How to choose the correct vitamin supplements
The way to approach good health is all about eating unprocessed, unrefined, real whole foods. This is truly the best way to get the vitamins and minerals your body needs. That being said, I understand multivitamins provide a convenient way to fill in the nutrient “gaps” found in your diet.
In my opinion, the biggest challenge consumers face with regard to multivitamins is deciding which one to take. If you have ever been to a health food store, I am sure you noticed the rows upon rows of shelves jam-packed with every vitamin under the sun.
The sheer number of options available can make choosing stressful!
Hopefully, this post will give you the information you need to feel cool as a cucumber next time you find yourself in the vitamin section.
Natural vs. Synthetic
I firmly believe the most important thing to do when choosing a multivitamin is to determine where the ingredients come from. The answer to this question will tell you what the quality of the product actually is.
You specifically want to know if the ingredients were sourced from whole foods or if they were created synthetically. Synthetic ingredients are manufactured in laboratories while the latter come from real whole foods.
One of the easiest ways to show you the difference between synthetic and whole food-based vitamins is using vitamin C as an example.
Vitamin C is actually a complex of many different types of C vitamins. In other words, it is not just one vitamin. Generally, you will see vitamin C listed as ascorbic acid. While ascorbic acid is a C vitamin, it is only one element of the vitamin C complex. Taking just one C vitamin would be like drinking half-and-half and calling it coffee! Half-and-half is just a component of the whole, right? The same idea applies to the vitamins you take.
One way you can avoid synthetic ingredients is by choosing a whole food-based multivitamin. Let’s use vitamin C again as an example to show you the difference.
When you look at vitamin C on the label of a whole food-based multivitamin, you will see something along the lines of vitamin C complex from acerola cherries or citrus fruits. Both types of fruit contain high levels of vitamin C.
This is important because when we eat vitamin C in its natural form, we get the ascorbic acid along with all the other C vitamins in the complex.
Vitamins work together synergistically in their natural state but not when they are synthetically isolated. This is an important distinction because it directly affects their ability to be absorbed and used in the body.
This is the biggest reason you should choose a whole food-based multivitamin over a synthetic one.
Make Sure The Label Has This…
Sometimes the labeling on supplements can be a little tricky to understand, and often, they can be misleading. Almost every one of them claims to be “the best” and some synthetic multivitamins even have pictures of fruits and vegetables on them.
If you are in doubt, search the bottle or packaging for a statement that says: whole food multivitamin or all ingredients derived from whole foods. If you want to take it a step further, look for a whole food-based multivitamin that is derived from organic fruits and vegetables. If the label says the fruits and veggies are also raw, that’s even better.
Another thing you can look at is the number of ingredients the multivitamin contains. This is the one and only time you’ll hear me say the more ingredients listed, the better. Generally, synthetic multivitamins have a short list of ingredients while whole food-based multivitamins have a long list.
What Do All the Numbers Mean?
Another question I am often asked is “What do all the percentages and numbers on my multivitamin mean?” The main numbers you should be concerned with are: Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), Adequate Intake (AI) and Tolerable Upper Limit (UL). These values are collectively known as Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) and have been established by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.
- An RDA is the average daily dietary intake sufficient enough to meet the nutrient requirement for most healthy individuals.
- An AI is an approximation used when there is not sufficient data available to determine an RDA.
- A UL is the highest level most healthy individuals can take without the risk of adverse effects. In general, you should not exceed the upper limit unless you are under a doctor’s supervision.
• Whole food-based multivitamins are much better for your body than synthetic multivitamins.
- When choosing a whole food-based multivitamin, look for a statement that says something similar to: whole food multivitamin or all ingredients derived from whole foods.
- If you can, get an organic, whole food-based multivitamin. If it is also raw, even better.
- The list of ingredients in your multivitamin should be long, not short.
Hopefully, this information will provide you with the clarity you need to select the best multivitamin your money can buy.
The next article will cover “How to choose a Mineral Supplement” and then in the following days, I will be posting articles about what you can actually do such as:
- How to choose a Probiotic Supplement.
- How to choose an Enzyme Supplement.
- How to choose an Antioxidant Supplement.
- How to combat air pollution in you homes and offices.
- A rejuvenating water that not only heals but helps destroy some health problems.
- An electrical devise that legally slows down electric meters.
- A laundry add on devise that lets you use only cold water (no detergents) which gets the clothes whiter and germ free which was developed with NASA for the Astronauts.
- There will also be future posts that will be showing what is new in healthy living products, health news and tips from accredited sources which could enhance your way of living.
For more information, questions or ordering please do not hesitate to contact me:
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God bless and stay healthy out there my friends
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Disclaimer: The information contained in this and subsequent articles are not intended in any way to be medical advice but is to be used for information only. This information should not be used as a substitute for professional treatment. Always check with your doctor before taking any supplements as they might interfere with prescribed medication but also for medical purposes the doctor might want to increase or decrease the dosage of the supplement.