Health supplements have been on the market for many years now, and all of them are supposed to have beneficial effects. As an example, taking cod liver oil tablets is supposed to be good for your joints. Vitamin C tablets are supposed to boost your immune system. Taking multivitamin tablets is supposed to do pretty much everything at once, although there’s some evidence that suggests that multivitamins are counterproductive. Your body can only absorb so much of any type of supplement or chemical at once, and some chemicals and minerals can prevent others from being absorbed. So how are we supposed to know what works for us, and what doesn’t?
The human body is a complicated bio-machine, and each one of us is individual. That’s why allergies and food preferences exist. The right blend of minerals and vitamins can help our body go about its necessary processes, but the wrong balance can actually do harm. Getting the best out of the genetic tools we’ve been given is about balance. Think of your body like an mobile slots game; you’ll only get something good out of it when everything lines up in order. When you put money into slots websites such as Amigoslots.com and the wrong symbols land, you get nothing at all. When you put the wrong supplements into your body, you’ll get nothing out of it either! We have more control over our bodies than we do with slots though; you can’t affect the outcome of most online slots, but you can affect how supplements complement exercise and a healthy diet to benefit you.
None of us, however, want to take so many tablets a day that we feel like we have a serious illness, so what should we really be taking, and what should we be leaving on the shelf? We’ve established that multivitamins are probably wrong for us, so what should we be doing instead? Let’s take a look.
- Vitamin C
Let’s start with one we’ve mentioned already. The most common claim you’ll see printed on the side of a bottle of Vitamin C tablets is that they’re good for your immune system, and in this case, the advertising isn’t lying. You may also see claims that it’s a good way to treat a cold, and although it doesn’t cure one (because nothing does), it won’t do you any harm to give your immune system a boost when you’re feeling run down. Ignore any hype beyond that – the websites which claim that it can also fight cancer aren’t to be trusted. There are no known downsides to taking Vitamin C, so there’s no harm in anyone taking it. As a recommended daily guideline, a single tablet containing 40mg is more than sufficient.
Less commonly heard of than Vitamin C – but just as helpful – is glucosamine. As with Vitamin C – and with almost all helpful supplements – glucosamine occurs naturally within your body. As the name suggests, it’s made up of glucose (as in sugar) and amino acids. The function that it serves is to aid recovery, with a specific focus on muscles and joints. Anyone who’s over thirty may wish to consider taking glucosamine – natural production slows down as we age, and so injuries take longer to heal without a little extra help. There’s some anecdotal evidence that it may also ward off or ease the effects of arthritis.
Forget every other ‘miracle fat burner’ tablet you’ve seen advertised online. Sesamin is the fat reducing solution you’re looking for when you want to take control of your weight, and it may be the only reliable one out there. Sesamin is an oxidant, and oxidizing fat cells in your body makes it easier to burn them away during exercise. At the same time, it sends a chemical signal to your brain which instructs it to reduce the amount of fat it stores from calories when you take them in. This probably sounds too good to be true, but it isn’t. It’s not a synthesized chemical either – it’s extracted from sesame seeds. As it isn’t a ‘crash diet’ pill and doesn’t place any dietary requirements on you during use, you’re free to take it every day as part of your health regimen.
- Vitamin D
Our ancestors didn’t need Vitamin D, because they spent plenty of time outdoors in the sunshine. Now, we spend our hours in offices and places of work, locked away from the sun. By the time our working day is done, the sun has gone down. To cut a long story short, most of us aren’t getting enough sunlight – and we need it. Exposure to sunlight compels our bodies to produce Vitamin D – that’s why it’s called the sunshine vitamin, and its main benefit to you is that it strengthens your bones and enhances your ability to absorb calcium. In cases of severe Vitamin D deficiency, sufferers can develop soft bone conditions such as osteoporosis. If you think you don’t get enough sun – or you just feel physically weaker than you used to – Vitamin D may be your solution.
Your body doesn’t just magically convert the food you eat into energy. Getting energy from food is a chemical process, and magnesium is the most important chemical involved in that process. If you want to make sure you’re getting the full nutritional benefits of whatever you’re eating, you should consider taking a magnesium tablet just before your largest meal of the day. For the same reasons, it’s good at preventing indigestion and other gastric issues. Ongoing research also suggests that magnesium also plays an important role in the transmission of electrical signals throughout your body, and can therefore regulate the imbalances which cause headaches and heart palpitations. Don’t rely on that though – just focus on the fact that it’s doing the vital role of breaking your food down properly.
Aside from that, your body doesn’t need any help at all unless you’ve been given medical advice to the contrary. We said at the beginning of this page that the human body is a complicated bio-machine, but it’s also a very well designed one. If you think you have a vitamin or mineral deficiency, or you have questions about supplements, always consult a medical professional before making changes to your lifestyle.
To read more on topics like this, check out the health category.