Are Nutritional Supplements Really Needed?
First, it is unfortunate that food supplements may be necessary in today’s world in order to insure better health. It would be much cheaper and more convenient to not be taking supplements. So, why are they sometimes considered an essential part of an overall strategy for optimal health? First, we must acknowledge that nutrients such as vitamins and minerals are essential to life itself. Of course, this shouldn’t be of much concern since the way we get these nutrients is by eating food. And we all eat food, right? It seems simple enough but things aren’t quite as simple as they once were. In order to get enough nutrients from food there must be an adequate supply within the foods. In general, much of our food supply today is lacking in many of the essential nutrients. This is for many reasons but primarily because of the farming methods used over the last several decades along with the extensive processing of foods. After years of modern farming methods including the reliance on synthetic fertilizers along with insecticides and herbicides, the soils have long been depleted. The old traditional farming methods such as using compost and/or manure to enrich the soil along with crop rotation fell to the wayside replaced by the more convenient and efficient chemical farming. The problem is that if the soil does not contain adequate minerals then the plants grown in that soil also cannot contain adequate minerals. The pesticides destroy the natural health of the soil, thus further adding to depletion. The synthetic fertilizers add back potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen and the plants grow but what about the dozens of other minerals? The plants don’t make minerals, they can only take them in from the soil. If year after year plants keep taking nutrients out of the soil while no nutrients are being added back, then you have depletion. The bottom line is that our commercially grown food is sadly lacking in life-giving nutrients. Now take those deficient foods and process the heck out of them by stripping away further nutrient factors and we have a dangerous combination.
That’s only the beginning. There are many factors in today’s world that add to the body’s need for extra nutrients. In other words, chronic stress, environmental toxins, radiation, medications and other factors inherent in our modern world place a need for extra nutrients to help counteract these insults. Certain genetic factors and diseases can set up a greater need for extra specific nutrients in order to improve the faulty biochemistry.
We have an abundance of food available to us but much of it can be considered foodless foods. But even without considering all the junk food, soda pop, candy, desserts, white flour products, artificial sweeteners, etc. that only add to our calorie count (and our waistlines) but little to our nutrient needs, we may still be missing the mark. Don’t get me wrong, most of us get plenty of our macronutrient needs (proteins, fats, and carbohydrates) yet are in short supply of the micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, etc.). Even when we try to choose healthier foods, in general, they do not have the nutrient density of the foods our ancestors once ate.
Many supplements go beyond just providing needed vitamins and minerals but can be specific to helping certain health conditions. Sometimes specific vitamins or minerals are needed in much greater supply, or certain herbs are useful for their therapeutic effects in various health conditions.
When choosing supplements, quality, dosage, and appropriateness all need to be taken into consideration. Here at Rejuvenate, we have teamed up with Fullscript to provide you with a wide selection of the highest quality and most dependable doctor recommended brands. For our patients, supplement recommendations are based on need, quality, cost and effectiveness. Patients are then able to order their products online from the comfort of their homes.
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