The Supplement Factor



Vitamins and Minerals and Supplements - Oh My! What do I take? How much should I buy?  This page will supply all of your answers to your questions about supplements.





Be prepared with pencil and paper as I describe my extensive daily regiment of vitamins and supplements.


Vitamin and Mineral Charts


*Water soluble (WS) vitamins are not stored in the body and must be replenished daily.*Fat soluble (FS) vitamins such as vitamin A are stored in body fat.  Consuming too much could have toxic results



Water Soluble (WS) /Fat Soluble (FS)

What the vitamin does

Significant food sources

(Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for adults mg-milligrams/mcg-micrograms/IU-international Units

B1 (thiamin)WS

Supports energy metabolism and nerve function

spinach, green peas, tomato juice, sunflower seeds, lean ham, lean pork chops, soy milk 1.4 mg

B2 (riboflavin) WS

Supports energy metabolism, normal vision and skin health

spinach, broccoli, mushrooms, eggs, milk, liver, oysters, clams 1.6mg

B3 (niacin) WS

Supports energy metabolism, skin health, nervous system and digestive system

spinach, potatoes, tomato juice, lean ground beef, chicken breast, tuna (canned in water), liver, shrimp 13 to 18 mg

Biotin WS

Energy metabolism, fat synthesis, amino acid metabolism, glycogen synthesis

widespread in foods 100 to 200 mcg

Pantothenic Acid WS

Supports energy metabolism

widespread in foods 4 to 7 mg

B6 (pyridoxine) WS

Amino acid and fatty acid metabolism, red blood cell production

bananas, tomato juice, broccoli, spinach, acorn squash, potatoes, white rice, chicken breast 2.2 mg

Folate WS

Supports DNA synthesis and new cell formation

tomato juice, green beans, broccoli, spinach, asparagus, okra, black-eyed peas, lentils, navy, pinto and garbanzo beans 400 mcg

B12 WS

Used in new cell synthesis, helps break down fatty acids and amino acids, supports nerve cell maintenance

meats, poultry, fish, shellfish, milk, eggs 2.4 mcg

C (ascorbic acid) WS

Collagen synthesis, amino acid metabolism, helps iron absorption, immunity, antioxidant

spinach, broccoli, red bell peppers, snow peas, tomato juice, kiwi, mango, orange, grapefruit juice, strawberries 90 mg/UL - 2000 mg

A (retinol) FS

Supports vision, skin, bone and tooth growth, immunity and reproduction

mango, broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, tomato juice, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, liver 900 mcg/UL- 3000 mcg


Promotes bone mineralization. Attacks cancer's cell membrane

sunlight, fortified milk, egg yolk, liver, fatty fish 400 IU/UL- 2000 IU



Antioxidant, regulation of oxidation reactions, supports cell membrane stabilization

polyunsaturated plant oils (soybean, corn and canola oils), wheat germ, sunflower seeds, tofu, avocado, sweet potatoes, shrimp, cod 15 mg/UL 1000 mg


Synthesis of blood-clotting proteins, regulates blood calcium



What the mineral does

Significant food sources


Maintains fluid and electrolyte balance, supports muscle contraction and nerve impulse transmissions

salt, soy sauce, bread, milk, meats 3500 mg


Maintains fluid and electrolyte balance, aids in digestion

salt, soy sauce, milk, eggs, meats 750 mg


Maintains fluid and electrolyte balance, cell integrity, muscle contractions and nerve impulse transmission (regulates heart beat)

potatoes, acorn squash, artichoke, spinach, broccoli, carrots, green beans, tomato juice, avocado, grapefruit juice, watermelon, banana, strawberries, cod, milk 3500 mg


Formation of bones and teeth, supports blood clotting

milk, yogurt, cheddar cheese, Swiss cheese, tofu, sardines, green beans, spinach, broccoli 800 mg


Formation of cells, bones and teeth, maintains acid-base balance

all animal foods (meats, fish, poultry, eggs, milk) 800 - 1200 mg


Supports bone mineralization, protein building, muscular contraction, nerve impulse transmission, immunity

spinach, broccoli, artichokes, green beans, tomato juice, navy beans, pinto beans, black-eyed peas, sunflower seeds, tofu, cashews, halibut 350 mg


Part of the protein hemoglobin (carries oxygen throughout body's cells)

artichoke, parsley, spinach, broccoli, green beans, tomato juice, tofu, clams, shrimp, beef liver 10 to 15 mg


A part of many enzymes, involved in production of genetic material and proteins, transports vitamin A, taste perception, wound healing, sperm production and the normal development of the fetus

spinach, broccoli, green peas, green beans, tomato juice, lentils, oysters, shrimp, crab, turkey (dark meat), lean ham, lean ground beef, lean sirloin steak, plain yogurt, Swiss cheese, tofu, ricotta cheese 12 to 15 mg


Antioxidant. Works with vitamin E to protect body from oxidation

seafood, meats and grains 55 to 70 mcg


Component of thyroid hormones that help regulate growth, development and metabolic rate

salt, seafood, bread, milk, cheese 150 mcg


Necessary for the absorption and utilization of iron, supports formation of hemoglobin and several enzymes

meats, water 1.5 to 3 mg


Facilitates many cell processes

widespread in foods 2.5 to 5 mg


Associated with insulin and is required for the release of energy from glucose

vegetable oils, liver, brewer's yeast, whole grains, cheese, nuts 50 to 200mcg


Facilitates many cell processes

legumes, organ meats 75 to 250 mcg



Vitamins and Minerals  



Vitamins and mineral supplements are best taken as gel-coated liquid and powdered encapsulated pills. Hard coated pills must sit in your stomach for a very long time until they dissolve enough to be absorbed. We do not have sufficient time for pills to break down completely, thus we have the potential for those vitamins and supplements not to be properly absorb-25% or less absorbency. Most brand named vitamins and supplements are very cheap, mass produced and sold in supermarket chains. These supplements are made using the cheapest ingredients possible, as well as the cheapest excipients (excipients are what bind the ingredients together.)


The Anti-Aging Pill - Resveratrol  



In January 2009, CBS News' 60 Minutes reported that scientists from across the country have identified a substance in red wine called resveratrol that they believe might do more than just protect the heart, but could in very high concentrations significantly extend life an extra decade or two by preventing a number of age related illnesses cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.



The Importance of Vitamin D




Dr. Oz discusses the importance of Vitamin D, a vital vitamin/hormone that can come from sunlight, diet, and some supplements. It bestows many health benefits including an improved ability to prevent some types of cancer. A study on Mongolian schoolchildren in winter found that taking vitamin D supplements led to a 50% reduction in acute respiratory infections.


Zinc's Effects in Your Body



Zinc is an essential trace element that is vital for growth and development. Zinc is instrumental in immune response, brain function and the ability to reproduce. There is also conflicting data suggesting that zinc supplements might be able to reduce symptoms of the common cold.


 8 Warning Signs of Magnesium Deficiency



Do you feel irritable, weak and exhausted all the time? You may be suffering from a magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is a crucial, but frequently overlooked, part of a balanced diet. Magnesium is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. It helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function, keeps heart rhythm steady, supports a healthy immune system, and keeps bones strong. Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is known to be involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis. There is an increased interest in the role of magnesium in preventing and managing disorders such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Dietary magnesium is absorbed in the small intestines and excreted through the kidneys.


Omega 3 Fish Oil



DHA & EPA are essential fatty acids which stand for docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid. This essential fatty acid is an Omega 3 fat, which is found in cold water fish. EPA and DHA are vital nutrients and may be taken to maintain healthy function of the following: Brain and Retina- DHA is a building block of tissue in the brain and retina of the eye. It helps with forming neural transmitters, such as phosphatidylserine, which is important for brain function. DHA is found in the retina of the eye and taking DHA may be necessary for maintaining healthy levels of DHA for normal eye function. Cardiovascular system - EPA and DHA are converted into hormone like substances called prostaglandins, and they reguate healthy cardiovascular function by lowering bad LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and inflammation. There are other benefits to taking EPA and DHA because it also plays as a source of energy, it insulates the body against heat loss, prevents skin from drying and flaking, and cushions tissues and organs.


 Krill Oil vs Fish Oil



Hate the fishy taste from fish oil? Dr. Oz explains why krill oil may be an even better source of omega-3s and why it's his supplement of choice when it comes to protecting your heart.


How Lutein Supplements Prevent Macular Degeneration 




The macula is the region of the retina responsible for central vision. Without adequate consumption of lutein, an aging retina's macula can become damaged overtime by blue light. Leading doctors recommend you get at least 6 mg of lutein per day to help maintain proper eye health. Since your body doesn't make lutein, you must constantly replace it through the foods you eat. Dark, leafy green vegetables like spinach or kale are especially good sources. But you'd have to eat over 2 bowls of raw spinach every day to get the recommended daily dose of 6 mg of lutein. Taking a multivitamin may help, but many multivitamins contain only a fraction of the recommended 6 mg of lutein.


The Importance of Lycopene





Lycopene is a compound that gives tomatoes and certain other fruits and vegetables their color. Lycopene is also a powerful antioxidant, a compound that blocks the action of free radicals, activated oxygen molecules that can damage cells. Several scientific studies have found lower risk of cancer among people who eat lycopene-rich foods such as tomatoes. People who have diets rich in tomatoes appear in some studies to have a lower risk of certain types of cancer, especially cancers of the lung, prostate, stomach, bladder, cervix, skin, and, especially, prostate.


What is Collagen? 




Collagen is a fibrous protein that constituents our bone, cartilage, tendon, and other connective tissue. As we age, our bodies ability to absorb collagen diminishes. Add to this sun damage to our skin, wear and stress on our cartilage, joints and bones, before long our bodies soon exhibit the visible signs of aging. Scientific studies have found that adding collagen supplements to our daily diets can slow and even reverse the damaging effects of aging to our worn joints and wrinkled skin.



How Arginine Supplements Lower Blood Pressure 






Arginine is a natural and safe way of lowering high blood pressure. Arginine stimulates our bodies to release nitric oxide, which then dilates our blood vessels and lowers blood pressure. The discovery of this effect won the discoverers the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1998. Exercising shortly after taking arginine accentuates the BP lowering effect.


DHA Supplements Prevent Alzheimers and Memory Loss




Watch Dr. Oz discusses with neurologist Dr. Majid Fotuhi the importance of taking DHA supplements to prevent Alzheimers and memory loss.


Vitamin D Can Boost Your Immune System and Fight Cancer 




The last ten years has seen a huge body of research evidence showing that: * Vitamin D is an important factor in cancer prevention. * Vitamin D activates the immune system to work against rogue cells. * Vitamin D has the ability to normalize and correct cancer cells. So it boosts the immune system, prevents cancer, AND (according to the very latest research) may even help beat it.


Can MSM supplements produce hair growth?



 This video lays out some of the benefits of MSM for hair growth. It also shows 2 ways to use MSM for hair growth.




 Aspirin Can Reduce the Risk of Melanoma Skin Cancer 




A recent study involving 18,000 women ages 50 to 79 has found that taking aspirin is associated with a lower risk of melanoma skin cancer. Anyone can develop melanoma, though fair-skinned people are at higher risk. The disease is more than 20 times more common in whites than in African Americans. Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight, tanning lamps, and tanning beds is a major risk factor for melanoma. The researchers followed the women for 12 years, and noted which women developed cancer. Overall, women who took aspirin had a 21% lower risk of melanoma compared with women who didn’t. And taking it longer was associated with lower risk. For example, women who took aspirin for at least 5 years had a 30% lower risk of melanoma compared with women who didn’t take it. The study was published early online March 11, 2013 in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal published by the American Cancer Society.




Using Fish Oil to Heal From Brain Injury



Why Cinnamon Is Insanely Good For You!


Scientists have long suspected that cinnamon can help prevent blood-sugar spikes and protect against insulin resistance, a risk factor for diabetes. But how, exactly, has remained a mystery—and while some studies have suggested a strong effect, others have been inconclusive.

New research presented Saturday at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology annual meeting suggests a potential mechanism for these effects, lending support to the idea of cinnamon as a metabolic powerhouse. In fact, researchers say, the spice’s benefits may extend far beyond blood-sugar control. 

Amy Stockert, associate professor of biochemistry at Ohio Northern University Raabe College of Pharmacy , has been studying cinnamon for years. In 2015, her research showed that type 2 diabetics who took daily cinnamon supplements saw greater reductions in blood sugar than those who took a placebo.

Some of these effects lasted even after participants stopped taking the supplements, says Stockert, which suggested that lasting changes had been triggered at the cellular level. “We started to suspect that one of the proteins involved in gene expression was being influenced by cinnamon,” she says.

Her new research, which has not yet been published in a peer-reviewed journal, focuses on Sirtuin-1 (also called Sirt-1)—a protein that’s active in insulin regulation. “We know that Sirt-1 acts on another protein that affects how glucose is transported,” says, “so it made sense that it might be the key player.”

Scientists know that Sirt-1 is activated by resveratrol, an antioxidant found in red wine that’s been touted for its anti-aging and cholesterol-lowering properties. Cinnamon contains similar compounds, known as phenols, which Stockert thought might also bind to Sirt-1 molecules in the same way. She and her colleagues used a computer model to test this hypothesis, and discovered that the cinnamon phenols had similar, sometimes even stronger interactions with the protein.

This suggests that the phenols in cinnamon also activate Sirt-1, providing a possible explanation for their beneficial properties. “If that’s true, it means cinnamon is doing more than just lowering blood sugar,” says Stockert. “It’s acting on a protein that affects lipid metabolism, cell growth changes, and the expression of a variety of genes.”

Stockert’s previous research found that people who consumed 1 gram a day of cinnamon saw blood sugar reductions comparable to what would be expected from prescription drugs. But she believes that even smaller quantities—like those used in cooking and seasoning—could also have benefits.

“If cinnamon interacts with this enzyme in the way our model suggests, it could possibly be linked to anti-aging, antioxidant control, a lot of really important health benefits,” she says. “And it shouldn’t take one gram a day to see those effects.”

Stockert recommends buying cinnamon—whole or ground—from reputable spice companies. Her team is now studying the effects of cinnamon on fat cells, and hope to expand their research to muscle and liver cells, as well.

Nancy Farrell, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, says that while the research on blood sugar is still inconclusive, it’s encouraging that the topic is being studied further.

“Cinnamon, in moderation and in daily foods, is generally a good habit,” says Farrell.

Farrell recommends adding cinnamon to oatmeal, toast, butternut squash, chili, and more. She cautions that above-average doses can worsen liver function for people with existing liver damage, and “use of cinnamon supplements should always be discussed with your physician.”

This isn’t the first time cinnamon’s been touted for its health benefits beyond blood sugar control—and it's certainly not the final word. But given the low risk and reported benefits, it seems a worthwhile addition to your diet, if you like the taste.


You Can Prevent Kidney Stones with Lifestyle Changes

By Dr. Mercola

Many people mistakenly believe that there's nothing you can do to prevent kidney stones. In reality, many risk factors are under your control, and many are remarkably simple.

1. Drink Plenty of Water


The number one risk factor for kidney stones is not drinking enough water. If you aren't drinking enough, your urine will simply have higher concentrations of substances that can form stones. NKUDIC recommends drinking enough water to produce at least 2 quarts of urine in every 24-hour period, but a simpler way to know if you are drinking enough water is to check the color of your urine; you want your urine to be a very light yellow.


Every person's water requirement is different, depending on your particular system and activity level, but simply keeping your urine light yellow will go a long way toward preventing kidney stones. Remember to increase your water intake whenever you increase your activity, and when you're in a warmer climate.


If you happen to be taking any multivitamins or B supplements that contain vitamin B2 (riboflavin), the color of your urine will be a very bright nearly fluorescent yellow and this will not allow you to use the color of your urine as a guide to how well you are hydrated.


2. Make Sure You Get Adequate Magnesium


Magnesium is responsible for more than 300 biochemical reactions in your body, and deficiency of this mineral has been linked to kidney stones. It also plays an important role in your body's absorption and assimilation of calcium, as if you consume too much calcium without adequate magnesium, the excess calcium can actually become toxic and contribute to health conditions like kidney stones.


Magnesium helps prevent calcium from combining with oxalate, which is the most common type of kidney stone.


Green leafy vegetables like spinach and Swiss chard are excellent sources of magnesium, and one of the simplest ways to make sure you're consuming enough of these is by juicing your vegetables. Vegetable juice is an excellent source of magnesium, as are some beans, nuts and seeds, like almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds. Avocadoes are also a good source. However, surveys suggest that many Americans are not getting enough magnesium in their diets.


It's been estimated that up to 80 percent of the U.S. population is deficient in this important mineral, according to Carolyn Dean, MD, ND, author of The Miracle of Magnesium.


If you decide to supplement with magnesium it is important to understand that its complementary partner is calcium. So you should use both. Typically you would use twice as much elemental magnesium relative to the elemental calcium. That ratio works out quite well for most.


3. Avoid Sugar, Including Fructose and Soda


A diet high in sugar can set you up for kidney stones, since sugar upsets the mineral relationships in your body by interfering with calcium and magnesium absorption. The consumption of unhealthy sugars and soda by children is a large factor in why children as young as age 5 or 6 are now developing kidney stones.


One South African study found that drinking soda exacerbates conditions in your urine that lead to formation of calcium oxalate kidney stone problems. Sugar can also increase kidney size and produce pathological changes in your kidney such as the formation of kidney stones.


4. Exercise


You're more prone to kidney stones if you're bedridden or very sedentary for a long period of time, partly because limited activity can cause your bones to release more calcium. Exercise will also help you to resolve high blood pressure, a condition that doubles your risk for kidney stones. You can find my comprehensive exercise recommendations, including how to perform highly recommended Peak Fitness exercises, here.


5. Eat Calcium-Rich Foods (but be careful with supplements)


In the past, kidney stone sufferers have been warned to avoid foods high in calcium, as calcium is a major component of the majority of kidney stones. However, there is now evidence that avoiding calcium may do more harm than good. The Harvard School of Public Health conducted a study of more than 45,000 men, and the men who had diets rich in calcium had a one-third lower risk of kidney stones than those with lower calcium diets.