Thursday, June 2, 2011

Is there a Prograde "perfect health profile?"

Is there a Prograde “perfect health profile?”

Possibly. We all know that supplements come and go, and sometimes it's a little perplexing to the average user. So I thought I'd take a look at some of the “essential” supplements Prograde offers, and see if it's possible to put together a profile that makes sense for most people.

First of all, I'm going to add in sports nutrition later. What I want to lay out is a simple supplement profile that should form the baseline for supplementation on a daily basis. From that point, you can build up other supplements as needed to complement your workouts and help you derive the greatest benefit from your nutritional program.

Of crucial significance here is this: only food is food. Having said that, a few simple tips should keep you on the right path.

  1. Go organic whenever you can. Some supplements help with free radical recovery and mitigating toxin damage, but that's no reason to start with a poisonous system and fight it back. Starting with a healthy system saves you a lot of energy.
  2. If you can't always go organic (let's face's expensive!), was your food thoroughly.
  3. Vegetables and fruits are your friends. Love them.
  4. Cut out starches like breads, pastas, most cereals, and even the usual overdose of potatoes. These are just sugar in disguise, and most are completely unnecessary.
  5. Reduce or eliminate sugar as much as possible. It's hardly necessary in most things, and it's the major cause of all this obesity; not to mention all the damage it does to the rest of your system, overtaxing your poor pancreas and making you tired from just being alive.

OK, so what does a basic supplement profile look like anyway?

To begin with, much of our environmental damage has to do with stripping nutrients from soil through over-farming without applying simple strategies like crop rotation. To counteract this, as well as to make up for general deficiencies in our regular diet, a multivitamin and mineral supplement is necessary.

Some experts argue this, and there is evidence on both sides of the discussion. However, I've found that simply adding this supplement to my routine has a marked effect on my energy levels and general sense of wellbeing. So, I say take it.

The amounts will vary depending on how you use your energy. However, following the directions on the bottle will generally give you what you need.

Next, since we've gone the way of toxic beef and nutrient deficient fish products, it's often very difficult for people to get the fatty acids they need to function at their peak. What's more, standard fish oil formulations can be rancid, procured from low-quality farmed stocks, or procured from endagered fish species like Atlantic cod. Cod liver oil used to be the gold standard, but cod stocks are dangerously low. Halibut liver oil is a reasonable alternative, but even there fishing practices are not conservation minded, and the practice of catching everything that swims and throwing away the dead carcasses of commercially unimportant fish is playing havoc with fisheries and ecosystems alike.

A virtually untapped resource—krill oil—is proving to be both ecologically more stable, vastly underfished, and surprisingly superior to all these other seafood sources. In fact, in recent studies it has proven to deliver far more of the essential fatty acids and other components we need than any other source we know of. And it's much cheaper to produce, keeps better, and is nowhere near the verge of extinction.

Plus, it's so far down the food chain that concentrations of environmental toxins are virtually untraceable. This is in stark contrast to predator fish (like cod and halibut), which have concentrated those toxins consumed over many levels of the food chain. Guess where those toxins end up.

In the liver. The same liver we get the oil from. Yuck!

The third essential supplement is an antioxidant. Antioxidants fight free radical damage in the body. Free radicals not only create signs of aging, but are known to be precursors to tumors and cancers that can obviously be more than a little harmful.

Many foods (including krill oil, incidentally) contain compounds that fight off these free radicals and restore systemic equilibrium. These include dark berries (blueberries are among the most powerful), fruits, and dark green vegetables. The most potent antioxidants in recent use include some pretty exotic discoveries, like acai berry, goji berry, noni fruit, pomegranate and coffee berry.

But that doesn't mean you have to go searching for these fruits. In fact, grapes (especially their seeds—thus the popularity of grapeseed extract) are high in antioxidants. So is green tea. So is red wine.

I don't like wine or green tea. There...I said it. But I do eat a lot of fruit. A simple solution for the average diet is to buy fresh berries when they're available, or frozen ones when fresh is out of season. Frozen berries are just as nutritious as fresh berries, and they last a lot longer. But of course, they do go mushy as soon as they thaw, so they're most useful as an ingredient. I like mine in smoothies or added to oatmeal.

To supplement food-based antioxidants, which in fact may be greatly reduced due to non-organic and GMO farming practices, a good antioxidant blend like that found in Prograde's Longevity forumla is a good addition. This particular product has ORAC values (oxygen radical absorption capacity) far in excess of standard sources.

For example, while the highest ratings go to astaxanthin and lycopene (ORAC 51 and 58 respectively), the incredient combination in Longevity scores a mind-blowing 3,646! That's the highest ORAC rating available in any source or supplement.

So, there you have it. If you want a baseline nutritional profile for some simple supplementation, three products will set you up for maximum health, energy, and wellbeing:

  • VGF 25+ (multivitamin and mineral)
  • EFA Icon (krill oil derived essential fatty acids)
  • Longevity (proprietary antioxidant blend)

The beautiful thing about this combination is that it's available from Prograde as a combo pack! Simply visit THIS PAGE and scroll down to the “Total Wellness Package.” Select your package for men or women (VGF 25+ is available in either, for maximum effectiveness), and you save $40 off the price of the separate products.

In my next post, I'll set up a sports and workout supplement profile as well, so you can see where all those complicated supplements should fit into a good workout program. And once that's done, we'll have another look at actually scheduling these things around meals, workouts, and all those other pesky daily habits (like, you know, being a dad).


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