Check out the benefits and options to using supplements, and why anyone would need them.
As a kid I know we used to take a chewy multivitamin (Flintstones I think it was). It was the grossest tasting thing ever – but it had our vitamins and minerals right? Do you still take a multivitamin or other supplements? And if you don’t, have you wondered if you should?
If you have followed me for any time at all you know I have used supplements to enhance my diet to control SLE (lupus) for many years on and off. I have used them to ease off meds (always talk to your doctor before discontinuing medications and using supplements), and into life without anything (including supplements).
There are really great reasons to use supplements today. But your choice in the product is just as important as your decision to use a supplement. The cheapest online market deal is NOT always the best option for you!
What are supplements?
These come in many forms. They can be vitamins and minerals combined, or separate. They can be herbs, they can be combos of herbs and vitamins, or other variations of nutrients that our bodies need for various body functions. They are meant to enhance and fill gaps in diet, or create a healthier environment to control things like inflammation and more. Herbs have been used for years to help with various ailments – from ancient times. I consider the use of herbs from those times to today as supplementation.
Who should consider using supplements?
Today most people could use some type of nutritional enhancement. Our food supply, even if you only eat all real fresh food (hand raised here), has a lack of nutrients compared to hundreds (well more like thousands now) of years ago. The soil nutrient value is greatly decreased to mass farming and depletion of the soil by use of chemicals and more to grow. That means our plants get less, our animals are fed non-traditional diets, and even when fed natural diets, have a depleted source. That means we are depleted also.
Now, some sources (just like supplements) are better than others. Such as grass-fed, pastured meats and products from those animals fed their natural diet without chemicals are the best and highest nutrient value we can attain today. And yes organic versus non has different nutrient values. The chemicals and often genetically modified plants grown are treated and lose their values (that will be another post). If you want to learn more about this – check out the Primal Blueprint podcast episode on May 13 with Jeffrey M. Smith.
Some supplements are HIGHLY processed and chemicals are used in the plants in processing the coating or tablet. Some have fillers to balance out if they are in a capsule. All of these things are important to consider. The quality of ingredients made into the powder is important as well, and to be sure that there are no added chemicals used in processed or inside the supplement. Read your ingredients and read about how the product is made by the company to ensure you are getting a clean and healthy product.
Let’s take a look at a few options that are beyond a single item that helps with several nutrient or dietary deficiencies!
Lack of Vegetables in Your Diet
Vegetables are full of micronutrients. They also contain macronutrients. These are essential to feelings of fullness in your diet as well. If you have had a heavily processed food diet for many years, and have been drinking soda, it may take some time to develop a literal taste again for vegetables. It has been proven that your taste buds are affected by soda and how you then taste (or don’t) vegetables. With that said, if you are in a transition to adding more vegetables to your diet, and experimenting with cooking and seasoning – adding some additional “greens” support to your diet might help.
“Whether you don’t have enough time to cook, go grocery shopping, or simply don’t like the taste of veggies, boost your shake with Power Greens Boost. Unfortunately, today’s average diet does not usually meet the daily recommended amount of veggies, but Power Greens can help! Each serving of concentrated powder has the equivalent of 1 cup of green vegetables (volume before drying). It’s like you’re eating ½ cup dark leafy greens, ⅓ cup cucumbers, and ⅓ of a large celery stalk.”
Struggling with Skin, Hair, Nails or General Connective Tissue/Joint Issues
Collagen is up and coming for supplementing. This is huge for the health of your skin, hair and nails as those are primary users of collagen that most people think of! But I am here to tell you that this is so important for your joint health and muscles as you age. You need this (as you lose it and it becomes more rigid). There is also evidence to show that it helps fight tumor cells, and who doesn’t want that right?
“Radiant skin and healthy nails begin on the inside—where creams and masks can’t reach but Beachbody Collagen Boost can. Just add Beachbody Collagen Boost to Shakeology® or your favorite beverage to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, increase skin elasticity, and support healthy nails—with just one daily targeted scoop.*”
Need some more variety in your diet?
If you just know you might be lacking some essentials, or you are lacking time for a healthy breakfast, or lunch, or snack – choosing the right type of supplement in the form of a shake powder might help. Changing up the greens, the fruit, adding yogurt and seed and nuts can increase the shakes healthiness even more. You can get a healthy dose of protein as well. If you just aren’t a meat-lover or know you struggle with protein, a shake is a tasty way to make it happen.
It is important to read your labels and understand that MANY MANY cheap shakes available are literally chemicals only with a bit of protein. So please be sure you understand what you are buying and look for something that is a superfood, versus just protein. You want to balance out a meal here and get as many nutrients as possible, NOT just a serving of protein.
Beachbody’s Shakeology does that.
An excellent source of protein, and so much more…
“On top of 16–17 g of high-quality protein, Shakeology® also contains so much nutrition your body craves—digestive enzymes, prebiotics, probiotics, adaptogens, fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, all crucial to being healthy and feeling great.”
My husband and I have tried MANY shakes in our lives, as he used to be big into bodybuilding in his younger years. This by far is one of the tastiest and HEALTHIEST shakes out there. It’s very clean without loaded chemicals as fillers!
Do your kids love smoothies? Check out our Daily Sunshine! My son loves his, keeps him full and fills him with some nutrition for a snack, or with his breakfast.
“You know your kids need fruits and vegetables. But they beg for snacks loaded with salt, saturated fat, and high-fructose corn syrup—and zero real nutrition. What’s a well-meaning parent to do?
You give them Daily Sunshine, the healthy smoothie kids love—and parents feel great about serving! Daily Sunshine puts an end to the kitchen table battles, the bargaining, and the compromises. Now everyone can be happy at snack time.”
Immune System Issues
Now, this is a little trickier. There are a lot of specific immune system problems out there today. HONESTLY, the TRUE thing that stopped my issues was a change in diet and the food I eat. The will be the THING that raises not only your immunity during cold and flu season (YES IT WORKS FOR THAT ALSO), but lowers inflammation and starts calming your immune system down from hyper mode. If you have an autoimmune disease, you need to calm it down WHILE boosting your immunity to things like colds and flu! I have done this.
I do not have one type of product recommendation here. There are so many variations you could try. I do recommend a probiotic and don’t choose something crazy strong, keep it simple to a daily dose (or choose a supplement shake to start – see above). If you want to go beyond – this is a clean terrific brand.
The BIGGEST recommendation I make here is to CHANGE YOUR DIET. It’s time to clean up those processed foods and eliminate them. Want some nutrition options? Check out this page for some support and help from me!
Start small with something like a healthy shake for breakfast, or add in a dark greens salad with healthy olive oil dressing at lunch instead of that fast food drive-thru. You don’t need to overhaul all at once unless you WANT to!
Getting enough rest also falls into the immune system category. Diet and sleep, with lowered stress, have direct impacts on your immunity.
We aren’t all perfect. We don’t always get the balance we need daily in our diets. Trying a few shifts in our food, our habits, and adding in some supplements can help you fill gaps that you do have. We all have them.
***If you are interested in any of the Beachbody products in this post, I can offer you a cart for them, as I am a coach, and some of them are just links to products and companies that I trust and find to be clean sources for supplements.
What do you need help with?