Once upon a time, we consumed about equal amounts of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Today, however, we eat many more inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids: 20 times or more, in fact. These inflammatory fats lurk in conventional meats, processed foods, vegetable oils, and other foods most of us eat regularly.
Why You Should Take These Supplements: They Are Essential
Supplements are meant to do just that: Complement, not replace, a healthy diet. They can provide the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients you might not get from food. Many of these deficiencies aren’t always obvious. Instead, they are considered “subclinical,” meaning they can impact your health in subtle ways.
The good news is that you don’t need to take a dozen different supplements to get these crucial nutrients. In fact, three daily essentials can help tremendously.
These nutrients provide an inexpensive “insurance policy” that covers the bases you might not — probably aren’t — getting from food. Essential nutrients can prevent deficiencies that contribute to many health conditions.
You might benefit from taking additional supplements that a healthcare practitioner recommends. Always consult with him or her to determine your specific nutrient needs.
For just about everyone, these three “just the basics” will be enough to provide the daily nutrients you need to thrive, be lean and healthy, and live your very best life. They provide the foundation for optimal nutrient coverage.
Discuss including these and/or any other additional supplements with your healthcare practitioner. Never modify any medications or other medical advice without your healthcare practitioner’s consent.
Some quality omega-3 formulas contain other fatty acids than just EPA and DHA. They include alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fatty acid in plant foods, as well as other anti-inflammatory fatty acids such as gamma linolenic acid (GLA) from borage or evening primrose oils.
Why You Should Take Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Everyone who doesn’t regularly eat wild-caught fish and eats too many inflammatory fats — that would be nearly all of us — should take omega-3 fatty acids.
Quality matters with supplements, and especially with omega-3 fatty acids. EPA and DHA can go rancid easily, potentially creating more harm than good. Better formulas will provide a clear sell-by date and include antioxidants like tocopherols (vitamin E) to stabilize those delicate fatty acids.
Read your labels closely. Never mind that the front says “1,000 mg omega-3 fatty acids per serving.” The only two numbers that matter here are the amounts of EPA and DHA. To find that, you’ll need to look at the back of the label.
Many commercial brands, unfortunately, contain very low levels of these two fatty acids. You’ll need to take more softgels to get the same amount of EPA and DHA that better formulas provide in just one or two softgels. That makes a “bargain” not such a bargain.
How Magnesium Benefits You
Magnesium is involved with over 300 biochemical reactions in your body; it is the most abundant mineral in your body. Among its many roles, magnesium contributes to:
Getting sufficient amounts of magnesium from food can be a challenge. Leafy green vegetables, nuts, and seeds are excellent sources found in our Core and Advanced Plans. Even then, you might not get the right amounts from food alone.
Finding the Right Magnesium
Most multivitamins don’t provide optimal amounts of magnesium. That’s because as a very bulky mineral, including it in a multivitamin would increase the number of capsules you swallow.
Whether you use a powder, liquid, or capsule, start on the low end with magnesium and work your way up. Too much at once can have a laxative effect, though this occurs less often with better formulas that have the right type of magnesium.
Pull together these three supplements — a multivitamin, omega-3 fatty acids, and magnesium — and you have the basic nutrient essentials for a healthy life.
Your healthcare practitioner might recommend additional supplements, including vitamin D. While a good multivitamin will provide some vitamin D, taking too much can create problems.
You might consider speaking with a Momentum Valley Chiropractor about getting a metabolic analysis profile test, which will show the levels of nutrients you have in your body. It will show what you might need more of. For instance, she or he might suggest you take additional vitamin D based on your lab results.