What comes to your mind when somebody says sports or fitness supplements?
Probably, you will think of whey protein, casein, creatine, BCAAs, – and many other names! But will you think of multivitamins? Or, specifically, multivitamin with iron?
It seems most of us, even in the sports and fitness world, are unaware of multivitamins. Sure, you might have heard people debating its health benefits. But that’s not what we are here for today.
As it turns out, multivitamins can help us achieve our fitness goals successfully.
Iron, on the other hand, helps us to push ourselves harder and perform better. So should you take both?
Today, we will find out if athletes, bodybuilders, and sportspeople really need a multivitamin with iron. We will discuss the role of multivitamins and iron and explore how they affect fitness and performance.
What is Multivitamin with Iron
Multivitamin is an umbrella term for combinations of vitamins sold in a single capsule or tablet. Multivitamins also contain additional nutrients like minerals. You can also get them in the form of liquid, chewable gummies, and powder.
Multivitamin with iron is a multivitamin that also contains iron.
There is no standard formula or ingredients for multivitamins. So, the contents of multivitamins differ from brand to brand.
What Does Multivitamin Contain
We need 13 vitamins and 16 minerals to stay healthy. The vitamins and minerals help our bodies function optimally. They perform various roles that facilitate growth, reproduction, maintenance, and regulate different bodily processes.
As we already said, the content of multivitamins can differ. Still, they will mostly contain B and D vitamins, and calcium, magnesium, or iron.
Multivitamins also come with amino acids, herbs, fatty acids, and other ingredients.
Men’s multivitamins can contain ingredients to boost testosterone and promote a healthy prostate.
Women’s multivitamins focus on healthy skin, hair, nails, and so on. You also get multivitamins for kids.
In our case, the multivitamin will have various vitamins and iron.
Role of Micronutrients in Athletic Performance and Muscle Building
Vitamins and minerals make up the micronutrients that we usually get from our diet. They have a big part in-
- Production of energy
- Haemoglobin synthesis
- Bone health
- Developing immunity
- Recovery from training or exercise
- Tissue and muscle repair
If our body is a car, then micronutrients are its gears. They facilitate various metabolic reactions that enable us to convert food into energy. Naturally, you need enough micronutrients to generate energy from food effectively. And as you know, you will need the energy to lift those weights or finish your lap in record time!
Micronutrients also help us to synthesize new muscles and repair torn muscles from exercise. Some micronutrients even protect us from oxidative stress.
The deficiency of micronutrients can hamper our metabolic processes, leading to inadequate production of energy. As a result, your performance can suffer.
The Importance of Iron for Athletes
Iron is another crucial nutrient for athletes.
Iron helps us create haemoglobin that transports oxygen to our muscles.
Iron deficiency can lead to lower levels of haemoglobin, which result in low oxygen levels in our bodies. And as you already know, low oxygen levels mean less energy, and that results in low performance.
From an athlete’s perspective, multivitamin with iron can-
- Facilitate muscle synthesis
- Help muscle repair and recovery
- Help us produce more energy
- Improve bone health
- Enable us to perform better
Now, we will tackle the most important question.
Do You Need Multivitamin with Iron?
We generally get our micronutrients from our diets. An average person will generally not need a multivitamin if his diet provides all the required vitamins and minerals. But, the case is completely different for people who train, lift weights, work out, or take part in sports.
Athletes and Bodybuilders Need More Micronutrients
The micronutrient requirement of an athlete is not the same as the average person.
According to research, exercising can increase the micronutrient needs of our bodies. Working out regularly leads to quick depletion of micronutrients, and increases the turnover and loss of micronutrients.
As a result, athletes need more micronutrients to build, maintain, and repair lean body mass.
Now, let’s talk about iron!
Iron is a crucial nutrient for any aerobic activity and endurance. Studies reveal that endurance training leads to higher losses of iron. So, highly active individuals may be at risk of iron deficiency.
According to Training & Conditioning, endurance athletes need 70% more iron daily, compared to a regular person.
The Food and Nutrition Board advises taking 30% more iron for people who exercise intensely every day.
Iron deficiency can hamper your performance by reducing your body’s ability to produce optimal energy.
Summary: It’s clear that athletes and highly-active individuals have greater micronutrient requirements than the average person. So a multivitamin with iron can help them fulfil their daily nutritional requirements combined with a proper diet.
What to Look For in Your Multivitamin with Iron
We don’t need to tell you anymore that the ingredients in multivitamins can vary. So, we are going to tell you the exact vitamins and minerals you should look for. We have chosen the micronutrients based on research, so they will surely help you attain your fitness goals.
Here are the micronutrients to look out for in your multivitamin with iron-
(Vitamin B6, B12, folate, riboflavin, thiamin, biotin, pantothenic acid)
B vitamins play a big part in energy production and work together for optimum results. B12 specifically helps in carrying oxygen and is important for endurance athletes.
Vitamin A may take the role of antioxidants during endurance training. It also supports bone health.
Vitamin D aids in the absorption of calcium and helps maintain bone health. It also reduces inflammation and plays a role in immune functions.
Long-lasting exercises can take a toll on our immunity. Vitamin C boosts immunity and helps prevent many diseases.
Surely, we don’t need to explain how calcium leads to strong and healthy bones!
Magnesium contributes to muscle and nerve functions. Lack of magnesium can result in muscle stress and spasms.
Potassium and Sodium
Athletes lose a lot of electrolytes with sweat, leading to fatigue and muscle cramps. Potassium and sodium together help maintain the fluid balance in our bodies by replenishing the electrolytes lost during exercise.
Zinc helps us grow and repair muscle tissue. It also plays a role in energy production and immune function.
Of course, your multivitamin with iron should contain iron!
A Word of Caution
Taking too much multivitamin with iron is not good for your health. Always follow the recommended dosage and don’t consume more than the recommended dose. Doing so can lead to toxic effects and health concerns.
Most athletes and people who work out regularly generally have a higher requirement of vitamins and minerals.
You may miss out on crucial micronutrients and develop deficits, even if you eat a proper diet. So it’s always wise to supplement with a multivitamin with iron to meet your daily nutritional needs.
Do check out the manufacturer and go for only reliable brands when you buy multivitamins for the best results.