February 2, 2016

Top Supplements to Combat Stress

Supplements

Being a successful attorney is a dedicated, time consuming task. Finding an adequate life-work balance is key. Adding a few supplements to your routine can improve your energy, your concentration, lower your stress and decrease your incidence of all disease!  Let’s get started!

  • A high quality Multi-Vitamin – How do you know what qualifies as a “high quality” product? Supplements are not as regulated as they should be and there are quite a few distractions out there. An easy rule of thumb is to purchase only through your functional medicine professional. They are physicians trained in the use and distribution of supplements so they will know what you should take and what to stay away from based on your medical conditions as well as prescription interactions. Look for a product that is copper free.
  • Magnesium – Magnesium is beneficial in almost every body process. It acts as a muscle relaxant – smooth muscle, skeletal muscle and cardiac muscle. It helps with heart conditions – irregular heart beat, high blood pressure and can minimize the spasms of arteries. It can help with sleep by acting like melatonin, it can decrease muscle spasms and even improve your mood! A deficiency in magnesium can be linked with anxiety, migraines and pain. Magnesium deficiencies can be caused by stress – both physical and emotional. We recommend our clients consume 3-4.5mg of magnesium per pound of body weight; if you weigh 150 pounds you should be taking between 450mg and 675mg daily. See this link to determine which type of magnesium is right for you! Magnesium Options
  • Probiotic – Probiotics are the good bacteria that lives in your gut and helps you not only digest food but fight off the bad bacteria we’re exposed to on a daily basis. They also help your gut communicate with your immune system and restrict immune over-reactions including inflammation. Probiotics are also key to vitamin absorption – they can increase Vitamin D levels by 25%! They should be consumed daily since most of us engage in behaviours that kill our gut flora daily such as having stress, drinking alcohol, taking antibiotics and eating sugar. Look for a probiotic that contains multiple strains (we recommend one with 10 different strains of bacteria) and of course it’s a live bacteria so it should be stored in the refrigerator.
  • Vitamin D – Some common conditions Vitamin D supplementation can improve are: blood pressure, depression and low back pain. If you’re looking to boost your immunity, vitamin D may be the answer! It controls the immune response in autoimmune conditions like diabetes, MS and arthritis. Meaning your body doesn’t attack itself. Vitamin D boosts the immune response your body has to invaders like bacteria and viruses. A good rule of thumb for supplementation is 1000IU/30lb of body weight; double that if you’re found to be deficient. There are a few categories of individuals that should NOT be taking vitamin D: sarcoidosis, melanoma, lymphoma or leukemia patients. 
  • Omega 3 FattyAcids – Foods high in Omega-3 include fish, vegetable oils, nuts (especially walnuts), flax seeds, flaxseed oil, and leafy vegetables. Studies have shown that heart attack survivors have reduced risk of another heart attack, stroke or death if they supplement with Omega 3. As a society our diets are too heavy in Omega 6 fatty acids. They are found in safflower oil, soybean oil, as well as poultry and eggs. (Try to limit or avoid these foods). A lower ratio of omega-6/omega-3 fatty acids is more desirable in reducing the risk of many of the chronic diseases. Omega 3’s help to decrease inflammation, improve your brain health and even reduce the risk of some cancers.

Your brain and your body are your tools! Take care of them from the inside out. It’s impossible to get all of your required nutrients from food so supplementing with the above will help you to function better. Take control of your health like you do your practice. Start with the supplements above. As always check with your functional medicine practitioner to make sure the recommendations above are appropriate for you.

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