This nutritional supplement page has some of the best and necessary supplements recommended for you by How To Nutrition.
Some of the most common vitamin and mineral deficiencies in today’s human body include: Vitamin B-12, Vitamin-D, Magnesium, enzymes, and good gut bacteria.
*Charts adapted from – Nutrition Counseling and Education Skill Development 3rd edition by Bauer and Liou
Recommended Nutritional Supplements
Vitamin B-12 synthesis occurs naturally in the small intestine, which is the primary site of B-12 absorption. As long as gut bacteria have cobalt and certain other nutrients, they can produce the vitamin.
Continued use of antibiotics by the medical field over the past decades has killed off most of the bacteria that produce vitamin B-12 in the colon and small intestines that then store it in the liver (60%) and muscles (30%) for later use when needed.
Pregnancy and hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) cause B-12 deficiency, as well as low levels of stomach acid which leads to an overgrowth of bacteria that do not belong in the small intestine. These bacteria in turn, leach vitamin B-12 from the body (Live Science).
Your body needs vitamin B-12, also known as cobalamin, to aid with energy metabolism, to support the health of the nervous system and to help produce red blood cells, DNA and RNA. It promotes your body’s use of iron and activates enzymes that regulate the level of homocysteine that you have in your blood.
High levels of the amino acid homocysteine may increase your risk of heart disease. If you don’t consume enough vitamin B-12, you may experience fatigue, diarrhea and possible nerve damage.
A long-term deficiency of vitamin B-12 may make you more likely to develop heart disease, pernicious anemia or age-related macular degeneration.
- Nature's Way Vitamin B-12 - 2000 Mcg - 100 Lozenges
- Price: $20.15
- Nature's Answer Liquid Vitamin B-12 - 2 Fl Oz
- Price: $19.89
Vitamin D is actually a hormone rather than a vitamin. The body makes most of the vitamin-D it needs. Only about 10% comes from the food you consume. Your skins contact with sunlight produces a substance called cholecalciferol, which is converted by the liver to calcidiol.
Vitamin-D has multiple biological effects. According to the Vitamin Counsel vitamin-D helps with:
- Immune system, which helps you to fight infection
- Muscle function
- Cardiovascular function, for a healthy heart and circulation
- Respiratory system –for healthy lungs and airways
- Brain development
- Anti-cancer effects
Vitamin-D also helps to increase intestinal absorption of calcium, magnesium, phosphate, and zinc.
- Liquid Health Vitamin D3 - 2.03 Fl Oz
- Price: $11.93
Magnesium does more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. It helps to maintain a healthy immune system, strong bones, nerve and muscle function, and works with calcium to support proper blood pressure levels and therefore preventing hypertension. The mineral also helps regulate blood glucose levels and aids in the production of energy and protein.
Without a proper balance of magnesium to other minerals like calcium, a heart attack can even occur due to severe muscle spasms (magnesium helps all muscles in the body, including the heart to relax).
- Life-Flo Pure Magnesium Oil Spray, 8 oz, LifeFlo
- Price: $7.68
- Magnesium Caps 400 mg, 180 Capsules, NOW Foods
- Price: $9.59
Medical studies have found approximately 75,000 enzymes in the body which are all divided into three category's:
- Metabolic enzymes that run our bodies
- Digestive enzymes that help to unlock the nutrients in the food we eat
- Food enzymes from raw foods that start the digestive process
Enzymes can be found throughout the body, such as in the organs, the bones, the blood, cells, and are also secreted by the salivary glands, stomach, pancreas, and small intestine.
They are extremely sensitive to the environment around them, such as by heat and chemicals which can denature or destroy their ability to unlock nutrients.
Heavy processing of foods, pasteurized foods and packaged foods often lack active enzymes. What does this mean for the body? That it must work harder to break down and synthesize the nutrients in the food you eat.
There are several symptoms of deficiency that can include:
- Skin rashes, acne, and eczema
- Brain fog, headaches, and mood swings
- Joint pain
- Myofascial pain (chronic pain disorder)
Small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is another sign of enzyme deficiency. This condition is the growth of abnormally large numbers of bacteria. You could say that it is bacteria that is misplaced or in its wrong environment and therefore causes havoc.
A major sign of enzyme deficiency is trouble digesting fatty foods, like meat fat, cooking oils that contain fat, like coconut oil, and olive oil. Also nuts like walnuts, pecans, and almonds have fat that can be hard to digest without certain enzymes present.
You can know that your body is not digesting food by taking a look at your poop after you have gone to the toilet. If your poop is floating on top of the water, it is a sign of undigested fat.
It is very important that your body digests fat found in the food you eat, as some vitamins are fat-soluble, such as the B-vitamins. These vitamins need fat to perform their functions in the body. Without fat, the vitamins are washed out of the body.
- Vitalabs Digestive Enzymes, 250 capsules
- Price: $11.80
- Nature's Way Food Enzymes - 90 Caps
- Price: $7.27
Good Gut Bacteria Or Probiotics
Scientific evidence shows that the right gut bacteria enhances the absorption and storage of lipids and helps to facilitate the absorption of needed vitamins and minerals.
Beneficial micro-flora either in your body or on the body's surface needs a stable environment in which to grow and flourish.
What is the best way to restore and maintain beneficial bacteria in the gut? By creating acidity which promotes the growth of various Lactobacillus bacteria. Here are a few simple yet effective ways to accomplish this:
- Eating fermented foods
- Taking probiotic supplements
- Consuming lactic acid yeast wafers
Furthermore, increasing the number of beneficial gut bacteria in the lower bowel or the small intestine this will help with fermenting more soluble fiber into compounds such as:
- Butyric acid
- Acetic acid
- Lactic acid
- Propionic acid
These types of acids produced by good bacteria will help to increase your body's energy and improve its ability to absorb vitamins, minerals, and fat.
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