A question that I get asked by many patients is if supplementing is necessary. The thought is if you’re eating a very clean, unprocessed, organic, locally grown whole food diet, you should be able to get all of your vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other nutrients solely from your food. Unfortunately, it’s just not that easy anymore. We are “mismatched” with our current environment due to a combination of variables – nutrient deficient soils, genetically altered crops, overuse of antibiotics, birth control and other medications, storage and transportation of our foods with the increase of stress and demands from our growing toxic environment. These factors and more make it impossible for us to get all our nutrient needs met through our food alone.
Easy answer, evidence shows we cannot get away from the need to supplement.[2,3] I am a big advocate of getting as many nutrients as you can through your diet (check out this blog) as with most nutrients, we are best able to digest and absorb these nutrients from food. However, certain nutrients (such as vitamin D and magnesium) are very difficult to obtain even in the most perfect diet so supplementing with these vital nutrients is a necessity for optimal health and wellbeing.
For ages doctors used to think that you got all of your vitamins and minerals from food. Any extra nutrients would be eliminated through excretion, or worse, become toxic. Today, doctors recognize the importance of supplementing with nutrients. Over one billion dollars per year is prescribed in fish oil supplements alone. Obstetricians have always recommended prenatal vitamins. A lot of cardiologists are recommending folate, fish oil and coenzyme Q10. Gastroenterologists are recommended probiotics.
For many reasons, most of us are nutrient malnourished, including nutrient depleted soils, the abundance of processed, nutrient-lacking foods many Americans eat, to the total burden of environmental toxins, lack of sunlight and chronic stress that leads to higher nutrient needs. Myself, along with many other functional medicine physicians, recommend a good multi-vitamin, omega-3, probiotic and vitamin D supplement as a minimum supplement regimen. In our office, we also have several different forms of testing for further therapeutic supplementation needs. I utilize applied kinesiology combined with acupuncture techniques, to computerized scanning methods, to full blood panels and hair and urine analysis to determine exactly what your nutrient needs are. I am offering for a limited time a FREE online nutritional analysis with supplement recommendations. To take advantage please fill out the form below.
Eating a diet rich in good fats, quality, unadulterated proteins and lots of locally grown, organic vegetables and fruits in conjunction with appropriate supplementation will be a huge step in the right direction towards optimizing your health!
- Kreisberg J. Learning from organic agriculture. Explore. 2006 Sep-Oct; 2( 5): 450– 52. Review. Hyman, Mark (2012-02-28).
- Fairfield KM, Fletcher RH. Vitamins for chronic disease prevention in adults: scientific review. JAMA. 2002 Jun 19;287( 23): 3116– 26. Review.