These days, you have a pill for everything. Take this and lose weight or take that and feel better. We have everything to prescription drugs, over-the-counter medication, synthetic vitamins, whole food supplements, and the list goes on. With all the advice, advertising, and personal opinions, it can be overwhelming.
It’s extremely difficult to give good advice without know everything there is about the body, and we’re still making new discoveries today. With that said, this is a tough topic to write about. I’m not a doctor, I’m not a nutritionist, I’m just a passionate about good health and I soak up as much information I can through reading, my own experiences, asking questions from experts, and so on.
I’m skipping over prescriptions and medications. Herbs are a completely different animal as well and don’t feel comfortable taking them without a trained practitioner. Today, I’m just focusing my attention on nutritional supplements.
Why you need supplements?
So many people ask, “Can I just eat the right foods?” Even if you are the most disciplined person in the world and can figure out how much of everything you need, our soil is so depleted right now due to modern intensive agricultural methods. Everything wrong with the world today, I can almost trace it back to the industrial revolution from our working habits to our food source. If you are not taking anything right now, PLEASE, just take a good multi-vitamin.
What should I avoid in supplements?
Vitamins and supplements are not created equal. There’s plenty on the market and pharmacy aisle with harmful additives including, but not limited to, artificial dyes, hydrogenated oils, lead, mercury, and PCB’s (hidden in omega supplements), talc, magnesium silicate, and titanium dioxide. The best way to avoid these is 1) read the label, 2) buy from a reputable distributor, and/or 3) look for whole food supplements. On that note, food-based supplements will break down in the body and used more efficiently.
I don’t want to take supplements, what should I do?
Good nutrition is the foundation of good health. Everyone, regardless of supplement routines, should eat organic local produce and livestock to maximize nutritional content. It’s not always a reality for everyone, and I don’t even do this regularly due to availability. Also, everyone NEEDS a healthy gut and good flora to be healthy and certain foods can also really damage that. Here are 8 common things that can disrupt our get health (and there’s so much more):
- Water w/ chlorine
- Foods with artificial coloring
- Antibacterial soaps
- NSAID pain relievers
- Sterilized Foods
- Antidepressants and other medications
What to look for from our food source?
To piggy-back off of local organic farmers. It’s extremely important to understand farming practices. Modern intensive agriculture does little field resting and rotation. GMO seeds and pesticides are commonly used which does further damage to the soil and environment. The “farmer” sits in a big air-conditioned tractor and doesn’t have a good sense of what’s going on with their fields and crops. Small local organic farmers are walking their fields, using crop covers, hand weeding, checking for soil disruptions, moisture or lack-of, pest concerns, and so on. They are essentially care-takers and giving your food LIFE.
What supplements should I take?
THIS is such a loaded question. Supplements are meant to compliment, not replace nutrition. Before answering this, it’s important to understand the difference in supplements. We have synthetics, we have plant-based, and we have whole food supplements. There’s also mentholated versions of some of these. As a rule of thumb, I go as natural as possible, but a bigger price tag usually comes with that. Drugstore brands are less expensive because they have fillers and synthetic ingredients, or combinations that have poor absorption.
For nutritional supplements, I’m really loving this multi-vitamin, probiotic, plant-based omega-3, and children’s 2-in-1 multi-vitamin and probiotic. The multi-vitamin is fully methylated which helps with absorption, the probiotic is seriously amazing compared to others and delivers 2 billion CFUs per capsule and promotes health bacteria and pH levels in the gut. The omega-3 is safe for vegans and free of contaminants such as mercury and PCB’s. And what mama doesn’t want their kid on a multi-vitamin. This one has 13 essential vitamins in the most bioavailable form, which is great for absorption and easy on their little bodies!
If you are taking medications, it is important to ask your physician about any supplements you are interested in taking. Some supplements can interfere with medicinal prescriptions.
What other questions do you have?