Supplements Part 3: My NEVER Go Withouts
I gave you a week's break from all the supplement* talk but it's time to wrap this up and share the rest. Actually, scratch that, I'm already thinking of more I should tell you about so stay tuned.
This one isn't so much a supplement as it is a "keep the germs at bay" tincture. I've been using oregano oil for years and I can't say it's the only thing that's kept me healthy through years and years of cold and flu seasons but I feel like if someone forced me to say something like that, they wouldn't have to twist my arm. Oregano oil is anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-microbial. Over the years, whether myself or any family member was exposed to someone sick or traveling or getting that itch in the throat or feeling "something coming on" I'd hand them a small glass of water with a few drops of oregano oil and tell them to "just chuck it." I can't tell you how many times I or the person I handed a glass to felt better by morning. This stuff is strong and does what it says. I swear by it and always have it on hand. This product may be taken every day but some prefer to use daily 3 weeks on and then take a break for a month or so. I take it daily and have had no problems but try it and see how you do, how you feel. There's no need to wait until you're sick to take it. This product is not cheap but it's potent and remember, you're only taking a few drops at a time diluted in water. Not dropper-fulls! So it should last you awhile.
Note: To keep your immune system upregulated these Fall/Winter months you want to have a daily intake of: Vitamin D3, Oregano Oil, Zinc and Vitamin C through the Spring season. Help your immune system help you! These supplements should be taken every Fall/Winter season but especially now during this particularly challenging one.
Again, been taking them for years. All healing and hurting start in the gut and a good probiotic combined with an anti-inflammatory approach to food starts the healing off right. A probiotic was the first supplement I ever incorporated when I began to learn about how important a clean and high functioning gut is to your overall well being. I've tried many and I can tell you that like so much else, a brand that works well for one of you may not be the best choice for another. There are a few things I've come to look for with regards to the efficacy of a probiotic. The first is, does it keep me going? Yes, that's right, I'm talking going Number 2. Now some of you may be fine with your bathroom time but if you're not, think about incorporating or switching to a new probiotic. Also, speaking of poop time, if you're body is really efficient, you should have to release your bowels soon after every meal. In addition, it shouldn't hurt, you shouldn't have "to push," and it shouldn't take you long to go. You should only hang out on the toilet if you like quiet time in your bathroom, you dig? Not because it takes you a long time to release.
Another thing I look for in the efficacy of a probiotic is if any bloating or gas is felt even after I've taken it. I have used brands that caused bloat. Screw that. If you're going to bother to take it, you want to at least reap true benefits and that means the bloat should be banished.
Finally, some women report that a good probiotic can help to stave off hot flashes and keep your hormonally bratty skin behaving properly. I want my skin kept clear and my temperature regulated, you feel me on this?
I have tried many probiotics and here's one of my faves. Here's another I've been using for the last several months and I like it very much. It works a bit differently than others but I'm really liking it.
Also, your probiotic doesn't have to be a refrigerated brand. I know many doctors and specialists are sticklers about this one way or the other. In my experience, the best probiotics I have used, and recommended, have been shelvers. I'm not suggesting you switch if you're happy with a refrigerated version, but just know, there are in fact excellent shelf stable brands out there.
Here's my standard reminder about probiotics: you can't "out supplement" a bad diet. Just like you can't "out exercise" a bad diet. So, a high quality supp, in this case a probiotic, either refrigerated or not, is still going to do it's best when you're also consuming fermented gut healing foods like: live pickles (refrigerated pickles), live sauerkraut (refrigerated sauerkraut), kefir, plain yogurt, kimchi, kombucha and miso, to name a handful.
Anyone who eats may have this problem, but aging women in particular may find that they do not digest their meals as easily as they used to. A decrease in stomach acid and/or leaky gut and/or the overeating of dairy, wheat and refined sugar (and alcohol), may all contribute to digestive discomfort and discomfort that increases over time. A good digestive enzyme helps upregulate stomach acids needed to digest proteins, fats and carbs and also, so importantly, it helps your body utilize the nutrients you consume. Again, you gotta eat nutrients to have any to utilize, but assuming you've done that, a digestive enzyme should be taken with every meal.
*Please remember I am not a doctor. Should you have any questions about these supplements or contraindications please speak to your trusted health care provider.