Setting a Foundation for Weight Loss Success

By Crystal H. Shelton, Senior Scientific Researcher

People often wonder which supplements they should take and what ingredients will work best for them. It’s especially important to have an optimal nutritional foundation when engaging in a weight loss program. You want to be sure your body is at its best and all vitamins and minerals are there in adequate amounts, doing what they should. There are certain components everyone should use to build a foundation for optimal health. As such, everyone should have the following in their daily regimen: a multivitamin, antioxidants and B vitamins.

Multivitamins:The most critical component of creating a wellness foundation regimen is taking multivitamins. Multivitamins are intended to supplement the diet with vitamins and minerals that are not being acquired through food. It is well known people are not eating well-balanced meals and acquiring the necessary nutrients, therefore it’s easily stated that multivitamins qualify as one of the most important dietary supplements. Vitamins and minerals are the foundation of health and nutrition and are necessary for the body to carry out normal functions. It’s very important to choose a multivitamin that provides all of the essential vitamins and minerals which are included at amounts that provide 100% of the recommended daily values. These nutrients play a variety of roles in supporting a healthy immune and cardiovascular system, promoting strong bones and skin health, maintaining normal metabolic functioning and healthy tissue growth and repair among many other benefits. To name a few specifics, vitamin C is a multi-faceted nutrient primarily known for its antioxidant benefits and strong role in immune health. It has also been shown to promote normal levels of cholesterol as well as normal platelet activity. A deficiency in vitamin C has been associated with fatigue and vitamin C is critical in the proper absorption of iron – another nutrient critical for optimal health. Vitamin D is another nutrient that should be a part of any multivitamin. Americans are deficient in vitamin D and this deficiency can lead to a number of health concerns in bone health and immune function. In addition to those general benefits, research also reports that women may be able to reduce their risk of heart attack by taking a multivitamin daily. Ideally, multivitamins should be delivered in a way where little nutritive value is lost, making the absorption of nutrients highly efficient while delivering maximum results.

Antioxidants: Antioxidants are necessary components in building the foundation for health as every single person is exposed to free radical damage and oxidative stress. These damaging free radicals are linked to numerous health conditions ranging from cardiovascular health to the aging process itself. In trying to combat free radicals, the most important ingredients to consume are proven and researched antioxidants. Pycnogenol® is the most clinically researched pine bark extract available. It has been shown in a number of studies to possess a very powerful antioxidant effect and it has also been proven to produce positive results related to cardiovascular health as well as inflammation. In general, oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs) are the most powerful natural free radical neutralizers. Other bioflavonoid extracts such as bilberry, grape seed, red wine and citrus bioflavonoids fall into this category. In choosing ingredients to provide optimal antioxidant support, an array of these potent antioxidants would be the most effective. Since free radicals are so heavily associated with many diseases and conditions, combatting those would promote far reaching effects in the areas of inflammation, cardiovascular health, joint health, cellular health, among others.

B Vitamins:Another component of establishing your foundation for health involves a complete B-complex formulation. B vitamins are necessary components for numerous metabolic processes and they support hundreds of biochemical reactions in the body. Specifically, folic acid, vitamins B6 and B12 help lower homocysteine levels in the blood, leading to a direct, positive effect on heart health. Folic acid and B12 also work together in promoting healthy red blood cell formation. Additionally, each of the B vitamins work by a number of different mechanisms to help increase energy, improve mood and cognition and protect telomeres, which help with long-term health. Traditional forms of B vitamins must be converted into usable forms once ingested. By using forms such as methylcobalamin, folinic acid or pyridoxal 5’ phosphate, also referred to as the metabolically “activated” forms, once can be sure optimal utilization is occurring and the effectiveness of these vitamins are enhanced.

While everyone’s dietary supplementation needs are unique, there are certain ingredients that provide a multitude of benefits and help establish the basic foundation for optimal health!