Top 3 Supplements You Should Be Taking - And Honorable Mentions



SCIENCTIFIC FACTS ABOUT SUPPLEMENTS


We do not need to take many supplements, in fact most supplements we take we just pee out and do not digest. Food is the main source of our nutrients, however there are just some essential nutrients that we would need to eat a ton of food to even get half of the daily requirement.


When we look at science for our supplements there are some things to consider.

First, supplements are not regulated or tested like other drugs. Meaning manufacturers do not have to prove safety and efficacy and there is little oversight in the manufacturing process. I will go more into detail in the next section. Second, supplements are just that...they supplement your lifestyle. So if you eat McDonalds every day but think that by taking fish oil you are getting the benefits, you are wrong! They supplement a healthy lifestyle and are more effective when taken properly. Third, sometimes supplements are dangerous to take, especially when combining with medications. Make sure to discuss with your doctor on all the implications and side effects.


NOT ALL SUPPLEMENTS ARE CREATED EQUAL


Going back to supplements not being regulated or tested as regular drugs, there is even more of an importance in choosing the right brands and what to look for. I will definitely go into more detail with each supplement I list below, but for now here is what to look for when purchasing your supplements. First, make sure to identify your nutritional needs. For example how many IU of Vitamin do you need. Next do your research and seek out companies that you can trust. Look at the labels. Do they do testing and quality control? What are the other ingredients (make sure the supplement is as pure as can be with no fillers)? Are they bio-available? Meaning are they absorbed properly and not just peed out like I mentioned in the beginning.


TOP 3 SUPPLEMENTS AND VITAMINS


1. Vitamin D3


This vitamin has to be the most important Vitamin to take. Especially during Covid and when we are all staying indoors more. We get Vitamin D from the sunlight, but we are not getting enough daily exposure of sunlight and are not highly available in foods, therefore we are deficient.


First lets go into the benefits of why we need Vitamin D everyday. Keeps our body and our bones strong and in some cases prevent some cancers. It helps to absorb Calcium, again to aid in bone health.


Second, what are the signs of deficiency. It can range from muscle weakness, pain, fatigue, and even depression. The health effects of a deficiency are heart disease, high blood pressure, immune system disorders, falls in older people, multiple sclerosis, and some type of cancers such as prostate, breast and colon


How much to take and what to get?

The IU amount varies by person, but take in the range of 600-4,000IU. You can get lower levels with food such as Salmon, Sardines, egg yolks and even cod liver oil. Or you can supplement at higher levels. Click here on the brand I use.


2. Magnesium


Another very important mineral - the most powerful relaxation mineral - that is missing from our daily food intake - even if you eat the healthiest.


Instead of focusing on the benefits of magnesium, which you will quickly see are many from looking at the list of symptoms of deficiency. Which include but are not all: Muscle cramps, insomnia, irritability, anxiety, autism, ADD, headaches, constipation, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, asthma, diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, menstrual cramps, irritable bowel syndrome, reflux and trouble swallowing. And even linked with inflammation in the body.


Do I have your attention now?


Our SAD diet leaves us with this mineral deficiency and further more it is often poorly absorbed and would need a lot of it and to be paired with Vitamin B6 and Vitamin D.


A few ways to combat Magnesium deficiency before taking a supplement.

  • Limit coffee, alcohol, sugar and salt

  • Practice relaxation techniques

  • Eat foods high in magnesium, such as walnuts, brazil nuts, almonds, cashews, millet, tofu, figs, dates, collard greens, avocados, and garlic

  • Take a hot bath with epsom salts to absorb and get the needed magnesium

Supplementation:

The minimum requirement of magnesium to take is 300mg, most people benefit from 400mg - 1,000mg a day. There are different forms of magnesium and the best ones and are most absorbable are: magnesium citrate, glycinate taurate, aspartate. Avoid magnesium carbonate, sulfate, gluconate and oxide as they are not absorbable. Click here on the Magnesium I use.


3. Fish Oil


I can almost bet that most of you do not eat a lot of fish, or at least enough and the type of fish needed to get the Omega 3s. That is why supplementing with Fish Oil is so important. We need to have a good health balance of Omega 6s which regulate our genes and promote immune health by eating meat, poultry, nuts, and eggs to Omega 3s which play a role in brain health and keep immune system healthy by eating fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, etc), eggs, flaxseeds, walnuts, tofu.

We tend to have an unbalanced with Omega 6 being the majority and miss out on the benefits of Omega 3s which lowers risk of cancer, type-2 diabetes, autoimmune disease, depression and inflammation.


This is one of the supplements that even though it is needed, you can get enough through food. However, that entails you to eat the foods that are mentioned, mainly fatty fish. I am a different breed in that I eat all of these fish throughout the week and therefore do not need additional supplementation. However, I know many of the population does not like the taste of these fish, so supplementation is key.


So what to get and how much? The amount of Omega-3s in fish oil, including both EPA and DHA - ranges from 18-31%, but the amount varies between fish species. Make sure the brand is safe and effective, remember to look for testing and no fillers. Click here to see the Fish Oil I use.


HONORABLE MENTIONS


1. Collagen


We lose collagen in our bodies when we get older, as early as in our 20’s. Why do we care about collagen? Well collagen consists of 16 different natural proteins that are mainly found in hair, skin, nails, joints, tendons and ligaments. How we lose collagen is through fighting against toxins, sun exposure, environmental pollutants, smoking, refined sugar and processed foods.


There are ways to get collagen through food such as carrots, leafy greens, polyphenols like nuts and wine and green tea, Vitamin C in tomatoes, Vitamin E in avocados. But you can also grab a tub of collagen made with pasture raised bovine to put in your coffee or smoothie. My go-to Collagen is this,


2. Tumeric


Hard to work with and very bitter, turmeric/curcumin is one of those spices that packs a powerful punch in terms of nutritional value. Curcumin supports the body’s natural anti-inflammatory response and promotes healthy liver, colon, musculoskeletal and cell function.


For more absorption it is best to add pepper to the turmeric when putting them in your drinks/smoothies and dishes. You can use turmeric as a spice or you can take capsules as well. Here is one I recommend.


3. Probiotics


When we think of bacteria we think of bad bacteria, however our bodies are made up of good and bad bacteria. One thing that antibiotics as well as sanitizers do, is not only get rid of the bad bacteria but also get rid of the good bacteria that is needed to fight infection. Good bacteria made up of good live bacteria and yeast helps eliminate the bad and get the body back into balance. That is where probiotics come in.

Probiotics are the good bacteria that reside in your microbiome (or a diverse community of organisms). The community is made up of microbes such as bacteria, fungi, viruses and protozoa. These microbes live in the gut, mouth, vagina, urinary tract, skin and lungs. The probiotics keeps you healthy by supporting immune function and controlling inflammation. They can also:

  • Help your body digest food

  • Keep bad bacteria from taking control and making you sick

  • Breakdown and absorb medications

Most common probiotic strains are Lactobacilius, Bifidobacterium, and good yeast such as Saccharomyces boulardii. When looking for supplements, make sure these strains are in there. But you can also get them in foods such as Kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha, tempeh, fermented pickles and miso soup


4. Ashwagandha


Stress out?? Take Ashwagandha or adaptogen. I swear by this supplement daily especially after being diagnosed with adrenal fatigue. It is best to regulate your stress so as to not depend on supplements, however this is a natural herb that is valued in thyroid-modulating, neuroprotective, anti-anxiety, anti-depressant and anti-inflammatory properties.


Additional benefits are:

  • Reduce stress

  • Increase stamina and endurance

  • Prevent and treat cancer

  • Reduce brain cell degeneration

  • Stabilize blood sugar

  • Lower cholesterol

  • Boost immunity

You can take ashwagandha in powder form, however I believe the capsule form is best. It is best paired with Holy Basil which is also known for fighting against the effects of stress. Click here for the one I use.


5. Noortropics/medicinal mushrooms


Want brain power? Go for those medicinal mushrooms. These include species such as reishi, cordyceps, lion’s mane, turkey tail and chaga. These have been known to support cognitive function in these ways:

  • Fighting cognitive impairment in elderly

  • Possessing antioxidant properties that protect the brain

  • Acting as adaptogens that increase resilience against stress

  • Helping to regulate cortisol levels

  • Fighting fatigue and low immune function


There are many ways to take these medicinal mushrooms. You can take them in coffee form. Four Sigmatic is a great company and comes in individual packets or bags. You can also take it in pill form, but I like to add powder in my bulletproof coffee or smoothie in the morning. This is what I use.

Again, supplements are just that, we do need to eat as much whole foods composed of the rainbow in vegetables and fruit along with sustainable sources of protein and a little of whole grains. Yet, there are still some minerals and vitamins that we will need to add in supplement form. Please do some research and ask your doctor for the best ones for what you are missing.





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