Supplements I Take

Supplements

By Jenn Bruer

Besides what I eat, one of the most common questions I get is “what supplements do you take?”. Before you try to do any of the things I do, check with your own doctor.

While I prefer to get my vitamins and minerals from food, that isn’t always possible and we are living in a time where we are exposed to greater toxins than ever before, so we need to be even more vigilant about our health. Also because I ate unhealthy grains for my whole life until recently, I am fighting against the damage and inflammatory response that still exists in my body. Here is what I take:

  1. VITAMIN D. I see this as the single most important supplement I take. Why? Because it reduces my risk of…well nearly anything that could go wrong with me! Like cancer, depression, arthritis, and MS to name a few! In the winter months, I take 3000 IU of vitamin D per day and 5000 IU if I am sick. In the summer I can take less because I am getting natural vitamin D from the sun. Ideally I should not be blindly taking vitamin D, I should be taking a blood test (30-50 bucks because it isn’t covered by OHIP anymore) and then supplement accordingly. OK I am going to get on that right now! Since I am blindly taking vitamin D there is a good chance that I should be taking EVEN MORE.
  2. Probiotics- I take these everyday. These help aid in digestion, keep fungus and yeast at bay, and help my body produce vitamin K-2 which keeps my bones strong. Probiotics also keep my immune system strong and help alleviate depression over time. The benefits of having a healthy gut are truly enormous are still being discovered.
  3. Multi-vitamin- I take a whole food source multi-vitamin every other day just to be sure I am getting enough (I like Now liquid caps and Vitality liquid multi-vitamin). I could take this everyday but I sometimes forget.
  4. Omega 3- that’s a given right?! Omega 3 protects my heart, my joints, lowers inflammation and makes my skin glow. I like Auum Omega-3 and you can contact me to find out how to get some. I also like Ascenta Nurti Sea products.
  5. Magnesium- I take anywhere from 150mg- 600mg of magnesium per day depending on my level of activity and whether or not I have taken an epsom salt bath (which is a form of magnesium absorbed through the skin, or transdermally). Magnesium helps to keep my bones strong. It also helps keep me calm and relaxed. Magnesium also helps keep my muscles from getting too tight after workouts or from daily stress.
  6. Chlorella. I take about 1g of Chlorella per day. I’d like to take more but I take enough as it is! I take Chlorella because Chlorella is a very efficient mercury binder (it removes mercury from the body) as well as other unwanted toxins.
  7. Korean ginseng- I take this because I am asthmatic and this has shown to aid in lung tissue regeneration
  8. Turmeric- this is a spice that I just don’t get enough of and it is a very powerful anti-oxidant so I take it in capsule form each day about. I take 370mg twice daily.
  9. Milk Thistle- I take 1000mg of milk thistle three times a day
  10. Cinnamon- I take cinnamon capsules each day with my milk thistle which helps protect and heal my liver from the damage of a high sugar diet that I used to consume. Cinnamon and milk thistle work synergistically (they kind of help each other out).
  11. Vitamin C- I take about 1000mg of C perday but I only do this when I am “low-carbing” because I avoid fruit for many months of the year. When I am not avoiding fruit I don’t take C. I like Ester-C as it’s more “bio-available” then asorbic acid.

Only when “low-carbing” do I take additional 1000mg of Calcium and 100mg of  Potassium.

Why as a woman over 35 do I NOT take Calcium (other than when I am low-carbing) even though I don’t eat dairy? Well because I get enough calcium from green vegetables, from salmon patties from the bones-in, from nuts and seeds, and from bone broths. What I think is key to healthy bones is optimizing vitamin D, A, and magnesium levels- all of which help the body put calcium where it belongs- in the bones. If I ingest calcium but I don’t have optimal vitamin D and magnesium then the calcium can actually build up around my arteries! That can increase my risk for heart attack. Another important player in calcium assimilation is vitamin K-2 (which in my opinion doesn’t get nearly as much press as it should!). Vitamin K-2 is a vitamin produced by the bacteria living in our gut! I know awesome right!? Vitamin K-2 is also found in foods like: cheese, egg yolk, butter, chicken liver, salami, chicken breast, and ground beef. Interesting that these are almost all foods that have been FALSELY DEMONIZED.


Magnesium

salt

By Jenn Bruer

The benefits of magnesium are huge: magnesium increases the bioavailability of calcium, regulates blood pressure, prevents kidney stones, lowers cholesterol, improves sleep quality, reduces muscle stiffness, increases circulation, prevents constipation, aids in protein digestion, prevents osteoporosis, increased vitamin D absorption, improves ADHD symptoms, aids in the digestion of carbohydrates, prevents migraines, decreases insulin resistance, and prevents congestive heart failure. We rely on magnesium to perform over 300 biochemical reactions in our body.

I can’t stress enough- this stuff is important!

Health Canada reports that between 40 to 60% of Canadians do not get adequate magnesium.

Now that you know how vital magnesium is, you should know that many of us are deficient in magnesium and if not deficient then most of us certainly don’t have optimal levels. There are many factors that lead us to having insufficient magnesium: consumption of prescription drugs, caffeine, sugar, and alcohol. It is also suggested that our soils are depleted of magnesium due to poor farming practices. Another big considerations is gut damage. Many of us have very damaged guts (especially those with IBS symptoms), even if we ingest adequate levels of magnesium it doesn’t necessarily get absorbed. That’s why it’s a good idea to soak frequently in epsom salt. Epsom Salt is magnesium sulfate which is easily absorbed through the skin (transdermal absorption) for those suspecting gut absorption issues. There are also magnesium gels and oils that can be purchased, beware though as these can make you itchy. Some suggest that the itch goes away once magnesium levels in the body go up.

I, personally, take 400mg of magnesium daily (I use “Naturally Calm” powder that is added to water). I also take an epsom salt bath several times a week.

I would add that magnesium can have blood pressure lowering effects so it’s best to avoid larger doses of supplemental magnesium if you experience low blood pressure.

Don’t forget children can benefit from magnesium too. There are many magnesium supplements on the market geared specifically for children too.