Which supplements exactly?

Supplements can be, on the one hand, extremely important, crucial even, especially for recovering or rebuilding our health. On the other hand, they are exactly what their name says: supplements—something extra. The foundation of natural health is and always must be food. Without putting food as medicine first, we will never thrive, because supplements cannot really make up for the damage caused by inadequate nutrition.

Supplements are useful to either correct an existing deficiency, prevent one from developing, or enhance and improve bodily functions in some way. And the best supplements are those that are most easily and naturally absorbed by the body. Because we as a species have until the last few decades only ever eaten whole foods derived directly from nature, whole foods will always be dramatically more easy to absorb than isolated substances. Secondarily, isolated substances extracted from whole foods will always be dramatically more easy to absorb than synthetically produced substances. Finally, some substances will be intrinsically more bio-available than others.

I will not here engage in an extensive description of supplements, where they come from, what they do, and why I take them. The global knowledge base accessible through the internet is far better suited to provide you with all the information you may want to have about any particular supplement. I will simply share with you which supplements I buy for the three of us at home. In some cases we take them every day, and in others for periods at different times. Some are taken only in the morning, and others are taken twice a day.

The primary deficiencies we either have corrected or continue to work to correct were/are B12, A, D, K2, iron, zinc, magnesium and iodine. The first five were caused by our two decades of vegetarianism (my wife and I). The last two are quasi-universal due to heavily mineral-depleted soils everywhere. Otherwise, the focus is on anti-oxidants like vitamins A and D, C and B3, astaxanthin, ubiquinol, turmeric and Megahydrate, those substances that neutralise free-radicals and prevent the damage they can cause; and super foods like chlorella and spirulina (in pellets or powder), wheat grass juice powder (in green juices), and maca (in puddings), and the like.

General:

  • Unrefined North-Altantic Sea Salt (2-3 tsp per day in drinks and food)
  • Concentrace Mineral drops (10 drops per liter for a total of about 30 drops per day)
  • Green superfood blend in morning green juice (Food Matters, MegaNutrition,  Biotona, Vitamineral Green, or equivalent)

Transdermal (baths):

  • Magnesium Chloride
  • Sodium Bicarbonate

Transdermal (patches by Dr David or Healthy Habits):

  • B12 (+ 10 supporting)
  • Glutathione (+ other antioxidants)

Morning (all water soluble and not requiring food):

  • Probiotics (1 cap, the best I have tried up to now are by Prescript-Assist)
  • Tulsi (1 cap, either extract by Source Naturals or 2 caps whole leaf by Organic India)
  • Iodoral (start with 1 cap of 12.5 mg for 1 week, increase to 2 thereafter; Optimox)
  • Liposomal vitamin C (1 g; Mercola)
  • Vitamin B3 (niacinimide 2 x 500 mg; Source Naturals)
  • Chlorella (start with 5 mini pellets, increase by 1 every 3 days up to 25; HealthForce, Mercola, or equivalent)
  • Spirulina (start with 1 large pellets, increase by 1 every 5 days up to 5; Nutrex Hawaii or equivalent)

After lunch (many fat-soluble and/or taken on a full stomach):

  • Astaxanthin (12 mg; Bioastin by Nutrex Hawaii)
  • Krill oil (2 caps; Mercola)
  • Ubiquinol (1 cap; Mercola)
  • Turmeric (2 caps; Organic India)
  • Tulsi (1 cap, either extract by Source Naturals or 2 caps whole leaf by Organic India)
  • Iodoral (25 mg; Optimox)
  • Liposomal vitamin C (1 g; Mercola)
  • Vitamin B3 (niacinimide 2 x 500 mg; Source Naturals)
  • Hydrogen Boost or Megahydrate (500 mg; same product, different name)
  • Whole Food Multi (MegaFood)
  • L-Carnosine (500 mg; Source Naturals)

Occasionally (usually 3 months on, 3 months off or punctually):

  • Silicic Acid (15 ml in water, first thing in the morning, 3 months on, 3 months off)
  • D3/K2 (liquid form with green juice or pudding during the day; Thorne Research)
  • A, D3, K2 (after lunch; DaVinci)
  • Bio B12 (after lunch; Thorne Research)
  • Zinc (after a meal; 3 months on, 3 months off and when needed; MegaFood)
  • Iron Bisglycinate (after a meal; 1 months on, 3 months off; Thorne Research)
  • Enzyme complex (on empty stomach at least 30 min before eating; HealthForce, LivingWell, or similar high quality broad spectrum.)

There is information about all of these on the web, in many more than one place. There is also a lot of information about most of these on Mercola’s web site, where there are often long, explanatory videos that present most of what you need to know on the particular supplement.

Naturally, as you should suspect, this list has and continues to evolve in time, but it has been pretty stable for the last few years. If you are not taking supplements and feel overwhelmed by this, start with the ones in bold.

It’s not possible to determine what are your personal deficiencies without complete blood work and lengthy exchanges about all sorts of things relating to your past and health history, but none of these supplements will cause you harm, and on the contrary, all will help you enhance you health. I hope you find it helpful.

If you enjoyed reading this article, please click “Like” and share it on your social networks. This is the only way I can know you appreciated it.

11 thoughts on “Which supplements exactly?

  1. Thank you Guillaume for the terrific information. I ran the Boston marathon barefoot and crossed the finish line. I have a question for which I would like your opinion. I take three or four tea spoon of coconut oil with my hot drink (coffee or tea) every day for the last few month. It helps my digestion and other aspect. I feel medium chain triglyceride also help my ketonic diet aspect. My wife concerns it may triggers my cholesterol level. I run almost every day, mostly aerobic basis, between 6 and 10 miles barefoot. What do you think of my taking coconut oil daily? I trust your opinion.
    Thank you, again,
    Tyson

    Like

    • Hi Tyson. Congratulations on finishing Boston. That’s one more marathon under your belt, and each one really is an important achievement. About coconut oil, I make a point of eating at the very least 5 tablespoons per day, and often more than twice that. Almost always, this is in the form of coconut milk, a can of which contains the equivalent of about 6 table spoons of oil (72 g). As far as I’m concerned, there are very few substances that are as healthful as coconut oil. So, I would recommend that you increase your consumption as much as possible; the more the better for you. It is difficult to eat that much oil without taking it as coconut milk in puddings, ice cream, soups and curries. And for the concerns relating to cholesterol, please read and share these two articles: But what about cholesterol? and Six eggs per day for six days: cholesterol?

      Like

  2. HI Guillaume, I have a question for you! Can some vitamins be rubbed on the skin and absorbed transdermally? I am thinking of vitamins like E and CoQ10 that are liquid and can be cut and squeezed out of their capsules. The reason I ask is because I heard that coQ10 applied to the face is good for dry skin and wrinkles so I mixed the coQ10 that I squeezed out with aloe vera and avocado oil. It feels really good on my skin and I was wondering if much of it is getting absorbed?

    Like

    • Hi Catherine: Yes, absolutely, especially the fat soluble vitamins like E and D, that both help greatly in speeding up healing, as does the CoQ10. In fact, you can check out Dr David’s Patches to see the kinds of things they contain, but I think that probably almost everything can be absorbed through the skin. This is particularly important to consider when choosing creams, soaps and shampoos. Also, you don’t need to use the pure stuff that sometimes has a very sticky texture or strong smell. You can include them in a coconut oil, almond oil and aloe vera gel based face cream, as I do, to which you can add lavender and/or geranium essential oils for fragrance.

      Like

  3. Please ignore the question above; I just noticed your reply to me in your other post: A meal plan for an ageing parent. Thanks again for sharing your knowledge to help others.

    Like

  4. Hi Guillaume,

    Your articles and work are insightful and very helpful. I have been suffering from IBS related symptoms for a long time and have worked with a naturopath for 2 years and taken multiple supplements and changed my diet at that time as well. However I just lost weight and got weaker and none of the symptoms improved (like for Sinusitis or joint pain ). I was 37 years old then and am 42 now. And we kind of concluded that I was not absorbing the supplements that i was having.

    When I read about Prescript-Assist in the supplements section I was curious, and read up on it. Many people say that there are some strains of bacteria in SBO and PA in particular that may be harmful. Also another opinion is that we should build up the probiotics that we eat (refer Dr. Natasha McBride – Gut and Psychology Syndrome).

    Would really appreciate your insight into this matter and if I should expect any die-off effects as she calls it when starting the supplements. Her point is that if the probiotics work – then it will kill the harmful bacteria which will release toxins and if there is permeability in the gut, the toxins will release into the bloodstream causing issues. So first heal the gut and then eat probiotics.

    So, 2 questions please.

    1) Are SBO’s safe and thus PA as well.
    2) Is there any particular sequence to follow , meaning heal the gut and then have PA?

    Appreciate your insight.

    Thanks
    Saleem

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Saleem: the first things I would ask you before going further, are the following:
      1) Have you completely eliminated grains from your diet in the strictest sense?
      2) Have you completely eliminated dairy products from your diet in the strictest sense?
      3) Have you done food intolerance testing?
      Depending on your state of health, you might want to considering coaching services: https://www.patreon.com/healthfully

      Like

      • Thanks for responding.

        I have done an intolerance test in the past and eliminated everything that was on the list for 7 months however the issues stayed. I don’t think it was holistically done by my health provider at that time. I will reach out to you once Ramadan is over as fasting has started today and may not be the best time to make these changes.

        Cheers

        Liked by 1 person

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