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Nutrient Absorption

Factors That Affect Absorption

Dietary Habits and Supplementation: It goes without saying that the more fruits and vegetables you eat, the more likely you are to absorb healthy nutrients. The same can be said for supplement intake. If you are dedicated with your supplementation, you will receive more nutrients than someone who rarely or never takes supplements. That said, the foods you eat and the supplements you take are only part of the story, other factors can also affect your nutrient absorption.

Lifestyle Choices:

Low Fat Diet: Contrary to popular belief, completely eliminating dietary fat, specifically healthy and natural forms of fat, actually impairs your health. Keeping healthy fats in your diet is necessary in order for your body to absorb certain nutrients. Fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K all need fat present in order to be absorbed and function optimally in the body.

Exercise: While exercise is great for your body, more intense workouts can affect how efficiently your body absorbs nutrients. If you don’t give your body the time it needs to absorb nutrients properly before you work out, you will miss out on the benefits of your of your food and your workout.

Stress: Stress causes indigestion and heartburn, both of which negatively affect your body’s ability to absorb nutrients. Antacids can also decrease nutrient absorption, so if you take them to reduce your symptoms, you may be doing more harm than good. A better approach is to find ways to reduce stress or learn techniques to deal with it naturally.

Caffeine: Caffeine can negatively affect nutrient absorption, especially iron. That doesn’t mean you have to give up your morning coffee or tea, just wait an hour between consuming caffeine and eating a meal or taking supplements.

Alcohol: It is common knowledge that alcohol damages the lining of your stomach and intestines, and thus it reduces nutrient absorption. You don’t have to cut out alcohol consumption all together, but moderation is crucial.

Smoking: Smoking affects your body’s ability to absorb nutrients. In addition, smoking also increases your body’s need for certain nutrients, thus worsening the problem. The only way to resolve this issue is to quit smoking.

Medications: Nutrient and drug interactions can work both ways. Some drugs increase the absorption of some nutrients and some decrease absorption. If you are concerned about your medications, Dr. Vann or your prescribing physician can give you more information.

Medical Conditions: There are medical conditions, such as certain digestive disorders, that can severely impact nutrient absorption. As with medications, Dr. Vann or your general physician can give you more information about how your disorders affect nutrient absorption.

Body Composition: The higher your body mass index, (BMI) the less likely you will be to absorb nutrients from your food. Use this calculator to figure your BMI. (We’ll have to find one)


Biophotonic Scanner:

At VisionArts, we track nutrient absorption with a biophotonic scanner. This scanner searches for the presence of 15 nutrients absorbed by your body from foods and supplements that you consume. This simple, non-invasive test not only gives us accurate information about your body’s current nutrient level, but it allows us to specifically focus on four nutrients essential to your eye health. The human eye cannot function without adequate amounts of Lutein, Zeaxanthin, Meso-zeaxanthin, and Beta Carotene. These four nutrients can only be replenished through consumption and absorption of fruits, vegetables, and some high quality supplements. By observing your scan score, our staff can more specifically discuss your personal dietary needs to ensure proper eye health.


Learn more about the biophotonic scanner here.