December 8, 2009

New Info on Supplements

So my little blurb about diet seems to have opened up some different avenues in respect to supplements, vitamins etc. I have always been a bit leery of any supplement being sold by anyone. I have tried many things over the years especially going through massage school where it seemed like everyone had the next best thing!

Overall my experience has been that many of these tinctures, pills, and powders are bunk. Bullshit. Nothing to 'em. You dish out lots of money for very little, if any, return. Currently I take three things: Glucosimine - Chondroitin / Cod Liver Oil / Greens Today.

The greens formula is loaded with veggies and in general things that are good for me. I have tried many greens formula's and not only is this the best tasting one (mixed with apple juice), but it seems to be the strongest one I have found in terms of how it makes me feel. Typically in the past I would take a formula for about 2-3 weeks feeling positive effects (increased energy / better bowel movements / clarity in thought / better food digestion etc.), but then it would taper off and eventually I would feel nothing. With the Greens Today powder I get all those positives without it ever tapering off! I have been using it for about 2 years now (I think) and to be honest my body misses it when I run out. I try to listen to what my body tells me, as it is much smarter than I am;)

The Glucosimine - Chondroitin is purely for the joints. My joints take a lot of abuse with the activities I am involved with, so this is one preventative measure that is worth it to me! Again, when I am off of it I really feel the difference. As always I try to be as smart as possible with my training but a certain level of abuse is simply a factor of what I do. I try to minimize it and supplement with GC.

The Cod Liver Oil is for Omega fatty acids. I do not eat a lot of fish due to the cost, and I am not a big fan of the taste, so I feel a need to supplement my diet with CLO. I have a history of high blood pressure and cholesterol in my family, and since I cannot afford health insurance I try to be proactive with such risks. Will it save me? Who knows. But I check my own blood pressure regularly and it stays in the healthy range (except after driving in Seattle!!!!). I check my blood sugar when I visit my sis (she is diabetic), and I had a free Cholesterol screening a few months back. It was a couple points high, but I had just eaten some eggs and what not.

Beyond those I try to get all I need from food, water, and exercise. The greatest gift the martial and healing arts have given me is the ability, patience, and quietness to listen to my own body. Our intuition is our strongest attribute in my opinion, and most people are so out of touch with it they can eat McDonald's day in and day out without noticing the damage they are doing to their bodies!

There is a lot of evidence coming out lately that not only are supplements a waste of money, but they can quite possibly do damage to your immune system and retard certain health promoting effects!

Check out this very scholarly article on the subject!

For those who wish for a little easier of a read, check out this study on antioxidants and their effects on patients with various diseases. To summarize the results of this study:

Plain language summary No evidence to support antioxidant supplements to prevent mortality in healthy people or patients with various diseases Previous research on animal and physiological models suggest that antioxidant supplements have beneficial effects that may prolong life. Some observational studies also suggest that antioxidant supplements may prolong life, whereas other observational studies demonstrate neutral or harmful effects. Randomised trials have largely been neutral. We need evidence from randomised trials to decide if antioxidant supplements should be used for prevention.

In the end I encourage you to listen to your body, exercise every day, and try to eat and drink as clean as possible. It is your body, your vessel, the only one you it, respect it!

Train Hard, Train Smart

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