I hardly use any supplements because I believe you need to get the real, live thing. The nutrients in vitamins are dead. Nature created what we need and we need to try to utilize that. You get the most nutrients when it comes from the true, live source.
I only use a pre-natal vitamin that is organic and raw (New Chapter Organics) when I am pregnant and nursing and a omega complex vitamin as a sort of insurance. I try to mix up the fish oil I use so that I get a good mix of omegas, DHA and EPA (all good for the brain both mama and baby). Whatever I use I make sure they use small fish (small fish have less toxins in them) and test for mercury and other toxins. My favorite is Nortic Naturals Ultimate Omega, Green Pasture for Cod Liver Oil and Minami Nutrition Essential Prenatal Support Formula.
Arabella likes to chew on the soft gel of fish oil. My nephew and niece do this and I thought is was genius. They think it is like candy. Arabella ask every night for her "vitamin". This is the only vitamin I give her. She eats fish with us once a week but we don't eat more because I do worry about the mercury in them. I think we all need a little more omegas in our life for hormones balance and healthy brains.
I realized just how important the omegas (and the right kind of omegas) were until I was pregnant. I had always stayed with an ultimate omega meaning a mix of omega 3, 6, 9, DHA and EPA. I kept reading about how important DHA was for my baby, so I switched to a DHA tablet. After about a week I started feeling like my hormones were off. I couldn't figure out what was going on. Usually if I start getting a little moody, I can do a good work out and shake it but this was going away. I finally realized after about a month that I wasn't getting all of the omegas I use to. I switched back to my favorites and felt back to normal in about 2 weeks.
I use real food for my supplements. When we do that your body will stay in balance. By using too many supplements, you can throw your body off. For example- if you take a supplement of Calcium, and it has more Calcium than your body needs you can through off your iron intake. If you eat an orange or eat some cheese with Calcium, your body will get rid of the right amount of Calcium and hold onto what it needs to absorb the iron.
What foods or things I make sure to include in my daily life to stay balanced:
I make sure Arabella and I get at least 30 minutes of sunshine everyday. There is nothing like the REAL vitamin D. Your body knows what to do with the real vitamin D from the sun. If you use a supplement, you don't know REALLY how much you might need. This can throw your calcium and magnesium levels off.
We try to eat yogurt or drink kombucha to get our probiotics. I am very thankful that Arabella likes yogurt but if your child doesn't, you can sneak it in their smoothies. The probiotics in these products are alive and real. A tablet or powder doesn't guarantee that the good bacteria is still alive.
We try to eat fish at least once a week. Again, I am thankful that Arabella likes fish. IF your child doesn't then definitely try to add an omega complex to their smoothies. Just try to stick to salmon from Alaska and smaller fish so they don't have as much mercury in them.
We eat sardines (in mustard) for our calcium. This is the best source of calcium out there because you are eating the bones also. Studies show now that if you take calcium supplements, you can increase heart problems. We need to stick to natural sources so we don't overload our bodies. Too much of anything isn't good. Supplements give us too much a lot of the times.
I cook most of our foods in cast iron skillets for our iron. We also eat grass-fed organic beef at least once a week. This has wonderful iron and if it is grass-fed you will get omega-3's as well. You will also get less saturated fat.
I also make my Green Smoothies to get tons of minerals and live vitamins. The fiber in these are SOOOO good for your digestion. The Vitamin K is also good for your blood quality if you are pregnant or nursing, plus iron and tons of antioxidants to help you with good hair, nails and skin. Not to mention the energy they give you. When I drink my greens, I get a shot of energy just like a cup of Starbucks. I am not kidding. I crave them for my afternoon pick me up.
I try to limit our sugar. I have realized how this counterbalances all the hard work I put into giving us the nutrition we need. I know everyone needs a treat (especially mamas : ) but I try to stick to fresh fruits and dark organic chocolate. Green and Blacks 85% Dark Chocolate only has 4g of sugar pre serving.
I know this might seem hard to do but it is totally worth it. I feel like it is my job to do this for my family. It took me a long time to get here so don’t feel like you have to do all of this at once. Just make small changes and before you know it you will have made a BIG impact on your families health.
Do you have any questions? I would love to help in any way I can. : )