This post was written by Tulsa’s premiere holistic physician, Chad Edwards, DO.
Most people know that we are a holistic clinic and we prefer supplementation with natural substances over the use of medications when possible. Outside of supplementation for specific therapy, one of the most common questions we get is “what supplements do you recommend for a standard one a day type vitamin?”
There are 3 primary components to optimal health:
I would prefer that everyone get their nutrients from whole foods but the fact of the matter is that the quality of most peoples food simply is not optimally nutritious. Add to that the type of food in the standard American diet (fried food, poor quality meats, lack of veggies, etc) and we have extreme difficulty meeting true nutritional needs through diet alone.
It is a simple fact that nearly everyone should be taking a few supplements.
So what should we be taking?
The types of foods that most of us eat can lead to improper digestion, alteration in gut health, and dysbiosis (imbalanced gut bacteria). Dysbiosis contributes to countless medical problems:
- Leaky gut
- autoimmune disorders
- gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- abdominal pain
- Crohn’s disease
- Ulcerative Colitis
- many more
One of the best things you can do to help restore normal gut flora is to take a probiotic. The problem is that there are bacteria and then there are bacteria. Not all probiotics are made the same.
There are 2 supplements that I firmly believe are worth the extra money to ensure high-quality: fish oil and probiotics.
Probiotics need to be consumed in sufficient quantities and I generally recommend higher quantities. Revolution’s probiotic is ‘ProbioHealth’ and has 30 billion CFU (colony forming units). Additionally, it has very high quality strains of bacteria that have been well studied demonstrating effectiveness.
We also need to make sure that the bacteria are surviving the stomach and actually reaching the small and large intestines. I’ve often wondered if the probiotics obtained from yogurt, kefir, and kombucha actually get where we need them. I don’t have the answer because I don’t believe it has been studied. Ours has been studied and we know that these bacteria are still in your system for between 7-21 days after taking one of them. We do recommend taking ProbioHealth with meals which will help neutralize the stomach acid and make it more likely that higher amounts of bacteria are able to survive the stomach.
The 2nd supplement that I believe everyone should be taking regularly is an Omega-3 supplement. We routinely perform a test called an Omega-3 Index which measures the amount of EPA & DHA on the surface of the red blood cells. We want this index to be greater than 8%. I have never seen anyone over 8% who is not taking an Omega-3 supplement. In fact, I rarely see anyone over 5% and most are around 3% if they are not taking a supplement.
As mentioned above, omega-3 supplements are one of those that are worth spending a little extra for the high quality. I could go on and on about why this is true and I have posted some of that information in previous posts. Revolution’s omega-3’s are very high quality and we highly recommend them. They are also very cost effective!
The final supplement we recommend on a day to day basis is a multivitamin. We perform a Comprehensive Micronutrient Assessment on many of our patients which evaluates the functional levels of vitamins, minerals, some amino acids, and antioxidants. This test shows us just how many people have nutritional deficiencies despite supplementation on some occasions. This is often due to inadequate dosing or poor quality.
Again, quality matter! We recommend Revolution Nutrients as an excellent and high quality multivitamin.
Our recommendations are that all of our patients take 2 supplements as a baseline to optimal health:
- Revolution Essentials: this contains the multivitamin, omega-3, and antioxidants in one supplement. It comes in a pack of 4 capsules. One thing we like about the way it comes is that it is very easy to take a few with you to work, on a trip, etc without having to take your entire supply. It is high quality, comprehensive, and very convenient.
- PriobioHealth: the probiotic
We will recommend additional supplements based on specific medical issues but they should always be taken from a good baseline nutritional status. Additionally, optimizing nutrition may prevent the medical conditions that require additional supplementation.
Contact us today to see how to get started on our baseline supplementation requirements!