As we discussed last week – many supplements are less than desirable due to synthetic qualities and I want you to avoid these to stay healthy, or at least find a quality brand. Read on for the last three recommended vitamins along with my favorite whole food drink mix.

 Questionable Vitamin #4: Synthetic Folic Acid

Folic acid is synthetic and isn’t great for humans. Folate is better, however a large part of our population has a genetic mutation that doesn’t allow the conversion of folate into its usable form known as 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (5-MTHF) aka Methyl folate. Because of this, I recommend to patients who need it to take the converted form 5MTHF. My favorite brands are by Klaire Labs, Seeking Health, and Suzy Cohen’s supplement line called Mito B-Complex. Here’s a link to a study showing how synthetic folic acid promoted breast tumors:

University of Colorado Cancer Center found: “a trial involving a folic acid supplement, which is thought to reduce pre-cancerous polyps in the colon, actually increased the number of polyps among users compared to those who received a placebo.”

Questionable Vitamin #5: Synthetic B 12 in the form of Cyanocobalamin  

This is the cheapest form of B 12 on the market and it is also the worst for humans.  It must be broken down and converted to a more usable form, so I suggest you just take the usable form, if you even need it. (A holistic healthcare provider skilled in analyzing a comprehensive lab panel should be able to tell you). Synthetic B12 is not easily absorbed and has a small cyanide component. Please only consume methylcobalamin, hydroxocobalamin, or adenosylcobalamin (ideally a mixture of all three). These are always best injected into a muscle – you absorb very little when taken under the tongue or in a pill, especially as you age. It’s also best taken with 5-MTHF.

The next issue with single vitamins is that nature never intended them to be taken individually. They usually come in vegetables containing thousands of phytochemicals that work synergistically (together) to potentiate one another. This means they make each other stronger when they are taken all together. My favorite example is an apple. One apple contains about 9000 phytochemicals. One is Vitamin C, but that Vitamin C may seem miniscule when you measure it. However, along with its 8999 other plant based chemical friends it is stronger and easier for your body to absorb than an over-the-counter, mega dose of Vitamin C. Usually your kidneys process it and you pee it out. I call this expensive vitamin urine!

I have my favorite supplement lines and products. I am a supplement snob of sorts and only want to take the best. I won’t give my patients anything that I wouldn’t want to ingest.  I’m also research driven and many vitamins have little to no real research on their actual product. It is perfectly legal, although not ethical, to take a third party’s research on a nutrient and slap it onto another product’s pamphlet. It is misleading the consumer in believing that the product has research on it, when in fact it does not.

I don’t promote or sell many products. However, there is one whole food supplement that is backed by years of double-blind, placebo controlled, third party, independent, and peer reviewed research. I want to disclose that I’m a distributor of only a few of their products because others don’t meet my high standards. The company is Juice Plus. The green veggie blend, the orchard fruit blend, and the vineyard berry blend are all fabulous. They are all vine ripened and organic. The sugar is extracted so it’s safe for people with cancer and diabetes who shouldn’t be eating fruit. It has the research to back it, for example it increases blood antioxidant levels by 500% in as little as a month. It decreases cardiovascular stress after a high fat meal by 98%, and it increases immune function while decreasing homocystein (a toxic amino acid in humans). The best news is kids get it for free when an adult is taking it. I’m part of the non-profit who gives it to kids for free, for up to 3 years.  You can learn more about Juice Plus by clicking here.

You don’t have to get it from me, but I’d be very appreciative if you did. Do your own research on it and let me know your thoughts.

In the mean time, avoid the synthetic vitamins and eat more organic and vine ripened vegetables. Supplement with natural vitamins as needed, and find a licensed, well-trained holistic healthcare provider to guide you on your individual nutrient needs.

Blessings of Vibrant Health,

Kristin Grayce McGary