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Supplements – 4 Good Reasons You Need Them!

by Mila McManus, MD

Most patients come into our practice with at least one or more nutrient deficiencies, and I recommend supplementation.

In my clinical experience, most patients come into our practice with at least one or more nutrient deficiencies, and I recommend supplementation. Why are so many people deficient in nutrients?  Well, it’s certainly not due to lack of food availability.  We have plenty of restaurants and grocery stores, and about 75% of the population is overweight or obese.

So why don’t we get everything our bodies need from the food we eat?

Here are top 4 reasons:

  • Most of our soil is over-farmed and depleted of nutrients due to commercial agricultural farming operations (CAFO’s). Deficient soil grows deficient plants.
  • Most of our fruits and vegetables are harvested very early, before ripening, so that they can be shipped, stored, and distributed over long distances. Nutrients develop in the ripening process on the tree or vine and in the sunshine, so when they are picked early, they are already deficient. Once picked, nutrients are also lost as the food ages and is exposed to heat. By the time we get our fruits and vegetables in the grocery store, they are very deficient in vital nutrients. 
  • Ultra-processed food, 85% of what is found in grocery stores and fast-food restaurants, is grossly deficient in nutrients due to the destructive nature of food processing. Any vitamins or minerals added back in by the food industry are cheap formulations that are not very absorbable by the body. For example, calcium carbonate is added to nut milks to claim they have the RDA (aka recommended daily allowance) of calcium, but this is not a form of calcium that’s well absorbed.
  • Our bodies are assaulted every day by our environment – stress, pollution, chemicals… just to name a few. Your body does an amazing job of coping with all of this; however, it does so by demanding more vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and quality nutrition. When your cells cannot obtain everything they need to do their jobs, you experience symptoms of illness, rather than wellness.

Hopefully this helps you understand why it’s important to supplement your diet properly with vitamins, minerals, and enzymes. Guidance from a trained medical professional will help to ensure you are getting what you need, in a form your body can absorb, while avoiding unnecessary ingredients and supplements. This also explains why we recommend a whole food diet, organic and regenerative farming practices, and a healthy lifestyle.

Of course, that brings us to the next obvious question. In a vast marketplace capitalizing on the supplementation craze, how do you know what supplements are worth buying?  Stay tuned! Next week we will address the many important considerations when choosing supplementation.

By |2024-02-19T16:04:37-05:00February 20th, 2024|General|

Melatonin Gummies: Label does not Equal Content

by Mila McManus, MD

The study analyzed 25 melatonin gummy products and found that 22 of them, (88%!) did not contain what the label said they did.

It always seems worth repeating – supplements are not all created equal! A recent study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) demonstrated, once again, the lack of quality control measure that are too common with over-the-counter supplements. Moreover, this is much more common with cheaper brands.

This investigation was for melatonin gummies for a sleep aid. The study analyzed 25 melatonin gummy products and found that 22 of them (88%!) did not contain what the label listed. One of them contained only 75% of the advertised amount on the label, while another had 347% more melatonin than the package listed. Another brand did not contain any detectable melatonin at all. Gummies are a popular delivery method for children’s supplements which makes this all the more concerning.

The same has been found to be true for many other supplements.  I have written about this before and explained a number of concerns, including the distinction between whole food supplements and synthetic supplements, and I encourage you to read that here.

We want to make sure this does not happen to our patients, families, and friends. Supplements and protein powders are not a wise place to scrimp on your budget. The quality and purity of all of the ingredients, both active and “other” ingredients on the label, and the correct dosing as promised on the package, all add up to safety and effectiveness. We are also aware of many supplements that are being counterfeited on Amazon (more than half the supplements sold on Amazon are counterfeit!); another concern resulting in our recommendation that you also not buy supplements there.  The supplements that we recommend at our facility have been vetted, so you can have peace of mind.

Be wise, be safe, and be well.

References

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/2804077

 

 

By |2023-05-09T09:27:19-05:00May 10th, 2023|Articles, General|