Should you take nutritional supplement or should you not take nutritional supplements? Some recent studies have discounted the value of these supplements. While others show them as life saving. So what’s a person to do?
Keep this in mind when pondering nutritional supplement studies.
All nutritional supplements aren’t created equal. Many supplements are made out of synthetic garbage. While others are made out of natural whole foods. Can you guess which ones are better?
Synthetic vitamins can’t be used by the body in the same way as whole foods. So when a study makes grand claims about vitamins, examine whether synthetic or whole food vitamins were used. And if you are supplementing with nutritional supplements, be aware of this same thing.
But our ancestors didn’t take vitamins and they were just fine.
Our vitamin and mineral needs are different than our ancestors. In the old days, driving the “latest model vehicle” meant a horse and buggy. “Picking up some food” meant going out in the garden. And nobody wrapped food in chemical filled plastic because it hadn’t been invented. Our ancestors had less stuff to detox from their bodies. So they needed less nutrients.
Not to mention modern stress levels. They’ll gobble up vitamins faster than pac-man. And what about sleep deprivation? Sleep is the primary opportunity for the body to detox. And let’s look at the Standard American Diet. That isn’t classically very nutrient rich.
So should you take nutritional supplements?
I would recommend considering a few specific supplements. These nutrients are extremely valuable for most people. We need more of these nutrients than ever before because of our modern lifestyles,
Vitamin d is the sunshine vitamin and it isn’t found in most food (other than fatty fish, liver, and egg yolks) Your body makes it from contact with the sun. And most of us either don’t get enough direct sun exposure or are missing other nutrients that are integral to producing vitamin d.
You’re probably not able to consistently make enough if you live somewhere that has winter, or you wear sunscreen when outdoors. Hell, I live in sunny L.A. and get a quite a bit of sun exposure. And my vitamin d levels were horribly low before I started supplementing. So get tested if you don’t know your levels. Most doctors don’t test it routinely. And if you need to supplement, 1000 to 2000 iu daily is usually a good place to start.
Emerging research shows vitamin d levels to be especially important for:
- Osteoporosis prevention
- Cancer prevention
- Cancer survival
- Heart health
So you want to make sure you’re getting enough vitamin d-3.
Probiotics are made from bacteria. But not the kind of icky bacteria you find on a public restroom floor. They’re made out of good, butt-kicking bacteria that fight all the other germs in your body. And when you don’t have enough good bacteria, the bad bacteria will start staging a coup in your digestive system, which affects your entire body health.
Modern lifestyles high in sugar, stress, and medications like the pill and antibiotics deplete your body of this good bacteria. Which makes supplementation necessary for most.
And here’s some added incentive for popping probiotic pills. Emerging research shows that a bacterial imbalance can make it impossible to lose weight. So not only do probiotics give you the potential to feel better. They can also help you shed some pounds when combined with proper diet and exercise!
Fish oil is full of health promoting omega-3 fats. And the startling truth is that most of us are horrible deficient in these good fats. This phenomena has everything to do with a prevalent diet imbalance.
Modern diets are overflowing with vegetables oils which are extremely high in Omega-6 fatty acids. And vegetable oils are in almost everything we buy from potato chips to pasta sauce to protein bars. Most restaurants cook with them. And many people still use them in their homes.
Don’t get me wrong, Omega-6 fatty acids are healthy fats. But we need a certain ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 fatty acids or the body becomes inflamed. And we are getting more of these Omega-6 fatty acids than ever before in history. So most of us need to reduce our Omega-6s and increase our Omega-3s.
Omega-3s help you:
- Fight inflammation
- Keep your hearts healthy
- Protect against cancer
- Lose weight
If you can’t take fish oil, you can try flaxseed oil instead. But fish oil is preferable because it provides a more usable form of Omega-3s. And wild or purified fish oil is always the best option.
But what about a Daily Multivitamin?
There is much debate about whether or not a daily multi is necessary. I personally prefer to supplement with specific nutrients I know I’m lacking. But I know more about my body and my nutritional status than most.
I would say take one if desired, Just remember, they can’t compensate for a bad diet. Multi-vitamins offer extra support. Just make sure to look for quality.And please stay away from gummy vitamins. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve met who are taking those. They are candy.
Do you take nutritional supplements?
Have you had your vitamin d-3 levels tested? What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments!
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