The last point that I want to leave you with for our vitamin series is optimizing our intake of each of the 13 essential vitamins through diet versus supplementing with pills/tinchers/tablets/capsules. My standard line to patients is that they’re called supplements for a reason, ie: meant to be an additional means of consumption rather than the primary method.
Toxicity is possible for certain vitamins, especially the fat-soluble ones, and that becomes a reality when using supplements because it is easy to get concentrated amounts in a pill form rather than solely from food. One of the most critical points when seeking out supplements, be it online or in the store, is to look for pharmaceutical grade supplements. Because supplements are not regulated by the FDA, there is no standard for how much of a vitamin is in the pill or the process by which it is made. So that 99 cent vitamin C that you pick up from the drug store is 99 cents because it’s likely 99 percent filler and 1 percent vitamin C. You’re actually doing your body a disservice in this regard because the kidneys and intestines are now working so much harder to filter out the fillers, chemicals, and any other unnecessary product to get that little bit of C.
There are specific companies that I have my patients order from because they are pharmaceutical grade, meaning that they hold themselves to the same standards that a product that is FDA regulated would be held to. Another means of optimizing product usage is through testing. I know that I’ve hammered this point all week, but I honestly cannot stress its importance enough. Treating based on symptom description is archaic when we have the technology to test for exactly what levels of almost any vitamin, mineral, hormone, or neurotransmitter are in the body.
I’ll end on this note: if you’re going to supplement your diet, use only pharmaceutical grade products and if you’re experiencing symptoms that make you suspect depletion of one or more vitamin, get tested. Most of us can use get ourselves on track by considering what we’re eating and adding more or less in certain areas to get the recommended amount of a specific vitamins. With the world we live in today, the soil is less rich than previous generations, so meeting the recommended amounts is more challenging, but it is still possible. Treat your most incredible and intricate machine, your body, with care and feed it what it needs to thrive. Remember, your heart is the greatest healer of your life. And your soul is the heart of your life. Let’s start living, folks. Today starts now. Until we meet again, this is Dr. Higgins saying, good bye.