Antioxidants in the Human Body
The human body naturally produces antioxidants and free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules/atoms (with unpaired number of electrons) generated internally within the body (normal energy production, metabolism, toxic heavy metals in tissue, etc) and externally induced (X-rays, smoking, stress, over-exercising, toxic chemicals/pesticides, unhealthy foods, toxic house products, air pollutants, etc.). The free radicals are scavengers and seek other electrons to pair up with, thereby burning holes in our cellular membranes (damage body cells). Antioxidants are nature’s way to neutralize free radicals and prevent human body cell damage.
Cellular Health of the Human Body
Cells are the smallest living structural, functional, and biological units of human body systems; the building blocks of all your tissues and organs. These trillions of cells absorb nutrients which they convert into energy, perform specialized functions, and replicate independently. If your body cells do not function properly the human body systems cannot function properly, and your health will deteriorate. Cellular nutrition is simply supplying the essential nutrients (vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein, fat and water) needed for Cellular Health. In essence, healthy living means keeping your cells healthy.
What is fiber?
Dietary fiber is the portion of plant foods that our Digestive System can’t absorb or digest. Unlike most other foods we eat, fiber passes quickly through your digestive tract.
It is noteworthy that whole grains are not the best source of fiber. This is due to the fact that fiber contain anti-nutrients that interfere with the nutrient absorption and allow toxic materials to be absorbed into the bloodstream. In contrast, the more desirable highest fiber foods include: split peas, chickpeas, lentils, chia seeds, black beans, lima beans, artichokes, avocados, peas, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, acorn squash, nuts, raspberries, blackberries, coconut, pears, flax seeds and figs.
Types of Fibers
There are 2 kinds of dietary fiber:
- Soluble Fiber: Soluble fiber dissolves with water and forms a gel. It makes you feel full and lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels. Foods rich in this type of fiber include beans, peas, oatmeal, nuts, apples and blueberries.
- Insoluble Fibers: On the other hand, insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water. It absorbs water and passes through our Digestive System more or less in its original form. Insoluble fiber is found in the seeds and skins of fruit, whole-wheat bread, nuts, seeds, brown rice, cabbage, carrots, and Brussel sprouts.
Benefits of Fiber
Fiber should be included in your diet since it has many benefits as discussed in my blog on “Benefits of Fiber in Your Diet” – click here.
What is a Multivitamin
A multivitamin is a preparation combining several vitamins to serve as a dietary supplement.
The basic formulations for most multivitamins usually include both vitamins and minerals including: Vitamin A (Group of fat-Soluble Retinoids), Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid), B6 (Pyridoxine), Vitamin B7 (Biotin), Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid), Vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin), Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) , Vitamin D2 (Ergocalciferol) or Vitamin D3( Cholecalciferol), Vitamin E (Tocopherols and Tocotrienols), Vitamin K (Koagulationsvitamin), Potassium, Iodine, Selenium, Borate, Zinc, Calcium, Magnesium, Manganese, Molybdenum, and Betacarotene.
Important Considerations in Using a Multivitamin
When selecting a multivitamin, choose one that have formulas aimed at your age, sex and/or specific nutritional needs. Store your multivitamins at room temperature and keep bottle tightly closed.
It’s better to take your multivitamin the morning with food. Given that the vitamins found in multivitamins are usually synthetic substances, it’s best absorbed in your body when taken with food and its naturally occurring vitamins. Always have your coffee at least 15 minutes before taking your multivitamin or a few hours after. The reason for this is that coffee impedes the absorption of vitamins and minerals and increase their excretion from the body.
Vitamins, organic compounds, are essential nutrients required only in small quantities in your diet, since they cannot be synthesized by the body. It is important that if you take a multivitamin, do not to go overboard with other supplements containing similar vitamins. This could potentially lead to a vitamin overdose and you should check the daily allowances. Especially look out for overdosing in vitamins A, B6, C and E to avoid health risks.
Furthermore, limit iron in your supplements, unless advised otherwise by your physician. Excess iron accumulates in your body and can quickly rise to toxic levels. This may increase your risk for heart attack, diabetes, liver problems and could even be fatal, especially in children under 5 years old. Nevertheless, your body requires minimum levels of iron to maintain red blood cell production and oxygen.
Best Supplements for General Health
The most effective supplements for the general Health are grouped into:
- Best Antioxidants,
- Best Cellular Health Supplements,
- Best Fiber Supplements, and
- Best Multivitamins
The most highly recommended supplements that work for General Health are based on 1,000s of user reviews. These supplements will be continually updated. Please provide comments and submit supplement recommendations that worked for you on Antioxidants, Cellular Health, Fiber and Multivitamins by completing the form below.