This post was written by Dr. Gregory Pippert, Medical Director of BodyLogicMD of Maple Grove. Dr. Pippert is part of the BodyLogicMD group of physicians, who use hormone replacement to prevent negative aging symptoms of again such as adrenal fatigue symptoms, weight gain, hypothyroidism, and more.
While there isn’t much you can do to make yourself younger, there are many things we can do to optimize our overall health and improve how well we age. One of the best ways we can improve how well we age is through the foods that we eat. What we put into our bodies (and don’t) plays a critical role in how well we look and feel. Still most of us aren’t getting the essential nutrients that our bodies need, from diet alone. This is because many of the foods we eat today are virtually depleted of all inherent nutrients. That’s where supplements come in to play. Supplements can help us replenish the vitamins, minerals and nutrients that our diets oftentimes lack.
Being that diet varies depending on the individual, there really isn’t such thing as a one-size-fits-all supplement regimen. However, being that certain supplements help the body carry out specific functions, gaining a better understanding of how these supplements can help you is the first step in finding a supplement plan that works for you.
1. Estrogen and Progesterone– While they’re not often thought of as being supplements, these hormones have been linked to a variety of benefits in women. As women age, estrogen and progesterone levels begin to decline and this manifests into what many women know as symptoms of hormonal imbalance. Balanced estrogen and progesterone levels can boost libido, strengthen bones and improve mental clarity.
2. Omega-3’s – Also marketed as “fish oil,” omega-3 fatty acids have been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease in women and men. Additionally, fish oil supplements have also been linked to lower cholesterol levels, decreased risk of hypertension (high blood pressure), decreased risk of diabetes and in some cases have even been found to help alleviate symptoms of depression.
3. Vitamin D – Although the name implies that it’s a vitamin, from a functional standpoint, vitamin D acts a lot more like a hormone. Vitamin D can boost immunity, help maintain calcium absorption, regulate blood pressure and also plays a role in insulin secretion, which in turn can reduce one’s risk of insulin resistance and type II diabetes.
4. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) – CoQ10 aids in mitochondrial function. The mitochondria are the “power centers” of our bodies’ cells. After being absorbed by the mitochondria, CoQ10 helps to convert fats and sugars into usable energy. Statistics show that we experience about a 50 percent decrease in CoQ10 as we age. Some scientists believe that this may contribute to chronic conditions, such as adrenal fatigue and chronic fatigue syndrome.
5. Resveratrol – This one is quickly gaining popularity in the anti-aging field of medicine. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant that helps to rid the body of free radicals that can cause oxidative damage to the body’s trillion+ cells. Although resveratrol has been coined as the “red wine nutrient,” I wouldn’t recommend relying on the wine to get your daily dose. Instead, there are several supplemental forms available and they don’t come with the risks of alcohol.
It’s also important to understand that not all supplements are created equally. That’s why I recommend that patients only take pharmaceutical-grade supplements, to ensure that they’re getting the highest quality possible. Ask your doctor about which supplements they feel are right for you and also ask if they’re available in pharmaceutical-grade.