Mardy Roux

Archive for August, 2010|Monthly archive page

Getting the Most from Your Vitamins

In Vitamins. Minerals & Supplements on August 22, 2010 at 9:26 pm

The big questions
If you’ve been following my Mardy Roux Obesity Treatment Project, and if you’ve read up to Phase 2, then you’ll know that in Phase 2 I began adding vitamins to my personal weight loss regime. Over the years I have been researching All Things “Healthy” I’ve noticed that there have been widespread concerns about the effectiveness of the vitamins we take. Are they high quality? Are they “bio-available”? Are they even necessary?

I take vitamins because I believe I need them
For years I didn’t think I needed to take vitamins if I ate a healthy diet. Surely, a healthy diet is enough to provide an average person with all the vitamins and minerals they could possibly need? After all, our ancestors didn’t need vitamin tablets. Well, putting aside the fact that our ancestors were considered “ancient” by their communities if they miraculously made it to the ripe old age of thirty, they were also eating animals and foods that grew in a food chain in which the soils of Earth were fresh and brimming with nutrients. Today, our soils are a shadow of themselves. Mankind processes OIL into fertilizer to get things to grow. Many of the foods we eat aren’t much more than clever holograms of what once was a real food. That might not apply to all of the foods we eat, but how the hell do we know which ones in the fruit and vegetable section of the grocery store DO have nutrients? We don’t. So I for one, am beginning to work on the assumption that I might not be getting every nutrient my body needs from the food I put into it.

There is also the issue of “how much” of any given vitamin or mineral we “need”. If we go by the recommended daily allowances, they are set at the point below which we’re supposed to die some kind of horrible deficiency death featuring deformities and insanity. So we’re clearly talking about a MINIMUM and not an OPTIMUM. And honestly, because we have so much involvement in research by profit-seeking entities who aren’t all that interested in non-patentable nutrition supplements, it’s taking a very long time to understand just how much of anything might be optimum for any of us in general, let alone you or me in particular. So we’re pretty much on our own. We need to work some of this stuff out for ourselves, or, if we’re lucky or have money, we can find a fantastic naturopath or holistic doctor to help us on our way. I am not so lucky, so I’m working this out for myself.

For instance, I now know that my adrenal glands are fatigued and that they need a variety of things for support, and one of those things is a plentiful supply of Vitamin C. I have tested that out for myself, by gradually increasing my Vitamin C dosage over a number of months. I found out how to recognise if I have excessive Vitamin C intake – which I do not – and I’m able to report that I can FEEL THE BENEFITS of the Vitamin C I’m taking! It’s true! Some vitamins and minerals actually have a noticeable impact on our health! If I ever feel that my Vitamin C intake is no longer helping, then I’ll reduce the dosage, slowly to avoid cold turkey effects, and stop taking it. But for now, I know it helps because I get nervous when I see the number of Vitamin C tablets in the bottle getting low….and my brain keeps the message of “must buy Vitamin C” right there in the front of my head until I get off my obese ass and go and buy some! I went through that exact process when I tested Maca Root for a month to see if it helped with adrenal fatigue. I never forgot to take my two daily doses for those first few weeks, and when my first bottle of tincture of Maca Root started running out, it burned a hole in my head until I bought another bottle. It was clearly doing something for me. But before I reached the end of the second bottle, I was forgetting to take it. And after forgetting, I felt no better or worse than I think I would have HAD I taken it. I now have a supplement that’s helping my adrenals far more than the Maca Root ever helped, and there’s no chance of me forgetting to take it! I just had to work this out for myself!

Are the vitamins I buy bio-available?
A year ago I thought I needed to take some B-Complex, and being concerned about the bio-availability of what I was taking, I popped into my nearest health store and bought some liquid B-Complex. Well, if that wasn’t the most disgusting, foul-tasting glug I’ve ever had. I’m cacking a bit just thinking of it. It tasted so horrible I was nauseous for an hour after taking it. I tried it in a banana smoothie, and turned a perfectly good banana smoothie into a giant, horrible cacky brown concoction I don’t even want to think about. I finished the bottle, because I’m not made of money and I hate to waste stuff. But I had to find a different way. I went back to tablets and again wondered if they worked.

I’ve heard stories about people having kilos of un-dissolved tablets in them when they die, with calcium tablets being a major offender. So I remained a bit nervous about the vitamins, minerals and supplements I was taking. And then, I found a simple way to check that what we’re taking is actually going to be “available” to our systems.

The Water Test
Really, what we’re hoping for with any vitamins, minerals, or supplements we take, is that they will DISSOLVE in our gut. If they don’t dissolve, then we cannot access whatever it is that they contain. If we take a capsule, we know that the gelatine outer coating will dissolve and all the tiny particles will be released for our use. But with a pressed tablet or caplet, what do we do? How do we know it will dissolve? We drop it into a glass of water and wait for 15 minutes. That’s what we do! Fifteen minutes in water is a lot easier on a pressed tablet than 15 minutes in the hydrochloric acid of the human stomach. If after 15 minutes the tablet breaks up into tiny particles really easily, then you know that it will do as well in your stomach! Now, if you’re a complete and utter dumb bunny like me, it will cross your mind to do this test on your timed release Vitamin C tablets…but think for a second. THOSE TABLETS…the “timed release” varieties, are DESIGNED to dissolve slowly. So don’t try the water test on timed release tablets! I know my Vitamin C tablets are working because I know how good I feel when I take them because they’re doing what I need to be done right now, which is supporting my adrenals and thyroid.

The big surprise I got when I water tested all the various tablets and caplets in my vitamin, mineral and supplement cupboard, was that all of them dissolved beautifully in the 15 minute water test. Even the calcium/magnesium caplets I buy from my supermarket. I don’t need to pay a small fortune for liquid vitamins, because I KNOW that the ones I’m buying in the supermarket are DISSOLVING. In fact, I only buy a very few things from the health store these days, as I know that the brands I’m buying cheaply at the supermarket are bio-available.

But do they WORK?
Sure, the vitamins and minerals and supplements I’m using may all be “bio-available”, but do they WORK? Well, here’s the thing about that. I’ve taken the time to reconstruct my approach to vitamins, minerals and supplements from the ground up. I’ve taken the time to take an active decision on each and every single thing I take based on the action I need from it. Knowing what I want from a vitamin, for instance, means that after a month or so of taking it, I’m in a good position to know if it works well or not. A great case in point is the brand of Vitamin D I recently bought. It passes the water test, but I gag when I take it. Why is that? I take a variety of things every day and don’t gag on any of them except this Vitamin D tablet. I also keep forgetting to TAKE IT. This means that this is not the right Vitamin D tablet for me. I will go back to the liquid Vitamin D I was taking before, even though it’s a lot more expensive, because, as the only liquid vitamin I was taking, I never forgot it, and I always had a positive feeling from taking it. And I know it had very positive effects on me. I could FEEL IT. I don’t get that from this new Vitamin D I’m taking.

I can only suggest that you too, if you’re following what I’ve been doing on my MROTP, monitor and assess the way you’re reacting to the various vitamins, minerals and supplements you take. If you always remember to take it, and you always remember when you’re running out, then it’s really a good one for you. If you gag, then it might be the brand or the form of vitamin or supplement that’s a problem with your particular system. You have to construct your own approach to this. I can tell you what works for me, but that’s not guarantee it will work the same for you.

Take it slow…
In my Mardy Roux Obesity Treatment Project, I chose to add a few new vitamins or minerals or supplements to my approach each month. In that way I had a month to evaluate the benefit I was getting from the previous lot and adjust my intake accordingly. I also didn’t want to run out and spend a fortune buying lots of stuff I might not really need. And most importantly, I wanted to be able to visualise what benefit I’m getting from every single thing I take, as I take it. And that takes a bit of time!

If you’ve read my MROTP Phase 2 instructions, you’ll see that I’ve written up the REASONS for taking the vitamins I included at that phase. For me, it was just so important to be familiar with those reasons and I encourage you to reread that post until you KNOW every time you take one of those vitamins, what it is you’re looking for it to do for you. And as time passes, you’ll start to get a good feel for whether or not it’s delivering. If it isn’t, then comes the time to re-evaluate…is the dosage right for you…too low…too high….or, do you really need it at all? Unless you are consciously connecting with the REASON you’re taking the tablet at the moment you’re taking it, you will not start to consciously connect with its ultimate effectiveness or otherwise. So know what you want from your nightly Vitamin C. Know what you want from your morning Vitamin D. If you’re following my MROTP you know that I am keeping vitamins, minerals and supplements at the very minimum I think I can manage to get the job done. And when I add another one in at each phase, I will explain exactly WHY I’m doing it, and what the benefit is that I’m looking for.

A framework for success
I can tell you right now, and without equivocation, that I would not be enjoying the success I’m enjoying right now in my MROTP if I wasn’t taking my supplements. They are the framework of support upon which I am allowing my body to heal. And my body must HEAL in order to drop fat. I don’t see my weight loss as my finding some kind of inner good character and willpower, because it’s not that. What I see is that my morbid obesity was due to being UNWELL. And now that I see it’s about taking small and imperfect steps towards becoming “well” as opposed to “good and socially acceptable”, I’m seeing results. Slow, but still certain, RESULTS.

Mardy Roux

If you are reading this post and wish to know more about the MROTP, then please be sure to read the MROTP rules and the instructions for Phase 1 which you will find here on this blog.
Always consult your medical practitioner before beginning any weight loss program.

© Mardy Roux 2010