We watch calories and try to eat the ‘right’ foods, but often neglect to think about how much of those good things are actually going where they should. That is, are the nutrients we need really being absorbed into and utilized by the body? Are there simple ways in which we can help them reach cell level? The answer is a resounding YES. I found some helpful tips on how to increase the bioavailability of vitamins and minerals dramatically:
1. Get more iron from your veggies. Eating your vegetables with Vitamin C greatly increases the absorption of iron, studies show.
2. If you are taking an iron supplement, wash it down with a glass of orange juice for better absorption.
3. Taking calcium supplements too? Don’t take them at the same time as your iron pills, because they can block each other’s absorption.
4. The lower your salt intake, the better your body’s ability to absorb calcium.
5. Taking a calcium supplement? Pair it with Vitamin D. Together, they boost calcium absorption.
Next: 5 more important tips
6. Drink milk fortified with Vitamin D. It’s one of the best ways to get this vital, immunity-boosting vitamin into your system.
7. Fortified cereal grains help your body absorb more folate (folic acid) than if you take this nutrient in the form of vegetables and greens.
8. If you add a squirt of lemon to your green tea, it will help absorb more catechins, a key health-boosting nutrient.
9. Which is better? Tomatoes in salad or tomatoes in marinara sauce? Guess what: cooked tomatoes have a much higher antioxidant quotient than raw ones!
10. Decline the fat-free dressing in salads, even if you are watching calories. The reason: certain nutrients are best absorbed in the presence of fat. So, go ahead and drizzle some real dressing on your greens! Don’t forget to sprinkle some freshly crushed black pepper on your salads and soups: this wonder spice is famous for ferrying nutrients right into your cells.