Does Your Body Need a Boost?
Why and When You Should be Using a Supplement
Vitamins, minerals and trace elements are absolutely vital for our everyday wellbeing for growth, maintenance and to ward off infections and the physical reactions to our everyday stresses.
The science behind food has been growing at a rapid rate and it is safe to say that we know more now than we ever have about the food we eat and its effect on our bodies.
In addition most of us in the developed world have access to some of the healthiest produce on earth. So why and when do we need to add in a supplement.
We are bombarded on a daily basis about the use of supplements and how they can cure everything from being overweight to the common cold. If only a half of it was true we would be incredibly healthy.
Many people mindlessly ingest millions of dollars worth of pills without really knowing what is in them or what the effect really is on your body.
In fact you could be forgiven for thinking that we don’t really need food at all
For older females the stakes hot up when you add in a society obsessed with medicalising menopause, and all of the negative stereotypes of post menopausal women.
So what is the truth about when you should be using supplements.
Here Are My 3 Top Tips for Using Supplements
- Firstly lets deal with those you need if you have been prescribed them medically. If you have been told by your doctor or healthcare professionally you need them, then provided you have had a discussion about the alternatives with them, they are obviously necessary for your continued good health.
You might be wondering why I said provided you have had a discussion. Well over my many years of working with women I have come to the conclusion that many of us don’t ask enough questions. In fact I have looked after women who have had no idea why they were taking something even though they had been taking it for the last 20 years.
Just a little reminder here that this is your body no one else’s so you need to understand it and know what you are doing with it.If you are medically prescribed any kind of supplement you should have your levels etc checked at least annually to make sure it is doing what it should be doing, and that you are taking a therapeutic dose. (A therapeutic dose is the dose that has been scientifically proven to do what it is supposed to in your body. This relates to all drugs not just supplements.)
- Secondly what about those supplements you take for a specific reason? For instance B Vitamins to assist in warding off depression. Magnesium for muscle cramps and anxiety, and zinc to boost skin health. If you would need to eat an enormous amount of a certain food to get what you need for a specific reason then taking a supplement is often quite a good idea. This can also be true when you have a food intolerance where you simply cannot eat what you need.
- Lastly there are times in your life when you don’t care for yourself properly despite your best intentions. Usually this happens when there is an enormous added stress such as the things caused by work and life in general. Things like working very long hours with deadlines and not eating and exercising properly as a result. When someone close to you becomes really ill and you spend time hanging out in the cafeteria at the hospital. Not known for their attention to the healthier things in life. When you have been sick or when you have had a prolonged period of “party time”. Chances are in these periods you have become a little depleted in some areas and you might just need a little short term assistance to regain the middle ground.
There are very few scientific studies that prove many of the supplements we take are of any use. In addition it is often exceedingly difficult to find out exactly what is really in them. If you fall into any of the categories above then you might want to talk to your GP, Dietitian, Naturopath or maybe even a Pharmacist to get some good scientific advice on what is best for you. You should also learn to read and understand the labels the ingredients and their effect on your body.
The truth is that eating good food is more than just ingesting the right amount of a certain thing contained within it. There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of complex physiological responses that occur within our bodies when we eat that make food a better alternative for the majority of the time. Our bodies response to smelling, seeing or eating food begins a chain reaction so powerful that it makes sending a rocket to the moon seem relatively easy.
The gastric juices and chemicals released make sure that whatever you have eaten can be stripped bare of its nutrients and used for the purpose it was intended. To make you a walking, talking powerhouse.