“Should I Take Supplements?”
Whenever I hear this question, as a therapist, I respond by asking, “Why?”
There is certainly a time and a place for supplementation with isolates, but they can cause as much problems as good. My suggestion is to look carefully at the symptoms that have led you to believe you need supplementation and then look openly and honestly at your use of nutrition (from organic food sources or not?), hydration (quality and quantity), sleep, breathing, thinking and movement (the 6 Foundation Principles) to see where there may be patterns or behaviors that are sending you messages through your body that something needs to change.
It may be that you simply need more or less of any one or a combination of these 6 Foundation Principles. It could be that you have a fungal or parasite infection, or a dysbiosis causing too high a level of toxicity for your body to clear and/or the creation of high levels of inflammation in your body, keeping your stress hormone levels too high; this will disrupt balance of your ANS and can cause all sorts of depletion symptoms.
I ask these questions of all my patients/clients/athletes for good reason.
99% of the time, the reasons they give me for wanting to take supplements/drugs turn out to be so they can continue to live against the advice their body is giving them, ignoring the wealth and depth of biological instinctual intelligence being offered them by their symptoms. Symptoms are often not indicators that they are low on this or that (vitamin/drug), but that the way they are living is causing imbalances. The imbalances can surely be the cause of depletion symptoms, but it is usually the behavioral patterns that have accelerated the body’s need for nutrients that are often not available for absorption form their diet due to poor food quality, quantity, or proportioning choices. Therefore, it is often a case where someone takes the supplement, feels better, and forever uses that as a crutch to keep living an imbalanced lifestyle.
Remember, there is no such thing as an isolate vitamin or substance in nature.
Moreover, vitamin and related deficiencies are rarely ever seen in animals living in the wild on their natural diets. Only when animals are put into captivity, or infringed upon by human beings do they begin to display such imbalances.
(There’s a lot of great information on this in a book called The Human Zoo, A Zoologist’s Study of the Urban Animal, by Desmond Morris.)
Vitamins were shown by Royal Lee to be complexes, which include fats, proteins, carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, enzymes, and nutrient co-factors such as phenolics, terpenes and alkaloids. The vitamin complex is a living molecular structure that functions like a watch; all parts of a watch work together to tell the time moment to moment and no amount of added sweep hands will improve one’s ability to tell time.
When you throw in a bunch of isolates, the body must scavenge all the missing components to reactivate the complex. This often leads to a string of other, seemingly different, problems of imbalance. This keeps people forever going to the vitamin stores chasing symptoms while keeping the vitamin companies well stocked with cash.
You can learn more about this by reading the book, The Real Truth About Vitamins and Antioxidants by Judith DeCava. Very important book!
Another key point to remember is this: anytime you bring in more isolates of any type than your body can utilize, your organs of detoxification must detoxify them. I’ve seen MANY people who were literally poisoning themselves with supplements!
That’s my two cents on supplementation. But it’s an important topic, because there’s a BIG misunderstanding of nutrition and how nutrition works in the human body when it comes to supplementation.
Love and Chi,