Supplement Smarts, Part 3: My 5 Favorite Supplements You May Not Be Familiar With – But Should Be!

Supplements

THE  FASCINATING  FIVE

Last but not least, I wanted share with you the fascinating five – a group of lesser-known, almost secret but fantastically beneficial supplements. Most people aren’t aware of them, but they should be, particularly if better health is a priority!

1. Glutathione

Glutathione is one of the most powerful antioxidants our bodies produce. It regulates metabolic processes and is crucial for proper mitochondrial function and energy production. It’s also thought to play an important role in reducing free radicals, clearing heavy metals and supporting immune function – all very worthy, health-enhancing pursuits! Chronic illness, long-term toxic exposure and aging can not only deplete stores of glutathione, but also inhibit our ability to produce it. Low glutathione levels have been linked to every major aging process in the human body, so fight back with supplementation – and help keep you energy levels higher, for longer.

Be Well Tip:
  • Always look for acetylated form of glutathione. It’s the most easily-absorbed and remains more stable throughout the digestive process than other forms.

2. Vitamin K

Vitamin K is a quiet powerhouse that plays a role in cancer prevention, maintaining skin elasticity, fighting osteoporosis, as well as protecting heart and brain function. But what’s really amazing is that it helps remove calcium from places where it shouldn’t be (like your arteries) and helps move it to where it should be (like your bones). Vitamin K comes in two forms, K1 (derived from plants and bacteria) and K2 (made by animals from vitamin K1). To get your Ks, try upping your intake of fermented foods, like sauerkraut and natto; cheeses and butter from grass fed cows; egg yolks and chicken breasts.

Be Well Tip
  • If you take Vitamin D, make sure you take Vitamin K2 as well, to reduce the likelihood of Vitamin D toxicity.
  • To keep your levels of vitamin K2 in a healthy range, shoot for 5 servings a week of foods rich in K’s, plus daily supplementation of 150-200mcg of VitK2
  • If you take Coumadin (warfarin), talk to your doctor before you begin supplementation.

3. L Theanine

L-theanine supplements are nature’s “chill pills.” Found primarily in tea, L-theanine is an amino acid that helps calm the nervous system. It’s also thought to be the secret to tea’s subtle calming effects despite the caffination. While it can help improve your quality of sleep, L-theanine is also helpful for reducing anxiety levels. These days, with so many people stressed to the max, it’s an effective, drug-free alternative that enables you to take the edge off anytime the need arises.

Be Well Tip
  • In general, I recommend a dosage of 100 to 300 mg, but you may need to adjust up or down, based on how well your body reacts to it. If you start to feel drowsy, you’re over-doing it, so take it down a notch.

4. MCT Oil

Not familiar with medium-chain triglycerides oil? Well, get to know it because it’s an excellent, yet under-the-radar supplement that’s useful for boosting energy and supporting athletic performance, as well as metabolic function and cognitive health. Unlike dietary fats, MCTs are a unique form of fat that needs less energy and enzymes to be digested, which makes them a more readily accessed energy source. Better yet, MCTs are burned for energy and don’t get stored as fat in the body. So whether you’re planning to run circles round the competition at the office or on the treadmill, MTC oil is an excellent alternative to sugary “energy” bars, chemical “goos” and performance gels.

Be Well Tip
  • Add it to your breakfast smoothie. It is a great source of long-lasting fuel that will keep you going all morning.
  • If you’ve got a tough day of meetings or travel ahead, try taking 2 teaspoons, 1 to 3 times a day.
  • Planning a longer workout than usual, try taking 2 teaspoons to help you go the distance.

5. Hair, Skin and Nail Formula

This one is a real beauty bonus – and an excellent secret weapon to help make hair, skin and nails stronger and improve their appearance. Less brittleness and breakage? It almost sounds too good to be true. And a good hair, skin and nail formula, as in one which includes vitamins, minerals, amino acids and herbs, can also help clear your skin, enhancing your beauty naturally, without cosmetics.

Be Well Tip
  • Make sure that the formula you buy includes Biotin, Zinc, Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) and Vitamin A, and look for the best, quality ingredients possible.
Also see:

Supplement Smarts, Part 1: The 4 Key Supplements to Take Every Day
Supplement Smarts, Part 2: Six Supplements for Constipation, Inflammation, Energy and More