Most vital nutrition can be reaped from the abundance of healthful foods eating the Paleo way.
Because neither our foods nor our food choices are perfect, some nutrients are either hard to attain or of insufficient quantities from diet alone, including detoxification nutrients, antioxidants, vital trace minerals and nutrients with anti-inflammatory properties. In addition to chemical additives in food, we are constantly exposed to environmental chemicals and heavy metals that can further stress our health. Ultimately, the choice to add supplements is up to the individual.
To make it easier for those who are interested in nutritional supplements, we have established an account with Pure Encapsulations, a professional-quality nutritional source with extensive variety (see description at right).
The following list highlights some supplements which, in our opinion, are of highest priority (anti-inflammatory properties, common dietary deficiencies, detoxification aids or convenience).
Pure Encapsulations Featured Nutritional Products:
Detox Pure Pack - Our most popular selection. A comprehensive and convenient daily multivitamin/mineral packet with an abundance of detoxification & antioxidant nutrients that are often not included in other multi-packets. Especially helpful during the strict paleo detox phase to minimize side effects, but also great as a regular daily supplement pack as well. Call it "The Easy Button of Supplements!"
Kelly's Note: This "Smart Pack" has the most comprehensive collection of nutrients of any I've researched and is the core of my personal regular supplement selection. I then add additional individual nutrients (generally from the following list of common deficiencies) to further optimize my nutrition.
Magnesium - Most people are deficient in this critical mineral, especially with all the attention to calcium. Magnesium citrate is the best absorbed form. Magnesium is involved in over 300 enzymatic reactions in the body, having influence on energy production, muscle contraction, nerve transmission and bone formation. Magnesium increases the absorption of calcium and works with Vitamin D3 and boron to improve bone strength (along with weight-bearing exercise).
Vitamin D3 - Anti-inflammatory properties. Vitamin D serves as a base molecule upon which many hormones are built. Vitamin D is naturally made from cholesterol in the skin with the sun's UV ray exposure but that reaction is hampered by sunscreen application and the lack of healthy fats in the diet (read more about healthy fats here).
Cod Liver Oil - Anti-inflammatory properties. All the benefits of fish oil with both EPA and DHA. It also contains vitamin A which is necessary for metabolizing these essential oils. Unlike other fish oils, cod liver oil's DHA percentage is naturally higher than EPA (DHA is the primary form used by the brain).
Probiotic 50B This product contains a whopping 50B CFU of the beneficial digestive bacteria, an intensity not found in most other brands. A great support for those with chronic digestive issues.
For additional probiotic support, soil-based organisms also greatly assist digestion and are commonly deficient in our modern dirt-free culture (select the 60 capsule size for the lowest price). Consider supplementing for a month or 2 until your digestion improves.
CoQ10 - A vital nutrient in energy production. Supplementing is critical for those taking cholesterol-lowering statin medications because CoQ10 is in the same pathway as cholesterol and, therefore, it's production is reduced along with cholesterol.
Iodine For thyroid support. Iodine is also a detox aide for purging fluoride, bromide and mercury. It's naturally found in sea products so those who live in the Midwest US tend to have chronically low iodine (the "goiter belt").
Vitamin K2 - This fat soluble vitamin is critical for bone metabolism - essentially instructing calcium to go into the bone. It's naturally found in butter from grass-fed cows and eggs yolks from pastured chickens, foods not commonly eaten in modern cultures. Warning: Cannot be taken by those using blood thinners such as Coumadin or Warfarin.
Digestive Enzymes - Enzymes tend to be weak or lacking after years of exposure to a western diet. Supplementation is beneficial in the transition to more nourishing food choices, especially protein. If your protein intake has been low (for example, a vegetarian diet), the increased protein in the Paleo diet can stress stomach digestion. Consider supplementing with enzymes until the stomach adapts and starts making its own.
Heavy Metal Detox, HM Chelate - Nutritional support for those interested in detoxing heavy metals from their bodies.
The information below comes from the Pure Encapsulations website and demonstrates the attention they put into the quality of their products. Feel free to browse their vast nutritional information and/or shop at your leisure (it's easy to shop via the "All Departments" link at the top of the page). Choosing supplements can be overwhelming, so the welcome page at the link below lists our top 25 recommended products in alphabetical order. We have been impressed with Pure Encapsulations' quality and personally use their supplements.
Supplements for Sensitive People
Pure Encapsulations supplements are hypoallergenic. All two-piece capsules are hypoallergenic and vegetarian.There are absolutely no added coatings, binders, shellacs, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners or colors, fragrance or excipients in our products that would disrupt or diminish the bioavailability of any of our ingredients. We do not use magnesium stearate in any of our formulas. Our products also do not contain wheat, gluten, nuts, egg, preservatives or hydrogenated oils. Furthermore, we have a comprehensive allergen SOP in place to prevent ingredient cross-contamination.
Our ingredients are selected solely on the basis of quality and purity and are provided in their most bioavailable forms. We source premium raw materials from trusted industry leaders, including the finest suppliers from the U.S., France, Japan, Switzerland, Germany and Italy. All ingredients are tested for purity and potency by independent certified laboratories. Ingredient suppliers must meet rigorous testing and quality criteria to qualify as a Pure Encapsulations supplier.
Manufacturing and Quality Control Excellence
We manufacture our own products in our own state-of-the-art plant in Sudbury, Massachusetts. Pure Encapsulations is NSF-GMP registered in the U.S., GMP certified in Canada and exceeds the standards of the United States Pharmacopeia (USP).All manufacturing takes place in temperature, humidity and dust-controlled rooms. Each piece of equipment is dismantled and sterilized before each production run. This includes scales, mills, blenders, powder fillers, encapsulating machines and capsule counters. Our warehouse is climate controlled in order to maximize the stability of our raw materials and finished products.Certified independent laboratories test raw materials and finished, encapsulated products. Using the most advanced equipment and test methods, including HPLC and GM-MS, these labs verify the potency and purity of ingredients. Independent microbiological testing is also performed to ensure supplement purity and safety.
Open Plant Policy
Pure Encapsulations maintains an "open plant" policy for our customers and prospects. You or a member of your staff can visit our plant at any time, without pre-notification to inspect our immaculate facility.
Full Label Disclosure
Our supplement labels have always listed all ingredients, including the composition of the raw material. Additionally, standardizations of herbal extracts are provided to indicate primary active marker compounds. Furthermore, minerals are listed by their true elemental weights.
Corporate Social Responsibility
Pure Encapsulations is committed to supporting local and worldwide communities through outreach efforts and environmental initiatives. These include product and financial donations to numerous foundations and clinics, including the SOS Children’s Villages, Vitamin Angels and the Wana Duma Children’s Project. The Pure Green Initiative minimizes our carbon footprint and includes annual efforts to reduce waste, improve facility energy efficiency and provide products containing sustainably sourced ingredients.
Pure Encapsulations makes every effort to source non-GMO ingredients. Vitamins derived from corn dextrose fermentation are non-GMO. Most of our soy-containing ingredients are non-GMO. Soy isoflavones, nattokinase and soy protein isolate are derived from non-GMO soybeans. Our vitamin E is derived from soybean oil that is PCR negative, indicating that there is no presence of genetically modified DNA. There is also no detectable GMO material in Alpha-GPC or phytosterols. For other ingredients, we have either obtained GMO-free documentation or are working diligently with our suppliers to obtain GMO-free certification/documentation.