Even the healthiest eaters following a varied diet can have nutritional deficiencies including low levels of important vitamins and minerals. Without a comprehensive vitamin and mineral analysis, it’s nearly impossible to accurately assess which specific micronutrients you’re lacking, and even then changes in physical activity, stress, sunlight exposure, and numerous other factors can affect your nutrient needs.
Enter the multivitamin. Comprehensive multivitamins provide “nutritional insurance” by delivering adequate amounts of all of the vitamins and minerals your body needs. But not all multivitamins are created equal; many vitamin manufacturers cut costs by skimping on vitamin and mineral quantities and by using the least expensive, least effective (and sometimes dangerous) forms.
Below is a list of the vitamins and minerals you should find in a good quality multivitamin. We’ve also included the Institute of Medicine’s recommended daily intake (DRI) for men and women, a recommended maximum daily intake (when appropriate), the forms to look for on your multivitamin’s label, and some common multivitamin add-ons.
|DRI* – Men||DRI* – Women||Max daily intake||What forms to look for|
|Vitamin A||900 µg or 4500 IU||700 µg or 3500 IU||3000 µg or 15,000 IU||Mixed carotinoids and/or beta carotene|
|B1 (Thiamine)||1.2 mg||1.1 mg||–||Thiamine di-phosphate or thiamine HCl|
|B2 (Riboflavin)||1.3 mg||1.1 mg||–||Riboflavin-5’-phosphate or riboflavin|
|B3 (Niacin)||16 mg||14 mg||35 mg||Niacin or Niacinamide|
|B5 (Pantothenic acid)||5 mg||5 mg||–||Pantothenic acid or D-calcium pantothenate|
|B6 (Pyridoxine)||1.3-1.7 mg||1.3-1.7 mg||100 mg||Pyridoxal-5′-phosphate or pyridoxine HCl|
|B7 (Biotin)||30 µg||30 µg||–||Biotin|
|B9 (Folate)||400 µg||400 µg||1000 µg||5-MTHF or folate/folic acid|
|B12 (Cobalamins)||2.4 µg||2.4 µg||–||Methylcobalamin or cyanocobalamin|
|C||90 mg||75 mg||–||Ascorbic acid or ascorbates|
|D||5-15 µg or 200-600 IU||5-15 µg or 200-600 IU||5000 IU||Cholecalciferol|
|E||15 mg||15 mg||1000 mg||D-alpha-tocopherol, mixed tocopherols, and/or mixed tocotrienols|
|K||120 µg||90 µg||–||Phylloquinone or phytonadione|
|Potassium||4700 mg||4700 mg||Potassium citrate or aspartate|
|Calcium||1000 mg||1000 mg||2500 mg||Amino acid chelate, malate, citrate, or carbonate|
|Magnesium||420 mg||320 mg||750 mg||Amino acid chelate, glycinate, or threonate|
|Zinc||11 mg||8 mg||40 mg||Amino acid chelate, monomethionine, or glycinate|
|Iron||8 mg||18 mg||45 mg||Iron protein succinylate|
|Manganese||2.3 mg||1.8 mg||11 mg||Amino acid chelate or gluconate|
|Copper||900 µg||900 µg||10 mg||Amino acid chelate, lysinate, or glycinate|
|Iodine||150 µg||150 µg||1100 µg||Potassium iodide or kelp|
|Selenium||55 µg||55 µg||400 µg||Selenomethionine, amino acid complex, or glycinate|
|Molybdenum||45 µg||45 µg||2000 µg||Amino acid chelate or citrate|
|Chromium||35 mg||25 mg||–||Chromium polynicotinate (ChromeMate®) or picolinate|
|Boron||–||–||–||Boron citrate or proteinate|
|Choline||550 mg||425 mg||–||Choline bitartrate or phosphatidylcholine|
|Vanadium||–||–||1.8 mg||Vanadyl sulfate|
*The DRI – or Dietary Reference Intake – listed here is for men and women ages 14 years old and above. Micronutrient needs for infants, children, teens, and pregnant and lactating women can be significantly different than those listed.
The amount of each vitamin and mineral in your multivitamin should be somewhere between the minimum DRI and maximum daily intake. For nutrients without an upper limit – especially some of the B vitamins – it’s not uncommon to see amounts that are thousands or tens of thousands of times greater than the DRI. In this case, whatever isn’t absorbed will be eliminated (which is why high doses of B vitamins can make your pee glow).
For minerals, you might notice that there are quite a few different forms – amino acid chelate, glycinate, gluconate, carbonate, citrate, etc. The different forms can provide various unique benefits, but for a multivitamin the form to look for is amino acid chelate or amino acid complex as these are the most easily absorbed.
One last note: if you’re a man it’s best to opt for the iron-free version of a multivitamin, and many manufacturers now have men’s formulas that don’t contain iron. The same goes for post-menopausal women whose iron needs are far less than what they were before menopause.
For over 5,000 years, Eastern medicine practitioners have utilized acupuncture as a method of correcting the body’s flow of Qi (pronounced “chee”) in order to improve health and eliminate disease. While Western medicine practitioners may not agree with the means by which acupuncture works, they are finally recognizing that it does work, and for many conditions – anxiety, depression, chronic pain, allergies, and headaches – it works quite well.
There are many theories on how Acupuncture works, but its true mode of action remains a mystery. The ancient Chinese explanation is that acupuncture corrects the flow of Qi, our vital energy. The Western explanation is that acupuncture stimulates blood flow, the release of endorphins, and other physiological processes that temporarily relieve pain. Regardless of how it works, millions of people have utilized acupuncture successfully, and research continues to reveal more of its benefits.
The actual procedure involves inserting hair-thin needles into certain points along your meridian, the path through which your Qi runs. Needling these points – called acupuncture points – stimulates the body’s own natural healing mechanisms, and certain points are associated with specific pathologies.
A typical acupuncture session lasts between 30-60 minutes. After an initial medical history to determine your symptoms, you lie down and relax in a dark, quiet room. The acupuncturist places the needles in the appropriate spots for your condition, and the needles are so thin there is no pain, only slight tingling or pressure. The actual process of inserting the needles takes 5-10 minutes, and the rest of the time you lie still, relax, and let the needles work their magic.
At Human Health Specialists, we have had numerous clients with a wide variety of ailments try acupuncture – many of them for the first time – with great success. At the very least, an acupuncture session provides thirty minutes to an hour of profound mental and physical relaxation which will be beneficial for anyone with any condition.
If you decide to give acupuncture a try, be sure the acupuncturist is licensed and uses only single-use, sterile needles. If you’ve tried acupuncture before and you’re looking for an Arizona acupuncture specialist, Human Health Specialists is the place for you. Give us a call today – (480) 883-7240 – to schedule your acupuncture appointment.
You may have a hidden food allergy that is making you fat (or at least making weight loss more difficult).
Best selling author Tim Ferriss has revolutionized the health and fitness industry with his recent book The Four Hour Body. In it, Ferriss details his years of in-depth testing, measuring, and tracking of personal physical changes brought about by self-experimentation of some of the world’s most popular diet, exercise, and health improvement programs. Among the ways Ferriss measured and tracked his health was through specialized laboratory testing of his body fat, hormones, food allergies, toxic heavy metals and much more. Many of the tests utilized by Ferriss and recommended in The Four Hour Body are tests that Human Health Specialists offers its clients.
Specific tests that Ferriss recommends in The Four Hour Body that we offer at Human Health Specialists are listed below:
Four Hour Body Recommended Tests for Men: view sample test results
- Testosterone (total and free)
- Luteinizing hormone (LH)
- Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)
- Dihydrotestosterone (DHT)
- Prostate-specific antigen (PSA)
- Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and DHEA-S
Four Hour Body Recommended Tests for Females:
- Thyroid panel
- DHEA and DHEA-S
Four Hour Body Recommended Tests for Inflammatory markers:
These tests are used to assess your risk for heart disease and diabetes.
- C-Reactive Protein (CRP)
- Glyco A1C
- Basic blood chemistry panel: red and white blood cells, metabolic profile, cholesterol, lipids (LDL, HDL, triglycerides)
- Liver enzymes: alanine transaminase (ALT) and aspartate transaminase (AST)
Other Recommended Tests:
- Bod Pod body fat testing
- Vitamin D status
- Berkeley Heart Labs or Advanced Cardio Lipid Panel
- Food Allergy Testing
- Doctor’s Data Urine Toxic Metals view sample test results
- Comprehensive Stool Analysis and Parasitology
- SpectraCell Nutrient Testing
This covers the testing recommended by Ferriss in The Four Hour Body, but it is only a small sample of the hundreds of tests we have available for our clients at Human Health Specialists. We can also provide these tests to anyone, anywhere in the US.
As stated in the book, many of these tests may be covered by insurance, but that will depend on your plan and your provider. Cash prices and payment plans are also available. For more information on any of these tests, to determine your insurance coverage, or to set up an initial consultation to discuss testing, please contact us at (480) 883-7240.
BE ON TOP