The role of gut health in nutrient absorption
Many people view their brains as their body’s control center, but the gut is where the real action happens. For example, 95 percent of serotonin (the neurotransmitter that controls mood, memory, and learning) is actually made in your gut and is then sent to your brain through various nerves. Studies have shown that a nutrient-dense diet can generate a vast improvement in overall mental wellness, but how does that all work?
When we consume any type of food or drink, enzymes break it down while we chew, then the food travels to the stomach to start the digestion process, which further breaks down the food into vitamins and minerals. Next, they travel to the small intestine, where most of the nutrient absorption occurs.
Known for being a whopping 20 feet long, the small intestine, also known as the small bowel, is lined with soft tissues that wrinkle and fold together. These tissues are covered with microscopic protrusions called villi. The villi are hairlike and their abundance, along with the many tissue folds, create an incredibly large surface area, which is necessary to maximize the absorption of nutrients in food.
If the gastrointestinal system is in poor health, your small intestine will have a harder time absorbing those nutrients—and because gut health affects the whole body, nutrient deficiencies can create mysterious ailments that are hard to nail down. Luckily, your gut is one of the easiest systems within your body to heal, and through proper nutrition either from a mineral-dense diet or supplements, you can improve the health of multiple organs by improving the health of your gut. To learn more about supplements that can improve your gut health, check out this blog post.
Know your baseline vitamin levels
While most people are deficient in some vitamins, minerals, or amino acids, many do not know it until their doctor orders a blood test. Knowing where you currently stand with your nutrient absorption can help you create a supplement game plan and hone in on specific areas that need improvement. Talk with your doctor about testing for nutrient deficiencies or get your blood tested by one of the many companies that offer similar services. Because having too much of a vitamin can have an adverse effect, it’s important to get these tests done before you start implementing supplements. Plus, this will give you a baseline you can refer to later to see if your supplement plan is working.
Developing a supplement routine/schedule
Supplements really get to do their work when you take them consistently, letting the nutrients build in your system and allowing your body to absorb those nutrients on a regular basis. This is why planning and sticking to a routine can make or break your supplement experience. Follow these simple suggestions to craft a supplement routine that works for you:
1. Some vitamins can be taken on an empty stomach, while others need to be taken with food. This information can be found on the label and will help you determine a time frame for taking your supplements every day.
2. It’s easy to miss a bottle when you have a whole lineup of supplements in the rotation. Use a supplement box to prep your vitamins every day and help you stay on track.
3. While you can take all your vitamins at once, it’s easier on the stomach to break up your supplements into multiple doses throughout the day. This will also help your body receive nutrients throughout the day instead of all at once.
4. Instead of taking all your bottles with you when you travel, use a carrying case to easily transport your supplements wherever life takes you.
5. Consistency is key when taking supplements. Plan on taking them at the same time every day to train yourself to remember.
Pairing supplements for an extra kick
Many vitamins and minerals pair well together, amplifying their properties when used in conjunction with one another. Several Young Living supplements are easy and safe to combine. You can mix Mineral Essence with NingXia Red® and a drop of Peppermint Vitality essential oil or add Sulfurzyme® to NingXia Red with a hint of Lime Vitality essential oil!
Example supplement schedule
Finding a routine that works for you is going to be a practice of trial and error, but you can use the following schedule as a beginner guide to finding your perfect routine: