Fat ones, skinny ones, fair and dark ones too!
No I’m not talking about drugs! I’m referring to the variety of dietary supplements available today. So what is good and what is not? and do we really need them?
Well I don’t blame you because it can get awfully confusing. Moreover with all the advertisements, sales pitches and attractive packages available it makes you feel you cannot get enough of the good stuff! They seem to have pills for every part of your body both the internal as well as the external parts. They have special formulated ones for the young, adults, senior citizens and even gender oriented ones. So what do you do? Buy them all? Ignore them and risk bodily malfunctions? ha ha
If you have a healthy lifestyle and have a balanced diet then you simply don’t need any! Because everything you need, your body can produce and for stuff that it can’t then that’s where your balanced diet comes into play.
In my youth, I had spent quite a fortune on supplements thinking that almost all of them were good, beneficial even essential. Well we all know better over time don’t we? Don’t get me wrong I do still believe that some supplementation is good, even necessary depending on the individual and his/her needs.
For instance I don’t always have a balanced diet and so there are times when I take some form of supplements. In fact I believe that because some of us just don’t eat the right food, that we tend to develop some deficiencies over time and our bodies alert us through it’s aches, swells and pains. I’ve even gotten hold of a book which basically talks about healing through vitamins and minerals.
However it is always best to consult a doctor before trying out any form of supplementation, but if you decide you don’t want to then at least do some research first. Too much of a certain supplement can be toxic and then there times ( rarely) when taken with some other supplement can be either dangerous or render the former useless.
Also be aware that certain supplements or rather ingriedients can sometimes be deemed as dangerous and even banned here in Singapore. You may purchase certain supplements over the internet and not even realise that they contain these very ingriedients that is not only in violation but puts your health at risk. Some examples are Ephedrine, Yohimbine, Kava-Kava, Vitamin K (usually in multi vitamins, can act as a blood thinner)
Here is my own personal list of supplements that I own though I do not take them daily :-
Vitamin B Complex
Creatine Monohydrate ( Only when I do weights )
Probably with age, I might include Saw Palmetto and Bilberry extract. *grins*
Below is some useful information :-
A balanced diet must contain carbohydrate, protein, fat, vitamins, mineral salts and fibre. It must contain these things in the correct proportions. If there is not enough protein, you will not be able to grow properly and you will not be able to repair yourself i.e. wounds will not heal properly. If you do not have enough energy containing foods you will feel very tired, you will not have enough energy. If you have too much energy containing foods you will become overweight. If you think that you are overweight you might try taking more exercise to “burn off” some of the excess food which you ate at you last meal.
Carbohydrates: these provide a source of energy.
Proteins: these provide a source of materials for growth and repair.
Fats: these provide a source of energy and contain fat soluble vitamins.
Vitamins: these are required in very small quantities to keep you healthy.
Mineral Salts: these are required for healthy teeth, bones, muscles etc..
Fibre: this is required to help your intestines function correctly; it is not digested.
A Healthy Eating Program
a)Drink one litre of fresh filtered water each day
b)Eat 3-4 helpings of fresh green leafy vegetables per day, 2 servings of red-orange vegetables and 2 pieces of fresh fruit
c)Eat 2-3 servings of wholegrain cereals such as rice, oats, rye, corn, millet, quinoa or wheat , unless you are grain intolerant. Then you can use root vegetables, sago, tapioca or arrowroot, banana or chestnut flours..
d)Eat 30gms of fibre foods each day, this would come from the fruit, vegetables and wholegrain cereals or nuts and seeds.
e)Eat some complex carbohydrate foods daily such as cereals, root vegetables, or pulse vegetables (legumes) as this supplies slow-releasing sugars into the body to sustain energy levels
f)Eat 1 tablespoon of fresh cold pressed oils each day from sesame, sunflower, safflower, olive or eat seeds and nuts or use 1 tablespoon of ground linseeds with breakfast. Avoid trans fats.
g)Eat some 50-75gm of protein foods per day, choosing from a variety of sources so that we take in a wide range of amino acids e.g. pulse vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds, eggs, dairy foods (cow, goat and ewes) and fresh fish or lean organic meats.