A frequent question in my practice is about vitamin and mineral supplements. While mega-dose vitamin/mineral therapy can be used as a drug in cases of serious illness under physician supervision, this section deals with the daily use of a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement as part of a wellness program.
The medical establishment usually views mineral and vitamin supplementation as unnecessary, believing that all our required nutrients should come from a “balanced diet”. Recommended daily values of all nutrients are set by the federal government and are now on all food labels. I think one can seriously question whether these recommended levels can truly be achieved by eating a low-fat diet of fresh fruit, vegetables, grains, meat, fish or dairy products in the context of our modern life-style and environment.
As our soil continues to be depleted and our environment more polluted, it is not unreasonable to ask whether the mineral content of our fruits and vegetables are at the recommended levels. The increased need for certain nutrients (like anti-oxidants) to help combat the effect of the several thousand tons of pollutants we spew into the environment each year is not taken into account when the government sets its minimum dietary standards.
There is also a faction of the alternative health community that believes that all our nutritional needs should come from freshly prepared, unprocessed, seasonally correct wholesome foods. This is unrealistic in our modern culture where most adults are working and don’t have time to prepare three healthy meals per day from scratch for their families. Likewise some advocate a macrobiotic diet, others a totally vegetarian diet, etc. These are also difficult to achieve and still don’t address the issue of declining food quality, environmental pollution and our true nutritional needs.
Admittedly, we do need more and better research on the role of supplementation and disease prevention. We need to go beyond simplistic correlation studies and into long-term placebo controlled studies. However, more of this good research is being done every day and the role of vitamin E and folic acid in heart disease prevention are two examples of such research. I believe that it is far better to assume the need for modest dietary supplementation than to wait until “all the research is in”. At best, it can prevent serious illness. At worst, it is a waste of money. However, we waste an incredible amount of money all the time anyway and I prefer to “waste” mine in this fashion.
To address this nutritional gap, I take a supplement pack each day and I offer the same supplements to my patients. A little over a dollar a day (far less than a pack of cigarettes) buys a supplement mixture meant to address two major diseases: cancer and heart disease. Although these packets are available for sale in the office at a discount, I make ingredient sheets available so patients can shop around for the best price and create their own packs if they so choose. ProThera™ manufactures my supplement called Dr.’s Formula – Extra Vitamin D
Sometimes I prescribe a specific supplement for a patient. Since there are so many supplements out there of varying quality and in varying dosage formats, I found it easier to create a link to a supplement distributor’s website, Emerson Ecologics.
When you click on the link above, you will be asked to supply an access code. You will receive this access code at the time of your office visit. After completing their registration form, my custom order page will appear and you can then order the item(s) I have prescribed. You can also use their search feature and buy other items for your family. You will receive a 20% discount on all the products you buy. The discount will be shown on the confirmation e-mail which you will receive from Emerson. (Any financial benefit accruing to me from this arrangement with the distributor is donated to charity).