This article was written with permission from our friends at youngandraw.com.
Many Americans are living with a nutrient deficiency. Most of us don’t even know it. What’s more, while we may be experiencing symptoms, we remain unaware of which specific deficiency these signs relate to or we mistake one deficiency for another.
To bring your confusion to an end, here are five of the most common symptoms and which nutrient deficiency each symptom relates to.
1. Headaches and/or Muscle Cramps: Magnesium deficiency
Magnesium is one of the most common mineral deficiencies in our culture. Roughly 75% of the North American population is deficient in magnesium. Magnesium is a powerful nutrient for nervous system function. It helps relax nerves and tense muscles, alleviate muscle cramping and headaches, and can help you fall asleep.
An easy way to get some magnesium is to add some green leafy veggies like kale or collard greens to your next smoothie or a scoop of Vega One Nutritional Shake which boasts 30% of your daily requirements. You can also add Epsom salts to your next bath. Epsom salts are high in magnesium and easily absorbed through your skin while you relax in the tub!
2. Acne: Zinc deficiency
Acne is often a sign of zinc deficiency. Zinc controls the production of oil in the skin and adds color and brightness to the complexion. In addition to soothing inflamed skin, regenerating skin cells, and speeding up the healing process, zinc inhibits acne causing 5-alpha-reductase activity (the enzyme that converts testosterone into its more active, pimple-promoting form). Consuming just 30 milligrams per day helps fight acne, and a quarter cup of raw pumpkin seeds provides just over half that recommended amount.
3. Dry/broken/brittle hair and brittle nails: Biotin deficiency
Biotin (vitamin B7) is the heart and soul of healthy hair. Since it’s an abundant mineral found in a variety of sources, biotin deficiencies are rare, but signs include hair loss, hair breakage, brittle hair, and even brittle nails. If you’re looking to strengthen your tresses, ignite hair growth, or just feel confident that bad hair won’t plague you, stock up on foods rich in biotin for that added assurance.
4. Thinning hair: iron deficiency
Iron is the pack mule of your body, helping to carry oxygen – not to mention other nutrients – to your hair follicles. Low iron levels or anemia can actually lead to hair loss.
5. White little bumps on back of arm: Essential Fatty Acids deficiency
Those little bumps commonly found on the back of the arm are often a result of an essential fatty acid imbalance. In particular, low levels of Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3’s are anti-inflammatory, which reduce the inflammation of the bumps and help to dissolve build-up and prevent hardening within the hair follicle.