3 Supplements Everyone Should Take

Assortment of vitamin pillsSpring is a funny time of year. The weather is changing, the temperature is up and down, and lots of us are getting sick. When people get sick, they take medicine, so spring is a popular time for people to stock up on supplements they think will keep them healthy.

I’d rather take a proactive approach than a reactive approach when it comes to supplementation, so today we’re gonna talk about three supplements everyone should take.

But don’t just take my word for it. Examine.com’s Supplement Goals References Guide went on sale today for $29, and it’s a compilation of EVERYTHING you need to know about what supplements work and what ones don’t. It’s usually $39 and, as of March 20, will go up in prince to $49. Get your copy now to save a few bucks today and lots of cash in the future that you may have wasted on bogus supplements.

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1. VITAMIN D

After a long winter, most everyone (especially those of us who endured a handful of ridiculous storms in New England) is going to have suboptimal levels of Vitamin D. The greatest source of Vitamin D is from sun exposure, but when you’ve got subzero temperatures and 18 inches of snow for a quarter of the year, that’s not a good option. Supplementation works well along with consuming Vitamin D-rich foods like fish, eggs and fortified dairy.

BENEFITS (from Examine.com)

Supplemental vitamin D is associated with a wide range of benefits, including increased Cognition, immune health, bone health and well-being. Supplementation can also reduce the risks of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and multiple sclerosis. People deficient in vitamin D may also experience increased Testosterone levels after supplementation.

HOW MUCH SHOULD I TAKE? (from Examine.com)

Research suggests that the true safe upper limit is 10,000IU/day. For moderate supplementation, a 1,000-2,000IU dose of vitamin D3 is sufficient to meet the needs of most of the population. This is the lowest effective dose range. Higher doses, based on body weight, are in the range of 20-80IU/kg daily.

Vitamin D is inexpensive and very effective. It’s a no brainer. It’s fat soluble, so take your dose each day with a little of bit of fat from food or a supplement like fish oil.

2. VITAMIN K

Vitamin K gets overshadowed by popular vitamins like C, D and all the B’s. That’s a shame because it’s almost impossible to get from food. As Examine’s Sol Orwell explained on an episode of the FitCast, you’d have to literally juice a bunch of kale to get enough Vitamin K from a whole food source, so it’s best just to supplement. It plays a role in cardiovascular and bone health, which is huge for people who like to lift heavy weights, eat lots of red meat, forgo cardio and smash our bones/joints with heavy weights.

BENEFITS (from Examine.com)

Optimal levels of vitamin K are associated with improved bone circumference and diameter. Vitamin K can also protect cardiovascular health. It reduces the calcification and stiffening of arteries, which reduces the risk of cardiovascular-related mortality. … Vitamin K is often supplemented alongside Vitamin D, since vitamin D also supports bone health. In fact, taking both together will improve the effects of each, since they are known to work synergistically.

HOW MUCH SHOULD I TAKE? (from Examine.com)

Vitamin K comes in a variety of different forms, known as vitamers. Forms of vitamin K are either phylloquinones (vitamin K1) or menaquinones (vitamin K2). There are different vitamers within the vitamin K2 class, abbreviated as MK-x.

The minimum effective dose for phylloquinone (vitamin K1) is 50mcg, which is enough to satisfy the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) for vitamin K. The maximum dose for vitamin K1 is 1,000mcg.

The minimum effective dose for short chain menaquinones (MK-4) is 1,500mcg. Doses of up to 45mg (45,000mcg) have been safely used in a superloading dosing protocol.

The minimum effective dose for longer chain menaquinones (MK-7, MK-8, and MK-9) is between 90-360mcg. Further research is needed to determine the maximum effective dose for MK-7.

As you can see, Vitamin K comes in a couple different forms, so make sure you check how much you need to take based on what you buy. Vitamin K is also fat soluble and works beautifully with Vitamin D for some nice combo benefits.

3. FISH OIL

Fish oil gets more press than just about any other supplement, and with good reason. It’s been linked to reduced risk of heart disease, certain cancers and diabetes and may lower cholesterol. It also increases brain activity, so you’re two-thirds of the way to healthy, wealthy and wise. Very few of us get enough healthy fats from our diet, so fish oil can help us make up the difference.

BENEFITS (from Examine.com)

Fish oil provides a variety of benefits when supplemented, particularly when the ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in the body is almost equal (1:1). The average diet (red meat, eggs, and so forth) are high in omega-6 fatty acids, which is why fish oil is recommended (to balance the ratio).

A ratio of roughly 1:1 is associated with healthier blood vessels, a lower lipid count and a reduced risk for plaque buildup. Fish oil can also decrease the risk of diabetes and several forms of cancer, including breast cancer.

Fish oil works primarily through eicosanoids, which are signalling molecules. A proper ratio of omega 3:6 fatty acids will influence which eicosanoids are released in response to stress.

HOW MUCH SHOULD I TAKE? (from Examine.com)

Fish oil doses vary depending on the goal of supplementation. For general health, 250mg is the minimum dose. The American Heart Association recommends 1g daily. If the goal of supplementation is to reduce soreness, a 6g dose, spread over the course of a day, will be effective.

Since fish oil is a combination of two different fatty acids, these numbers reflect a combined total. Total eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) consumption should come from a mix of real food and supplements. The more EPA and DHA is provided by the diet, the less supplementation is required.

Keep in mind that you need a lot of EPA and DHA to reach these daily requirements. Stock up and be prepared to take several doses throughout the day. It’s all worth it once you reap the benefits.

Remember, the Supplement Goals Reference Guide is just $29 til Wednesday, and then the price goes up to $49 forever. Get it while the gettin’s good.

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One comment on “3 Supplements Everyone Should Take
  1. […] You need supplements more than you think, but probably not the ones you’re taking. […]

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