Today I’m filling you in on – SUPPLEMENTS! I’m often asked about what supplements I’m going to take you through what I use daily and why. Before we get too far in, I want you to know that you DO NOT need supplements to be healthy. All the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals I’m going to talk about are found in real food sources (and that is the ideal way to consume them). Taking these in a supplement form acts as an insurance policy so that I can be sure I’m getting enough of the nutrients my body needs.
My supplement routine has changed a lot over the years. I’ve taken multivitamins, protein powders, BCAA’s, greens powders, the list goes on. Since I’ve been at this for many years, I’ve been able to find what works well for me and my body. Your needs may be different than mine so please chat with your doctor prior to starting any new supplements.
This is a supplement I’ve been taking since the very beginning. Fish oil is loaded with the healthy Omega-3 fatty acids (DHA and EPA) and is a nutrient our culture tends to be deficient in. Omega-3’s are naturally found in cold water, fatty fish such as salmon, herring, sardines, and trout, as well as eggs and organ meats, like liver.
- Fights inflammation
- Improves heart, eye, and brain health
- Improves body composition (fat loss)
- Fights depression and anxiety
- Supports metabolism, immunity, and hormone production
I recently asked my doctor for blood work and one the “optional tests” I asked for was vitamin D. In Canada, you must pay for this test because it’s assumed that everyone in the country has a vitamin D deficiency. Still, I opted to take it because I wanted to know where my numbers sat. At the time of the test, it was summer, and I had been supplementing with 4000 IU of Vitamin D3 for only 1 month (D3 is more effective at raising and maintaining vitamin D levels). The results came back showing that I was borderline vitamin D deficient. I’m going to continue taking 4000 IU/day and re-test in the fall since it can sometimes take several months for your body to adjust to a supplement.
- Helps build strong bones and teeth (through calcium and phosphorous absorption)
- Potentially protects against osteoporosis
- Promotes brain health
- Supports the immune system (especially in winter months)
I did a lot of research on collagen before deciding which one was the best for me. I ended up going with grass-fed bovine hydrolyzed collagen because it has both type 1 and 3 collagen, and has a higher mineral concentration of calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. As we get older, our body’s natural ability to produce collagen declines (by the time you’re 40, your collagen production decreases by 25%) so taking a collagen supplement may be one the best natural anti-aging tools out there.
- Fights inflammation
- Source of protein
- Promotes muscle, bone, and joint health
- Supports hair, skin, and nail growth
- Supports nervous system
- Improves digestion
Although chia seeds are real food, I treat them as a supplement because I want to make sure I’m having enough every single day. I try to eat 1-2 tbsp daily in a smoothie, as a yogurt topper, or by making it into chia pudding.
- High in calcium, magnesium, iron, and potassium
- Loaded with both soluble and insoluble fiber
- Serve as prebiotics (feeds your healthy gut bacteria)
- Can help regulate blood sugar (especially when eaten with carbohydrates)
- High in omega-3 fats
Kombucha is a fermented tea beverage that has been consumed for thousands of years. While there are many beneficial health claims to drinking kombucha, I have a small glass every day for the probiotics. In a nutshell, probiotics are the healthy bacteria that live in your digestive system and support your immune system. I used to take probiotic pills daily, but I personally find that having a glass of kombucha helps with my digestion and bloating more than taking a probiotic supplement.
- Naturally high in probiotics
- Source of antioxidants
- May reduce allergy and eczema symptoms
- Can improve cholesterol levels
- More cost effective than buying probiotic pills
Before you go, I’d love to hear from you:
What supplements (if any) do you take right now?
Do you have any questions about the ones I use?
Until next time,