It’s true that the best way to get the nutrition you need is through diet, but nutritional supplementation is a safe and effective way to optimize your health if you are in a deficiency state, or if dietary measures are not the best option. Maybe you’re not absorbing food properly, or maybe you are taking prescription medications that are known to deplete certain nutrients.
There is so much to know about what works and what’s safe when it comes to supplements. Many people ask Dr. Google what they should take for certain conditions, and purchase supplements online or at stores that don’t carry optimal products. This is very true among people who are fighting cancer. They then find out later that what they are taking is not at the correct dose, or doesn’t contain bioavailable forms of nutrients. Let me guide you to prescribe the absolute best, medical grade supplements out there, so you can achieve the lasting results you desire.
Supplements and Cancer
It is not uncommon in practice for patients to bring in an overflowing bag with supplements they have bought online, or at health food stores, all claiming to be the next best thing for cancer, and sometimes promising a cure. If you are fighting cancer, you are probably very confused, and overwhelmed, at the information on the Internet.
As a naturopathic doctor, a considerable amount of time is spent reading published research and literature, from only accredited sources, and determining what holds the most promise for cancer. This might include what is best for maintaining a robust immune system, or what is best for decreasing inflammation, or what supplements may actually possess anti-cancer activity.
There are a variety of supplements that can be extremely beneficial for someone fighting cancer. Medicinal mushrooms are great for enhancing the natural killers cells of our immune system. There are wonderful herbs that can help with sleep, or decrease anxiety, or improve energy. By having a trained professional prescribe you the most effective supplements, you can rest assured that you will be working towards a more healthy you!
What are Medical Grade Supplements?
The term “medical grade supplement” refers to formulations that 1) carry much higher doses than you can purchase in stores, 2) may contain doses or other substances that could cause side effects, and 3) are independently tested by third party laboratories to ensure the potency and purity meet the highest standards. These supplements can only be purchased for resale by naturopathic doctors or other health care professionals with medical licenses. We only use medical grade supplements in practice to ensure that all patients get the most effective nutraceuticals on the market.
There are a variety of forms that supplements may take, which include:
Standardized herbal extracts
Standardized herbal extracts are extracts of botanical medicines that are standardized to a particular amount of a plant phytochemical. For example, we know that by eating an orange, we are getting lots of vitamin C, but sometimes we take tablets of vitamin C to get higher doses.
That is how herbal extracts work. Curcumin is the main active phytochemical from the spice, turmeric: it’s a powerful natural anti-inflammatory with lots of research behind it. Extracts from turmeric start with the whole plant, and then the curcumin is extracted, and supplements are standardized to levels of curcumin that have been shown to work. These extracts are a great way to take herbs as medicines.
Vitamins and minerals
Not all vitamins and minerals are created equal; some forms are more rapidly absorbed, while others get broken down making them very ineffective. Vitamins and minerals are easy enough to get from a healthy diet, but if you have inflammation or digestive issues, you’re not absorbing the nutrients you need to function properly. If vitamins or minerals are required, we know the right ones to suggest.
Micronutrients are nutrients that are only required in very small amounts, but play very important roles in our bodies’ healthy functioning. Some of these micronutrients also have specific therapeutic actions. Chromium, for instance, is a micronutrient that is very effective at helping control blood sugar levels, while selenium is a necessary part of a healthy immune system, as well as thyroid function. Sometimes we’ll prescribe micronutrients in chronic conditions to help get your body back on track. They can also be used in acute situations, like at the start of a cold, to help your body systems function optimally and get you better faster.
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