Let’s talk Vitamins & Supplements

I will be the first to admit that I resisted the benefits of vitamins for a very long time.  Let’s face it, I was 65 pounds overweight and obviously not too concerned about my health.  The decision to lose weight was a personal one and a very well planned one at that.  I knew that I needed to make lifestyle changes and not just drop the pounds by starving myself.  I was getting sick on  a regular basis when I was at my heaviest and I was eating all the wrong foods.  I knew that a change in my diet was going to be a shock to my system and my immune system was already weak so I talked to my doctor and did a lot of reading on vitamins.  In the beginning I was taking a multi-vitamin, Fish Oil, CoQ10, Fiber and Echinacea and I was buying whatever was on sale without much research on the product.   I was making better food choices, exercising and losing weight.  I was feeling great.

When I made the move to a vegetarian diet six months ago everyone was worried that I was going to be missing vital nutrients like protein, calcium, B12 and Omega 3 Fatty Acids.   I’ll admit that I did get a very bad cold during the first month of my vegetarian diet, but I expected my body to react that way.  I was shocking my system again and it was ridding itself of all the animal toxins.  After two months I really started to see the difference in how I felt and looked.  My skin was clearer, my hair was stronger and I wasn’t suffering from those nagging digestive issues.  I want to be truthful and tell you that the first 3 months I was very strict about not eating much dairy or eggs, but in the past two months I got lazy and have eaten more dairy.  The results are clear that I need to continue to limit dairy and egg products.  In the two months I’ve been adding more of these products to my diet I’ve had numerous stomach issues and had gained two pounds.  YUCK!

So how does this tie in to vitamins and supplements?  I know…get to the point Carrie!  A strict vegetarian or vegan diet may cause deficiencies in your intake of protein, calcium, B12, Iron, Zinc, Omega 3 Fatty Acids, Iodine and Riboflavin.  It takes careful planning in the variety of foods you eat and how you consume them.  I’m still learning all of the ways in which I should combine greens, beans, fruits,etc.. to maximize my nutrient intake, so I take a vegetarian dietary supplement from GNC.  The Maximum Greens Vitapak provides me with all the important nutrients that I might be deficient in except protein.  I get my protein from soy, legumes and occasionally I use a brown  rice protein powder.

I’m confident that my current vitamin regimen is giving me what I need…are you?  What vitamins do you take and how do you decide which products are right for you.


1 Comment

  1. October 5, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Robert Thigpen, Carrie Labowitz. Carrie Labowitz said: Let's talk Vitamins & Supplements: http://wp.me/pRvRU-5N […]

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