Hack your Brain with Supplements
The supplements you consume can enhance your brain and support your body, only if you are taking the right brand. Do you know what you are taking?
Who are you?
Throughout the journey I have come across several types of people:
#1: those who compare supplements to prescription medications. They expect the supplement to provide instantaneous relief like a drug, and are angry when it didn’t work – after a few days of use.
#2: Believe supplements are the end all be all. They can cure everything
#3: Want nothing to do with supplements. They are a waste of time, energy, and money.
#4: Not sure about supplements but are OPEN to try anything.
Regardless of which individual you are, I want you to know that supplements can be beneficial if you choose the right ones.
This article is here to help you understand the differences between brands, how to know what brands you should choose, and which nutrients may be best suited for your body.
Popular Brands Can Be Harmful
Many of the brands that you find in your Walgreens, CVS, GNC, and others that are advertised on TV, etc. are created with synthetic ingredients. The synthetic blends are usually cheaper, but they are harmful to you. These products are manufactured to mimic the way natural vitamins and minerals react within your body.
Because these products lack the critical enzymes, minerals, and vitamins that control the way your body metabolizes the natural form, your body can’t properly absorb them.
The Organic Consumers Association suggests isolated vitamins cannot be used or recognized by the body in the same way as the natural occurring nutrient [*].
Your Multivitamin and Turmeric is Probably Garbage
Depending on where you purchased the supplement and what ingredients are in it, you may want to consider pitching it and chalking it up as a loss.
In the beginning of the journey, did much trial and error before I became dialed in with the brands and supplements that I needed.
Be aware of fillers and added ingredients. Soybean oil, titanium dioxide, maltodextrin, and cellulose powder are some of the common additives you should avoid.
Food for thought: It is always best practice to do your homework and see who the brand is owned by.
How to start supplementing?
Get your nutrients from quality food sources
Without a doubt, the best way for you to get nutrients into your body is through the food you consume. Therefore, opting for the highest quality food does have significant upsides.
Get a blood test
Work alongside you general practitioner to request a Complete Blood Count, along with a full nutrient panel and full thyroid panel. In some cases, especially if you experience hormonal-related headaches, you would want to have a full hormone panel done.
Why Is Targeted Supplementation Best?
When you know and understand exactly what deficiencies exist within your body, you are able to create a customized plan that works for you. You are able to use the right amounts and target accordingly.
The objective of targeted supplementation is simple to support nervous system function, improve cognitive ability, boost brain power, enhance immune system, and help your overall wellbeing.
Magnesium is responsible for over 300 enzymatic functions including neurotransmitter functions. When your magnesium levels are shown to be low the common symptoms include trouble sleeping, migraine headaches, poor digestion, anxiety and muscle aches or spasms. Science has proved that by taking a magnesium supplement it calms the brain and promotes relaxation, helps increase energy, treats insomnia and actually prevent migraine headaches.
Recommended Brand: Life Extension Magnesium
Vitamin D is processed and ends up becoming a hormone in our body that affects our blood pressure, immunity, brain function, mood and our skeletal structure. Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include depression, insomnia and chronic pain. When adequate levels of vitamin D are present in the body it has been proven to help manage blood sugar levels, enhance our immune system, prevent inflammation, improve hormone regulation, boosted mood and help with concentration, learning and memory.
Recommended Brand: Garden of Life Vitamin D
Vitamin K2 plays an important role in the body by helping maintain brain function, a healthy metabolism, protecting against cancer, improving bone and heart health and also affecting our intestinal bacteria which is responsible for our gut health. The benefits of taking a vitamin K supplement include improved brain function due to its anti-inflammatory properties, improved bone density and reduced risk of certain cancers.
Recommended Brand: Life Extension
Vitamin B12 is essential to your nervous system as it helps to support healthy nerve cells, which is crucial for neurotransmitter signalling. Symptoms of a B12 deficiency include fatigue, joint pain, poor memory, increased depression, increased anxiety, mood changes, chronic fatigue and muscle aches and weakness. Proven benefits of B12 include improved functionality of the nervous system, boosted energy levels and improved cognitive function.
Recommended Brand: Jarrow Formulas Methyl B12
Methyl folate is used for copying and synthesizing DNA and supporting nerve and immune function to produce new cells. It helps the body convert food (carbohydrates) into fuel (glucose) to produce energy. It is also essential for helping your nervous system function effectively. Signs you may be folate deficient include chronic fatigue, getting sick all the time due to poor immune function and changes in mood. By taking a folate supplement also helps the body to utilize iron, B12 and amino acids more efficiently.
Recommended Brand: Jarrow Formulas Methyl Folate
Vitamin C is essential for the health of the growth and repair for all the body’s connective tissues and protection against immune deficiencies. It also contains strong antioxidant properties and aids in the absorption of iron. Proven benefits of taking a good quality vitamin C supplement include improved nutrient absorption, protection against free radical damage, stressed immune system improvements and better physical performance and muscle strength.
Recommended Brand: Solaray
CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant and is an essential element for many daily functions such as regulating blood pressure levels, transporting electrons and supplying cells with energy. It is a substance that helps to convert food into energy. The proven benefits of taking CoQ10 include improved energy utilisation, reduced free radical damage, protection for cognitive health, stabilization of blood sugar levels and maintains optimal PH levels.
Recommended Brand: Life Extension
Omega 3 – EPA/DHA
Omega 3 fish oil is essential for health however our bodies cannot make it. It plays a crucial role in brain health, cognitive functioning, growth, and development to reduce inflammation – thus prevent chronic disease. This supplement has been proven to improve cognitive related conditions, high blood pressure, depression and anxiety and chronic illness.
Recommended Brand: Jarrow
Iodine is an essential component needed to make thyroid hormones and these hormones regulate the metabolic activities of the organs, brain, and cells, which is vital for the bodies growth and development. Symptoms of an iodine deficiency include headaches, depression, memory problems, fatigue, sensitivity to temperature changes, brain fog, muscle weakness and joint stiffness.
Recommended Brand: Bulletproof Iodine
Zinc plays a part in more than 100 enzymatic reactions in the body. It is a powerful antioxidant, which protects cells from free radical damage. Zinc is vital for blood clotting, thyroid function, the immune system, and growth. The benefits of a good quality zinc supplement help to normalize blood sugar levels, boost immunity, increase nutrient absorption, help with hormonal balance and improves muscle growth and repair.
Recommended Brand: Jarrow Zinc + Copper
Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant that helps to fight free radical damage. It is essential to the body for healthy neurological functioning, normal vision, protection of the mucous membranes of the digestive, respiratory functions and bone growth. It also helps form and maintains healthy teeth, skin, skeletal and soft tissues throughout the body. The benefits of a good quality vitamin A supplement include providing immune support, protection for the eyes and vision, fights inflammation and supports skin health and cell growth.
Recommended Brand: Nordic Naturals Cod Liver Oil
Probiotics increase the number of good bacteria in your stomach and intestines and are key in treating neurological disorders, digestive issues and maintaining a strong immune system. Our gut health is linked to a range of ailments such as joint pain, chronic fatigue and thyroid imbalances. Including a probiotic supplement in your diet will heal leaky gut syndrome, improve your microbiome and good gut bacteria, protect you from harmful toxins, increase energy production, build a stronger immune system and assist in better digestion.
Recommended Brand: Axe Naturals
Tyrosine is an amino acid and is essential for the healthy functioning of the brain’s neurotransmitters, which help cells communicate and affect your mood. It is also vital to the function or certain organs that make and regulate hormones such as thyroid, adrenal and pituitary glands.
Recommended Brand: Jarrow L-Tyrosine
All cells require enzymes to function. Digestive enzymes help break your food down and make the nutrients available to absorb. When your body is filled with toxins, your enzymes are not able to construct, carry, deliver, synthesize, and eliminate effectively. If it takes your body longer to recover, you are unable to digest dairy, or even a reduction in energy could mean you have an enzyme problem.
Recommended Brand: Enzymedica Digest Gold