i have held off writing this post simply because taking supplements on a regular basis has beendifficult for me - i mean, who doesn't struggle remembering to take them EVERYDAY? firstworld problems, i know! anyway, i have finally remembered to take my supplements for severaldays in a row for the past several weeks and i definitely see and feel a difference so i feel confident sharing with you which supplements i take and why!i take 4 supplements on a regular basis - i feel like i should truly strive to get most of my nutrients from food versus supplementing for a lack of nutrition. also, it is very hard to know the appropriate time to take vitamins in order to maximize the uptake - i, for one, cannot afford expensive pee, so i would like to actually absorb what i am taking.
probiotic - i really should bold, highlight and italicize this because this has literally been a life-changing supplement for me. probiotics are getting their well-deserved time in the limelight lately, but mainly in the forms of yogurt, kefir, kombucha, etc. well, i have been a regular kefir and kombucha drinker as well as yogurt-eater, but nothing can compare to taking this as a supplement. i buy Garden of Life probiotics for Women, it is available for $40 in the Whole Foods refigerated vitamin section - there has never been a time where Whole Foods hasn't offered a $5 off coupon right on the front of the bottle. this is the most expensive supplement that i take and i would donate plasma to afford this bottle of 90 capsules and yes, it must remain refigerated. i decided to start taking this after my 'get balanced' workshop this spring because even after eating completely clean for 15 days, my digestion did not improve. at all. the ladies behind Prescribe Nutrition suggested a probiotic and i haven't looked back since. not only are probiotics good for the obvious, digestion - indigestion, heart burn, bloating, but also for your immune system. did you know that 80% of your immune system is actually located in your gut?! 80%!!!!! even with germs while working, nannying, gym, yoga, kickboxing, etc., i literally have yet to get sick since starting (knock on wood!). healthy gut, healthy you! once i started talking to people about how awesome this probiotic is, i learned that a lot of ladies have turned to probiotics to help with their digestion - they feel the same way as i do! while alot of ladies i know take the popular-known 'Align', feel free to do research on what probiotic you need. aim for something that has 10 billion cfu on packaging and try to take it right away in the morning! the serving suggestion on my bottle is 3 capsules morning and night, but i almost always just take 2 capsules with a glass of water in the morning and that seems to be enough. depending on how i feel, i may take 3 in the morning.
fish oil - many people take fish oil because it is cheap and has always been a highlighted supplement.
fish oil does cover a lot of ailments and help your body run like a well oiled machine, but let me give you a few reasons behind all that. in the typical American diet, we do not get enough Omega 3's from fish, cod liver oil, etc. - our diet just isn't based around fish/seafood! Omega 3's is an essential fatty acid that is great for many things such as fighting free radicals and decreasing inflammation. fish oil helps offset all of the damaging Omega 6's that we eat on a daily basis (typical ratio of Omega 6's to Omega 3's is about 16:1....recommended is MAYBE 3:1, yikes). we can partially thank the uptick in diseases such as cardivascula, cancer, and inflammatory and autoimmune diseases to this out-of-control ratio. fish oil also aids in digestive and adrenal health, as well! while you can get Omega 3's naturally from (responsibly raised) tuna, salmon, cod liver oil, fish, etc. i have been trying to 'acquire' the taste of salmon and tuna, but to no prevail, i resort to my daily fish oil. i buy a large bottle of the Whole Foods brand fish oil which is from Cold Water Fish. i take 1 fish oil per day, but am considering on upping this to 2 per day.
glutamine - i wouldn't be surprised if this supplement makes it way into the spotlight soon as i continue to hear more and more about it. glutamine was suggested to me by a personal trainer - i was having issues recovering from my workouts. the more i dug deeper, the more i realized that glutamine is a great supplement for people who regularly workout - drew even said that he doesn't buy protein powder unless it has glutamine in it (well, duh!). glutamine is also know to help with sugar cravings, an added bonus for me! i will take 1 glutamine per day, but don't hesitate to take an extra one on days that i really get my butt kicked (kickboxing class). drew will also take a couple after a hard soccer game or lifting session to help make getting out of bed the next day easier. again, i buy the Whole Foods brands.
biotin - this is known as a 'beauty' supplement. i didn't really believe in taking this, but it is pretty inexpensive and a couple of girlfriends swore by it and now i do too! i mainly starting taking biotin to help my nails. as a recovering nail-biter, i needed something to make and keep my nails strong and less prone to break or split. not only have my nails benefited, but also my hair! my hair has gone from the awkward, 'i'm trying to grow it out' shoulder length to well below my shoulders and beyond in the last 4 weeks! i actually got it trimmed the other day becaues i felt like i had a couple inches to spare. it's kind of funny because after a few weeks of taking it, i got several compliments about how great and healthy my hair looked (and i swear i wasn't soliciting for compliments!). a few people have asked me if i noticed an improvement in my skin - i have been blessed with great skin, so i can't attest to less breakouts or oil, but i have noticed my face being more hydrated and less in need for face lotion (i am sure the upcoming MN winter will give it a true test). i started out with taking 2 biotin per day, but switched to 1, i didn't need my hair growing that quickly.
when i start to tell people about the supplements that i take, they instantly dive into how they can never remember to take them and they end up being a waste of money. here are a few tips that i have found work for me!
>> set an alarm - use it as a reminder, an appointment to take your vitamins. set as many as you need!
>> take them the same time everyday, have it become apart of your daily routine. it didn't take long for me to remember to take the probiotics everyday - as soon as i felt the benefits, i didn't need a reminder! i take the rest of my supplements right after lunch. i fell into a routine of flossing, drinking a mug of green tea and taking my supplements right after lunch. i feel out of tune if i miss it....
>> get a cute vitamin holder! who wants to carry around big bottles of vitamins or even little baggies of vitamins looking like a distributor? the last time we were at the Vitamin Shoppe, we got a freebie vitamin case. it's kind of stupid how easy this case makes it! it allows 6 days to fit in a case as big as a credit card - i like that it keeps the days separate since the biotin and glutamine look similar. i am able to keep the vitamin case on my desk all week without looking like a drug addict and it is in my face all day reminding me not to forget. at the end of the week, i can easily throw it in my purse for the weekend and restock for the next week!
what supplements are you religious about taking and why? how do you remember to take them everyday?
always striving for more,