Alright now I´ve been researching supplements for about 10 years now I really enjoy nutrition and the science of how different foods and substances increase our performance. I could talk and write about this forever, but I´ll try to make it as condensed as possible so it´s easy to understand and implement and you can get maximum value out of this.
Focus on Healthy, Unprocessed Food
The first truth is that you SHOULD focus on your macronutrients – carbs, fats and protein. So make sure you get plenty of healthy fats (coconut, avocado, olive), protein (it gets more complicated here, choose from meats/dairy/legumes/grains – whatever works for you) and carbohydrates – vegetables, fruit, rice, potatoes etc. But since it´s super hard to get everything you need with food, especially micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, enzymes, probiotics) getting some supplements is essential. Another reason to do so is because the food we eat today has been depleted of micronutrients. Again, Supplements won´t help much if the food you eat is crap. They can make your overall nutrition much better though.
RDA = Bullshit
The second truth is that RDA (recommended dietary allowance) is pure bullshit. Our bodies are so different that no diet or specification works for everyone. Basically you need to go on a journey to find out what is good for your body. It will last a lifetime, and your needs will continually change as you will. A medicinal test might help to shine some light on your current situation. I haven´t done one yet but will do asap.
Alright, let´s get it cracking!
Fish Oil are essential fatty acids. Your body can´t produce them, and ALL of the experts agree they are critical. Get on board!
- They improve brain function ( your neurons are covered by the myelin sheet which is 80% lipid (fat) and acts like a lubricant – so the communication in your brain runs smoother)
- They reduce inflammation,
- They reduce cardiovascular risk (heart attack)
People say take 1000mg, I say at least 3000mg. Pay attention to the EPA and DHA content, those are the ones you really need, I´d try to get about 1000mg of both, so that would usually take about 3000mg of your average brand fish oil. Also, pay attention, cheap brands might catch their fish in polluted water which is bad for you, because there will be toxins present. Research your brand or use krill oil instead. Toxins don´t accumulate in krill as they are so small. Hits your pockets heavy though.
The sun vitamin. Your needs depend on climate and sun exposure. But there is a high probability you are deficient, especially if you live in a dark climate or during the winter time for most people. Best practice is to expose as much of your skin as you can to the sun daily for about 15min. If you can´t then vitamin D3 is your best bet. You wont notice unless after you stop, big mood swings, depression and anxiety is what I felt in the northern climates when not supplementing vitamin D3.
Look, I´ll be honest, you get what you pay for. I can talk about multivitamins (when I say multivitamin I mean multi vitamin,mineral,probiotic,enzyme – your 1-a-day basically) only for hours. But I´ll just give you a few general guidelines:
- 1 small pill cant really do much for you. Impossible. For example, most of multivitamins are super low in magnesium because the mineral takes a lot of space, so they dont put it in. Make your own reserach, if it´s a big pill or several pills, it´s generally better.
- Check RDA, if its 100% for all the ingredients, it sucks.
- If there is no other supportive blends – probiotics, enzymes, herbal blends, it probably sucks.
I use Bulk Powders because of the price vs quality ratio, Life Extension are tested very good (and expensive). When I´m a big boy (rich baller) I´ll eat Mercola´s supplements. Alive! is pretty decent too.
Here´s a short (2min) vid where dr. Mercola explains better than me (and tries to sell you too 🙂 )
If you´re a guy, please use Zinc, your penis will be grateful. Here comes the erection story. So some time ago, I noticed I didn´t have a morning boner (erection) – yes, this is normal for most guys ladies. So I did the obvious thing. I freaked the fuck out! I spent a couple of hours researching testosterone production, erections etc. I order a whole bunch of herbal supplements that probably didnt do much. What actually helped was increasing my Zinc intake to about 3x the RDA. After a few weeks my boners came back, yaaaay!
If you´re a woman, pay atention to you Iron, research how much you need yourself! It´s different when ingested via meat or non-meat sources. How heavy your period is plays a crucial role as well. Also combine it with vitamin C for increased absorption. If you have an Iron problem, I´d take a good supplement and add in some iron rich whole foods.
N-acetyl-cysteine IS A BOMB. If you havent seen or used it yet you are missing out. Trust me or make your own research. But the fact is it´s cheap, it´s been used for a long time in medicine (40 years) and it works! It´s used for a big range of different diseases and conditions such as Alzheimers, cancer, liver damage & poisoning, the flu, improving insulin sensitivity etc.
Most importantly it helps in producing glutathione which is your body´s natural and it´s own antioxidant. It is super potent. 600-1800mg, several times a day is the recommended dose that I take when I need it. However, there is no need to take it every day, because the body regulates glutathione anyway. What you do is you take it when you are about to get sick to raise the defenses and then stop taking it.
3 min video with overwhelming information about the “coolness” of NAC:
Dear reader, I love NAC so much I gave it to my mum when she got sick. Guess what, she was a lot better the next day!
Extra tip! NAC helps prevent liver damage, which makes it useful as an anti-hangover medicine too. Hangover occurs mainly due to liver damage and dehydration. So just start to supplement with 1-2g of NAC and a pint (0.5l) of water in the middle and after your drinking session and you wont have a hangover. Tested!
We have all hear about this baby. Again, similar to NAC, I don´t think you need to use it every day (however if it´s in your multivitamin that´s fine). When your body is under stress, increase your vitamin C intake (it´s even synergetic with NAC), if you feel like getting sick, 500-1000mg a few times a day is fine. Preferably natural source (with flavonoids which help the vitamin C to stay longer in your body and increase absorption). If you do well with fruits, oranges might work well for you, they do for me. It´s completely safe, if your body can´t absorb it, you simply pee it out.
There is big variety here. Everything from the powerhouses of Chlorella and Spirulina, to Wheat and Barley grass, to all sorts of different herbs and spices. Again, you will need to test out a few things and see what works for you. Look, very dumbed down, everything that´s really green is good for you. It´s just easier to take 10g of a dust mix in water, than eating half a kilo of lettuce. Daily. I am oversimplifying but you get the gist. Green stuff will help you detoxify, and give you some energy and focus in between meals (especially if you´re doing intermittent fasting like I am). If your poo turns green, you´re doing something right 🙂
There you go people, pretty comprehensive but hopefully still simple enough to follow. I encourage you to do the research yourself, I am no doctor, so the risk is on you. But I have tested and tried a whole lot of diets and foods and especially supplements, and I found I can stand my ground to most nutritionists when talk comes to food supplements.
Let me know what you think. Was it helpful? If so, which part? Was a part too long or too detailed, or not detailed enough? Your feedback will help me create better content for you guys. If you want to be sure not to miss out on anything feel free to subscribe. If this was valuable to you, please comment and share it, so I know I´m on the right track.
Here´s the Video on the same topic I made in the beautiful Ljubljana, Slovenia: