Is there a deficiency of supplements in the country of Australia? Certainly not. There is no lack of availability of supplements in Australia. However, there is a noted trend in vitamin and mineral deficiency in the Australian population. The Australian Bureau of Statistics has found that despite consuming sufficient food, only 1 in 20 people meet the recommended fruit and vegetable servings. Besides, there is also a disparity among the sexes when it comes to meeting nutritional requirements.
Top Deficient Nutrients in Australia
Calcium deficiency has been widespread among Australians, especially females. Perhaps due to hidden malnutrition or as a result of malabsorption, calcium levels drop in the human body. When the blood has low calcium, the body sees signs like weak nails, a decline in dental health, and cataracts and osteoporosis in extreme cases.
Most of the time, people fail to realise that there is a relationship between calcium and Vitamin D. Unsurprisingly, the Australian population also suffers from significant Vitamin D deficiency. Without the vitamin, the calcium supplements taken by an individual cannot be optimally used by the body. The calcium content of the body can be restored by consuming foods such as dairy products, fortified grains, leafy vegetables, and soya beans.
As mentioned earlier, Australians seem to lack Vitamin D. Dietary supplements in Australia alone do not seem enough to combat this deficiency. Exposure to the sun, especially the UV-B rays, along with a nutritious diet, are crucial. The condition is prevalent more among females, specifically those who inhabit the southern regions of Australia.
Moreover, the deficit increases in the population during the spring and winter seasons. Along with Vitamin D supplements, sun exposure is the best course of treatment. However, since the UV index falls below 3 in certain parts of the country, spending time outdoors in the middle of the day can yield the best results.
Globally, iron deficiency has been widely discussed in various forums and platforms at length and Australia is no different. Almost 1 in 5 individuals were seen as deficient in iron. The condition is more prevalent in females than males. Perhaps pregnancy, vigorous exercise, and lack of iron-rich foods can be the reason behind this pattern. While consuming large quantities of iron supplements can prove to be dangerous for the body, one can maintain a healthy level of iron in the body by consuming prunes, spinach, beetroots, flaxseeds, and fortified grains.
This vitamin is not hard to come by if one has a well-balanced diet. However, almost one in five Australian males and half the female population of the country are deficient in Vitamin B6. The richest sources of Vitamin B6 include potatoes, fortified breakfast cereals, and chickpeas. Lack of Vitamin B6 manifests as cracks in the corner of lips, itchy rashes, and anaemia. B6 deficiency also makes an individual more prone to depressive and anxious episodes.
Why Are Nutritional Deficiencies So Prevalent in Australia?
Despite being a developed country with sufficient resources to feed its population, Australia has seen a steep incline in dietary deficiency. One of the major reasons behind this is hidden malnutrition. Almost everyone has enough to eat but it’s not always the right kind of food.
Relying too much on processed food or foods that are low in nutritional value is the primary reason behind nutritional deficiencies. Encouraging people to eat more fresh produce and whole grains, especially superfoods, can combat this problem. Promoting healthy supplements in the country of Australia is another viable solution.