I want to start this post by making very clear that I am not a doctor. I’m not encouraging you to take any of these without asking your doctor first. Also keep in mind that these vitamins and dosages are for people that work out with weights and do cardio at least 5 times a week. These 2 things do affect the dosages and amount of vitamins your body needs.
I’ve been taking all of these for a year now and I feel amazing. I rarely get sick and my hair, nails and skin have never looked better. I think it’s all a combination of working out, eating healthy, additional treatments (mostly facials) and consistency, which is the key to everything.
Keep in mind that you won’t see short term results when you take vitamins and supplements. You have to be patient and trust the process and you’ll see the results when you are a healthy adult that looks great in her/his 60’s and beyond. At least that’s my goal.
I decided to focus on my skin, inmune system and bones when I was choosing which vitamins and supplements to take. There are so many vitamins out there, so I think you need to choose what you want to focus on. I read somewhere that you can also alternate them a couple times a year, but I haven’t done that yet.
So without further ado, here are the ones I take, why I take them and the dosages that work for me and my lifestyle:
Vitamin C: (1000 mg)
Brand: Viva Naturals
Vitamin C is necessary for the growth, development and repair of all body tissues. It’s well known for being a potent antioxidant, as well as having positive effects on skin health and immune function. It’s also vital for collagen synthesis, connective tissue, bones, teeth and your small blood vessels. There are many other benefits, but these are the main reasons why I take it.
Foods high in Vitamin C: kiwi, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, lemon, lime, orange, papaya, strawberries, sweet little peppers, grapefruit, kale, tomatoes, red-orange-yellow peppers and sweet potatoes among many others.
Collagen: (4000 mg)
Collagen is one of the most plentiful proteins in mammals. It is responsible for several biological functions, one of which is to provide structural support in connective tissue, muscle and skin. You can think of collagen as the “glue” that holds all these things together. Collagen is the protein responsible for skin elasticity and it also plays a role in joint and bone health. Our bodies create collagen naturally, however, over time the production of this protein slows down. When I started taking collagen it was because of my skin (superficial reasons), but after learning more about it, I now feel like the #1 reason why I like it, is because of the role it plays in my joint and bone health. I know my older self will be grateful for this!
PS: The daily recommended dose is 6000mg, but I only take 4000mg because each pill has only 1000mg and it’s just a way for me to take 2 less pills a day LOL. I don’t take Vital Proteins daily, but I make some really yummy recipes using their collagen peptides that cover for the remaining 2000mg in most days.
Foods high in collagen: Here’s the deal with this… some protein rich foods like meat, eggs, fish & seafood, beans and dairy help your body PRODUCE more collagen because they contain a wide range of amino acids that your body needs to produce more collagen and other foods like bone broth, gelatin, garlic, actually HAVE collagen in them. I try to include both in my daily diet. Having a rich vitamin C diet also helps your body produce more collagen, so it’s important to include those as well. (I mentioned them above).
There are also things that damage your collagen production. It’s so important to avoid doing these on your day to day. Eating refined sugar and carbs, too much sun exposure and smoking. As you can see collagen is super important for your skin, organs and bones, so you don’t want to prevent your body from producing it with a poor diet, not wearing sunscreen and smoking.
Vitamin E: (1000 IU)
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce free radical damage and slow the aging process of your cells. Vitamin E is fat-soluble, this means your body stores and uses it as needed.
Foods high in Vitamin E: Wheat germ oil, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds, spinach, broccoli, kiwi, mangoes and tomatoes. As you can see it’s very important to include nuts and seeds on your day to day diet to get vitamin E.
Vitamin D3: (2000 IU)
Brand: Sports Research
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is naturally present in very few foods, added to others and available as a dietary supplement. It is also produced endogenously when ultraviolet rays from sunlight strike the skin and trigger vitamin D synthesis. Vitamin D is so important because it helps your body to absorb calcium, which is necessary to maintain healthy bones. Muscles need it to move, nerves need it to carry messages between the brain and every body part and the immune system needs vitamin D to fight off invading bacteria and viruses. Together with calcium, vitamin D also helps protect older adults from osteoporosis.
This vitamin also affects your mood and anxiety. That’s why is so important to consume enough vitamin D during the Winter months, where we don’t get much sun exposure.
Other sources of vitamin D: Fatty fish like tuna, mackerel and salmon. Beef liver, cheese and egg yolks. Mushrooms, spinach, kale and okra. There are other foods that are fortified with vitamin D, like some dairy products, orange juice, soy milk and cereals. The levels of vitamin D in foods though are very low, that’s why it’s recommended to supplement. You can also get vitamin D from sun exposure (without sunscreen though which is not great). Usually between 10-30 mins every day. It depends on the color of your skin (darker needs more sun exposure than lighter) and how sensitive your skin is to sunlight.
Calcium: (1000 mg)
Brand: Honest to Wellness
Calcium is one of the most important minerals for the human body. The teeth and bones contain the most calcium. Nerve cells, body tissues, blood, and other body fluids contain the rest of the calcium. Calcium also helps your body with clotting blood, sending and receiving nerve signals, squeezing and relaxing muscles, releasing hormones and other chemicals and keeping a normal heartbeat. Our bodies get the calcium it needs in two ways; one is by eating foods or supplements that contain calcium, and the other is by drawing it from calcium stores in the body, primarily the bones. In other words… If you don’t eat enough calcium-containing foods or supplements, your body will remove calcium from your bones and over time this can have terrible consequences like osteoporosis.
Foods high in calcium: almonds, sprouting broccoli, curly kale, beans & lentils, sardines, okra, sesame, chia seeds, spinach, amaranth, bok choi, whey protein and figs among many others. Dairy products are very high in calcium, however there are many studies that prove that our bodies can’t absorb most of it. Also, dairy products are also high in sodium and sugars (lactose is a type of sugar), so be aware of that. The only dairy product we consume in this household is non-fat greek yogurt and with moderation. We love cheese, but it’s not part of our daily diet.
Omega 3 – fish oil: (1250 mg)
Brand: Sports Research
This is the best way I found to explain it…
When it comes to fat, there’s one type you don’t want to cut back on: omega-3 fatty acids. Two crucial ones, EPA and DHA, are primarily found in certain fish and ALA, is found in plant sources such as nuts and seeds. Not only does your body need these fatty acids to function, but also they deliver some big health benefits like lower blood pressure, reduce triglycerides, slow the development of plaque in the arteries, reduce the chance of abnormal heart rhythm, reduce the likelihood of heart attack and stroke and lessen the chance of sudden cardiac death in people with heart disease.
Foods high in Omega fatty acids:
EPA & DHA: mackerel, salmon, herring, oysters, sardines, anchovies, caviar and trout.
ALA: flax seeds, chia seeds, almonds, walnuts, hemp seeds, kidney beans, seaweed and algae, among others.
ZMA (occasionally): Zinc (30mg), Magnesium (450 mg) and Vitamin B6 (10 mg).
ZMA, or zinc magnesium aspartate, is a popular supplement among athletes, bodybuilders, and fitness enthusiasts. It contains a combination of three ingredients; zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B6. It boosts muscle growth and strength and improves muscle endurance and recovery and most importantly, sleep quality.
A good night sleep is crucial for strength training recovery and helps with musclerepair after a strenuous workout. Along with dietary protein to aid in muscle repair and new muscle growth, your body produces its own muscle-building hormones while you sleep, including human growth hormone (HGH). This all happens on stages 3 and 4 of your sleep cycle, which ZMA helps you get to more efficiently.
This is what happens during this stage of sleep: This stage is the beginning of deep sleep, as the brain begins producing slower delta waves. You won’t experience any eye movement or muscle activity. At this point, it becomes a little harder for you to be awakened, because your body becomes less responsive to outside stimuli. Then, your brain produces even more delta waves and you move into an even deeper, more restorative stage of sleep next. It’s most difficult to wake up during this stage. This is when the body repairs muscles and tissues, stimulates growth and development, boosts immune function, and builds up energy for the next day. To read the whole article, click here. This is why I take ZMA, it just basically guarantees that you’ll get into that crucial sleep stage 🙂
That’s why it’s recommended to take ZMA 30 – 60 minutes prior to bedtime and on an empty stomach to help synchronise absorption with sleep. Also, the product should not be taken with foods or supplements containing calcium because calcium blocks the absorption of zinc.
CBD capsules & oil:
I wrote a detailed blog post about this brand and how much it has helped me with anxiety, energy levels and to quiet my mind before bedtime so I can fall asleep faster. You can check it out here. That’s why taking CBD capsules and oil has been one of my favorite supplements to take since I tried them last year! I am currently subscribed to receive both every month (it’s way cheaper this way). I also have the cream, but since I only use it when I have cramps, I didn’t feel the need to subscribe, so I just buy it when I need it.
If you think CBD is for you, feel free to use the code ‘WAYSOFSTYLE’ at checkout for a 20% off your first order (valid for any product except the beginners box). You can also go straight to this link and it should take 20% off automatically.
I cannot recommend this company enough!
Milk Thistle: (40 drops)
Brand: Nature’s Answer
How do I explain this…. It’s complicated. Let me try.
Milk Thistle is sometimes used as a natural treatment for liver problems. I don’t have any liver disease, but this natural product is thought to reduce damage to the liver caused by free radicals, which are produced when your liver metabolizes toxic substances.
These toxic substances are present in foods, our environment and daily use products, like makeup, lotions, cleaning products etc. Even though I try to be good with food and the products I use, there is no way that you can prevent ALL of these harmful toxins to enter your body, so milk thistle helps you get rid of those toxins which can cause a lot of damage in the long term. Your liver is one of the most important organs because one of its functions is to ensure hormones are efficiently metabolized once their work is done (specially estrogen). If your body doesn’t get rid of those excess hormones it has terrible consequences like, fibrocystic breast, PMS & PMDD, migraines, irregular periods, endometriosis and infertility among others. That’s why I’ve spent so much time learning about my liver and finding ways to take care of it.
I don’t know if this makes sense… It’s very hard to explain. I feel like this deserves an entire blog post on its own LOL. A great resource if you want to learn how your body works and why taking care of your liver is SO IMPPORTANT, I recommend you to read “Women Code”. This book changed the way I understand and treat my body.
It’s important that you do your research on which brands and laboratories are best. Cheapest usually means they don’t use the highest quality ingredients/formulas. I buy different brands depending on the reviews, if I trust the laboratory, and then I choose the cheapest one (in most cases) among the really good ones. Does this make sense? I’m not married to any of these brands and I’m still learning, but so far I’m happy. I think the only upcoming change I have is switching to hydrolyzed collagen because apparently your body absorbs it better… I’ll keep you posted!
I fell in love with learning about foods. Understanding why I should eat certain foods and avoid other ones has really helped me make better decisions. When you know how good or bad something is for your body, how it affects your hormones, your skin, the benefits or consequences it has within your cells, tissues and organs, etc, will help you make better decisions when it comes to your day to day diet. What matters the most is what you do every day. I still eat junk sometimes and sugary stuff, don’t get me wrong, I LOVE THAT STUFF! But I used to eat junk and sugar every single day. Now, I just reserve that stuff for one meal a week and trust me, I go all in! HAHAHAHA
Anyways, hope this post helps if you don’t know where to start. Remember that these dosages are for a female, who works out with weights and cardio 4-6 times a week and it’s 32 years old. Do your research to see what’s best for you and talk to your doctor! This post should only serve as a guide and general information 😉
I know this was long… but thanks for reading all the way down here!!
Thanks so much for stopping by! Hope you all have an amazing weekend!!