Nutrient Cures

Why Do You Need Extra Vitamins and Minerals?

Why Do You Need Extra Vitamins and Minerals?

I did not take vitamins for years. In the gap between young childhood when my parents made me take kid’s vitamins and my 30’s when I realized just how sick I was from nutrient deficiencies, I didn’t take them. My Dad told me I should and he was right…as with so many things!

I argued with him and said I had read that if you eat a healthy diet there is no need for supplement since we can get all we need from food. After all I thought, how did people live for millennia before the invention of supplements if we need them? This is the justification that many people use to avoid taking them but the logic does not hold up under careful scrutiny.

Do You Really Need Extra Vitamins and Minerals?

For most of us our diets and lifestyles are nothing like those of our ancestors. If you have a perfect diet, get outside in clean air, drink clean water, don’t have stress and happen to be naturally healthy you may not need them.

However, if you:

  • Eat fast food,
  • Eat processed, packaged food,
  • Live somewhere with polluted air,
  • Drink city water with chemicals added or polluted water,
  • Don’t get enough exercise,
  • Get too much exercise without proper nutrition to support it (no protein powder is not enough)
  • Have stress in your life,
  • Don’t get enough sleep,
  • Eat regular produce from the store that has pesticides and herbicides,
  • Eat produce that comes from commercial farms with depleted soil (most all normal produce now)
  • Have genetic causes of malabsorption,
  • Have autoimmune disease and other diseases that cause malabsorption,
  • Just don’t eat enough fresh vegetables and fruits,
  • Don’t eat meat or a balanced diet with a mix of meat, vegetables etc.,

then, you may well need supplements to get adequate micronutrients. Micronutrients are vitamins and minerals vs. macronutrients which are proteins, carbohydrates and fats.

Micronutrient Deficiency is Very Common

Even if you eat a very healthy diet you will have a high risk of micronutrient deficiency. How can a diet high in fruits and vegatables with a good mix of nutrients result in vitamin and mineral deficiencies?

The biggest problem is the relative lack in micronutrients in fresh produce now compared with that in the past. While fruit and vegatables are supposed to have dense mix of minerals and vitamins, those levels are declining rapidly. This is a result of industrial agriculture. If the same crops are grown year after year after year, it makes sense that the nutrients in the soil will get depleted. This is one reason organically grown produce can be healthier option. Organic farming does not rely on the application of pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Chemical fertilizers do not contain the mix of nutrients found in rich soil. If natural farming practices are used, the soil is replenished, crop rotation is practiced and soil is kept rich. Of course organically grown produce can also be very expensive.

How Many People Have Micronutrient Deficiency?

While Western diets often offer an overabundance of calories, many of them don’t offer enough vitamins and minerals.

The majority of American for example have deficiencies in magnesium and potassium. Many have deficiencies in B vitamins and especially in northern latitudes with low sunlight, they have deficiency of Vitamin D. Of course the numbers depend on the definition of deficiency and that can vary. The USDA levels for micro-nutrients are ridiculously low by some estimates and certainly low for some populations who need more. I believe they are enough to keep you alive but not healthy in today’s environment.

Even a Diet of Organic Produce Might Not Be Enough

Many people cannot afford to buy all organic produce. Even if they could, it may not be enough. There are other causes of nutrient deficiency. Some are even genetic mutations that result in low absorption of certain vitamins or minerals. Pollution, treated water, and stress are also very common reasons why we need additional nutrients. Some minerals like magnesium are used by the body to deal with stress. This could be mental stress or physical stress from illness or injury. So, even with a great diet and no genetic reasons for nutrient deficiency, you will likely need micronutrients like I did.

What I Needed

It was a car accident that triggered a domino effect of problems for me. I needed magnesium, Vitamin D, B vitamins, potassium and zinc. Many or all of these deficiencies may have existed before, but that was the event that set off the domino effect of stress, sprained muscles, inflammation and fatigue as well as light headedness and difficulty thinking. I have never fully recovered but I am making progress and finally finding solutions. Instead of ending up in a wheelchair and losing my job I am still working, walking and this is absolutely unbelievable to me; we live on the third floor of our new building! Stairs were the worst thing for me for years since the accident so the fact that I can live on a third floor now is amazing!

I now take magnesium glycinate, Vitamin D, B complex, zinc, niacin, full-spectrum Vitamin K and more. I can tell if I stop taking them. I end up with a host of pains and problems quite quickly. Everyone won’t need as many supplements as I do but some people are prone to nutrient deficiencies and it can cause many serious health problems. You will probably not know that is a cause however if you don’t know about micronutrients. Your regular doctor might tell you if you are extremely low in Vit D but the others are not usually tested for. Even the normal range for Vit D is quite low and you may already suffer from the effects of deficiency and be in this “normal” range.

Even Stress can Cause a Deficiency

One micronutrient that is affected by stress is magnesium. Magnesium helps the body deal with stress. This was ok in the cave man days when stress was occasional. When the bear was chasing you or you were hunting, stress to keep you on your toes was necessary. Nowadays people are stressed all the time however. They end up feeling stressed constantly. This long term stress is damaging to our bodies. When we are stressed (from physical injury, illness or from mental stress) our body tries to deal with it by producing extra hormones such as cortisol, the “fight or flight” hormone. Cortisol is the hormone that is responsible (partially) for developing belly fat since it affects our metabolism and makes the body store calories as fat.

If cortisol is produced all the time, the adrenal glands which produce it can wear out. At first you might have too much of it and eventually when it really wears out there may not be enough. Having  stressed adrenal glands can make you store belly fat but it can also have many other painful side effects. It can cause lower back pain! I had no idea of this but I suffered from it for years! It wasn’t until my Naturopathic doctor gave me a supplement for night sweats (another symptom of adrenal fatigue) that my back pain was suddenly cured! I did not even know they could be related but I told her it was suddenly better after taking the pills and she told me adrenal fatigue can cause it! Having high cortisol levels can make it hard to go to sleep at night and then make you feel exhausted the next morning since you didn’t get enough (or good enough) sleep. It can make you have bad dreams or dreams that seem so real they keep you from getting restful sleep because your mind is racing all night.

Adrenal Fatigue Due to Chronic Stress

If you have symptoms of fatigue, brain fog, low back pain for no apparent reason, night sweats, muscle aches or have trouble getting to sleep at night, you might want to check out this amazingly complete explanation of adrenal fatigue, it’s causes and treatments by Dr. Lam. Dr. Lam is a pioneer in Adrenal Fatigue and I really recommend this site: Fundamentals of Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome

He explains how adrenal function is linked with other hormones and conditions such as thyroid problems and hormone imbalance. Adrenal fatigue can cause progesterone to not be absorbed and therefore result in problems like estrogen dominance for women. This is what I had and caused the night sweats, terribly itchy skin due to nerve issues and other problems. I will share a post later about my experience with adrenal fatigue and the wonderful supplement that helped me so much! It is not listed in Dr. Lam’s article above but it worked wonders for me.

Magnesium Helps With Stress, Heart Disease and More

These are just a few of the symptoms of adrenal disorders caused by chronic stress! Magnesium helps the body deal with stress. The more stress you are under the more magnesium you need. The same goes for chronic illness. If you have a chronic illness you most likely need additional magnesium. A blood test at the regular doctor’s office won’t show this however. Magnesium is so important that your body will leach it out of your bones and organs to keep your heart pumping! Calcium makes muscles including the heart contract and magnesium allows them to relax. Without both in balance, heart disease such as arrhythmia can occur. My Dad had to take nitroglycerine pills for heart arrhythmia before he started taking magnesium at my urging. When he told the heart doctors he was taking it they said it should help! I wonder why they don’t volunteer that information? There are different forms of magnesium and I will go over those forms and which ones work best for different conditions and concerns.

Genetics Can Cause Nutrient Deficiency as Well!

If you eat a healthy diet, get exercise, plenty of sleep, drink filtered water and everything else you could STILL have deficiencies. It doesn’t seem fair but there are even genetic mutations that can cause deficiencies in micronutrients such as the minerals zinc and magnesium. I plan on getting tested for those mutations soon. There really is no way to be sure you don’t have any deficiencies without extensive testing (which can be expensive and difficult to obtain). In many cases a good doctor can recommend supplements you can try and see if they make you feel better! Most of them are very safe so you can try them out and see what works for you. They are almost always safer than prescription drugs which have many, many side effects. In my experience these supplement are extremely effective also.

Find a Good Doctor or Naturopathic Doctor

I am not a doctor. I am not offering any medical advice. Please find a good, open-minded doctor or doctor of Naturopathic Medicine to advise you before starting any supplements or treatments. There are 16 states in which Naturopathic Doctors are licensed. In these states, their services are covered the same as any medical doctor. Therefore, regular health insurance will pay for them. I am lucky to live in one of those states so I don’t have to worry about coverage. They can order blood tests and other tests the same as any other doctor. They can order more specialized tests that won’t normally be done and these can identify many problems. Naturopathic doctors started me off on the road to finding solutions after the regular doctors and specialists told me there were no cures.

What is Coming Next

Stay tuned for upcoming posts on magnesium, Vit D, zinc, potassium and many more! These basic micronutrients can prevent and help treat diabetes, heart disease, depression, pain, inflammation and a massive list of hundreds of problems! They are safe, effective and don’t require a prescription and I will share these all with you! That is my answer to why you need extra vitamins and minerals!

Please leave a comment or question! I would love to hear your stories and thoughts!

Thank you,





  1. BarbAtkins

    Dear Jessica,

    Thank you for creating this stunning website and the content of this post has really got me re-thinking my views on my current ill-health!

    I’m going to carry my lap-top to the Health Food Pharmacy and top-up my vitamin deficiencies tomorrow!


    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thanks Barb,
      I take magnesium glycinate since it is the easiest on digestion. Regular, cheap forms such as citrate work but they can cause diarrhea. Some people are more sensitive than others. My husband was sensitive to any amount so our doctor recommended the glycinate form. Taurate is especially good for heart health. I also recently started taking zinc and potassium as well which really help with inflammation! I will be doing posts on all of these.

      Vitamin D is of course essential in high latitudes where we don’t get much sun and even higher doses are needed for those of us who have auto-immune conditions. B vitamins are great for brain fog and energy. I could go on and on!

      Please let me know if you have any questions.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Steve T

    Thanks for this great post, Jessica! This is a topic that needs far more discussion and in-depth explanation. I really appreciate your testimony as one who needs supplements and experiences clear health differences when you take them and when you stop. Since I spend time and money on my own supplements, I have important questions about them, and I have a need to know if I’m taking the right ones and in the optimal doses.

    My primary question deals with the viability of health changes due to use of supplements. There is no shortage of experts who claim that supplements have no positive health affects, and site studies that claim to prove that there is no value. I don’t simply accept those studies on faith (it is VERY hard to prove a negative…) but I’m left with plenty of questions and doubts. Are the studies using low quality supplements or improper doses? Are they used on the wrong population, or is the duration flawed? Whatever the shortcomings of those studies, if any, I could be repeating them in my own regimen; how can I know if I am or if I’m not? Advice from a Naturopathic Doctor may not be compelling for me, if they also recommend homeopathic treatments which I know (from basic chemistry) are not valid.

    Currently, I take vitamin D3, high EPA fish oil capsules, a general multivitamin/mineral supplement, turmeric curcumin, niacin (nicotinic acid), lycopene, L-arginine and zinc (zinc gluconate) which I just added back to support immune health this cold/flu season. I also work to keep particular supplement foods in my diet, including ginger root, watermelon, cloves, cinnamon, potassium chloride, cilium fiber, berries, green leafy veggies and probiotics (mostly kefir and raw local honey). I also try to maintain a mostly anti-inflammatory diet without chlorinated water, wheat products, trans fats, poor quality oils and high sugar / high starch foods. I also observe the 5-2 fast lifestyle, which requires two 36 hour fast periods weekly during which calorie consumption is restricted to 600 calories each.

    I do this due to specific health concerns related to family history of cancer and cardiovascular disease, personal history of osteoarthritis, high LDL and raynaud’s syndrome. Generally, it seems to be working, such that none of these conditions is keeping me from my racquetball and tennis, or general work and play activities, and none have gotten worse. That said, even with all this lifestyle work, I’m not finding a ‘silver bullet’ that seems to turn all these issues around.

    Here are my primary questions/concerns:
    1- When nutritionists or other experts site studies that disprove the value of people using many supplements similar to mine (no improvement compared to a control group) does this prove that my actions are self delusions, or is there counter evidence?
    2- If my supplements (such as omega 3 fish oil) could be helpful, how do I know I’m using quality supplements in effective doses?

    I’m not sure if it is reasonable to ask you these detailed questions Jessica, but since I’ve no obvious place to look for credible answers, I’m giving it a shot.

    Thanks again for this excellent material,

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Steve,

      Wow! That is a very detailed list of questions and ideas. Needless to say, I will have to do some research in order to answer them! For now let me just give you my own personal thoughts.

      There are many claims that supplements do not help us but I would argue there are many that show they do. Drug companies and the medical industry have a vested interest in promoting their drugs. There is hardly any profit to be made on vitamins and minerals because they cannot be patented. Therefore, it is in the drug and medical company’s interest to spread their story that natural treatments don’t work. They have the advertising budget to do this while promoting their drugs (as we know from their endless ads everywhere). Statistics can be made to tell the story you want to tell, especially if you have an agenda. So, yes to your questions. There are studies on the wrong population I am sure and at the wrong dose. If your study uses too low of a dose it might not have much effect! If it is northerners in the long dark winter that need Vit D but your study is on healthy, young people living in the south who get plenty of sunlight, then your “study” will show that Vit D supplements do no good! I am not talking about a specific study here just giving examples of how extremely easy it would be to conduct a study and show supplements are of no use! Not everyone has the same needs or deficiencies so it would be stupidly simple to conduct all kinds of experiments to “disprove” the use of vitamins and minerals in supplement form.

      For example. Fluoride in drinking water is horrible. Even the American Dental Association admits the amounts in water are much higher than needed for tooth health. Too much fluoride is toxic and causes tumors and thyroid disease among other things. I believe that is part of the cause of my own thyroid tumors. Now that we are on well water I am doing better.

      It is cheaper to dump fluoride in water and justify it for health with bogus studies than to dispose of it. That is because it is toxic waste. Putting it in water was a brilliant idea to dispose of it cheaply. Many still insist it is necessary for teeth but they are wrong. Natural minerals in drinking water and food are necessary for teeth, not industrial waste quantities of man made fluoride which is a commercial waste product! But, we have millions of people forced to consume it every day because of the ability to twist a study to serve someone’s financial gain!

      Therefore, I am positive there are lots of “studies” out there that show supplements are not useful but that doesn’t mean I believe them. I used a mixture of apple cider vinegar and water on my cat’s fur which helps fix upper respiratory (kitty cold) symptoms when they lick it off and it absorbs though the skin. It works! But if you talk to certain veterinarians they are horrified and say it is just an old wive’s tale and doesn’t do any good. I had this very conversation. They prescribe antibiotics which often don’t work either. Many veterinarians as well as doctors in this country have been indoctrinated to rely on pharmaceuticals alone. They do not understand how basic nutrients and formulas work. Apple cider vinegar is naturally anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal…if it works, it works!

      I will look for some examples of studies that show how supplements are effective and get back to you.

      Another thought. There are many cases where pills are not absorbed well and therefore much of the supplement is wasted. That does not mean the vitamin or mineral is useless though! That just means it would be better delivered in a different form! That is why I am taking liquid zinc and potassium now. I know I don’t absorb and digest pills that well. So, that is another way the discredit supplements! Their statement is true but it is misleading and has no bearing on the effectiveness of the mineral or vitamin itself.

      Thanks Steve!

      1. Steve

        Good points, Jessica. I’m well aware of the way that Big Pharma money can hijack the University and other resources to conduct studies that benefit Big Pharma. As a technical person who believes firmly in the scientific method it pains me to see it abused for the sake of illegitimate profits, but it DOES happen, and often. Your point about poorly designed (or cleverly, deceptively designed) studies is solid and it makes perfect sense. For every academic department or research institution that conducts a trial with great care and balance in order to get the most accurate and meaningful results, there are most likely 4 or 5 that do what is required to maintain their funding, whether that means cutting corners or accepting stilted controls or parameters to get to a desired result. The scientific method is not immune to human weakness or financial imperatives, so statistics must all be taken with a grain of (potassium) salt.

        Despite these hard truths, I still long for a source of small, well designed studies that confirm positive outcomes of supplement use in the proper way by the correct population. There is enough money in the supplement business and related products, services and interest groups to fund modest studies. Maybe FDA level studies are out of reach, and that’s OK, since FDA doesn’t regulate these treatments.

        As mammals, we humans are complex organisms. It is very hard to find treatments, natural or otherwise that are effective, but don’t produce problematic side effects. The claim is often made that supplements are not risky because they produce no side effects; I don’t buy that one. Many weight loss supplements in the past have had devastating side effects, natural or not. The niacin I take is a great example. It is effective in reducing my Raynaud’s symptoms and improving blood flow, LDL and blood pressure, but it does cause uncomfortable flushing. The flushing is not terrible, and it only lasts a few minutes, so I don’t mind, but I am concerned about potential liver, kidney or joint irritation that may not be well known. Doctors tell me it’s OK, not to worry, but that’s a bit hollow if studies have not been conducted, in my opinion.

        Your point about poor bio-availability is a great one. Many vitamins, minerals and other supplements just go on through us and don’t get extensively absorbed. I’ve been told by nutritionists that this is the case with fish oil, and that it is in a different chemical form when we take it as capsules, compared to consuming oily fish. I doubt that fishermen paid to fund stilted studies on that situation, but I still have my doubts about the ‘different chemical form’ claim.

        So as you can see, I’m still in the mode of ‘experiment on my own body’ as I lack really solid data on how supplements I consume interact with each other and with the many systems in my body. I am healthy, however, and unlike most my age, I require NO prescription medication to maintain that situation. I’m now knocking on wood.

        Thanks again for your posts on this topic. They are most needed and much appreciated.

        1. Jessica (Post author)

          Thanks Steve,
          I agree there can be side effects. However, the side effects of vitamins and minerals are in my opinion much less serious than the side effects of most prescriptions. For example, people are scared to take much Vitamin D due to the warnings that you can take too much since it accumulates in the body. That is true but it takes much higher doses than previously mentioned. For people in the northern latitudes that get no sun in the winter and for people who have auto-immune disorders we need a much higher dose as well. If we believed the FDA warnings we would never get enough!

          As for liver and kidney affect processing the supplements, I have wondered the same thing since I take extremely high doses. That is why I take Milk Thistle. It is the best aid for liver and kidney function and health. It is the insurance policy that makes me feel better about taking all these things! Milk Thistle is also in the cat’s Immunity and Liver Support capsules!

          I will find you some studies!

          Thank you!

  3. Sue Dixon

    Jessica, thank you for this informative post. I had to stop and think about the supplements I take. Multi-vitamin for women 50+, calcium-magnesium-zinc combo, vitamin C and a natural cranberry extract supplement. The information you offered here is quite helpful! I look forward to reading more from your site as you go along.

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you Sue! I take so many supplements but I need each one. I can feel it if I stop. I am glad you found this useful and I look forward to you stopping by in the future!

  4. Monica Bouteiller

    Wow Jessica, this is great information. For the longest time, I would take vitamins off and on, generally not paying a lot of attention because I never knew what I should be taking until I finally stopped. I’ve always known I should be taking them but it seemed to be a hassle … one of my kids brought it to my attention because she started to workout and was learning all about healthy foods and vitamins and minerals women should be taking. She told me what I should be taking and I’m been taking them everyday including the Vitamin D.

    I go to Bootcamp now too and really paying more attention on healthy diet. I enjoyed reading your article because there is so much more I didn’t know and bookmarking this for future reference. Thank you for writing this article.

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      I don’t think regular multi-vitamin tablets are very effective. Many people don’t absorb pills very well. If they are in capsules it is better and liquid is the best. Also, the amount of each component in a multi-vitamin may not be high enough anyway.

      I don’t take a multi-vitamin for these reasons. I take capsules of some things and liquids that are absorbed so much better.

      I am glad your daughter is bugging you about the need for these!

  5. Brandon

    I knew vitamins were important but had no idea all THIS was involved. I drink city water at least 5 days a week so do you think this is a problem? Should I be filtering it or boiling it before consuming? I get it straight out of the tap most of the time.

    Not much of the other causes resonate with me that much so I think I should be fine with everything else. Would love to hear your thoughts on the water situation though. Thanks

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hi Brandon,

      The best thing you can do is avoid excess fluoride and chlorine. Chlorine is easier to get rid of since regular water filters can remove it. Regular water filters like Brita do not remove fluoride however. Reverse osmosis and distillation do remove fluoride and there are some filters on the market that do such as ZeroWater. You can also buy spring water (not bottled water that is simply tap water).

      Packaged beverages like iced tea have fluoride also. Also some fruits and vegetables can have very high levels since a common pesticide in the U.S. uses fluoride. Grapes that are used to make wine and grape juice have high levels of fluoride due to this pesticide. Iceburg lettuce has very high levels also. For this reason it is better to buy organic produce to avoid the pesticides.

      Fluoride is also high in tooth paste. You can look for non-fluoridated tooth paste, but if you use regular toothpaste, make sure you don’t swallow it! The toxicity of the fluoride is why there is a warning right on the tube not to swallow it!

      Fluoride accumulates in the body so levels that may be considered safe are misleading since it accumulates over your lifetime. In order to combat fluoride you can get more iodine and boron. There are foods that contain high levels of these naturally. The highest source of iodine found naturally is seaweed. You can supplement with these minerals also but that is more complex and you have to be careful.

      Fluoride is a leading cause of thyroid dysfunction and thyroid tumors. Thyroid problems are very common and this may be the reason, or one of the reasons why. I have read that nutrient deficiency can make people more susceptible to fluoride toxicity. Deficiencies in Vit C, calcium and magnesium are some of those that can lead to this susceptibility. Taking magnesium is great for many reasons, but it also helps prevent the absorption of fluoride. Eat citrus to get the Vit C such as oranges, lemons and grapefruit. Eating tamarinds can also helps flush fluoride from the body.

      Good luck!

      1. Wendy

        People think I’m weird because I love dried seaweed and eat it every day. So I’m glad to have some justification for loving seaweed. I do have one question, and I don’t know if you can answer it. What happens if you have GERD or acid reflux and really can’t eat citrus? I supplement with plenty of vitamin c, but I’m concerned because I can’t tolerate citrus and I know it’s good for you. Thanks for this website, there’s a lot of great information here.

        1. Jessica (Post author)

          I love citrus but it is hard on my stomach. I can’t have orange juice generally unless it is a small amount with a meal. I can generally eat oranges however. I am sensitive to Vit C however and don’t take supplements that have much C in them. This can make it hard to find certain supplements.

          I get Ester-C which is easier on the stomach and digestion than regular C. I would recommend you try that instead if you can. If you can eat the citrus and feel ok then I would eat as much as you can.

          That might be why you like seaweed so much! Maybe you need the iodine! Good for you!
          Thanks for stopping by!

  6. Denise

    Hi Jessica… it’s Denise from WA. Great site/post. Very informative and insightful. Looking forward to reading more of your posts.
    A big thumbs up!

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you very much Denise. I am glad you find it useful and I look forward to sharing so much more information here in posts to come! I am planning to address Magnesium next.

      I hope you check back in soon,

  7. Denise

    you’re most welcome. I take magnesium everyday.
    Looking forward to the article.

  8. Christina

    Hi Jessica –

    What a great topic! This is a tough one for me. This is one of those topics that no one agrees on and it can be very frustrating for the average person. You laid everything out really well though. And you’re right, most people aren’t getting enough nutrients in their bodies.

    Now, I do eat a plant-based diet, but even I know that I’m not doing everything perfectly and sticking to 100% whole foods. So I’m also not getting all the micronutrients needed, most likely.

    And because we live in this world where we don’t move enough, don’t get enough sun, eat too much processed foods, our bodies are missing out.

    I just starting taking Natural Calm, which is a Magnesium supplement. I also started taking Spirulina, dulse flakes and I’m taking and learning more about wild blueberries and how awesome they are!

    I don’t know that a regular multivitamin you find in the grocery store is going to do the trick. I think our bodies need more.

    I can’t wait to continue reading more about this topic!

    – Christina

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hi Christina,

      I agree that regular multivitamins are not very effective. That is why I don’t take them! If I do take a multi-type supplement, I try to make sure it is in liquid form. At least that way I know I will absorb it better even if the doses are low. The low doses in a tablet form just aren’t going to cut it!

      There are so many great drink mixes, smoothie mixes etc now that have vitamins and minerals, there is no reason we all can’t get the basics covered everyday! I have found several that I really like and will be reviewing here.

      Since you are vegetarian you will probably be ahead of most of us in the micronutrient game. There are a few micronutrients that generally need to come from animal products but of course fish, eggs etc. cover some of those as well.

      I have Natural Calm but I am a bit sensitive to that since it is one of the cheap forms of magnesium that can be hard on digestion. It does work though and if it works for you, then great! I don’t mind the taste and it really does help me get to sleep!

      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  9. Jaime

    Hi, Jessica.

    I agree, It is really unfortunate what has happened to food in this country, and in the world in general. It’s sad that we can get nutrients from just eating. I mean, it feels like that would be the point of eating, right?

    My husband makes the same complaints and arguments you used to make as a kid. I have been taking supplements my entire life, but I have trouble getting him to agree he needs them. I’m going to show him the information you’ve given here because I think it will help him realize how much a lack of nutrients is affecting him. In the meantime, I manage to get him to take the gummy vitamins, which I guess are better than nothing.

    I personally have to take powder or liquid supplements to absorb them better, like you. Liquid b-vitamins are my favorite, I’ve been drinking that stuff since I was a kid. My mom used to give me spoonfuls of barley malt with b-vitamins…yummm. I like to talk CALM before bed, which is a powder calcium magnesium supplement. But with your advice on stress, I think I might need more, and perhaps during the day. Stress is my personal biggest killer and why I focus so hard on nutrition.

    As always, thanks for your very helpful information.

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Jaime,

      It took getting really weak and ill for me to realize how deficient I was. I had serious memory problems, weak, cramped muscles and so many problems. It was scary. Now, I can tell if I miss my supplements. Everything starts hurting and my bursitis, food allergies and joint inflammation get worse. My husband was grumpy today and as I suspected he had not taken lithium orotate since he was almost out of it. Luckily he found another bottle and everything got better! He has more on the way.

      I am glad you use liquid supplements too. I am working on a magnesium post now.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  10. Carol Meador

    Wow, Jessica! This is a very informative article. You touched on several areas that I need to work on here. I have fibromyalgia, and asked my doctor for an adrenal test due to my extreme fatigue. She said it was out of her area of expertise and sent me to an endocrinologist, who pooh-poohed my concerns and did not order the test. Is there a directory of licensed Naturopathic physicians that you know of? I’ll have to find out if NC is one of the states that licenses them so I can possibly use my health insurance. Thanks so much for all this great information. I’ll be staying tuned for more!

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hi Carol,
      Unfortunately, North Carolina is not one of the states where Naturopathic Doctors are licensed. There is a Senate Bill there to change the law so they can be licensed. It is Senate Bill 258.

      You could still try an adrenal fatigue supplement and see if it helps. I use Sleep Tonight by Enzymatic Therapies and get it from Amazon since it is cheaper that way. That is the brand my Naturopathic Doctor recommended. She did not do any test first, she just said I could try it and see how I feel.

      I just added my first nutrient post tonight. Here it is! Causes of Low Magnesium

      I look forward to interacting more with you here on my site and hope you find some useful ideas to feel better!

      Thanks for your comments,

  11. Carol Meador

    Hi, Jessica.
    Thanks for your reply. Too bad NC doesn’t license Naturopaths yet, but hopefully Senate Bill 258 will pass. Thanks for that info. You are really up on things, and I appreciate you sharing your expertise with us. I will try “Sleep Toniight” Have been taking a magnesium supplement I get from our local health food store here. Maybe this one will work better. I”ll check out your new post. soon.

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      If you try Sleep Tonight just take it 1-3 hours before you go to bed. At least that is what I need to do. I should start taking it again. I always stay up way too late now. I got to bed on time when I took it! You may need to take 1 or 2. Just try it and see how you feel. I would start with 1.

      I thought I saw the Senate Bill was introduced last March so I don’t know what happened to it.

      Thanks Carol!

  12. Melissa Hazlett

    Hello Jessica. You have a lot of very helpful information on vitamins. I have to admit I am not the best about taking them either. However after reading this post I think it very well might be in my best interest. I have several of the symptoms you have described with the Adrenal Fatigue. Which is crazy because I didn’t even realize these symptoms could be catergorized together. Thank you again I need to do some looking into things.

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Melissa,

      Some of these conditions like adrenal fatigue and thyroid problems can overlap with the symptoms of nutrient deficiency. It doesn’t hurt to supplement with nutrients we all need! You may end up helping several conditions at once. It is generally a safe and easy way to increase our health and feel better.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  13. Sharlee

    Hi Jessica

    I came to your site to look for information on what I can use to help me sleep…. and then I found this article of you mentioning Adrenal Fatigue as well! I never realized that it is related.

    I just thought I have always been a “bad sleeper” – since I can remember it has always been a struggle to getting to sleep and to stay asleep. I have always lamented the fact that I can’t have a switch installed, so that I can just flip it over to the “sleep” position and there I go. Wouldn’t that have been awesome? Argh, and all the bad dreams.

    And then the next day I feel like a zombie, so fatigued and with so much brain fog, that I can barely function properly.

    I am eagerly awaiting your post about your experience with Adrenal Fatigue!

    Thank you for this very valuable post, Jessica, it is very much appreciated!

    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you Sharlee! I really need to do a post on Adrenal Fatigue and the supplement I found (my naturopathic doctor recommended it) that works. Adrenal fatigue is a complex issue and quite daunting to explain or even understand. I will do a short post at least explaining the basics and showing this great supplement. Thank you for letting me know you are interested! Stay tuned!


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