This time of year I seem to be getting a lot of questions from friends about how to start a good, science-based supplement program. Most of the people who ask me are actually trying to overhaul and upgrade their health in general, so vitamins are just a part of the overall lifestyle changes they’re making, changes which include slowing down a little, managing stress, eating anti-inflammatory foods, and getting more exercise. And spending more time with their loved ones.
All great things to do, all highly recommended, and all worth a book’s worth of commentary. But for now, let’s focus on the question of supplements.
I’ve said a billion times that I don’t believe in one-size-fits-all solutions for anything—and that includes clothing, romance, diet, hairstyles, exercise routines and supplement programs. That doesn’t mean there aren’t some basics from which you could start, basics that would be beneficial for almost anyone.
I did a lot of thinking about this last year when Dr. Steven Masley and I designed two basic supplement packs. We wanted them to have the greatest possible applicability, beneficial to nearly everybody. And while people with special conditions—i.e. liver problems, depression, arthritis—can always benefit from an individualized program heavy in nutrients specific to their situation, the ingredients we used in our two supplement packs were nutrients we felt everyone could use more of.
What are those nutrients? Well, let’s start with a “high quality multivitamin” which basically everyone recommends but few people define. Is a “high quality multi” something you get at CVS? Costco? Walgreens?
It could be… but it’s probably not.
Each one of our Vitality Packs contains 2 high-quality multiples, and I do mean high-quality. Made for us by Thorne Research, one dose contains all the basic vitamins (C, all the B’s, D and E) in reasonable doses and in the correct forms (mixed tocopherols for vitamin E, for example, as opposed to d-alpha tocopherol). It also contains important minerals in chelated form, such as zinc, selenium, and chromium.
Also in the Vitality Pack is one 500mg capsule of EGCG (green tea extract) which has been found to protect the brain as well as help with fat burning. Rounding out the five-pill pack is a chelated magnesium supplement (almost no one gets enough), and a capsule containing a full 2000 IUs of vitamin D (ditto). If I could get my nieces and nephews (mostly in their 20’s) to take just this packet every day, I’d breathe a lot easier.
Then there’s the Energy Pack Plus, which we designed as a terrific add-on to the basic Vitality Pack. The Energy Pack Plus contains resveratrol (in its most potent form, trans resveratrol), curcumin, and Coenzyme Q10. Those are three nutrients that are on my personal top 10 list, and that I recommend to almost anyone willing to take a couple of extra pills. The Energy Pack Plus also contains 200 mg of quercetin, a powerful anti-inflammatory found in apples and onions, and hard to find as a stand-alone supplement.
In addition to our two supplement packs, we also created a protein powder and a fiber supplement. Two things to know about the protein powder: One, it’s from grass-fed cows (so no antibiotics, steroids or hormones). Two, it happens to taste delicious. Twenty-two grams of high quality protein, only 4 grams of carbs, 120 calories, and sweetened with stevia. What’s not to like? And you get 35 servings per tub.
We made a fiber supplement because—honestly—I don’t think anyone is getting enough fiber. Our fiber supplement—Ultimate Fiber—contains 7 grams of fiber per scoop and mixes with anything (including the protein powder). Six of those seven grams of fiber are soluble fiber, which is one of the best foods for the microbiome, the collection of non-human microbes that live in our gut and that we now know are connected to everything from weight gain to depression to immune function.
It’s critically important to make sure the healthy microbes in our gut are being fed and nurtured; feeding them plenty of fiber is one of the best ways to do just that.
I’d love to encourage you to start the new year with an awesome Smart Fat package, and to make it even more attractive, we’re offering all the products, together in one package, for the unprecedented, limited time price of only $195 – The package includes one of each of the Smart Fat products (retail value of over $425). ORDER HERE- NOW.
And wait… there’s more!
“Smart Fat: Eat More Fat, Lose More Weight, Get Healthy Now” (by Dr. Masley and myself) has just been released in paperback, and if you haven’t read it yet, this is the perfect time to do so. It will answer all your questions about fat, bust the myths about “good fat” and “bad fat”, and show you how to use fat to turbo-charge your health.
I’m going to include a FREE copy of the new edition of “Smart Fat” for anyone purchasing the heavily discounted Smart Fat Super Package. And for the first 100 people who respond, I’ll personally autograph it for you. (If you want me to autograph it to someone else, just drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org right after you make your purchase, and include your order number.)
Vitamins, supplements, protein powders, fiber and the like—even high-end ones like these– may not by themselves give you a health makeover for 2017.
But they’re a hell of a foundation from which to get started.
Here is a recipe I love for the Ultimate Smart Fat Shake.
Ultimate Smart Fat Shake
This is our basic, protein-packed morning shake with added smart fat and fiber. This will keep you going all morning, and can also be used as a mini-meal or even a dessert. If you’re primarily concerned with weight loss, I’ve had clients do two of these plus one good, low-carb/high fat/moderate protein meal a day with terrific results.
Prep time: 2 minutes
Serves 1 (2.5 cups)
1 scoop of Grass-fed Whey Protein (22 grams of protein)
8-12 ounces of original or unsweetened almond milk OR raw milk from grass-fed cows (available in some states)
1 cup frozen berries (I prefer organic blueberries)
1 handful of frozen spinach leaves (mixes better and doesn’t get stuck in your teeth)
1 serving of the fat of your choice: tablespoon of almond butter, nut oil, a couple of slices of avocado (makes it really creamy), Dave Aspery’s Brain Octane oil, or MCT oil. (Hint: Barlean’s makes an MCT oil in coconut swirl that’s out of this world and goes great in this recipe!)
1 scoop of Ultimate Fiber
Note: no problem if you want to use two servings of fat.
And be creative! Peanut butter works as well as almond butter, chia and flax seeds are a great addition, you can change up the berries with blueberries, strawberries, blackberries or raspberries, and you can even add a tablespoon of uncooked oats. It’s all good!