Vitamins, Supplements, Nostrum & Diet: Items that may be particularly useful in a survival-hardship scenario.
This article is primarily composed of commercial product descriptions about supplements that could make the difference in a SHTF situation.
Bragg organic apple cider vinegar
[Some people swear by this product. I bought a small bottle and used it for several weeks. It has a clean refreshing taste when mixed into several ounces of cold water, however, vinegar is just too tart for my taste. I didn't feel any better or worse from trying the beverage, it just wasn't for me. Mr Larry]
Bought from Amazon.com: Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, 2 ea 16 oz bottles. .
• Preparation: 1 teaspoon organic apple cider vinegar per 8 oz cup water, sip.
• Apple cider vinegar is an ancient folk remedy touted to relieve just about any ailment you can think of.
• In recent years, apple cider vinegar has been singled out as an especially helpful health tonic.
• Some small studies have hinted that apple cider vinegar could help with several conditions, such as diabetes and obesity.
• If you drink a lot of water throughout the day, consider adding just a splash of apple cider vinegar to your glass/container each time you fill it up. Drink this on hot summer day, especially before working out, your body will feel very cleansed. If you prefer a warm drink, try 1 tsp vinegar in hot water– you will feel energized, but not adrenalized.
• There are several things you will notice within a day or two of drinking Apple Cider Vinegar: your allergies will disappear, your face will have a healthy & youthful glow, you will look & feel more vital, you will have consistent energy, and you will more easily —-digest your food.
• Vinegar is a disinfectant, but it doesn’t kill as many germs as common cleaners.
• Apple cider vinegar is highly acidic. The main ingredient of apple cider vinegar is acetic acid. Apple cider vinegar should always be diluted with water or juice before swallowed. Pure apple cider vinegar could damage the tooth enamel and the tissues in your throat and mouth.
• Long-term & frequent use of apple cider vinegar could cause low potassium levels and lower bone density.
Vitamin B-12 (Finest Natural, 1000 mcg. 2x 150 tablet bottles, Walgreens Drug Store) Dietary Supplement Tablets.
• Vitamin B-12 contributes to normal brain function and nervous system health, take 1000 micrograms every day. A low level of vitamin B12 has been associated with memory loss and other cognitive deficits, asthma, depression, AIDS, multiple sclerosis, tinnitus, diabetic neuropathy and low sperm counts.
[If things go bad, you'll want what to maxamize your brain functions. Being out of your typical daily element will already have you operating at a few percent less than optimum. It's the functionuing of that cranial encased organ that allows us to learn and use complex symbols and methodologies to thrive. Mr Larry]
• Several surveys have shown that most strict, long-term vegetarians are vitamin B12 deficient. Many elderly people are also deficient because their production of the intrinsic factor needed to absorb the vitamin from the small intestine decline rapidly with age.
• Vitamin B12, vitamin B6 as well as folic acid play a vital roles in recycling homocysteine into methionine, one of the 20 or more essential building blocks from which our bodies builds new proteins. Without sufficient amounts of folic acid, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12, the recycling of homocysteine into methionine becomes inefficient and homocysteine levels can increase. Quite a few studies indicate that high levels of homocysteine are associated with higher than normal risks of both heart disease and stroke. Increasing consumption of folic acid, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12 is now believed to dramatically decrease homocysteine levels. And some studies also show lower risks of cardiovascular and heart disease among individuals with higher intakes of folic acid, those who use quality multivitamin supplements, or those with higher amounts of serum folate (the form of folic acid found in the body). Notwithstanding, there are other studies that show little or no meaningful association between homocysteine and cardiovascular disease.
Some of the top vitamin B-12-rich foods are:
|Eggs||Some species of fish supply small amounts|
|Cheese||Vegetables and fruits are very poor sources|
Calcium tablets (Tums Ultra 1000 160 tablets): consume enough calcium every day to maintain adequate blood and bone calcium levels.
• Recommended calcium intake for adults is 1,000 to 1,300 milligrams daily. Multi-vitamins typically do not contain more than 200 to 250 mg of calcium. Tums are 1000 mg /tablet with 40% elemental Ca. [In a SHTF situation, you'll may get your daily calcium requirement from taking Tums to ease an upset stomach. lp]
• The bones and teeth in your body are largely made of calcium. The bones and teeth represent 99% of the total calcium found in your body, with the other 1% residing in the bloodstream.
• If your body cannot achieve its daily requirements, it will begin to sap the calcium from your teeth and bones, making them fragile and weak, and resulting in problems such as arthritis and osteoporosis. A calcium deficiency can also cause palpitations of the heart and hypertension. In addition to supplying bones and the bloodstream, calcium helps the body to properly heal from wounds and promotes heart function. Also, calcium aids in blood clotting and helps nerves communicate with each other better. In general, this is one of the top minerals your body needs to be successfully healthy.
• Do not to take calcium supplements (Tums) with tetracycline or doxycycline antibiotics.
Some of the top calcium-rich foods are:
|Cheese||Dark leafy greens like spinach, kale, turnips, and collard greens.||Fortified soymilk (Not all soymilk is a good source of calcium, so it’s best to check the label.)|
|Yogurt||Fortified cereals such as Total, Raisin Bran, Corn Flakes (They have a lot of calcium in one serving.)||Enriched breads, grains, and waffles|
|Milk||Fortified orange juice|
Vitamin C (Spring Valley 500 mg x 250 tablets, Walmart). Vitamin C is one of the safest and most effective nutrients. It may not be the cure for the common cold, but the benefits of vitamin C include protection against immune system deficiencies, cardiovascular disease, eye disease, and even skin wrinkling.
• Vitamin C plays an important role in fighting and controlling harmful infections. It’s also considered a powerful antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals that can harm the body, and vitamin C helps make collagen, a tissue required for healthy teeth, bones, gums, and blood vessels.
• It’s not practical for most people to consume the required servings of fruits and vegetables needed on a consistent basis, whereas taking a once-daily supplement is safe, effective, and easy to do. Only 10% to 20% of adults get the recommended nine servings of fruits and vegetables daily.
• There is no real downside to taking a 500-milligram supplement, except that some types may irritate the stomach. The safe upper limit for vitamin C is 2,000 milligrams a day, and there is a great track record with strong evidence that taking 500 milligrams daily is safe.
The top Vitamin C-rich foods are:
|Acerola Cherry 1 cherry = 1 orange||Guava||Cauliflower|
|Citrus Fruits: orange, grapefruit, lemon, lime||Brussels Sprouts||Tomatoes|
|Papayas||Melons||Select Herbs: cilantro, chives, thyme, basil, parsley|
|Blackcurrant||Dark leafy greens: kale, mustard greens, chard, spinach|
Vitamin D-3 (Spring Valley 1000iu x 100 soft gels, Walmart) Protect bone, joint, and immune health. vitamin D3 is extremely useful in absorbing calcium and phosphorus from the intestines so the two key minerals can be used by the body. Vitamin D3 is the vitamin that is used by humans. Receiving approximately 15 minutes of sunlight per day, if you are able, will provide you with all the Vitamin D you need. The FDA suggests that you consume 200 to 400 IU per day of Vitamin D if you are less than 50 years old. If you are over 50, it is suggested that you consume 600 IU. For many individuals, the best way to obtain the recommended daily intake is by taking a good multivitamin.
What can high-vitamin D foods do for you?
• Help optimize calcium metabolism
• Help optimize phosphorus metabolism
• Help prevent type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, high blood pressure, heart attack, congestive heart failure, and stroke
• Help prevent falls and muscle weakness
• Help prevent osteoporosis while maintaining bone integrity
• Help regulate insulin activity and blood sugar balance
• Help regulate immune system responses
• Help regulate muscle composition and muscle function
• Help regulate blood pressure
• Lower risk of excessive inflammation
• Lower risk of some bacterial infections
• Support cognitive function, especially in older persons
• Support mood stability, especially in older persons
• Help prevent chronic fatigue
• Help prevent the following types of cancer: bladder, breast, colon, ovarian, prostate and rectal
If you live north of the line connecting San Francisco to Philadelphia, chances are very good that aren’t getting enough vitamin D. The same is also true if you don’t, or can’t, get outside in the sunlight for at least a 15-minute daily walk. A recent study of individuals admitted to a Boston hospital showed that nearly 60% were experiencing vitamin D deficiency at some level or another.
***Vitamin D3 is both a vitamin and a hormone. It acts as a vitamin when it binds with calcium for proper absorption. Humans cannot digest calcium without adequate amounts of Vitamin D3.
This Vitamin Can Radically Reduce Damage from low level Radioactivity
3 June 2011, FoodConsumer.com
How Does Vitamin D3 Protect Against Radiation-Induced Damage?
Scientists have identified a total of nearly 3,000 genes that are upregulated by vitamin D3, so it makes sense that it would have “multifaceted protective actions,” as researchers noted in the International Journal of Low Radiation.
The report found that the most active molecular form of vitamin D3 (also known as calcitriol) — may offer protection against a variety of radiation-induced damages, including those caused by background radiation or a low-level nuclear incident, through the following mechanisms:
• Cell cycle regulation and proliferation
• Cellular differentiation and communication
• Programmed Cell Death (PCD)
• Anti-angiogenesis (a process that stops tumors from making new blood vessels, which means they stop growing)
The protective mechanisms are so strong that researchers suggested vitamin D3 should be considered among the prime (if not the primary) non-pharmacological agents to protect against sub-lethal low radiation damage and, particularly, radiation-induced cancer.
It’s unclear how much vitamin D is necessary to protect against radiation-induced cancer, but researchers have found that daily intakes of vitamin D by adults in the range of 4,000 to 8,000 IU are needed to maintain blood levels of vitamin D metabolites in the range needed to reduce the risk of breast and colon cancers by about half.
Earlier studies have shown that optimizing your vitamin D levels could help you to prevent at least 16 different types of cancer including pancreatic, lung, ovarian, prostate, and skin cancers, so it’s not a stretch to add radiation-induced cancer to that list.
It has been my experience that many are still nervous about taking doses larger than 1,000 to 2,000 units per day. This is unfortunate as most adults without sun or safe tanning bed exposure will need 6,000-8,000 units of vitamin D per day to attain healthy vitamin D levels.
Three Points to Remember About Vitamin D
When using vitamin D therapeutically, it’s important to remember the following:
1. Your best source for vitamin D is exposure to the sun, without sunblock on your skin, until your skin turns the lightest shade of pink. While this isn’t always possible due to the change of the seasons and your geographic location (and your skin color), this is the ideal to aim for. Vitamin D supplementation or use of a safe tanning bed can fill the gaps during the winter months outside of the tropics, when healthy sun exposure is not an option.
2. If you supplement with vitamin D, you’ll only want to supplement with natural vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol). Do NOT use the synthetic and highly inferior vitamin D2, which is the one most doctors will give you in a prescription unless you ask specifically for D3.
3. Get your vitamin D blood levels checked! The only way to determine the correct dose is to get your blood level tested since there are so many variables that influence your vitamin D status. I recommend using Lab Corp in the United States. Getting the correct test is the first step in this process, as there are TWO vitamin D tests currently being offered: 1,25(OH)D and 25(OH)D.
Foods high in Vitamin D3 include:
|Salmon, mackerel, cod||Cod liver oil||Beef liver|
|shrimp||Fortified cow’s milk|
Brandy, gin, rum, tequila, vodka and whiskey are typically the most stable distilled spirits. These can be stored for a long time. These liquors have an indefinite shelf life and once opened may begin to lose certain flavor qualities over a period of time. Depending upon your storage methods, this can be anywhere from several months to several years.
Most distilled spirits do not age or mature in the bottle. This means that your 20 year old, unopened bottle of bourbon or whiskey will taste relatively the same as first day it was bottled. However, like beer certain liquors can “go bad” after a few months in an opened bottle. This may cause your liquor to loose some of its character or flavor.
When alcohol is consumed, it gets special privileges and needs no digestion. The alcohol molecules diffuse through the stomach wall as soon as they arrive and can reach the brain and liver in minutes. This reaction is slightly slowed when there is also food in your system, but as soon as the mixed contents enter the small intestine, the alcohol grabs first place and is absorbed quickly.
Alcohol and weight loss are enemies, but an occasional drink can have a place in a healthy lifestyle. In fact, many experts note the health benefits of consuming a single drink per day, including a reduced risk for high blood pressure. If you are exceeding one drink daily, you might be sabotaging your weight loss plans. Alcohol only add empty calories to your diet. Research shows that if you drink before or during a meal, both your inhibitions and willpower are reduced. In this state, you are more likely to overeat—especially greasy or fried foods—which can add to your waistline. Drinking might help induce sleep, but the sleep you get isn’t very deep, as a result, you get less rest. Alcohol can also increase the amount of acid that your stomach produces, causing your stomach lining to become inflamed. Over time, excessive alcohol use can lead to serious health problems, including stomach ulcers, liver disease, and heart troubles.
Example: Seagrams 7 Crown: 1 shot=1.5 fl oz=97 calories
Echincea (Spring Valley 760 mg x 100 capsules, Walmart) One of the most popular herbs in America today. Echinacea is used to shorten the duration of the common cold and flu and reduce symptoms, such as sore throat (pharyngitis), cough, and fever. Contains substances that enhance the activity of the immune system, relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and have hormonal, antiviral, and antioxidant effects. For general immune system stimulation, during colds, flu, upper respiratory tract infections, or bladder infections. [This is not taken daily like a common multivitamin, Echincea is only taken for a few days when you have already become ill]
• Named for the prickly scales in its large conical seed head, the herb resembles the spines of an angry hedgehog (echinos is Greek for hedgehog).
• Results of archeological digs indicate that Native Americans may have used echinacea for more than 400 years to treat infections and wounds and as a general “cure-all.”
• Throughout history people have used echinacea to treat (treat is different than cure) scarlet fever, syphilis, malaria, blood poisoning, and diphtheria. Although this herb was popular during the 18th and 19th centuries, its use began to decline in the United States after the introduction of antibiotics. Echinacea preparations became increasingly popular in Germany throughout the 20th century.
Magnesium (Finest Natural 250 mg x 300 tablets, Walgreens Drug Store). Dietary Supplement Tablets. Magnesium is an essential mineral and plays an important role in energy metabolism, protein synthesis, neuromuscular transmission and bone structure, energy support. (Equate Multivitamin provides 50 mg of the 400 recommended below)
The “Recommended Daily Allowance”, or RDA, for Magnesium in the United States is approximately:
• 400 mg per day for men
• 300 mg per day for women
Given that magnesium is also important to help your body absorb calcium, it is crucial to get a healthy dose of this mineral.
Some of the top magnesium-rich foods are:
|Leafy Green Vegetables: Spinach, romaine lettuce more than iceberg lettuce.||Nuts: Almonds, cashews and Brazil nuts.|
|Whole Grains: Buckwheat flour, barley, cornmeal, oat bran and bulgur, instead of white flour and white rice||Cereals: Whole grain cereals containing bran, oats and buckwheat have magnesium.|
|Beans: black beans, white bean, soybeans, navy beans and lima beans.Tomato paste.||Drinks: Coffee, cocoa and tea|
|Spices: Flavoring your food with magnesium rich spices can give your diet the nutrient boost it needs. Sprinkle on sage, basil, lemongrass, peppermint, parsley and paprika||Chocolate: A surprise magnesium source, this sweet treat is the highest in magnesium of any food, but a chocolate craving can often be a sign of magnesium deficiency. Don’t always reach for a chocolate bar to get your fix, other magnesium rich foods are healthier choices.|
Multivitamin (Equate Mature Complete Multivitamin, 220 tablets, Walmart ) In general, a good daily multivitamin/mineral supplement improves your overall bodily functioning and boosts both your physical and mental health and well-being. Even though multivitamin pills may be beneficial they don’t provide sufficient nutrition in themselves for peak health or disease prevention.
Omega-3 Fish Oil One-Per-Day (Finest Natural soft gels, Walgreens Drug Store). Omega 3s are necessary for many vital functions in the body and have been shown to: Support heart health, Support mental performance and proper brain function, Support a healthy mood, Support healthy skin, nerve and joint function.
Nearly 20% of the US population are so low in DHA and EPA that tests are unable to detect any in their blood.
There is evidence from multiple studies supporting intake of recommended amounts of DHA and EPA in the form of dietary fish or fish oil supplements lowers triglycerides, reduces the risk of death, heart attack, dangerous abnormal heart rhythms, and strokes in people with known cardiovascular disease, slows the buildup of atherosclerotic plaques (“hardening of the arteries”), and lowers blood pressure slightly. However, high doses may have harmful effects, such as an increased risk of bleeding.
Good food sources of plant based ALA :
|Fish or soft gel supplements||soybeans||cauliflower||Brussels sprouts|
Cells in the human body must constantly fight against harmful substances called free radicals. Free radicals can damage the body’s DNA, the inside lining of artery walls, eye proteins and just about any substance or tissue in the body. Many free radicals are created by the body as an inevitable byproduct of processes that occur on a regular basis in the body. Free radicals also come from the foods we eat and even the air we breathe.
However, the human body isn’t completely defenseless against free radicals. Antioxidants we extract from the foods we eat can help protect us against harmful free radicals. Hundreds of antioxidants are found in fruits, vegetables, and other plant-based foods that we can east. The most common antixodants are vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene and other similar carotenoids. Minerals such as selenium and manganese which are needed by enzymes that destroy free radicals can also be found in many whole food products.
The Logical Conclusion
A regular run-of-the-mill multivitamin supplement isn’t going to make up for a bad diet. While it will provide a dozen or so of the vitamins known to maintain health, it only is going to offer a mere shadow of what’s made available to the body from eating plenty of good foods including fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Instead, a daily multivitamin provides a sort of nutritional safety net not a solution. While a majority of the populations gets enough vitamins to avoid common deficiency related diseases, very few people get enough of five essential vitamins that may be key in preventing many chronic diseases. These include:
• Folic acid
• Vitamin B6
• Vitamin B12
• Vitamin D
• Vitamin E
A common, store-brand RDA multivitamin can supply you with enough of these vitamins. And it’s about the least expensive health insurance you can buy.
Top 10 lists of the healthiest food on the planet:
1. Olive Oil contains monounsaturated (good) fats, which have been shown to have some excellent health benefits, such as possibly lowering your risk of diseases such as heart disease and cancer.
2. Blueberries are one of the 10 healthiest foods out there and contain powerful antioxidants that may help lower LDL cholesterol. In fact, these antioxidants were rated #1 in antioxidant activity in a recent Tufts Unioversity studythat compared 40 fruit and vegetables.
3. Yogurt contains healthy bacteria that helps boost your immune system, fight infection and improve your gastrointestinal health. Yogurt may also help prevent osteoporosis, lower cholesterol and reduce your risk for high blood pressure. It is an excellent source of calcium and B vitamins. Be sure to choose low fat and low sugar yogurts.
4. Broccoli makes the 10 healthiest foods list because it’s high in antioxidants and loaded with vitamin C, calcium and folic acid. Broccoli is a proven cancer fighting food – eating broccoli stimulates the body to create natural cancer fighting substances and diets including broccoli have been shown to prevent a number of different types of cancers. Broccoli is also high in soluble fiber and low in calories.
5. Spinach prevents muscle & bone loss and has been linked to decreased risk of cancer and heart diseases. It’s also very high in antioxidants and vitamins A, C, and K, as well as potassium and folate. Spinach is one the healthiest foods you can eat – calorie for calorie, not many foods can match the nutritional benefits and low calorie content of spinach and other green, leafy vegetables like kale and Swiss chard.
6. Tomatoes are high in lycopene, which is a powerful antioxidant that has a ton of health benefits, including helping prevent cancer. Tomatoes are packed with vitamins A and C, as well as potassium. Eating tomatoes also decreases the risk of developing heart disease, increases prostrate health and may lower cholesterol.
7. Apples aid in lowering cholesterol; prevent numerous types of cancer; and have health benefits related to many other conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease, asthma, and diabetes. Apples are extremely high in antioxidants and contain high amounts of vitamin C and fiber. However, apples tend to be one of the most contaminated fruits with pesticides. [Half of a large apple every morning with breakfast is tasty.]
8. Salmon is loaded with heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to a decreased risk of sudden-death heart attacks, heart disease, memory loss, and Alzheimer’s. Salmon has also been shown to help control symptoms of arthritis and depression as well. Be sure to choose wild salmon over farm raised (farm raised salmon contain lots of contaminants.
9. Sweet potatoes are one the top 10 healthiest foods list for good reason: they’re nutrient-rich foods that contain high amounts of fiber, potassium, and vitamins A and C. Sweet potatoes also have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and have been shown to stabilize blood sugar levels (making you feel fuller for longer periods of time) and have cancer and heart disease fighting properties.
10. Almonds round out the 10 healthiest food list. Almonds are loaded with healthy monounsaturated fats and also contain protein, firer, potassium, and calcium. They are rich in vitamin E and potassium and have been shown to lower cholesterol levels, lower your risk of heart disease and diabetes, and they have cancer fighting properties as well.
1. Lemons: A single lemon contains more than 100% of the daily-recommended value of Vitamin C.
2. Broccoli: You can get more than 100% of the daily-recommended amount of Vitamin K from a medium-size stalk of broccoli. In addition, you will also get 200% of the daily-recommended amount of Vitamin C from this wonderfully healthy food.
3. Dark Chocolate: Just by eating a quarter of an ounce of this deliciously healthy food every day will effectively reduce blood pressure.
4. Potatoes: A single red potato has 66 micrograms of folate, which the body needs for building cells. You would have to eat an entire cup of broccoli or spinach to get the equivalent. Just one sweet potato has nearly eight times the amount of Vitamin A you need on a daily basis to effectively boost your immune system and fight off cancer. Studies indicate that you can burn as much as 25% more fat following a meal containing potatoes because of the fat-resistant starch.
5. Salmon: A small three-ounce serving of salmon has nearly 50% of the recommended daily allowance of niacin to fight memory loss and Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, salmon also contains omega-3 fatty acids, which lower the risk of cancer, depression and heart disease. Make sure you are eating wild salmon as opposed to farm-raised, which has up to sixteen times the amount of toxic polychlorinated biphenyl.
6. Walnuts: All nuts are naturally healthy foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce cholesterol, improve mood, protect against sun damage and fight cancer. The melatonin present in walnuts is the perfect natural sleep aid.
7. Avocados: A single avocado contains more than 50% of the fiber you need each day and 40% of the folate, which reduces heart disease. Avocados are healthy foods that are rich in fats that can lower cholesterol by as much as 22%. Add avocados to salads to increase the absorption of beta-carotene by up to five times as much.
8. Garlic: Garlic may be better than all the other healthy foods on the planet. It is a powerful fighter against disease and inhibits the growth of bacteria such as E. coli. A compound known as allicin is found in garlic is a potent anti-inflammatory that has been known to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Crushing fresh garlic will release the greatest amount of allicin. Add garlic to other healthy foods; just be careful not to overcook because the garlic will begin to lose its nutrients after only ten minutes.
9. Spinach: Recent studies found that spinach ranks above other fruits and vegetables as one of the best healthy foods for fighting cancer. In addition, spinach contains zeaxanthin and lutien, which boost the immune system and promote eye health.
10. Beans: A single serving of legumes, such as lentils, peas and beans, four days a week will reduce your risk for heart disease by as much as 22%. In addition, beans also reduce the risk of breast cancer. The darker beans are healthy foods because they contain the most antioxidants. A recent study of healthy foods found that black bean hulls have forty times the amount that is present in white beans.
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