Choosing supplements can be confusing, if not overwhelming. There are so many choices and endless promises. Some supplements can even be toxic or dangerous if taken incorrectly. My supplementation has changed with my goals, age, and the individual needs of my body. Here are five of my favorite supplements:
- Tri-Pep BCAAs (Branch Chain Amino Acids): Improve recovery, builds muscle, and promotes endurance. BCAAs increase the rate of protein synthesis and stimulate the cells capacity for protein synthesis. BCAAs bypass the liver and go directly to the blood stream. So they are a quick energy source before, during, and after workouts.
- Metabolic Effect Craving Cocoa: Helps to reduce cravings and hunger. There are studies that indicate cocoa stimulates serotonin production, regulating mood and suppressing appetite. Cocoa powder also has a high fiber contact, which makes it naturally more filling and helps to keep your digestive system working properly. I like to mix a scoop of this into cold or hot coffee and add a little almond milk.
- Curcumin (the main ingredient in turmeric): Has been linked to several benefits including reducing inflammation, increasing the antioxidant capacity in the body, boosting brain function, and lowering heart disease. My main concern with rheumatoid arthritis is finding ways to fight inflammation, and curcumin does this at the molecular level. In fact, it has been found to be as powerful as some NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory drugs), yet significantly safer. NSAIDs have been linked with an increased risk of cardiovascular events, stroke, and gastrointestinal problems.
- Resveratrol: An antioxidant found in certain fruits, vegetables, cocoa, and my favorite…red wine. It can cross the blood-brain barrier and potentially help protect the brain and nervous system. Studies indicate it can protect cells from damage, inhibit the spread of cancer, reduce inflammation, lower blood pressure, keep the heart healthy, and improve elasticity in blood vessels.
- Smart Blend by MRM: This supplement contains some key “good” fats. CLA is a natural nutrient found in cheese, milk and beef that is known to promote increased lean muscle and reductions in body fat.
GLA promotes the release of good prostaglandins. This is critical in the development of cardiovascular, joint and immune health. It is also a good anti-oxidant.
EPA and DHA are essential body fats that our bodies are unable to produce from within. EPA and DHA promote overall good health.
This is not a conclusive list but rather a few of the products I have personally found helpful. I encourage you to work with your health practitioner to develop a program that works best for your body.