Is your body deficient in these vitamins?

I often get asked if supplements are good for you. My response is that taking supplements is not a free-pass to neglect your diet. A solid, healthy, clean diet filled with fruits and veggies and clean proteins and grains like brown rice, quinoa and oats are your first source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. And then come the supplements.

When it comes to supplements - the vast majority of multivitamins and supplements are made from synthetic chemicals. Why? Because it’s cheap. These synthetic vitamins create confusion in your body as it doesn’t know what to do with them. Your body cannot use synthetic vitamins. When you’re body cannot identify and digest the ‘chemical’ vitamins it winds up eliminating them. Which is a waste of your money and your good intentions!

Some vitamins are bound to harmful substances as is the case with a cheap form of B-12 - cyanocobalamin. Cyanocobalamin is a chemical that isn’t found in nature. The B12 is bound to a cyanide molecule, which is a poisonous substance. Your body then has to eliminate this poison, which would be ok if your liver wasn’t already working overtime removing environmental toxins and chemicals from your food. All the more reason to know what’s in your vitamins!

You want to look for vitamins that come from organic food sources and that are in their active forms. There are several common vitamin and mineral deficiencies. They are:

  1. Vitamin B12 - a very common deficiency with symptoms ranging from lethargy, anxiety and depression to dementia/alzheimer’s-like symptoms. How to deal with this deficiency? Take B12 in the form of sublingual methylcobalamin.

  2. Magnesium - most people do not get an adequate amount of this mineral from their diet and as a result migraines, constipation, cramping, hypertension, insulin resistance may be commonplace to them. The best food sources of magnesium are leafy greens, like swiss chard and spinach, nuts and seeds, raw cacao and 70% dark chocolate and halibut. Supplements should be in chelated form - meaning its chemical name ends in -ate (glycinate, citrate, taurate), as these are best absorbed.

  3. Iron - some symptoms of iron deficiency are fatigue and weakness, decreased immune function, poor work/school performance and an inflamed tongue. Food sources of iron are organic, grass fed lean red meat, chicken and fish, lentils and beans. Menstruating women should take 18mg/day. Males/Males over 51 and post-menopausal Females  - 8mg/day.  

  4. Zinc - deficiency in this mineral is more common than one may think. Some symptoms are hair loss, slow wound healing, lower alertness, loss of appetite and reduced fertility. Get your zinc from oysters, grass fed red meat, pumpkin seeds, eggs, beans and nuts. Women should get 8mg/day. Men 11mg/day. Just 2 oysters a day fills your daily zinc quota!

  5. Iodine - best sources of this mineral are ocean fish, seaweed, shrimp and other seafood. Those deficient in this mineral can have brittle nails, cold hand/feet, poor concentration, lethargy and unexplained weight gain to name a few symptoms. 150 mcg/day if you’re going to take it in supplement form.  

  6. Vitamin C - Some excellent food sources of C are broccoli, green peppers, citrus fruits, tomatoes, kiwis, strawberries and guavas. Symptoms of deficiency include fatigue, inflammation of the gums, loose teeth, joint pain and poor wound healing. It is important for your vitamin C supplement to be naturally derived. Look for your vitamin C to be from berries or veggies. If you see a chemical name on the ingredients list it is synthetic.

  7. Vitamin D - the sunshine vitamin! 10-15 minutes of sunshine a day could help get your body’s full of this vitamin but there are other factors to consider. Vitamin D is most commonly found in fatty fish like salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel and fish liver oils. Some common symptoms of deficiency are depression and mood swings, lowered immunity, low energy and fatigue, muscle pain and weak bones. The best supplement form of this vitamin is D3.

Remember, first go for eating a healthy, well-rounded diet free of hormones, artificial-anything, chemicals and processed foods and full of fresh fruits and veggies, lean proteins and real, whole grains like oats, brown rice and quinoa. And then fill in the gaps with high quality supplements, as needed.  

If you found this post helpful, feel free to share it with your friends and share your progress too! & if you’re up for it - schedule a Self-discovery Session with me at https://www.timetrade.com/book/B6X4N

Boost your Mood with Food

There have been some times in my life when I’ve felt down or blue, as I’m sure has happened to other people. I can’t say I was “depressed” but I might’ve been, had I taken the time to evaluate how I was at that time. For other people depression is very real and isn’t something that they can just shake off. What I have seen and studied though gives me hope that with some minor changes to our diet & nutrition we can manage this illness. Nutritional imbalances have been proven to affect not only the body, but the fragile chemistry that is our brain. I’m going to share with you some nutritional deficiencies that once corrected can make you feel better - and some recipes.

  1. Lean protein rich in Omega 3s, like Wild Salmon, Artic Char, Mackerel - cold-water fish, have plenty of amino acids that have positive effects on the chemicals in your brain, helping balance your moods. They are also a great source of energy.

    1. Nuts and seeds like Walnuts, Flaxseeds, Chia seeds, Almonds are also high in Omega 3s.

  2. Berries, like blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, can help prevent the release of cortisol - a stress hormone that aggravates symptoms of depression and causes one to retain fat around your midsection.

  3. Limit your sugar intake - anything that ends in -ose or that has ‘syrup’ in its name and be mindful of any hidden sugars, read your labels. Every 4 grams of sugar listed on the label equals 1 teaspoon.  

  4. Research into Folic Acid has shown that it can help boost your mood. Go for leafy greens, like spinach and swiss chard, oatmeal, sunflower seeds, lentils and black-eyed peas.

  5. A diet rich in vitamin B-12 has been shown to have a positive effect on the brain. To keep your levels optimal go for lean, grass-fed beef, clams, oysters, crab, wild salmon and organic, cage-free eggs.

  6. Vitamin D is also important for its mood-enhancing properties. Your body makes it from the sunshine, just 10-15 minutes of sunshine can help your body get its dose, but make sure you time it right, either early in the day or later in the afternoon. Organic cage-free eggs and fish with bones in it are other sources of vitamin D.

  7. Dark Chocolate!! (Just when you thought there was no ‘good news’ on this list!) But there is one caveat - it cannot be Hershey’s or Mars or a pint of Haagen-Daas!! In order to get the mood-enhancing effects of chocolate - it has to be at least 70% cacao and preferably organic.       

As you can see from this list - it almost exactly reflects what a truly healthy and healing diet is. The benefits of eating clean and lean will have positive effects on everything from your body weight to your energy levels to your hair and skin and nails and your mood!! It makes sense. No special fad diets or calorie restriction just real, healing food.

Spinach & Lentil Frittata

4 organic, cage free eggs

1 bunch spinach, organic - coarsely chopped and rinsed

4 scallions, organic - diced

½ onion, organic - diced

½ cup lentils, organic  (can substitute with a can of wild salmon)

2 tbsp butter, organic

1 tsp himalayan sea salt

*Start by melting butter over medium heat. Add the scallions, onions and lentils and allow them to cook for about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and stir it gently allowing it to cook down - this is going to look a little scary but put the whole bunch in. Add the sea salt. In a separate bowl - whisk the eggs. Add them to pan. Cover and reduce heat to low-medium setting. Cook, covered, for about 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy!   

If you found this post helpful, feel free to share it with your friends and share your progress too! & if you’re up for it - schedule a Self-discovery Session with me at https://www.timetrade.com/book/B6X4N