Natural supplements can offer great benefits for health, but unfortunately unscrupulous manufacturers put profit before quality by producing subpar supplements. By becoming a careful label reader you can make sure you are getting only quality supplements. The following guidelines use the example of Rhodiola Rosea, but the principals can be applied to any supplement purchase.
DO Read Labels. Any good supplement manufacturer should fully disclose all ingredients on the label. Terms like “proprietary blend” are often used to hide undesirable ingredients. Other important disclosures to look for on labels include the manufacturing location and the percentage of key ingredients. With Rhodiola Rosea, look for three percent rosavins and one percent salidroside.
DO Pay Attention to Processing. The less processing foods and herbs undergo the more their nutrient and antioxidant content is preserved. In the case of Rhodiola Rosea supplements, freeze drying is the optimal way to maximize nutrients.
DON’T Fall for Extreme Claims. Any manufacturer that promises dramatic, overnight results is likely more interested in making a quick sale than in customers’ well-being. A reputable company selling Rhodiola Rosea may point out its ability to help fight fatigue, increase energy levels, reduce stress, improve mood, and other benefits. On the other hand, a disreputable company may present it as an instant cure-all to any disease.
DON’T Accept Artificial Ingredients. Quality supplements should have no chemical additives or artificial fillers. Look for Rhodiola Rosea supplements and other supplements with only high quality, natural ingredients.
Don’t let disreputable manufacturers deter you from the potential benefits natural supplements offer. Instead, follow these guidelines to find a trusted manufacturer, and enjoy the advantages natural supplements have to offer.
Nutrient dense algae such as spirulina and chlorella are truly miraculous superfoods! These fresh water algae are so nutrient dense, that the UN has considered using algae as a food source to cure world hunger and NASA has considered algae as a nutrient dense space food! Pretty cool, right? Wondering what spirulina can do for you? Well then, keep reading!
Spirulina is naturally rich with vegetarian protein. In fact, spirulina is about 65% protein by weight which it makes it one of the most protein dense vegetarian foods on the planet! Spirulina is also rich with minerals such as iron, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. Last but not least, spirulina is rich with vitamins, amino acids, fatty acids, and chlorophyll. This super algae is so nutrient dense that some people consider spirulina Nature’s multivitamin.
Due to its incredible nutrient content, spirulina promotes many health benefits. Spirulina works to boost the immune system, improve digestion, detoxify the body from heavy metals, promote healthy liver and brain function. alleviate constipation, normalize blood sugar levels, increase energy and endurance, and promote the growth repair of tissues.
When buying spirulina, there are few guidelines that are VERY important to follow. First off, you should looks for a USDA certified organic that was harvested in pristine waters. Spirulina works to remove toxins from its environment, which makes it perfect for use as a heavy metal detox, but dangerous when grown in contaminated waters. Make sure the company you buy from can provide a certificate of analyses proving that the spirulina they sell is safe and not contaminated. It is also important to look for a spirulina powder that was freeze dried instead of being processed with high heat and chemicals. Exposure to high heat can destroy many of the nutrients found within spirulina and using chemicals during processing contaminates the product. Learn more about spirulina here.
Coconut oil is a nutrient dense oil pressed from fresh, raw coconuts. Coconut oil has millions of uses. It can be applied topically, cooked with, eaten raw, used to make homemade beauty products, and more. When you eat coconut oil, it offers numerous health benefits as it is incredibly nutrient dense. Many of the nutrients within coconut oil may even help you lose weight naturally.
Coconut oil contains medium chain triglycerides AKA healthy fats that work to boost your metabolism. Most types of foods contain long chain triglycerides that are harder to break down and use for energy. Medium chain triglycerides create instant cellular energy. There is also evidence that long chain triglycerides are more easily stored as fat in the human body versus medium chain triglycerides.
Coconut oil also boosts your body temperature which allows you to burn more calories- even in a resting state. Because coconut oil is fat which is high in calorie per gram, coconut oil, and other healthy fats, will keep you feeling full longer than if you ate a meal high in carbohydrates. The more coconut oil you eat, the less likely you are to binge eat on unhealthy, carbohydrate dense snacks.
For all of the above reasons, coconut oil helps people lose weight naturally. There is even evidence that suggest coconut oil is especially good at targeting the super unhealthy and dangerous abdominal fat that so many people struggle to lose.
Coconut oil usually comes in a jar that is solid at room temperature and becomes liquid when the oil reaches temperatures over 76 degrees (F). You can also buy coconut oil capsules. If you simply wish to use coconut oil for supplementation, coconut oil capsules are the way to go. If you’d like to cook with coconut oil or apply it to your skin, I would recommend buying a jar of oil.
I’m a huge fan of green smoothies. Since starting to make my own about a year ago, I have noticed dramatic improvements in my energy and overall vitality. I generally have a green smoothie each morning as my breakfast. Occasionally, I will make a green smoothie 1-2 hours before my gym sessions when I’m in need of some extra energy and an added boost of nutrients.
In fact, I make so many green smoothies that I often have trouble keeping fresh greens in the house. It seems that when I buy them, I either run out way too quickly or the greens somehow spoil before I have the opportunity to use them all. This can be an annoying, and expensive, predicament. I always try to hit the farmer’s market or food cooperative at least once per week, but this still means that I usually run out green vegetables in between trips.
This is why I have started using organic green superfood powders to make my smoothies more nutrient dense. I shop online and find USDA certified organic greens powders that range from wheatgrass to chlorella to fermented kale. If you can think of a nutrient dense green veggie, chances are it has already been turned into an organic greens powder. These organic green powders are perfect for making green smoothies as they contain all of the nutrients found in fresh, raw version of the green.
I simply add 1 or 2 scoops of my favorite green powders to a smoothie made usually with almond milk, vegan protein powder, fresh or frozen fruit, and assorted superfoods such as cacao and acai. The ability to keep a steady stock of a variety of different greens allows me to switch up the nutrient profile of my green smoothies on a daily basis which is one of the many reasons that I have fallen in love with green powders!
Not many athletes have heard of desiccated liver supplements as liver has become somewhat of a forgotten superfood. Those who have are likely body builders as desiccated liver first became popular as a body building supplement. Body builders often took up to 50 capsules of desiccated liver per day! Desiccated liver became a body building supplement super star due to the fact that they are a clean source of protein and amino acids that work to build and repair muscle. Taking desiccated liver supplements helps body builders build muscle and recover from their workouts faster.
Little do most athletes know, desiccated liver is also the perfect superfood to boost energy and endurance. Grass-fed beef liver is packed with B vitamins and something that is known as an “unidentified anti-fatigue factor.” B vitamins give the body energy right down to the cellular level which is why it is the perfect supplement for boosting energy, whether you are an athlete or anyone who simply wants to feel more vibrant.
This “unidentified anti-fatigue factor” was discovered by a team of scientists working with lab mice. Though lab mice do not compare directly to a human study, the results were promising. The mice were split into three groups; a vitamin B group, a desiccated liver group, and a control group. The energy and endurance on these mice were then tested and it was found that the vitamin b group outperformed the control group, but the desiccated liver group outperformed all of the other mice- tenfold. Though the scientists could not identify what exactly caused this, it was clear that the desiccated liver group experienced the greatest boost of endurance.
Because desiccated liver is good at boosting energy and endurance, it is great for all types of endurance sports including running, hiking, biking, swimming, mountain climbing, cross country skiing, and more! And don’t forget that is also works to build and repair muscle, making desiccated liver one of the best athletic supplements around.
My name is Christopher Reed. I started this blog in 2008 when I decided that I needed to make a major change in my life. I was overweight, lazy, tired, and sick all the time. I hated getting up in the morning. In fact, there were times when I stayed in bed all day. I wasn’t active, I wasn’t healthy, and I definitely wasn’t happy. I needed to make a change.
It’s not always easy to make a big change which is why I started small. I live a little over a mile away from my office. I’m lucky enough to live in Colorado where it is sunny and 65 degrees about 2/3 of the year. Realistically, there was not a single reason why I couldn’t have been walking to work so that’s what I started to do. Whenever it is warm enough, which happens to be most days, I now walk to work in the morning.
Since I started walking to work, I have lost about 30 pounds. I definitely don’t walk every day, but I usually get to walk at least 4 days of the week during the summer, spring, and fall. During the winter, I have to take my car a bit more often.
Walking isn’t the only change that I have made since 2008. I have made many other health conscious changes to my life. I recently got a gym membership which is great for those cold winter months when I cannot get outside as often. I also picked up snowboarding as a hobby to keep me active in the winter (though I am not very good at it!). I’ve managed to keep the weight I’ve lost off simply by eating healthy and staying active- I, by no means, follow a rigorous exercise or diet plan. I simply eat the foods that make me feel good and keep my body moving.
I try to eat local and organic food that I cook from scratch whenever possible. Other than that, I don’t really restrict my diet. I listen to my body; I eat when I am hungry and I stop eating when I am full. I have found that when you make weight loss less complicated, it is far easier to be successful. This is one of the many reasons that I started this blog. Follow me along my weight loss journey, and who knows, maybe you’ll find a little inspiration.