Hello Mama Yoga,
Recently I committed to living a healthier lifestyle, which has helped me lose weight (I have lost around 25 pounds), balance by blood pressure and renewed my self confidence. All that being said, I feel like I am on the right track. however, I am confused about what vitamins and nutritional supplements to take.
For starters, every time I visit a vitamin store there seems to be endless choices of brands, and varieties, each boasting how it's better for you than the other.
Some of my friends suggest I take whey protein powder, a multi vitamin and sports/electrolyte drinks. Still others suggest I don't need to take vitamins at all if my diet is healthy and balanced.
I Need a little clarity. What are your thoughts. Gina B. Lawrenceville, NJ
Good Day Gina,
First let me congratulate you on your decision to make the healthy lifestyle choice. Bravo and much success to you as you continue on the exciting journey toward a stronger, healthier you.
Well, the vitamin and nutritional supplement question is perplexing for most people. I have been an active participant in living a healthy lifestyle since 1992, and yet I am still amazed by all the "new" products, formulas, and gimmicks on the market.
According to an article written by "Nutraceuticals World Magazine", the vitamin and nutritional supplement industry will be raking in revenues of 34.7 billion dollars per year by 2016. That's a tremendous amount of powders, pills and products. (http://www.nutraceuticalsworld.com/contents/view_breaking-news/2011-10-26/revenue-rising-in-vitamin-supplement-manufacturing-market/
Still, in my 20 plus years of researching what contributes to healthy living, I have come to the conclusion that vitamins and nutritional supplements can be useful and beneficial to a persons overall fitness and well-being.
Our food is not what it used to be. During the 1950's scientist determined that the soil in the U.S. had been depleted to the point of producing de-nurtured crops, so the vitamin and mineral content became insufficient for human dietary needs.
In addition, the media has kept Americans aware of the conditions of the live-stock used for food consumption such as suspected high levels of cancer causing hormones, in humane living conditions and the ever growing list of pharmaceuticals found in the meat of cattle, chicken etc... So there is a need to "supplement" the nutrition we are getting from our food.
That said, I don't believe a person should be taking a handful of supplements on a daily basis. Handfuls of ANY types of pills, powders, packaged beverages etc... is NOT natural and should be avoided.
Start with a few simple inclusions. Here is what I suggest:
Please consult your healthcare provider before including any new supplement or dietary regimen to your routine.
1) Eat an Organic Plant Based (75-80% fruits and vegetables) as often as possible. The Micro-Nutrients help nourish the cells and keep your bodies systems functioning at optimal levels.
2)Take a quality multivitamin. The body can absorb most vitamins and supplements better in a liquid form. Capsules are second best for absorption. Try and avoid the hard chalky pills, as they don't easy for the body to break down and are not absorbed by the digestion tract.
3) If you are athletic, (moderate to heavy exercise 5 days per week) you can take a plant based protein powder, such as pea, rice, or hemp seed protein. Consuming too much Whey protein has been shown to cause issues with the kidneys.
4) Take Vitamin C, D, and a GREAT B-Complex. Helps with stress and anxiety.
5) Go on a liquid juicing, and raw salads fast 2-4 times a year. Giving the digestion a rest from having to constantly breakdown heavy food helps to put years back on your life.
6) Make sure your supplements are PLANT BASED. Studies show that 70% of all Americans are on some type of pharmaceutical, so the last thing you need is to introduce synthetic vitamins to your body, which may be already be compromised. CBS News Special Reports:(http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-57590305/study-shows-70-percent-of-americans-take-prescription-drugs/)
Remember The Principals of Wellness are:
1) clean, wholesome, plant based diet
2) regular exercise
3) minimal stress
4) loving relationships
5) connection to "Higher Power"
Wishing you Wellness,
If you would like specific nutrients that I recommend and or use, please email me at Mamayogawellness@gmail.com