Vitamins and Supplements, should you swallow the hype?

You can't pass a shop aisle these days without seeing some form of natural nutrients in a man-made pill form. Do we really need them?

With so many free radicals, pollution, and often inadequate eating habits, many people could use taking supplements and vitamins1 to sustain a healthy body. Living here in the Netherlands, it is probable that you haven’t seen the sun for days (or even months!).


You Are What You Eat?

Are you feeling down? Are you lacking energy?

Ideally, your diet should be very rich in fruit, vegetables and whole grains, and poor in fat and processed foods. If you are what you eat, then no wonder so many people suffer from obesity and health problems! Many of us maintain a very unhealthy diet, living on processed food and barely any fresh produce or physical activity. If you know that your diet is not ideal, you may consider reaching for vitamins and supplements, or consult a good nutritionist to get on track to a healthier lifestyle.


Know Your Food

Consult an orthomolecular practitioner. After an intake, he or she will be able to tell you what kind of vitamins you need, in what quantity you should take them and when.

Another good way to find out which nutrients you may be lacking, is starting a food journal. Nowadays, the food tracking apps are so user friendly, and the basic ones are often free. If you only stick to entering what you eat, you can get a nice overview of your nutrient intake, and know what you are deficient in. It's often a necessary reality check to see what we actually eat.


Where to Get Started?

But there are so many different vitamins and supplements to choose from. Which one should I get? The first thing to do is to look at the label. Are the vitamins chemically constructed or derived from natural resources?

There is a lot to choose from out there so inform yourself before taking anything, or better yet, visit a health practitioner or good vitamin shop to ask for help. Various drug stores and vitamin shops offer hundreds of varieties, brands and quality. It's a bit like with the food we buy in shops. You can find cheap, low quality products filled with extra sugar and preservatives, or higher quality, more pure products. You just have to know where to look. Avoid buying the cheapest supplements offered in regular supermarkets, they often have so much garbage added to them, that you may be healthier without taking them! Instead, visit The Vitamin Advice Shop, The Vitamin Store or The Soulsister Vitamins, they are our favorite vitamin and supplement shops in Amsterdam, and offer many natural supplements, and friendly advice.


Don't Rely on Supplements Alone

Before stocking up on various expensive supplements, consider making a healthy change to your diet. Make sure that you don't feed yourself supplements and vitamins in pill form, just in case, instead of following a healthy diet. Consider taking supplements if your diet is affected by an allergy, special diet or food intolerence.

If you would like some advice on what to eat, or how to improve your general level of health and fitness, contact ProWellness or Your Health Coach. They are not only able to help you find the best diet, but can also whip you into shape!


1There is great debate over the regularity that is optimum. Some doctors and scientists recommend a daily dose, while others say that if too many vits are taken the body naturally reduces its absorption of nutrients in food. Naturally, it would be best to eat a healthy and well balanced diet to get all your vitamins straight from fresh food.