I am a huge advocate of individualizing each persons supplement regime based on their particular needs and family history. Even a seemingly healthy person can have risk factors such as heart disease or breast cancer in their family history that require special attention.
With that said, there are some blanket recommendations I often make to perfectly healthily people who want to support themselves with supplements. They were cleverly referred to by one of my mentors in medical school as Basic Treatment Guidelines.
They are as follows:
1. Fish Oil. The omega 3 fatty acids in fish oil have the ability to reduce many risk factors associated with most major diseases such as cancer, heart disease, arthritis and diabetes. They work by blocking inflammation pathways and supporting the health of cell membranes. Choosing a high quality fish oil is very important as they must be free of all impurities such as heavy metals and pesticide residues. In addition they should be processed in a manner that reduces oxidation and preserves the integrity of the important fatty acids.
2. Multi-vitamin- A broad spectrum multi-vitamin will provide you with the basic amounts of nutrients necessary for your body to function in today’s world of nutrient deprived foods and increased toxic burdens.
3. B-Complex- Although most multi-vitamins contain B-vitamins, I always recommend an additional B-complex supplement. All the b-vitamins are water soluble and therefore pose no significant risk of overdose when taken in this manner. B-vitamins are crucial in supporting energy production, buffering stress and aiding in detoxification. Because most people in today’s society are under excessive stress and can benefit from the extra energy support provided by B-vitamins, I feel they are an important part of a basic supplementation plan.
4. Probiotics- These tiny micro-organisms inhabit our gastrointestinal tract and help to support our immune system and aid our bodies in nutrient absorption.
For women I also recommend considering a high quality calcium supplement to support optimal bone health and development.
With these basic recommendations most healthy people can be ensured that they are getting optimal nutritional support to continue to feel good and thrive.