People agree nutrients improve health. They just don’t agree about how to successfully obtain vitamin and minerals for optimal wellness.

Some suggest nutrients should come from the foods we eat; others challenge this assumption due to the way foods are now harvested and consumed and champion the cause for nutrition supplementation.

I agree with the latter, and that’s because we don’t interact with foods like we once did. Let’s say we still harvested foods locally, prepared them fresh and consumed a rainbow mixture of vegetables daily with clean-sourced protein. If that were the case, little to no supplements would likely be needed. Nutrition solely from food, however, is almost impossible now due to food cost and food production. Essentially, what we consume is no longer as pure or rich in nutrients as it could be.

While it would be great if nutrition could be obtained from the foods we eat, this isn’t the case and why I have devoted my life’s work to giving people easy access to quality supplementation. I do this because proper supplementation is a cost-effective insurance against declining health.

‘D’ for deficient

Thanks to science and the ability to conduct blood tests of nutrient levels and other functional medicine markers, we can find out nutrients we are deficient in. For instance, let’s look at levels of vitamin D and omega 3. According to research, less than 15% of individuals over age 40 have proper levels of omega 3 and vitamin D; additionally, less than 35% of younger people have adequate levels of these nutrients.

Without proper levels of omega 3 and vitamin D for a sustained amount of time, the body’s brain function and cardiac health can decline while the amount of triglycerides and presence of chronic inflammation can increase.

Keep in mind I’m only referring to what the body suffers when two out of the over 40 nutrients are lacking or deficient. This is a small example of a big problem.

Facts like these make me passionate about adding in nutrition supplements for improved daily function.

The core four

I often find many people don’t know what products to stay away from and what products to invest in when it comes to nutrition supplements. Moreover, there is little education on how to combine nutrients based on personal needs. Nutrition World exists to meet these real needs in real time.

As a holistic health expert with over four decades of experience at Nutrition World, my mission has been and continues to be focused on educating and empowering consumers to live healthier lives through core supplementation.

While everyone has different supplement needs, everyone can benefit from adding in four core supplements. These include multivitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics and greens.

I like this core-four list because it’s simple and easy to understand and implement.

Multivitamins

I encourage people to purchase a complex multivitamin containing myriad vitamins and minerals and produced with no preservatives, artificial colors or toxic ingredients.

At Nutrition World, we offer the highest quality products available for multivitamins. Brands we recommend and carry include:

—Bluebonnet

—Garden of Life

—MegaFood

—NutriGold

—Life Extension

—Source of Life

—Metagenics

—Pure

—Mt Angel

As a gatekeeper for nutrition, we search the marketplace for only the highest level of ethics and quality and demand certificates of purity and potency from manufacturers. We often visit companies to vet them and observe operational standards of excellence.

While product quality is important and safety always top of mind for Nutrition World, the entire nutrition industry is regulated for safety. For instance, the DSHEA law allows guidelines for the legality of nutrition industry. Likewise, the Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Trade Commission continually monitor these products for safety.

If any product we own is found to be suspect at all, we stop selling it. End of story. Over my career, I’ve pulled about 12 products due to either contamination or quality control, which is a small percentage, considering I’ve been in this business for over 40 years.

Omega 3s

Our bodies need omega 3s to fight inflammation caused by an improper ratio of omega 6, the instigator of chronic inflammation, to omega 3. A healthy diet should contain a 2-to-1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3; most Americans, however, have a 20-to-1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3.

You have probably heard that eating fish is a great way to obtain a reliable source of omega 3s. This isn’t the case, unfortunately.

A majority of fish sold today is labeled “farm-raised,” and even though this term sounds like a good thing, it doesn’t mean it’s a superior product. In most cases, farm-raised fish accumulate toxins by existing on a diet of commercial feed while living in crowded waters. The combination isn’t a winning one. For instance, click here to read why farm-raised salmon is considered a “toxic junk food.”

A well-researched and safe way to obtain omega 3s is by taking fish oil products.

Top brands we recommend that you can fully trust include:

—NutriGold

—Terry Naturally

—Nordic Naturals

—LYSI

—Natural Factors

—Wiley’s

Fish oil products that we offer have been screened for heavy metals, pesticides and many other toxins.

Probiotics

The microbiome is the landscape within the gut lining that is responsible for both significant parts of the immune system and brain chemistry. This is why it is vital that we continue to introduce healthy productive probiotics to the trillions of cells that line our gut.

Not all probiotics can successfully pass through acid in the stomach, but quality products can because they are made to resistant stomach acid.

Nutrition World has the largest selection of probiotics in Chattanooga and our staff is happy to assist in educating customers interested in choosing proper probiotics, since different formulas offer somewhat differing results.

Greens

Some people enjoy eating and drinking their vegetables but just don’t consume enough of them regularly; others don’t enjoy the texture and taste of most vegetables, and opt out altogether. Those who make do with too few to no vegetables miss out on essential vitamins and minerals.

For the most part, I recommend consumers add greens as powder to their diet. Green powders offset acid conditions by being alkaline. They also supply much needed antioxidants and phytochemicals, allowing the body to detox.\

Over the years, Nutrition World has carried every green powder available but currently recommends the following brands:

—Green Vibrance

—Garden of Life

—Natural Factors.

The list above contains top-of-the-line formulas and our highest praise.

Key takeaway

Investing in good nutrition is similar to investing in a solid retirement fund. You want to start investing early and often in your body, as you would your retirement account. Every contribution you make matters and compounds interest.

While you cannot make up for lost time and missed opportunity when it comes to nutrition or saving, the wisest thing you can do is act now with the information you have.

To learn about other products recommended for healthy living, click here to read my free e-book, “Are You Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired”.

Ed Jones is a Chattanooga holistic health expert who is passionate about natural health, holistic health, natural healing and physical fitness. He is a graduate of American Health Science University and received his associate in arts degree in 1978 from MTSU. He is also a professional member of the American Botanical Council, a nonprofit organization that helps people live healthier lives through responsible use of herbs and medicinal plants. He is constantly training in new areas, attends seminars across the country and has had personal interactions with many of today’s experts on natural health. He seeks to inspire and empower people to take control of their health through the use of holistic approaches to accomplish peak vitality and complete wellness.