A 2006 Centers for Disease Control report stated nearly half of American adults take some sort of dietary supplement. But with a sea of supplements to choose from, it can be tough to know what nutrients you really need. Here's the bottom line on supplements you should add to your daily regimen, but before you do, be sure to check with your primary physician.
Don't fear bacteria, you have trillions alive and well in your body right now. "We're looking for a balance between good and bad bacteria, but many of us are deficient when it comes to the good kind," says Chiro One Wellness Centers' Dr. Sara Stefan, of the Schaumburg West location. "This imbalance hinders our digestion, causing poor absorption of nutrients and a possible decrease in our immune response." Even organic foods are short on nutrients because our soils are, too. Dr. Sara recommends Innate Choice's Probiotic Sufficiency, a product that delivers nine strains of healthy bacteria.
Our bodies get vitamin D from sun exposure and some foods, but probably not enough. A deficiency can lead to symptoms like fatigue and immune response issues. And most of us are deficient, so get tested to know your baseline. Dr. Sara says even some pharmacies, like Jewel-Osco, perform a screening test. Most people will need to take about 3000 I.U.s of vitamin D3 (the form our bodies process best) per day to maintain normal levels. Supplementing with vitamin D3 can help boost your immune defenses and help ward off sicknesses like the flu and cold.
"I love fish oil," Dr. Sara says. "Every single cell in our bodies benefits from the Omega 3 fatty acids they offer, but they're especially great for brain and heart health and decreasing inflammation and other generalized pain." This powerful supplement can help prevent obesity, eczema, cancer, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
Ensure that your diet has the nutrients you need by adding a multivitamin. "Let's face it, most of us just don't eat that well," says Dr. Sara. "And even those of us that do need to make up for the inherent deficiencies in our food." When it comes to multivitamins, Dr. Sara recommends investing in a high quality product, as some less expensive multivitamins may be based in petroleum, which is nearly impossible for our bodies to breakdown. Consider trying one of Dr. Sara's favorite multivitamin brands, Standard Process or The Vitamin Code.