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Question:
I have seen on cereal boxes that 1 serving gives about 4-8% of some important vitamins. With a good diet (milk, vegetables, breads) am I getting 100% of all necessary vitamins every day? Should I really be concerned about vitamins like Zinc, Copper, etc.? I'm a male, so take that into consideration. Thanks.



Replies:
If you are indeed eating a well balanced diet, heavy on the fruits, veggies and cereals, you're probably getting the vitamins you need. The minerals (zinc, copper, etc) are also probably in your diet naturally. Different foods contain different nutrients; the catch is to be certain that you're getting enough variety. Especially during this time in your life when you're very actively growing, you need lots of things to be replenished regularly.
Ellen Mayo


As mentioned in the first answer- stage in life is important such as growth spurts etc. Males need more zinc (micro levels) that females. Women, more iron and at other times magnesium/calcium (PMS?) than men. There are genetic differences in how efficiently we absorb and metabolize various nutrients. Also differences in how we do this under stress (chemical and emotional). Some day I predict we will have easy monitoring of our nutrient deficiencies and develop accurate individualized profiles as to what we really need to supplement for optimum nutrition.

Macronutrients (proteins, fats, carbohydrates) are just as important in their mix in our diet as micronutrients. Macronutients are perhaps the hardest to control, e.g., most Americans eat too much fat and our heart & kidney disease numbers are a reflection of this.
Harnisch



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