Supplements: Essential vs. Nice-to-have

A bunch of you have asked what my supplement regime is, so I thought it’d be fun to talk about supplements as a whole and delve into the ones I use and why.

As much as I’d love to believe that money grows on trees, it doesn’t. So when it comes to having a conversation about supplements, I can understand why people get scared of it.

The good news is, is that you don’t need to drown in supplement bills to live a happy and healthy life.

The Essentials

Generally speaking, the essentials that everyone needs are:

  • Multi-vitamin. Because [unfortunately] no matter how clean you eat, there’s just not enough nutrients in our soil to provide you with all of the macro + micro nutrients you need.
  • Omega-3. Omega 3 + 6 play a balancing game. If one is low, the other is high, and vice versa. Our diets are naturally high in omega-6, so we need to supplement with omega-3 to keep that balance.
  • Probiotics. I can’t tell you the last time I met a client that didn’t have issues with their digestive or intestinal system. We run our digestion to the MAX from the time we move from our mothers milk, to our last day. So it’s no wonder we’re deficient in healthy bacteria! [For more information on healthy bacteria, checkout this post]

Essentials: Personal Picks

Multi-vitamin

Cost: $1.33/day


Vitamin Code is a raw form of multivitamins created by Garden of Life. Garden of Life is one of my favorite supplement companies. Their supplements are sourced from real food, the have high standards, and they truly stand behind their commitment to offering the best products to the consumer.

Omega-3

Cost: $0.58/day

I am new to Ascenta NutraSea, but have already fallen madly in love! When shopping for an omega-3 supplement, there are a couple of things I look for:

  • Ratio of EPA to DHA.
    • complement your diet: 1.5 EPA to every DHA [I use this ratio]
    • joint health: 4.5EPA:1DHA
    • heart health: 2EPA:1DHA
    • brain performance: 1EPA:5DHA
  • Price comparison to competitors.
  • Source of omega-3. Herringand sardines harbor some of the highest levels of heart-healthy omega-3.

Probiotics

Cost: $0.83/day

I am an unfaithful probiotics user. I jump from product to product (but this dairy-free DDS Acidophilus powder is my favorite). But you know what, that’s a good thing! I am of the school of thought that the more you try, the more diverse your bacteria.

Things I look for in a probiotic supplement are:

  • Dairy free
  • Sugar free
  • Minimal ingredients
  • Powdered form. This is a preference thing. I like it powdered so I know all of it will be used.
  • Single vs. dual celled. Single species are good if you’re fighting a specific health issue. If you’re just taking probiotics to support your health, a dual celled bacteria is best.

Personal Essentials

Depending on someone’s history and current state of health, additional supplements may be essential.

My personal essentials are evening primrose oil + B complex.

Personal Essentials: Personal Picks

Evening Primrose Oil

Cost: $0.44/day

Efamol Pure Evening Primrose Oil makes my PMS much more bearable. I still crave chocolate, but I don’t want to scream, cry, and jump for joy, all in a matter of seconds.

Evening primrose oil also acts as a cheap relationship therapist. Trust me.

Vitamin B complex

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This B100 Complex assists with stress + energy support. I do not take this daily, only when I need it!

The nice-to-haves

In addition to the supplements above, I also rely on:

  • Spirulina. Used as a protein supplement and energy booster from time to time. Check out my post on spirulina here.
  • Vitamin D drops. My best bud during the dark and dreary days of Winter.

So there you have it. Moral of the story is: find a good multi-vitamin, probiotic, and fish oil and you’ll be set. Unless of course you have some underlying health issues that need addressing, but for most of us, getting on this minimalistic supplement regime will do wonders for our health.

Are you a supplement taker? What’s your favorite supplement company?

Do you find it challenging to remember to take your supplements?

I battled with this problem for years until I setup a supplement schedule. I found 2 things in my day that I do everyday no matter what. Breakfast + Lunch.

Every time I purchase a new bottle of supplements, I separate 1/2 and place it in my lunch kit, and the other stays in the fridge at home.

Breakfast smoothie = supplements

Grabbing lunch = supplements

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Comments | Leave Your Comment

  1. Hi Leanne,
    I stumbled upon your website while browsing. I am currently working with a retired clinical nutritionist who is a good friend. We are doing the paleo/keto except to start with no pumpkin, squash, sweet potatoes etc. I am wanting to lose weight and get healthy. She has taught me that any vitamins I take need to be from assayed companies. I am intrigued by your Multi Vitamin but that company is not on her list of assayed companies. Do you know if that brand would fall into that category? Thank you for all your excellent help! Donna (born & raised Canadian but currently in the USA where the Lord led us to be) :)

  2. I have read on multiple other keto sites and Facebook pages that magnesium, zinc and potassium are super important for this way of life. They werent as focused on green and whole foods like you are (I just started following you the other day and am in love ? Haha) so I am assuming you get more of this minerals then those who arent as focused on as much nutrient dense foods? Btw I love that you are a fellow Canadian!

    • Hey! This post was written long before I was keto. It’s definitely important to have magnesium and to balance electrolytes while eating keto. We can get much of this stuff from veggies, but sometimes we need to supplement, too. I hope this helps!

  3. Hi Leanne

    What about Antioxidants likes Moringa? Kelp? And Multi Mineral to improve bone density and also Turmerynne?

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