Over the last couple of decades or so, the natural products/health supplements industry has boomed. Sure, I remember my grandparents taking supplements, but they were plain old vitamins bought at the grocery store, or tonics purchased at the local pharmacy. Now we have stores dedicated specifically to the sale of supplements, and how many times have you turned on the television late at night just to see another infomercial telling you about the latest health discovery. Fearful of backlash from the FDA, they never state that this product will “cure” an ailment although you hear many customer testimonials that near claim healing has taken place.
Amongst all of the marketing, how do I know what to buy? Although many of these products are wonderful/excellent supplements, we also have to remember that natural products have become a huge money maker in America, and just as with any thing else, we consumers must be wise. Don’t get me wrong, I am a firm believer in supplements, and I believe that the proper use of them can and will minimize sickness and illness in one’s life.
Mother always said eat all of your vegetables. But how many of us adults today eat the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables as established by the U.S.D.A. and/or health professionals. Even if we did, many of our fruits and vegetables lack in the nutrients they once provided because of farming techniques and methods centered around making more money and harvesting a larger more “attractive” crop. For this reason alone, most of us need to take a supplement.
I believe every person should begin with a basic multi-vitamin/nutritional supplement. Personally I prefer to take something closer to fruits/vegetables more “natural” state, meaning as close to a “whole food” as possible. Some ideas/suggestions to consider alone or in combination are –
* Platinum Super ORAC 7 by Nature’s Answer (combines the nutrients of several berries and fruits, especially those high in antioxidants along with other fruit juices and green tea);
* Sweet Wheat (pure wheat grass juice powder, high in chlorophyll which is helpful to the blood and high in antioxidants);
* Kyo-Green (a combination of greens – wheat grass, Pacific kelp, brown rice, and green algae);
* Other Health Drinks such as – Noni Juice, Aloe Vera, Mangosteen Juice
* Liquid Supplements such as Mineral Rich (again nutrients are closer to their original state and are easier to digest and absorb).
* Whole Food Supplements
Before you decide, consider talking to someone at your local health food store. No slam to GNC (the General Nutrition Center) or other chains, but I find that “local” health food stores have better trained and educated staff.
After you decide upon a daily nutritional supplement, now examine your diet even more thoroughly. We all know that we lack in the consumption of fruits and vegetables, pretty much every American does, but what more does your diet lack in? Do you lack in dairy, how about beans/legumes or maybe fish? Let’s take fish for example. Some people choose not to each fish because of the polluted waters, or concern about mercury; nevertheless, it is clear that fish contain nutrients that are very good for our bodies, especially our brains and hearts. So if you don’t eat enough fish, you might want to think about supplementing your diet with fish oil.
Secondly, consider whether you have an ailment. Are you suffering from arthritis, asthma, high blood pressure or diabetes? If so, you might wish to take a supplement that can help in combatting that ailment. Sure the vitamins/minerals in your mult-vitamin are going to help, but in order to repair the body you might consider taking an additional supplement for a while. You may also want to look at your family history and take preventative measures by taking supplements that help you to avoid certain ailments/diseases that your parents or even your grandparents had.
Lastly, consider your age and sex. For example, if you are a woman in your childbearing years you will want to ensure that you get adequate amounts of folic acid in your diet. If you are a man over 40, you might want to supplement your diet with herbs such as Saw Palmetto or Stinging Nettle to help block the agents that cause prostate cancer.
This guide is meant to be a beginning of your creating your own vitamin regimen. Again, I strongly recommend that you talk to an expert in the field of natural medicine. This is just simple advice from a laymen.