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To Supplement or Not To Supplement, That is The Question

In my clinical practice I am always being asked, "Do I need to take supplements or can I get all the nutrients I need from my diet?" I can only say that my observations and review of the diets of thousands of individuals further confirms my conviction that in today's hectic world, even the best intentions of eating a well-balanced diet fall short of reality.

I like to think that as a health care practitioner I eat fairly well, certainly better than the people that I see on a daily basis. I try and practice what I preach. When I was in graduate school, I did an experiment with my own diet. I made a seven-day diary of my diet; making sure I did not change any conditions that would be abnormal to my eating habits. I sent the diary to a special lab to be analyzed. The result of the analyses was startling. I was actually below the RDA in many areas. Understand that our Recommended Dietary Allowance is the least amount of nutrients we can get away with. With all of this considered the RDA is still about one notch up from disease and falls way short of being the optimum dietary requirements for good health. Basically one up from scurvy.

Granted, there are many ways to approach dietary assessment and food intake analysis. Some may prove to be more effective than others. However, I can only report after thorough assessment of thousands of clients' dietary profiles, that without exception, people require specific supplementation of one or more vitamin, mineral or enzyme preparation in order to attain and maintain the highest level of wellness. One must always seek guidance on establishing such a program to be sure that one is taking the proper nutritional supplements in their correct dosages.

In conclusion, I do not believe that all of our nutritional requirements could or should be gotten from a bottle. On the contrary, I feel more emphasis should be made on eating a proper balanced diet, conscientious of purer, cleaner, unprocessed, organic whole foods. However, after examining this issue in depth, I do feel that we would be foolish and impractical if we relied solely on our food intake to satisfy the dietary needs of our modern lifestyle.

I am like most people, my schedule is crazy busy and the way that I assure that I get at least the adequate amount of nutrients every day is to start with a whole food based, super-food formula called Tonic Alchemy by Dragon Herbs. One scoop of Tonic Alchemy in my morning shake gives me 91 high potent, organic, food-source, super, nutrients. Throw in a tablespoon of Barlene’s Omega Swirl and it gives me 1500mg of the yummiest Omega 3 fish oil imaginable, that lasts me the whole day.

Best of Health!

Radhia Gleis, Wellness Director,

Radhia Gleis, PhD, Med, CCN, is a certified Clinical Nutritionist/Holistic Practitioner, Wellness Director for Martins Wellness Pharmacies with three locations in the Austin area. She is available for private consultation at the Dripping Springs Pharmacy, M-F, 2:30 to 6:00pm. Contact Sign up to become a VIP at and find out when Radhia’s next free lecture is sched

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