Diet_deficiencies in popular diets

Nutritional gaps in popular diets – it’s a question of balance

Life shouldn’t be an endurance test. Life is for living. But of course, we can’t do what we want to do all the time – we have to earn the means to do that living for a start. So, it’s a question of balance. And what we eat and drink is no exception in striking this balance. Yet, as we wrote previously in To supplement or not to supplement? That is the question! delivering all the nutrients we need through a balanced is not so straightforward as it might be within the pressures of modern life.

On top of the issue of time and energy constraints, following restrictive diet such as vegan, gluten-free, Atkins, DASH or paleo makes it even harder to meet all your nutritional requirements. Here are the most common nutritional gaps to look out for.

Gluten-free Diet

Removing wheat from the diet, as well as such wheat-based fortified foods as cereals, can leave a gap in delivering such essential micronutrients as:

  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Folate
  • Thiamin (B1)
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D

Vegan Diet

Cutting out meat, fish and diary from the meals can leave you deficient in:

  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin B12
  • Omega-3 EPA/DHA

Low carb Diet

Following low carb diet (i.e. Atkins, The South Beach Diet) often means avoiding many nutritional foods from which you would obtain such nutrients as:

  • Calcium
  • Chromium
  • Copper
  • Iodine
  • Magnesium
  • Potassium
  • Pantothenic acid (B5)
  • Biotin (B7)
  • Vitamin E

Low fat Diet

Low fat diets like DASH or Best Life besides cutting out otherwise healthy fats can also result in a deficiency of:

  • Chromium
  • Iodine
  • Pantothenic acid (B5)
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E

Paleo Diet

A strict paleo diet excludes dairy, beans, oats and wheat products. Their absence can make you struggle to deliver to your body such vital nutrients as:

  • Calcium
  • Iodine
  • Riboflavin (B2)
  • Thiamin (B1)

Mind the Gap

We’re not advocating that you shouldn’t follow any of these diets should you wish to. But do be aware that specialized dietary plans such as these can leave nutritional gaps. You can fill such gaps in nutrient intake by:

  • Meticulous dietary planning
  • Modifying the diet to make it less restrictive or
  • Use food supplements to bridge the gap.

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