We are busy….so busy that instead of eating to supply our body with the right nutrients, often we are grabbing something just so our stomach isn’t growling loudly enough for our coworkers to hear in the afternoon meeting. We think to ourselves “tomorrow we will eat healthy”, except tomorrow comes and we are once again trying to pack 24 hours’ worth of tasks in to 10, all while nutrition takes a back seat. It’s life and we must give ourselves grace, but at the same time we need to remember to appreciate the body that is running fanatically to and from. While I always say “food comes first, and supplements are just that - a supplement to a good diet,” it’s worth noting a few nutrients that can make a big difference when added in.
Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acids – these are the healthy fats found in wild fish and are amazing for helping balance the inflammatory process in the body. Inflammation plays a role in numerous health issues including chronic pain, mood and cognitive function, overall performance, weight management, and cancer. With the American diet so high in unhealthy Omega 6 fats from fried and processed foods, it is vital we consume Omega 3’s whenever we can. It is always best to consume these healthy fats straight from the source, but fish oil capsules can be a great addition to our pro-health regiment. Decreasing fried and processes foods will also help these essential fatty acids win the "uptake war," increasing effectiveness.
Magnesium – Magnesium and other alkaline minerals are found in many healthy foods like greens, grass fed meats, nut and seeds. Magnesium is another one of those wonder nutrients that helps with energy production, supports positive mood and decreases muscle and joint pain. People with decreased levels of magnesium can experience insomnia, anxiety, lack of focus, constipation, muscle cramps and joint pain. Eating foods high in minerals and supplementing with a quality “multi-mineral” with adequate levels of magnesium is always a good idea.
Vitamin D – Going into the winter months Vitamin D levels are important. This fat-soluble vitamin is most easily obtained through sun exposure and is responsible for contributing to 1000’s of processes in the body. In Colorado we see lots of people with symptoms relating to low Vitamin D due to the inability to absorb/create the nutrient at higher elevations. Supplementing with Vitamin D can be a great way to increase your resistance to infections like the common cold and flu, but also to support energy and assist with positive mood.
Probiotics – We tend to think of bacteria as a bad thing as the most well-known ones bring about disease, but there are many types of beneficial bacteria that can help keep us healthy and even increase energy and mood. We have learned over the past few years that gut health is a huge contributor to overall health and longevity. It’s important to recognize that what we eat, our gut bugs eat, and to keep the beneficial ones happy we need to eat lots of fresh vegetables. Many of the non-beneficial bacteria and yeast eat sugar, so it is best to limit sugary foods and consider supplementing with a good quality probiotic that contains lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidus.
In future articles I will discuss the top nutrients for energy and how they can increase endurance and combat fatigue. If you want to learn more about proper nutrition for optimal health and vitality, or need help purchasing quality supplements, you can contact me directly at Jessica@NutritionalSolutionsOnline.com. The top supplement brands I recommend are Xymogen, Orthomolecular, Klaire Labs, Douglas Labs and Vital Nutrients. Most of which are third party verified for purity and are pharmaceutical grade. You can also shop on FullScript, a reputable e-commerce supplier of quality supplements, by visiting https://us.fullscript.com/welcome/jdoyle