The Importance of Supplements

The importance of supplements is occasionally underestimated.  I hear people often ask, are they really necessary? I eat well so why should I bother wasting my money???

Well, I have a different opinion and the purpose of this article is to provide some information on the importance of supplements that you may not be aware of, and why even a good diet can be deficient in all kinds of minerals
People often say,  ‘I eat well, so I am not interested in supplements’. Really?

Then why do you feel tired all the time? Why are you getting muscle aches and pains, why the poor sleep and the period pains, why the headaches ect…?
Here is something I bet you did not know. Plants cannot make minerals. They make some vitamins (as do humans) but they cannot make minerals. So how do they get them? They absorb them from the ground.  That is when the importance of supplements come in.
You can have the world’s best diet and you will still be deficient in all kinds of things if you eat food grown in nutritionally poor soil.
In industry commercial crops are grown in nutritionally deficient soil and fed only 3 minerals. NPK. Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P) and Potassium (K) as these 3 minerals give the appearance of plants being green and lush.
Contrast that to a nutritional mineral rich food like unrefined sea salt which contains 84 minerals. So where are the other 81 minerals??? They are missing…..

Test it for yourself. Go and buy a tomato from a large supermarket.  Is it nice and ripe, deep red color, juicy and delicious?
No, I did not think so. It is not nice and hardly even tastes like food. That is what happens when you substitute quality for quantity, you produce an inferior product with a poor nutritional status. Supplements are vital in that regards.
Now compare the mediocre supermarket tomato with an organic tomato bought at the Farmers market and picked from the garden yesterday. It’s like a completely different food. That is what happens when you care for the ground, nurture the crops and eat food picked from the garden yesterday, not last week or last year.
People who live on supermarket fruit and veg can expect to be deficient in nutrients for this reason. I digress, but you get my point I hope?
Key Nutrients

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid)
Mg (Magnesium)
Zn (Zinc)

Vitamin C

Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) the active form of vitamin C. This is a highly underrated nutrient and is often deficient in peoples diet, especially in the colder months of the year.
In winter, you will notice that citrus fruits are in season, like oranges and mandarins. This is nature telling us to eat more of these foods at this time of the year.

The Vitamin C is essential for a normal healthy immune system, as well as the formation of collagen (the body’s main type of connective tissue) and the normal function of healthy veins and arteries.

Mostly Vitamin C is burned up quickly in times as stress as it is needed for the synthesis of stress hormones, like cortisol and adrenaline.

Vitamin C is also crucial for elastin, to keep the skin healthy and allow proper elasticity

Yes! Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, along with all the B vitamins which means the body cannot store much of it, so you need to get it in the diet daily.

Like Magnesium, you will get diarrhoea if you take too much which is what happens when the body tissue becomes saturated and cells cannot absorb any more, so excess is passed in the bowel. Reduce the dose if this happens or consult your doctor.

Food sources of Vitamin C include;
• Green leafy veg like kale, chard etc… as well as herbs like parsley
• All berries
• All citrus
• Capsicum
• Tomatoes
• Pineapple and pawpaw

Magnesium

Clinically, the most obvious mineral that people become deficient in is Magnesium (Mg)
Magnesium is an alkaline mineral, meaning the complete opposite to acid. This is an excellent mineral to take because you burn up your magnesium during periods of stress. This occurs because magnesium is needed for the synthesis (to make) the adrenal hormones. The more you stress, the more adrenal hormones you make, and one of these hormones is particularly problematic. I am sure you have heard of it. It is called cortisol.

Cortisol has anti-inflammatory effects by reducing white blood cells, which unfortunately also slows wound healing. B vitamins (think energy) and zinc (think the immune system, skin, and reproduction) are all needed to make these hormones along with magnesium.
But if you suffer from muscle cramps/spasm, problems sleeping, period pain or general muscle soreness it is likely you are deficient in magnesium.
I much prefer a powdered magnesium over tablets, as it is much faster and easier to absorb and metabolize into cells. I usually take 200-300mg once or twice a day depending on how stressed I am. It easily dilutes into water or smoothies etc…
However, like vitamin C if you take too much magnesium for your body you will get loose stools. Consult your doctor your dosage if this happens.

Magnesium is found in the following foods;

Avocado
• Cacao (raw chocolate)
• Nuts (except peanuts)
• Seeds

Zinc

Think zinc!
Zinc (Zn) is one of my most favourite minerals and is needed in more than 300 metabolic actions in the body.

Zinc is often prescribed for the following reasons;

• Increases fertility in both males and females
• Important for connective tissue and skin health and repair
• Stimulates the immune system and is crucial proper white blood cell function
• An important building block for healthy skin, hair, and nails

Zinc is especially important for males as we store much of our zinc in the prostate gland and men lose about 5mg of zinc during ejaculation.
Taking zinc as a supplement can cause digestive issues if the dose is too large, as zinc is toxic at excessive levels in the body.
This is very rare, however just be aware. While zinc can affect the stomach it is also very important for making hydrochloric acid (stomach acid).
Zinc is needed in different amounts in different people and the body usually requires  40-60mg daily, and the body will need at least this amount or more when fighting off an acute infection be it viral or bacterial.

Zinc is found in the following foods;

• Animal meats
• Ginger
• Black pepper
• Seeds (especially pumpkin seeds)
• Nuts (not peanuts)

Zinc tends to hang out in protein foods and is needed for the absorption of amino acids (the building blocks of protein).
All food sources is not a complete list, just somewhere to get you started. I hope you now have a little bit more information on the importance of supplements.

Wishing you health and happiness!

22 thought on “The Importance of Supplements”

  1. Sue Marriott

    Well that was an interesting read. I think i’m getting some of these in my vegan diet but might need to make a few additions and maybe try to buy a few more organic fruit and veggies. Thank you for the advice.

    Reply
  2. tina

    I’m glad to see the list of foods containing zinc. With so much to keep track of ensuring I’m including those foods in my grocery list, I had forgotten about zinc. But like you mentioned, sometimes the food built for shelf life, packaging and travel, and removed from the vine before being ready for consumption may not hold the expected nutrient.

    Reply
    1. admin Post author

      That is true, adding a variety of food to a diet is another way of getting maximum benefits of nutrients from plants and buying organic where possible or grow your own.

      Reply
  3. Phomrong Hongsha

    You’ve shown the importance of adding supplements to our food intake.
    The addition of vitamin-c, magnesium and zinc to make up 81% of the minerals not found in ordinary foods but through supplements is equally a good information.

    This was a good read.

    I wish you all the best.

    Reply
  4. Evan Cruz

    Hello Angella, it was a pleasure reading your blog post today. The stuff with magnesium and zinc were particularly useful; I will definitely incorporate those into my diet. Thank you.

    Reply
  5. Eugen

    Hi Angella,

    Great article. I am often tired of people when they are saying ahh I eat lots of vegs I don’t need minerals. It is ridiculous, but this article sounds like was written based on what is on my mind.

    Completely agree that we should get magnesium supply asap, also please note that this should not be magnesium oxide that is put into cheap supplements. The oxide is very low digestible 4% roughly of the total amount. Instead, I would go at least with citrate which can be purchased as a powder is digestible and not very expensive.

    Great article I am glad someone understands the issue and share with others.

    Reply
    1. admin Post author

      Hi Eugen
      There are definitely different forms of magnesium. I agree taking a powder is better than tablets because it is easier to absorb and metabolise. The form of magnesium form that I take contains magnesium amino acids chelate, magnesium citrate, magnesium orotate dihydrate and is in a powder form.

      Thank you for your comment

      Reply
  6. Ali

    What a nice post you wrote! I really enjoyed reading it and I could not be silent about your post so I decided to leave my comment here and say Thank You! For sharing this quality post with others.
    Actually this is exactly the information that I was looking for importance of supplements and when I landed to your website and read this post, it answered all my questions in details.
    So I’m happy that you decided to write about this topic and share it with people. It’s very useful and can definitely be used as a great source for importance of supplements.

    I will come back to your website again for sure and I’m looking forward to read your new posts.)

    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. admin Post author

      I am so glad I could help. So many people underestimate the importance of supplements but they should generally be part of a healthy diet for maximum body performance. Thank you for your comment.

      Reply
  7. William

    My wife got me into taking supplements. I swear I can contribute part of my good health to them. Especially since I don’t eat all the right stuff. On top of mass-produced foods can be void of what your body needs.

    Reply
    1. admin Post author

      Real food is important because it is full of mineral and nutrients the boddy needs. Fast foods and packed food unfortunatley not and supplementss will definitely help. Thank you for reading.

      Reply
  8. Nadia

    Thank you for the awesome info Angella! I must admit I was one of the them who’s not sure if supplements are any good – but thankfully I found your article and I now know better!

    Reply
  9. Irma

    Great post!
    People do not realize how long it can take to replenish your body when it is deficient. I found that out when it took almost two months for my hormones to start to normalize when taking the maximum dosage of evening primrose oil, but I felt so much better when it finally kicked in.
    And I can attest to the usefulness of magnesium supplements, which help me to sleep and keep my leg cramps under control.

    Reply
    1. admin Post author

      Taking supplements is definitely not a quick fix you are right. It all depends on your level of deficiency, and its always a good idea to have tests done before one can start taking supplements. A good start would be to start eating whole foods which contains minerals and good nutrients. Thank you for your comment.

      Reply
  10. Sabrina

    Great post! Very informative… It looks like I need more magnesium in my body. I couldn’t figure out why my neck muscles always seem to be sore and no matter how much I stretch they never seem to get any better. Also get spasms constantly.

    So do you suggest that I take the magnesium powder as well? Do you have a preferred brand you like to use?

    Thank you for the great information 🙂
    Sabrina

    Reply
    1. admin Post author

      Thank you for your response.Magnesium worked well for my neck too. It is an amazing supplement if used correctly. I suggest you consult your doctor for a good brand of magnesium if you don’t want over the counter stuff.

      Reply

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