Getting What You Need
From nutrient soil depletion to processed food and storage we do not get the same amount of nutrients in the foods we eat. Few health care professionals would argue with that statement. This is a list that I like to consider as essentials for pretty much everyone (excluding infants of course - except for the probiotics).
These consist of the good bacteria naturally present in our bodies. They help the body in digestion and play some role in over all immune health. We all have taken antibiotics in our lives and what one must remember is that that this medication is against all life; good or bad. It removes our good bacteria.
Often children go on an antibiotic and then weeks after get a 'reoccurring infection'. The reason? There are no good bugs left in their body to fight off the bad bugs. The answer: bug yourself up!
Therefore, we all (young and old) must be conscious of getting it in. If you do not want to take a fish oil supplement, increase your fish consumption (salmon, tuna, cod, mackerel), eat walnuts regularly or take ground sable seeds or flax as both are very high in omega 3. Omega 3 is great for your skin (relives dry skin, acne etc), metabolism, cardiovascular health (like blood pressure and cholesterol), cognitive function (focus and attention) and regulates hormone balance.
Omega 3 (EPA/DHA)
North Americans do not eat their 2 servings of cold water fish every week. If they did they would be closer to the minimum recommended levels. Therefore, we all (young and old) must be conscious of getting it in. If you do not want to take a fish oil, increase your fish consumption (salmon, tuna, cod, mackerel), eat walnuts regularly or take ground sable seeds or flax as both of these are very high in omega 3. Omega 3 is great for your skin (relives dry skin, acne etc), metabolism, cardiovascular health, cognitive function (helps with focus and attention) and hormone balance.
A great book discussing healthy fats:
“Healthy Fats for Life”
by Lorna R. Vanderhaeghe BSc and Karlene Karst BSc, RD
Calcium and Vitamin D
Both of these nutrients are often underrated particularly in Canada. Majority of Canadians are deficient in Vitamin D (which controls the amount of calcium deposited in the bone) as we are located so far north of the equator. This makes it challenging for our skin to produce the right amount of Vitamin D from sun exposure. A study done in Calgary, the sun capital for Canada, reveled that 97% of Calgarians were deficient in Vitamin D.
The Canadian Cancer Society has now recommended all adults to take a Vitamin D supplement as of June 2007. They recommend 1000 IU a day for all adults in the fall and the winter and for people at risk of low Vitamin D stores to take a 1000 IU all year round.
Calcium is also commonly forgotten as you would need to consume about 4 dairy everyday or eat about 20 cups of greens like broccoli.
Taking Calcium and Vitamin D together helps with absorption and will improve your bone mass, heart rhythm, give immune support and cancer protection.
Multi-Vitamin and Mineral
This provides a great insurance policy to overall health. When shopping look for one that does not have all your nutrients in 1 pill. If your body could absorb all the nutrients you need in one sitting then in theory we should only be required to eat once a day. This however, is not the case. Our body needs us to eat regularly to balance blood sugar, regulate our metabolism, fuel our brain constantly and provide cell nutrition to just function and be alive. Better Multi-Vitamins request the tablets or capsules to be split up amongst your meals. This ensures better absorption.
Normally we find these in fruits and a vegetable like berries, spinach, oranges etc but the truth is we do not eat enough. Many people struggle to get a minimum of 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. As well, with cancer and heart disease as high as they are we all need extra antioxidant support on top of the recommended garden necessities. Some great ones are Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Coenzyme Q10, Grape Seed Extract and Juice Plus.
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