Let’s talk about supplements! With the media and advertisements always sharing different information, it can be hard to determine what supplements are safe and beneficial to take. I have compiled a list of the most important supplements to take regularly to focus on the healthiest you!
Vitamin C is essential for proper growth and immune system function, but it cannot be produced in the body. It is a strong antioxidant and may reduce the risk of chronic diseases, but it also assists the body in the process of absorbing iron, B-12 and B-6, and folic acid. It can also help to battle high blood pressure. Studies even demonstrate the benefit of higher doses to help mitigate the risks of urinary tract infections. It is water-soluble, so your body will not store any excess. As most know, citrus is a great natural resource of vitamin C. Go ahead and splash that lime on your food.
Fish oil provides omega-3 fatty acids. Two of these omega-3s, eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid, are only from fish sources. These are essential to brain development and function. Fish oil also has a benefit on thyroid function, overall heart health, arthritis, inflammatory problems, weight loss, digestion, and even improve psychiatric conditions. This is an important supplement that I recommend for those who are in a weight loss program. There is some concern that fish oil farming may place an environmental burden. This is not vegan and would not be appropriate who are vegan on moral or ethical grounds of use of animal bi-products. However, high-quality fish oils are very beneficial for human consumption.
Vitamin D functions to absorb calcium, so it can be very problematic and damaging to have low vitamin D levels. Even if calcium intake is high, your body can struggle to absorb it. These levels can be increased by being in the sun and by eating vitamin-D rich foods, but the body’s ability to absorb vitamin D decreases with age. Those who are overweight are commonly deficient in this important vitamin. I do not recommend very high doses without monitoring, as the body will store vitamin D and above optimum levels can be unsafe. I recommend taking at night as it may even help facilitate sleep.
Multiminerals are not present in any synthetic vitamins, but consumption of them is critical to not use your body’s mineral reserves. Some good supplements will contain Zinc, Selenium, Manganese, Boron, Chromium, Selenium and Molybdenum. Celtic or Himalayan sea salt is primarily sodium chloride but also contains potassium, magnesium, and calcium.
Vitamin E is made up of 8 compounds that consist of four different tocopherols and four different tocotrienols. Vitamin E supplements may reduce heart disease, support immune function, lessen the risk of cancer, support eye health, and prevent inflammation within the body.
Probiotics are good bacteria and yeasts. They use the right bacteria in your body to fight against and help to treat diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, urinary tract infections, vaginal infections, and many other things. This is my first go-to when I see patients with GI (gastrointestinal) issues. I also recommend taking a quality probiotic when on an antibiotic as antibiotics are responsible for killing the healthy bacteria in our gut which is responsible for proper nutrient absorption.
Enzymes have an incredible impact on the body, but they are not spoken about often enough. Some individuals are deficient in these enzymes and have GI (gastrointestinal) issues. For those who are deficient, there are prescription enzymes that can be beneficial. There are also natural sources of enzymes such as those in papaya. They can help to digest food and break it down more thoroughly. They should be consumed with every meal, especially for those suffering from a disease process or who are deficient in antioxidants.