Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Choosing The Best Supplement For Your Body And Your Health

There are hundreds of thousands of vitamin supplements available on today's market.  You can buy them at health food stores, drug stores, grocery stores, various retailers, through health care professionals and on the Internet.
When Choosing A Supplement, How Do You Determine Which One To Buy?
·         The package design?
·         The manufacturer?
·         The ingredients?
·         The label claims?
·         Where it's made?
How do you know for sure you are getting the best supplement for your body and your health?
There are two basic types of nutritional supplements.
1.      Brand A (whole food supplement)  Whey (milk) protein powder, flax meal powder, brown rice protein powder, calcium citrate, magnesium citrate, buckwheat juice powder, Brussels sprouts (whole plant), kale, choline bitartrate, inositol, barley grass, alfalfa juice powder, soybean lecithin powder, grape (seed) extract, carrot powder, red wine extract.
2.      Brand B (isolate-based supplement) Calcium Carbonate, Magnesium Oxide, Potassium Chloride, Cellulose, Ascorbic Acid, dl-alpha Tocopherol Acetate, Acacia, Croscarmellose Sodium, Zinc Oxide, Di calcium Phosphate, Steric Acid, Dextrin, Titanium Dioxide, Niacinimide, Silicon Dioxide, Hypromellose, Gelatin, Soy Extract, Magnesium Sterate, Calcium Silicate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Magnesium Sulfate, Polyethylene Glycol, Corn Starch, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Mannitol, Cupric Oxide, Resin, Lecithin, Riboflavin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Acetate, Chromium Chloride, Folic Acid, Dextrose, Betacarotene, FD&C Red #40 Lake, FD&C Blue #2 Lake, Sodium Selenate, Biotin, Phytonadione, Cyanocobalamine, Ergocalciferol.
In Brand A, vitamins and nutrients are derived mainly from recognizable food sources.  In Brand B, the vitamins and nutrients are man-made chemical isolates not recognized as food sources.
How To Properly Read A Label
It can be very confusing to determine the true value of a supplement.  Understanding the label will help you know if you are taking a quality supplement.
Where do the nutrients come from?
Look at the ingredients on the food label.  Do you recognize any of them?  Just like any other food label, the nutrients are listed in a particular order and some manufacturers put the source next to the nutrient.  In a quality, wholesome product, you will recognize and be able to pronounce most of the ingredients on the label.
What is the importance of whole food ingredients?
Only whole food ingredients can provide you with all the nutrients contained within the food.  For example, in brand B, the sixth ingredient is dl-alpha Tocopherol Acetate.  This is not a food ingredient.  It is an isolated component of the vitamin E complex.  These nutrients are only available by consuming natural, whole food forms of vitamin E, such as wheat germ oil, pea vine, green leafy vegetables, nuts, and sunflower seeds.
To be Effective, Don't I need 100 % of the Daily Value?
We often think that more is better.  However, when choosing supplements, quality is far more important than quantity.  A small amount of a vitamin in whole food form is far more important to the human body than the large dose of an isolated vitamin.  This is because the isolated form is just a fraction of the whole and is missing important nutrients that the body needs.  Taking more of the isolated form will not make up for these deficiencies.  In fact, it will create larger deficiencies within the body, as the body will have to lose vital nutrients from its stores in an effort to process the excess of the isolates. 
Going Beyond The Label
Just like any recipe, the quality of the ingredients you use affects the quality of the final product.  Therefore, it's important to answer these questions when evaluating a supplement and its effectiveness.
   1.    Where Do The Ingredients Come From?
          Manufactureres who grow many of their ingredients have the unique ability to control quality of the ingredient from seed to supplement.  Some of the manufacturers own certified organic farms to further enhance the quality of their ingredients.
    2.    When Are Ingredients Processed?
          When you buy a tomato, you inspect it for quality.  You wouldn't knowingly buy one that was mushy and bruised.  This same principle holds true for when ingredients are prime for harvest.  Different foods reach their peak nutrient value during different times within the growing season.  Pea vine, for example, is at its peak during the flowering stage.  Once harvested, food begins to lose its value.  It is perishable like the tomato.  If there is a delay of hours, days, or months from when the ingredient is harvested to when it's processed, many of its very delicate phytonutrients are lost.
    3.     Are The Ingredient's Vital Factors Retained?
          Each ingredient has its own set of rules in relation to how to best package its vital life.  The manufacturing process needs to retain the vital nutrients within the ingredients.  Too much heat will destroy enzymes and phytonutrients.  The manufacturer should use a low-temperature, high-vacuum process to make sure that the ingredient's nutrients are preserved.
Consult With Your Health Care Professional
You trust your health care professional to provide quality care.  It is important to speak with them about the supplements you are taking.  They can provide recommendations and advice to you regarding quality brands.  They can also help you determine which supplements you need based upon your individual needs.  With their help and guidance, you will know the supplements you are taking are working best for you.
What We Can Offer To You
Dr. Huntoon has always believed in quality over quantity.  This is evidenced by seeing practice members when their body says, not fitting them into some multiple appointment schedule months in advance.  Dr. Huntoon has always been an advocate of good high quality whole food nutrition, as well as good high quality whole food supplements.  Standard Process is the main company used within the office because of their integrity and quality.  Since 1929, Standard Process has committed to strict manufacturing guidelines and has never changed that philosophy.  And time and time again, when a "new" miracle nutrient is discovered and touted as being a breakthrough in nutritional science, invariably, the "new" ingredient is already contained in their high quality whole food supplements.
At Advanced Alternative Medicine Center, we believe that given the proper nutrition, your body has amazing capabilities of healing itself.  We also believe that nutrition should be individualized to meet each person's needs.  For these reasons and many more, we proudly recommend Standard Process whole food supplements specific for your personal health picture.
My Offer To You
For anyone interested in having their current supplements evaluated for quality and effectiveness, simply call the office and ask us to put you in for the "I want my supplements evaluated Evaluation."  During the whole summer, I offer this to any current and potential practice members as a gift to you. That's right, It's FREE!!! But don't wait!  This offer expires on Labor Day, so please take advantage of this $75.00 value during the Summer, and call to schedule this during your next regularly scheduled office visit.  Bring any and all of your vitamins and supplements with you, and we will make sure to test all of them.  If we find that something isn't working for you, we will recommend a suitable replacement and be sure to find the appropriate dosage specific to you.  Don't wait for the end of the Summer to arrive.  Take advantage of this opportunity sooner, as your health can only benefit from the correct nutritional supplementation.  Waiting delays progress.  And had we started sooner, we could have arrived before now!

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