I’m just going to cut straight to the point: food is no longer enough. Yes, even if you’re eating the best organic foods in the world, you still won't be getting the recommended nutrient intake for optimal function and performance.
FYI this doesn’t mean that, since you need to take them anyway, supplements can be taken instead of a healthy and nutritious diet, you need both!
In fact, if you have a poor diet, you are less likely and less able to benefit from supplementation.
Three Main Reasons Why You Need Good Quality Supplementation
1. Soil Degradation
Soil is a priceless, non-renewable resource and mass farming has resulted in soil being depleted of nutrients. It takes thousands and thousands of years to form just an inch of topsoil. What does this mean? Well, we are running out of the good stuff, and whilst this has terrible implications for the climate, it is also detrimental to our health.
We are depleted of nutrients and minerals too, especially calcium and magnesium. In fact, some recent studies have found that there has been a 5% to 40% decline in some minerals and nutrients in our fruit and vegetables! What a crazy statistic…
When soil loses certain physical, biological or chemical qualities, it can affect the life within it. Whilst it might sound counterintuitive, healthy soil should be full of biodiversity, in fact, just a teaspoon of soil can contain more microorganisms than there are people on Earth.
So, when nearly 99% of the world’s daily calorie intake can be traced back to soil, it is inevitable that nutrient-depleted soil results in nutrient-depleted people.
Our foods do not contain the nutrient and mineral levels that they once did, and therefore even if we had the most diverse and healthy diet out there, we still wouldn’t be getting all the nutritious goodness that we need to function optimally.
2. Extended Shelf Life
Did you know that as foods become less fresh, the quality of the food begins to deplete? Historically, crops were grown close to home, we ate seasonally and there was no supermarket 'middleman’, resulting in a longer time between being produced to being served on your plate. This time means that the food you end up eating is not as nutrient rich as it once was.
Additionally, to extend shelf life many foods are pumped full of preservatives. These additives and preservatives are detrimental for your health, impacting the digestive system and your ability to absorb nutrients, resulting in nutrient deficiencies.
This leads me nicely into the next main reason…
3. Digestive System Health
Due to mass farming, the availability and movement towards a diet rich in processed food, environmental pollution, artificial additives, antibiotics, toxic household and cosmetic products and so much more, most people’s digestive system isn’t functionally optimally.
Whether their digestive health is slightly ‘off’ or if they’re suffering from a chronic issue, this will impact the amount of nutrients and minerals absorbed into their body.
This could be down to not breaking down foods properly, due to low stomach acid or not enough pancreatic enzymes. If the food isn’t broken down properly then nutrients will not be absorbed.
This is why I am such a huge advocate of smoothies as they are already broken down and therefore ensures the nutrients are readily available for absorption. Additionally, you must remember to chew your food! I recommend putting your cutlery down in between mouthfuls to encourage you to chew your food for longer.
Or maybe you have leaky gut? This is increased permeability of the intestinal wall. One of the biggest symptoms of leaky gut is nutrient deficiencies, due to the damaged intestinal wall inhibiting nutrient absorption.
How Do I Know Which Supplements To Use?
Whilst EVERYONE should be supplementing, if you are extremely nutrient deficient then the first thing you need to do is address the underlying reason WHY you are nutrient deficient. Do you have leaky gut? Do you need to optimise your digestive health? Are you carrying a high toxic load?
If you have never done a functional medicine detox before, I recommend doing the 21 Day Reset as a starting point. If you suspect gut or digestive issues, then the GI Protocol is the perfect follow up to heal your gut wall and rebuild your digestive health.
Meanwhile, you need to choose your foundational supplements wisely. These are the supplements that are the building blocks to good health; the supplements that you absolutely NEED to be taking every single day to support your mind and body.
It is important to note that not all supplements are made equally. I cannot express the number of times that clients have shown me their supplements routine and I unfortunately had to let them know that they were wasting their moneybecause either the dosages were not high enough or the formulations of vitamins and minerals were not in their most bio-available form, and therefore not easily absorbed by the body. They were very often causing more harm than good as well due to the way the formulations were made. As a result, they were just excreting the supplements they were taking, without reaping the benefits.
I use the Daily Essential Formula, which offers your foundational supplements in ONE shake, with the highest quality ingredients in their most bioavailable form.
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