so you should make sure that your body is receiving a healthy supply of it.
Also known as pyridoxine, vitamin B6 is one of the 8 B complex vitamins, which are typically known for their contributions to your body’s metabolism. In fact, pyridoxine in particular supports the metabolisms of cells by helping them break down proteins, carbohydrates, and fats (3). Since your metabolism is essentially what powers your body with the fuel it needs to function throughout the day, you can usually count on B complex vitamins like B6 to give you a small boost of energy that may be quite helpful for seniors whose metabolisms have slowed down.
Like many other B complex vitamins, vitamin B6 also plays an important role in brain health and neurological function. Homocysteine is an amino acid that your body gains from eating meat. Having high levels of homocysteine can put you at a higher risk for certain conditions, such as heart disease and artery damage. However, what some people may not know is that it may also lead to dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and other forms of cognitive decline (4). Vitamin B6 is one of several B vitamins that breaks down homocysteine into other chemicals, lowering the amount of it in your system and helping reduce your risk of developing these chronic conditions as a result.
Vitamin D is quite unique as it is not often found in your routine diet. You can gain some of this healthy nutrient from eating fatty fish, egg yolks, mushrooms, and foods that have been fortified with it, but your body receives a majority of its vitamin D via sunlight exposure. Those who are over 65 typically produce less vitamin D, whether because they cannot be out in the sun as much or because the body’s production simply slows down with age (5). Either way, this decrease makes it important for seniors to make sure they get enough vitamin D, either from their diet or by taking a multivitamin
Having lower amounts of vitamin D can be dangerous for older individuals, especially those who suffer from bone diseases like osteoporosis. This micronutrient is a key component in calcium absorption, and, as you probably know, calcium is essential for building and maintaining healthy bones (6). Without enough vitamin D, your body will not be able to absorb sufficient amounts of calcium, leaving your bones weaker and putting you at a higher risk of fractures. Luckily, most multivitamins contain a healthy amount of vitamin D that can supplement your diet and make up for the inability to spend extended periods of time in the sun.
Anyone who is considering taking a multivitamin should speak with their doctor first, as they can help you figure out which supplements are perfect for you. Seniors should pay careful attention to their supplements, especially when taking them in conjunction with other medications.
- “Selenium.” Harvard School of Public Health, 2022, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/selenium.
- “Older Patients and Thyroid Disease.” American Thyroid Association, 2022, https://www.thyroid.org/thyroid-disease-older-patient.
- “Vitamin B6.” Harvard School of Public Health, 2022, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-b6.
- “Health Benefits of Vitamin B6.” WebMD, 16 November 2020, https://www.webmd.com/diet/health-benefits-vitamin-b6.
- “What to Know About Vitamin D Dosage for Older Adults.” WebMD, 16 March 2021, https://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/what-to-know-about-vitamin-d-dosage-for-older-adults.
- “Vitamin D for Osteoporosis.” WebMD, 25 October 2020, https://www.webmd.com/osteoporosis/guide/vitamin-d-for-osteoporosis.