Part of maintaining a healthy diet may include taking supplements. We are all unique individuals, so choosing a supplement that’s right for your needs is very important. For example, I need extra vitamin D3 and B12. I found out that I was deficient in these by getting my blood checked. I asked my doctor to add those tests to my lab work; I get lab work done every three months as part of my “surveillance” program (which is not to be confused with the NSA), although I wouldn’t be surprised if I wasn’t on some sort of “watch list” by now… I tend to be political at times, especially about our food and what creepy, toxic things are kept hidden from us — the consumer.
Anyway, back to the importance of supplements. As you know, I am vegan. I do eat a good deal of organic these days, especially since my neighborhood Ralph’s grocer added an excellent, moderately priced organic produce section. They are so much cheaper than Whole Foods and a great deal closer, so I don’t add to the pollution and gas consumption problems by driving 10 miles to eat healthier. That being said, I still can be deficient of certain nutrients because, let’s face it — we crapped all over our environment — the water, air and soil are not as clean as they once were.
I still eat some conventional produce like; cucumbers and onions. Conventional produce is grown in less than optimal conditions. They are sprayed with insecticides and pesticides, and who knows what they use for fertilizer anymore. According to the FDA, the sky seems to be the limit — except for organic; they better use only the purest and best ingredients (which is one of the reasons it costs more).
I write quite a bit about genetically modified foods (gmos) and how bad they are for our health. If you are new to my blog… a good rule of thumb is to stay away from corn and soy and read labels! If any of these ingredients are listed or their derivatives — aka: canola oil, cotton seed oil, high fructose corn syrup — don’t buy it.
That being said, you must also be aware of what’s hiding in your supplements. Are you aware that they are not all alike? Did you know that many supplements are packed with other ingredients that are “filler” and have nothing to do with your health? In fact many contain gmos, which are anything BUT healthy.
Lots of parents give their kids vitamins that are fun to look at and contain sugar, or aspartame. It has been documented that aspartame causes serious illnesses. Flint Stones vitamins are a prime example.
I learned about this about a year ago when I became involved in the California Prop 37 initiative. Before that I had no idea what was really in my vitamins. I really had trouble last month shopping for a vitamin D supplement that was not only vegan, BUT GMO FREE as well. I did find one though and I will list it at the bottom of this post. I also learned that another ingredient, gelatin comes from bone, usually cow and most soft gels contain it. I don’t want to ingest bone, if I am vegan.
A good rule of thumb is to stay away from drug and grocery stores when buying vitamins and that includes Costco. I know Costco has such great deals, but when it comes to your health, aren’t you worth the few extra dollars? Quality foods and supplements cost more than mainstream junk, and I do mean junk. You are better off saving your money than wasting it on supplements that are filled with ingredients your body can’t use or absorb.
For example, let’s take a look at a popular vitamin brand sold in Walgreen’s — Nature Made.
The following is a portion of the response letter from Nature Made to a concerned consumer about GMO ingredients and their vitamins:
From: Erick Pineda, Consumer Affairs Department
Subject: Reference #200093901
We recently received your e-mail regarding Nature Made products. We appreciate your question concerning your inquiry regarding the use of GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) materials in our products.
When possible, GMO-free materials are employed in the formulations of our products. However, certain ingredients, such as soybean oil and cornstarch, may be derived from genetically improved plants… Our Vitamin D and our Triple Omega supplements are GMO and non-organic.
We thank you for contacting us and hope that you will continue to use and enjoy Nature Made products with complete confidence.
My response to that letter is, “thanks but no thanks.” I prefer to not give my hard earned money to companies that use gmos (and don’t even label them as such) while at the same time claiming themselves to be natural or nature made. I think they should ask themselves this — “If the products we are selling are really natural, then why are gmos patented?” Altering a gene in a lab is not natural. That reasoning makes no sense to me. If you want to read more about how a gmo is made, click here.
If you go to my “GMO Free for Me” link, you will find a list of supplements that are guaranteed — good for you.
As promised, click here to find out about the MRM vitamin D3 supplement I buy. I buy mine through Vita Cost because they accept PayPal, are reasonably priced and ship lightening fast.
Peace and Great Health!