Positive Energy 404 - Not So Fast
Mrs. Y came in a few days ago for a massage/bodywork treatment. During our conversation, she told me that she has severe osteoporosis and has lost two inches in height over the last three years. She said that her diet has never been good but she always took the "right supplements" and thought that that would make up for it.
I am sure Mrs. Y is not alone in her belief that supplements can make up for a poor diet. It's easy to get mesmerized by the smooth marketing and believe taking a tablet with solve any health issues. If today's email encourages just one person to take a more conscious and intelligent approach to supplementation, I will consider it successful.
Quality counts in everything. It counts in your vegetables, meat, teas, oils, and even in the water and air you take in. Quality also counts in the supplements you ingest. Americans spend over 30 million dollars per year on supplements. Before you part with some of your well earned cash, consider the following:
1) Supplements can and often contain synthetic and GMO ingredients. Does synthetic food sound appealing? How about a nice shiny, synthetic apple? No thank you. How different is eating synthetic food from eating synthetic ingredients in pill form? Why would you carefully avoid GMO food and then swallow them without question in your supplements?
2) Supplements can and often contain fillers, artificial colors and hydrogenated oils. Red, blue and yellow dyes are common. Click here if you want to know some of the side effects connected with artificial food dyes: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2957945/
3) Some vitamins can concentrate toxins (fish oils), get old or rancid, thus quickly limiting their effectiveness and possibly causing inflammation or other harm in the body.
What is ironic is that the people most likely to take supplements are those that care about their health. It's easy to believe the marketing hype and forget to use the same detective skills when choosing supplements as you do when choosing what to eat. Labeling loopholes and tricky jargon also complicate the issue. What can we do?
Please keep the following in mind:
1) Even the best supplements cannot make up for a poor diet. Supplements should be viewed as their name suggests, something to "add" not "replace". A crutch can be used when your foot or leg is injured as a temporary help. It can never replace or compare to your actual flesh and blood leg. Quality supplements can enhance but they can never replace a healthy diet. Diet diligence first, supplements second.
2) If you read on the benefits of a particular vitamin or mineral and feel excited to try it, the first thing you should do is to search "food sources of vitamin X" online. For example, if you search food sources of vitamin D you can see what high quality foods to add to your diet to get the benefits in a more bioavailable way with less expense. Why add a middleman into the equation when you don't need one?
3) Be cautious and diligent when choosing to supplement. Read labels, familiarize yourself with a company through online searches and education. Many companies get their supplements from the same source but do their best to differentiate themselves by telling a better story or using more appealing packaging. Multi level marketing products are always the most expensive because they must pay their distributors.Think of it like dating, you don't want to marry the first person you have coffee with. You have to get to know them before you take things to the next level.
4) For the cost of 1-2 bottles of most supplements you can visit a natural care, holistic practitioner to get long lasting customized advice to reach your goals. Respect your financial resources and spend wisely.
"Things come apart so easily when they are held together by lies." - Dorothy Allison
“It is always the simple that produces the marvelous.”
– Amelia Barr
All the best,
Bodywork, Movement & Holistic Lifestyle Design
Want to take your health to the next level?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, let's talk about solutions.
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recommended beginner activity: If you are taking supplements, read all labels and visit the company website to get an initial feel for the company. Do an online search for food sources of any vitamin or mineral you are currently supplementing. Boost your diet first before supplementing.
recommended advanced activity: Throw out any old supplements you have in your cabinet. Make it your business to build a strong foundation for health by becoming skilled in the basics of health. Movement, water, and quality food. When your basic habits are solid, you will have gained a victory and earned the skills to move to the next level.
It's not your age, it's your lifestyle.