Finding Good Vitamins
* Vitamin A: Some forms of supplemental vitamin A, when taken in even moderate daily doses, can be toxic. Dr. Weil specifies the use of mixed carotenoids - these are substances that the body converts to vitamin A, avoiding toxicity potential and maximizing effectiveness.
* Vitamin D: Inexpensive vitamins tend to contain vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol), the kind synthesized by plants. But when humans eat plant-derived D2, very little is converted to D3 (choleciferol), the kind most readily used by the human body and which skin makes when exposed to ultraviolet light. Dr. Weil specifies D3 in his supplements, as this form has been shown to have greater biological activity in human tissue.
* Vitamin E: In nature, this vitamin is found as a combination of eight different active compounds - four are called tocopherols, and four are called tocotrienols. Many manufacturers use inexpensive, synthetic versions of one or only a few of those eight forms. In his supplements Dr. Weil specifies a complete, naturally derived tocopherol/tocotrienol complex that more closely mirrors the natural vitamin E found in foods.
* Calcium: Manufacturers make calcium supplements in many forms, including calcium carbonate (the most common type), calcium lactate and calcium aspartate. Dr. Weil specifies calcium citrate because it is more easily absorbed, especially by older people who may have less stomach acid. Although more expensive, calcium citrate is more than twice as bioavailable as calcium carbonate.
* Fish Oils: Oils derived from the fat of cold-water fish, a source of essential omega-3 fatty acids, can be contaminated with toxic heavy metals. Dr. Weil recommends seeking out products that, like his fish oil supplements, have received the highest rating for purity – five out of five stars – from the International Fish Oil Standards program.
Vegetarian Sources of Omega-3? - Dr. Weil
Taking 400 to 600 mg a day of Neuromins DHA and relying on dietary sources of ALA is probably the best vegan strategy for getting omega-3s.
A daily handful of walnuts or one to two tablespoons of freshly ground flaxseed per day provide ALA. I hope we will soon see products made from algae that provide both EPA and DHA.
10 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin B-12 daily or take 1,000 mcg once a week
To get enough iron without eating meat, cook in iron pots and eat such iron- rich foods as blackstrap molasses, cocoa, and leafy greens. You can boost your absorption of iron-rich foods by eating foods high in vitamin C at the same meal.
take 8 to 15 mg of supplemental zinc per day.
Supplements for Healthy Joints - Dr Weil's Daily Health Tips
Glucosamine and chondroitin. These two compounds help provide the building blocks for substances naturally found in healthy cartilage and appear to relieve pain, improve joint mobility, and slow osteoarthritis-related damage to the joints.
SAM-e. This naturally occurring molecule (S-adenosylmethioine) delivers sulfur to the cartilage, which helps build and maintain strong joints.
Evening primrose oil. A source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) which may help maintain healthy joints by modifying inflammation.
Anti-inflammatory herbs. Ginger, holy basil, green tea, rosemary, turmeric, scutellaria and hu zhang all have naturally occurring anti-inflammatory compounds that act as COX-2 inhibitors. (Zyflamend from New Chapter, which contains these herbs, is highly recommended.)
Omega-3 fatty acids. Use varieties that are molecularly distilled from the oil of fish or krill and contain both EPA and DHA, essential fatty acids which have been shown in studies to help maintain bone health and joint flexibility.