Many people wonder if supplements really make a difference when it comes to aging well. At Dr. Amy Garza’s AgeWell practice in Amarillo, Texas, we firmly believe that supplements can play a big role in the overall picture of optimal health for people of all ages. Whether it comes to just feeling more energetic, creating a healthy diet or addressing sexual health issues, supplements can really make a difference. And that means noticeable results!
With all the vitamins and supplements on the market, it can be difficult to know what supplements you need, or what you should be taking. In an ideal world we could get all our vitamins and minerals from the foods we eat, but unfortunately, this is very rarely possible in our “real world” lives. Even with a seemingly perfect diet designed around a complete regimen of vitamins and minerals, people fall short.
Fact: Foods Are Not As Nutritious Today
This hasn’t always been the case. The soils in which we grow fruits and vegetables and the feeds that livestock are given are exhausted of natural vitamins and minerals. The resulting foods that we eat do not even come close to reaching the full gamut of natural vitamins and minerals that we need to live and age optimally. Not to mention genetic modification of plants, and drugs and chemicals administered to livestock to keep them growing faster and bigger. Many people believe that these additives are detrimental to the health.
All of this means that an apple today is not even close to the apple of yesterday. While there is a strong movement towards whole, organic foods, it’s difficult, and expensive, to comply with that sort of regimen. So what’s one to do?
In an ideal world, our food would supply all our nutritional needs. Given our current consumption patterns, and the quality of the foods we eat, this is not our reality today. A quality multi-vitamin will provide all of the basic micronutrients your body needs, including the correct forms of these vitamins. For example, many over the counter multivitamins provide vitamin B and vitamin E in forms that many bodies are unable to utilize. And Dr. Garza can provide even more information on the best ways to administer different supplements, in order to optimize their effectiveness.
Omega 3 Fatty Acids (Fish Oil)
It may be no surprise that fish oil tops the list of supplements most everyone should be taking. Omega 3 fatty acids have many known benefits. They have been shown to boost your brain as well as create a strong anti-inflammatory response in the body. Omega-3 fish oil also helps improve skin health, and can lower cholesterol levels as well as preventing and managing heart disease.
Sunlight gives our body this much-needed vitamin, but even in sunny climates, it’s common for people to have lower-than-acceptable levels of Vitamin D. While we know about wearing sunscreen to protect ourselves from sunlight, it’s important to note that because of those sunscreens, people today are experiencing universally low rates of Vitamin D. It’s critical to proper functioning of the immune system, bone strength and even impacts our susceptibility to depression. Vitamin D is instrumental for a number of daily enzymatic reactions, so it’s very important to be tested for levels of Vitamin D, and to take a supplement if those levels are below acceptable thresholds.
The Best Supplements Really Do Work
The supplements Dr. Garza recommends are chosen based upon their purity, strength and effectiveness in improving patients’ health. Many retail lines of supplements use poor raw materials and dosing levels that are lower than the needed therapeutic levels. In a 2013 study of Vitamin D by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), researchers found that pills sold in stores contained between 9% and 146% of the dosage reported on the label. While none were likely to be dangerous, some contained too little of the vitamin required to effectively treat a deficiency.
As a nutrition expert, Dr. Garza thoroughly researches supplement companies, and only prescribes the best products from top physician lines. All are tested in-house at the manufacturer and by a unbiased, unrelated third party.
Visit Our Office to Learn More About Supplements
At Dr. Garza’s AgeWell healthy aging practice in Amarillo, Texas, comprehensive blood work along with an in-depth patient interview helps us determine a patient’s vitamin needs. When we work with patients with a proper supplement regimen and/or hormone replacement, most patients feel the difference right away.
We attempt to streamline our process to benefit our patients, and to optimize the doctor-patient consultation time. As a patient at the AgeWell practice in Amarillo, Texas, patients undergo thorough blood/lab screens prior to the first office visit. This pre-screening process enables Dr. Garza and the AgeWell staff to know much more about our patients’ health during the very first consultation.