It has become almost impossible to flip on the television or radio without being reminded of how important it is to eat well, drink lots of water and exercise. As a result, many have become desensitized to these so called words of wisdom. Unfazed, we switch stations, take another bite of processed junk or just fall asleep. Big mistake.
Here's why. At any given split second, our bodies are accountable for billions of chemical reactions, cellular processes and other impulses. Individually, these actions would be otherwise insignificant.
Collectively however, they make up what we so fluently refer to as life. How nourished (or malnourished) we are ultimately determines how effective this process fares. When nourished, our system is primed, fluid and able to function at full capacity.
In contrast, when we're deprived of the nutrients needed to fuel these otherwise basic actions, we become sluggish, spacey and terribly unmotivated.
And let's face it. The constant pressure to avoid saturated fat, count calories and prepare fresh meals every day for the rest our lives is no short order. And while many of us make the decision to abandon these unhealthy habits, very few succeed permanently.
It's understandable. But if you're one of the millions responsible for keeping fast food chains and bakeries in business, listen up. Because unless your long-term goal involves nothing more than maintaining motionless life on a sofa, you need to keep nourished, regardless of how poor your diet is. Here are 7 supplements you should definitely become familiar with.
1. High Potency Multiple Complex:
If you take no other supplement, ever, make it a priority to start taking a high-potency multiple formula. They might not work miracles, but they will fill in the most basic nutritional gaps from your diet.
When the time comes to choose one, don't settle for the cheapest one on the shelf at your local mega-conglomerate discount mart. Visit a dedicated health food store. Ask questions, compare formulas and read labels like a hawk. The best formulas offer a generous mix of vitamins, minerals, herbs and digestive enzymes.
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2. Alpha Lipoic Acid:
Unless you reside in a sealed bubble, there's just no way to avoid exposure from the toxins, pollutants, germs and other airborne environmental cell wreckers. As they collect in your system, they assume the role of free radicals, and go medieval on healthy cells - a process more commonly known as oxidation.
Alpha lipoic acid is a powerful free-radical fighting antioxidant that's both fat and water soluble and unique in that it can travel to any cell in the body to fight these dangerous free radicals. Excess oxidation robs the body of energy, wanes the immune system's ability to fight infection and ultimately leaves you feeling worn down.
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When the FDA actually allows supplement manufacturers to make qualified health claims, there's a good chance that they're on to something very special. Omega-3 essential fatty acids are imperative to a long list of biological functions, but cannot be manufactured by the body and therefore must be obtained from the diet.
Clinical studies have shown that these "healthy" unsaturated fats can be very helpful in supporting cardiovascular health, neurological function, combating depression, promoting healthy skin, cancer treatment and a long list of others. Fish oil and flax are excellent sources. Look for a formula high in EPA and DHA.
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4. Vitamin C:
As the first orally administered dietary supplement ever introduced, Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) remains one of the most frequently used supplements worldwide, even among the casually health-conscious.
A powerful antioxidant, C supports the immune system by quenching oxidation, wiping out free radicals, and protecting cells. One of its most unique attributes is that it helps the body recycle other antioxidants, and has a strong synergism with vitamin E, alpha lipoic acid and beta carotene.
The FDA is currently considering raising the 60mg RDA, initially issued to prevent young men from acquiring scurvy in the 1930's. The "father of vitamin C" Linus Pauling, a Noble Prize winning chemist openly admitted to taking 10-18 thousand mg per day. He was reportedly "very active" until his death at age 93.
| Linus Pauling:
Linus Pauling is considered one of the greatest chemists of the 20th century. He's also the only person ever to win two unshared Nobel Prizes: as an outspoken activist against nuclear testing, he won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1962. After 1970 his fame - and controversial reputation - centered on his insistence that Vitamin C had the power to fight cancer and the common cold.
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Users often refer to this amino-like substance as a powerful fat burning, muscle sparing, energy producing, lactic acid fighting miracle supplement. In fact, L-carnitine is actually one of the most researched dietary supplements on the market today.
Biologically, it works by assisting the body in shuttling fat into the cell's mitochondria where it can be immediately used for energy production. Some research suggests that it helps the body recover faster after workouts. Supplementation is especially important for vegetarians, and L-carnitine is typically obtained from meat and certain dairy products.
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6. Milk Thistle:
When it comes to abusing under-appreciated organs, no one has it as bad as the liver. This metabolic filter ultimately decides what should be done with everything we consume - a 24 hour a day job that most of us give little or no thought to. Not smart.
Because like any filter, the more junk you throw in, the more clogged it becomes. This can make it exhausting for the liver to eliminate toxins, utilize nutrients and metabolize food.
Milk thistle (silymarin) increases the production of bile, the digestive juice responsible for cleansing the liver, healing damaged cells and promoting overall digestive efficacy. It is inexpensive, side-effect free and vital to overall wellness.
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This vitamin-like compound is present in every cell in the human body, and especially abundant in high-energy cells similar to those in the heart. More importantly, without it, the body simply wouldn't be able to produce enough energy to fuel the heart's ability to beat 100,000 times per day.
Yes, it's that important. As an antioxidant, CoQ10 works at the cellular level to eliminate harmful free radicals, lower bad (LDL) cholesterol levels and support normal mitochondrial activity. And while it seems to work very well for many people, it can be quite expensive.
A month's supply (100-250 mg) can cost as much as $50. Start with a low dose and increase as needed. Studies have shown that CoQ10 is considered very safe at doses up to 400 mg/day. Your body will begin thanking you almost immediately.
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