by Linda M Kennedy
Vitamins are essential nutrients the body requires to function properly. As a supplement, synthetic vitamins are readily available, yet these are chemical compounds that are unable to support the body. Synthetic vitamins lack the micronutrients that are needed for proper vitamin absorption and utilization in the body.
For example, vitamin C is commonly sold as a health supplement, yet the supplement only contains isolated portions of the naturally occurring vitamin. Vitamin C found in fruits and vegetables contains bioflavonoids, rutin, factors K, J and P, tyrosinase and ascorbic acid. Binding sulphuric acid to cornstarch produces synthetic vitamin C, which is labeled as ascorbic acid on the supplement bottle.
However ascorbic acid is only the outer shell of the entire vitamin C complex and needs the other micro-nutrients found in natural vitamin C to offer any health benefit. A diet rich in whole foods, or whole food nutritional health supplements will offer greater health benefits than synthetic vitamins, having all the components necessary to act effectively. There are a variety of nutritional health supplements available that can confer a wide array of health benefits.
A valuable nutritional health supplement, fish oil, is well known for containing omega-3 fatty acids that have been shown to provide numerous health benefits.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are two long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids that are found almost exclusively in seafood. Tuna, sardines, salmon, mackerel and herring have particularly high concentrations of these fatty acids, however fish oil supplements are another quality source.
Taking the capsules at bedtime, or freezing them may help to eliminate the “fishy burp” that many people experience as they dissolve in the stomach. Regular intake of EPA and DHA has been conclusively shown to prevent heart disease, through reducing the susceptibility of the myocardium to fatal arrhythmias. Fish oil has also been shown to decrease mild hypertension, regulate the body’s inflammation cycle to reduce pain and inflammation, and may also help to alleviate symptoms of depression and psychosis in affected people.
Coconut oil is a saturated fat, predominately composed of medium-chain triglycerides. While most saturated fats are bad for the body, medium-chain fatty acids can be easily digested, and may even contribute to excess calorie burning and weight loss. Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which converts into the monoglyceride, monolaurin, and has antiviral, antimicrobial, anti-fungal and anti-protozoal properties.
It is especially beneficial for targeting and eliminating herpes, the measles, influenza, hepatitis C and HIV. Coconut oil has also been shown to reduce or eliminate heart disease, as well as relieving haemorrhoids, psoriasis, and precancerous lesions. Coconut oil is a great nutritional health supplement and is available in soft gel capsules that can be easily absorbed by the body.
Olive oil contains high levels of monounsaturated fatty acids, as well as the vitamins E, K and A, and a host of micro-nutrients. It has been shown to have anti-hypertensive and anti-thrombotic properties, and is claimed to be effective at preventing colon, breast, and skin cancers. It is easily digestible and will work to lower LDL and raise HDL cholesterol levels. Virgin olive oil is produced by directing pressing of the olives and can be taken daily as a nutritional health supplement.
Aloe vera juice is commonly taken as a nutritional health supplement. It contains vitamins, enzymes, minerals, sugars, lignin, saponins, saclicylic acids and amino acids. Aloe vera juice helps to support the digestive system, and aid absorption of nutrients, and can be beneficial for treating bowel disease such as ulcerative colitis. It has also been shown to reduce blood glucose levels and lower overall and LDL cholesterol levels. It has both anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties and may be taken as a health supplement daily.
Whey protein is a nutritional health supplement that is derived from milk, and as it does not contain casein, may be a beneficial way for those who have milk allergies to consume dairy proteins. Whey protein contains all the essential amino acids and is especially good for those experiencing significant growth such as children, pregnant women and bodybuilding athletes. As a health supplement it is fat free and easily absorbed by the body.
Mushrooms are a natural source of proteins, fiber, vitamins B and C, as well as calcium and a host of other minerals. A variety of medicinal mushrooms are available as natural health supplements. They have been shown to promote immune function, prevent heart disease, lower the risk of cancer and act as a hypoglycemic.
Although synthetic vitamins are readily available, they do not provide the body with the appropriate micro-nutrients to be properly absorbed and used. A diet rich in whole foods is necessary for providing good general health. A variety of whole food supplements are widely available to aid the individual in attaining the necessary nutrients for optimal health.