Supplements That Actually Work
We like to believe sticking to a healthy diet will supply us with all of the necessary nutrients our bodies need, but that’s not always the case. If your diet falls short of nutrients such as calcium or vitamin D, it may be wise to consider taking a daily supplement.
Every supplement bottle will tell you the positive benefits, why you need to take it and how it will drastically help you. And while many of these supplements speak the truth, others are leaving out the detrimental affects it could have on your body.
Therefore, it’s important to know what you are putting in your body and the correct nutrients you need to function properly. There are healthy supplements that boost energy, beat stress, improve physical performance and enhance memory. If you are suffering from insomnia, try melatonin; if you are looking to build muscle, use Whey Protein; and if you’re suffering from stress, consider Rhodiola.
For those of you unsure of the right supplements to take, here is a list of 16 supplements that actually work.
Creatine Monohydrate is a cost effective supplement that improves cognition and is a safe workout booster for men and women. According to bodybuilding.com, Creatine Monohydrate is a “physiological sports ergogenic and also a nutritional sports ergogenic.” Purchase this supplement at bodybuilding.com, Vitamin Shoppe or GNC.
Omega -3 Fatty Acids are commonly found in Fish Oil. They have been known to help fight cancer symptoms and have incredible anti-aging effects on the brain’s structure and functionality. This supplement has also been known to help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. “According to the 2012 National Health Interview Survey, which included a comprehensive survey on the use of complementary health approaches in the United States, fish oil supplements are the nonvitamin/nonmineral natural product most commonly taken by both adults and children” (NIH).
For those of you who are unaware, “whey protein… the liquid part of milk that separates during cheese production,” according to Authority Nutrition. As they explain, taking whey protein is an easy way to add 25-50 grams of protein on top of your daily intake. That said, whey protein is commonly used by bodybuilders or people lacking protein in their diet. Tip: There are three types of whey protein to choose from, Concentrate, Isolate and Hydrolysate. Make sure you ask the store associate to explain and help you choose the best one for you.
Melatonin helps those who suffer from insomnia and promote healthy sleep patterns for those who don’t. According to Life Extension, new studies have shown that melatonin’s multifaceted effects may improve treatment outcomes in cancer patients and extend their lives. They also explain, melatonin guards the “nervous system against degenerative diseases—such as Alzheimer’s disease and stroke—and preventing debilitating migraines.”
Carnitine is a popular fat-loss supplement that also helps enhance muscle growth. Dr. Julian Whitaker explains, L-carnitine supplements improve angina, heart function and exercise tolerance in patients with coronary artery disease and heart failure. He also explains, if you are willing to exercise regularly, carnitine can help improve your metabolism and enhance exercise endurance.
Green Tea supplements (extract) offer a convenient way to get the benefits of green tea in a pill form. They are proven to enhance weight-loss, protect against arthritis, improve cardiovascular health, enhance physical performance, improve brain function and lower your risk of Alzheimer’s disease and type II diabetes.
Ginkgo biloba began as a common treatment in Chinese medicine, now it is among the top-selling herbal supplements in the U.S. According to WebMD, “Several ginkgo studies have shown that it can help with memory problems caused by dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. It seems to help prevent the progression of dementia symptoms, especially if the dementia is thought to be the result of atherosclerotic vascular disease.” They also explain, there is good evidence ginkgo may help with leg pain, PMS symptoms, ADHD, depression and multiple sclerosis.
Glutamine is an amino acid found in your muscles, and this supplement is commonly used by body builders. According to bodybuilding.com, “studies have shown that L-Glutamine supplementation can minimize breakdown of muscle and improve protein metabolism.” It also helps boost your immune system, maintain cell hydration and speed up recovery. Tip: Take Glutamine before working out to decrease muscle fatigue.
It’s almost impossible to consume all of the nutrients your body needs on a daily basis. That’s why multivitamin supplements are extremely important. It’s a healthy way to consume the nutrients and reap the benefits of whole foods. WebMD explains, “Vitamin and mineral supplements can help prevent deficiencies that can contribute to chronic conditions.”
“Calcium is one of the minerals most often lacking in Americans’ diets” (WebMD). Take calcium supplements to build strong bones and ensure the proper function of your heart, muscles and nerves. Studies also suggest that calcium may help protect against cancer, diabetes and high blood pressure, according to the Mayo Clinic.
If you’re not consuming enough vitamin D daily, it is important to consider adding the supplement to your daily regime. Vitamin D helps boost your immune system, while also helping weak bones, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, asthma and diabetes.
Theanine is commonly found in green and black tea. It helps relax the mind, improve sleep, reduce stress and boost concentration. According to Berkeley Wellness, “in a Japanese study in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology, college students who took L-theanine experienced less anxiety and had smaller increases in blood pressure when under psychological or physical stress than when they took a placebo
Rhodiola is a spectacular herb that provides numerous benefits. It decreases stress, fights fatigue, improves energy and helps with memory loss while also increasing levels of neurotransmitters serotonin. According to herbwisdom.com, “studies using proofreading tests have demonstrated that Rhodiola rosea enhances memorization and concentration ability over prolonged periods. It increases the bioelectrical activity of the brain which improves memory and brain energy.”
Magnesium Threonate supports restorative sleep, and promotes good cognitive and neurological health. According to Suzy Cohen, the clinical applications for magnesium include healthy levels in the central nervous system and healthy synapse function and number. This supplement also helps boost your mood and manage stress.
Saffron & Ginseng
New research recently published online in the journal Food Research International finds that ginseng and saffron are key to spicing up your sex life. Both boost sexual performance, according to a scientific review of natural aphrodisiacs done by researchers at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada.
Zinc supplements reduce the severity and duration of illness caused by the common cold, according to a systematic review published in The Cochrane Library. The common cold places a heavy burden on society, accounting for approximately 40% of time taken off work and millions of days of school missed by children each year. The idea that zinc might be effective against the common cold came from a study carried out in 1984, which showed that zinc lozenges could reduce how long symptoms lasted.
Probiotic digestive supplements
Probiotics frequently are recommended as dietary supplements to improve digestive health,” said NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D. “This is one of the first studies to describe precisely how they may work to provide health benefits. The possibility that oral Bacillus might be an effective alternative to antibiotic treatment for some conditions is scientifically intriguing and definitely worthy of further exploration.” Staphylococcus infections cause tens of thousands of deaths worldwide each year. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, is familiar to many people as a cause of serious disease. Probiotics seem to offer a prevention for this serious type of infection.
Alpha lipoic acid
Alpha-lipoic acid is an anti-oxidant which naturally occurs in the body and in many foods. The supplement is approved in Germany to treat nerve-related symptoms of diabetes; it is thought to help prevent certain types of cell damage and is also used by consumers to treat degenerative eye and cardiovascular diseases.
New Research also indicates that this amazing supplement can prevent kidney stone formation in a mouse model of cystinuria, a rare inherited disease that causes recurrent formation of painful and damaging kidney stones. The research, a collaboration between the Buck Institute and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), has led to the initiation of a clinical trial in patients suffering from the condition.
New Findings: Two dietary supplements straight off the health food store shelf put the spark back into aging rats, and might do the same for aging baby boomers, according to a study at the University of California, Berkeley, and Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute.
A team of researchers led by Bruce N. Ames, professor of molecular and cell biology at UC Berkeley, fed older rats two chemicals normally found in the body’s cells and available as dietary supplements: acetyl-L-carnitine and an antioxidant, alpha-lipoic acid.
In three articles in the February 19 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Ames and his colleagues report the surprising results. Not only did the older rats do better on memory tests, they had more pep, and the energy-producing organelles in their cells worked better.
“With the two supplements together, these old rats got up and did the Macarena,” said Ames, also a researcher at Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI). “The brain looks better, they are full of energy – everything we looked at looks more like a young animal.”
Supplements That Actually Work