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News & Article Archives > Grab Bag Articles > Why Supplement?

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Why Supplement?
Posted by on 03 March, 2005

Shocking! According to the Canadian Cancer Society, there will be 145,500 new cases of cancer with an estimated 68,300 deaths occurring in 2004. That means on the day you are reading this, 187 people will die from cancer. Statistics also show that 80% of Canadians will have some form of heart disease. A chart from the Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation about risk factors states that 62.4% of heart disease is due to inadequate Fruit and Vegetable Consumption (66.8% for Alberta). In addition, over two million Canadians suffer from Diabetes, which puts them at a higher risk for heart-disease and stroke.
The functioning of our immune system has deteriorated by approximately 30% in the last twenty years and continues to drop at an alarming rate of about three percent per year. Is there a connection between health and nutrient consumption/absorption?

Everyone has busy lifestyles, whether we choose it that way or not. Our bodies are constantly under physical, emotional and environmental stress. To make matters worse, we starve ourselves by not providing our body with the nutrition it needs to function properly. We get little nutrition from food for a variety of reasons. The very convenient processed, ready-to-serve foods available at your corner store, such as cereals, pasta sauces, white bread, canned foods and pop etcetera, are far from nutritious.
We live in the age of science. The food industry makes our foods easy to prepare and inexpensive but with little thought about the nutritional value of the product. Canning, pasteurizing, milling, refining, you name it. Brand name products are created for profit. Lots of sugar, salt and countless additives and preservatives (chemicals) are added, not only to make the food taste better but more importantly from a business point of view, to extend the shelf life. And this market is still growing. These additives can seriously disrupt the natural chemical balance in our body, especially long-term. No wonder cancer and heart disease are on the rise to epidemic levels.
Even when we eat fresh fruits and vegetables, nutrient levels are considerably lower than fifty years ago. This is due to the fact that they are mass produced, genetically modified, picked prematurely (due to storing and transportation issues), extensive use of pesticides, and grown on eroded and nutrient starved lands. Most nutrients (phytonutrients) of fruits and vegetables remain in the roots until they mature. During ripening, the phytonutrients move from the roots into the fruit, slowing down the aging process. This is what makes strawberries turn red and bananas turn yellow. Naturopath Dr. Steve Nugentís research showed that we need to eat about 52 peaches to get our daily recommended vitamin A, where in 1951 we only needed to eat about 2 to get the same amount. Try to fit that in our already busy lifestyles. And once the fresh produce has made its way into our house, we kill most nutrients by preparation; boiling, micro-waving, freezing etc. Steaming would be the better alternative.
Our health is related to nutrient consumption and absorption. The body protects, repairs, restores and defends itself through nutrients. You have to add supplements to your diet to get enough for your body to do all this work. Regular maintenance is a major key for longevity. Supplements are not intended to replace the need to eat a healthy diet, exercise and maintain a healthy body weight. However, a good supplement system gives your body the basics to keep the immune system up to speed, so our body is able to defend itself against illness, even just the flu. Also keep in mind that pharmaceutical drugs deplete your body from vital nutrients, which means it is even more crucial to take supplements.
What should you look for when buying supplements? Your body needs to recognize the nutrients as food in order to absorb them and send them to the proper systems of our immaculate structure. Synthetic vitamins are NOT absorbed in the body and can even do harm. This is yet another form of processed, test-tube created supplementation. Look for supplements that are food-based. You will more likely find it in a health food store than at the local drugstore.
One way to test if your vitamins dissolve properly is to mix warm water (about 8 fl. oz.) with eight table spoons of white vinegar, to stimulate stomach acid. Then add one of the tablets and check every 5 minutes. After 15 minutes it should be completely dissolved. If not, you are better off trying another brand. And keep in mind that vitamins are only one category of nutrients the body needs.
Drinking filtered water is also paramount to health. You require 50% - 75% of your body weight in ounces, depending on your activity level. Every cell in your body must be bathed in water, to carry nutrients through your system, to regulate temperature and to help eliminate waste. Drink your water in small sips, so your body gets time to absorb it. Small sips of warm water during your meal aids in digestion and chew your food thoroughly to mix it with saliva for better absorption.
Good health and proper nutrition can be yours if you just follow some simple rules; drink lots of water, eat a healthy diet, take food-based supplements, exercise regularly, get plenty of rest and live with a positive mind set.

(see also

Credits: Canadian Cancer Society, Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation, Canadian Diabetes Association, Mannatech Inc., Heal-thy (Canmore), Steve Plog,,

About Noortije

Noortje Vanderelst is located close to Calgary Alberta. Her passion is helping people feel good/at peace in this world and helping them reach their optimal health goals, through deeply relaxing Reiki treatments and by giving the body the raw materials it needs to recover from the growing toxins we are exposed to, every single day! We live in stress full times. The key is to get the body, mind, emotions and spirit in balance. You will find more information in our healing arts directory under "Reiki"

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