Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Vitamins: What's your kind?

Finding vegan vitamins is becoming easier and easier as the years go by, especially if you aren't scared of online shopping. I can't remember how I initially found them (probably at Earth Fare) but I have really gotten into New Chapter Organics Line, though not all of their supplements are vegan friendly. I was able to find some great deals on Amazon.com (one of my first go to's for online shopping) though and all was great until it came out that they were selling out to Proctor & Gamble (read more on that disappointing story here). But luckily on my Amazon.com searches I had also found another brand, Deva, that had gotten some great reviews. I checked them out (here is their site) and made the decision to give them a go after seeing they had the supplements I need.
For some reason (I'm sure it's legit, just haven't really looking into why yet) both the New Chapter & the Deva daily multivitamin have a very low amount of magnesium. For the past several years I have had a few issues with my right leg not always wanting to work when I stand up after sitting for some time (made car trips annoying). In the past year it began to affect my right arm as well (being that I don't walk on my arms, it was a bit different though so I wasn't sure if it was the same thing). In that time frame it had been recommended to me to take magnesium for menstrual cramps (as well as other kinds, since I'm tired of taking pain meds all the time) and it turns out that it helped the issue with my right leg & arm. The only bad part is I can definitely tell the difference when I don't take it.
Side note: I was also advised to start taking an iodine supplement. If I am able to eat the way I want to, I am able to get plenty of that from sea vegetables. Since I'm not always able to, I like to keep a supplement on hand though they aren't so easy to find in vegan form... not that have good reviews, anyway. So any suggestions on that would be great (just add to comments, please, or send me an email anytime).
Another side note: I do prefer to get what I need from food. I do believe in letting our food be our medicine, but let's be honest. It's not always the easiest thing to do, or even possible. Money problems, time constraints, etc can keep us from getting what we need at our meals. While I do think it's better to have a bit too much rather than not enough, keep in mind that one can overdo the vitamins. Look into what you need, what fits you the best, and go with that.
That being said, here is what I take:
A daily vitamin: (once I run out of this bottle of New Chapter Organics every woman's One Daily I am switching to the Deva Vegan Multivitamin, with iron- look for the 2 pack specials on Amazon.com). I prefer the kind where you only have to take one a day, and can take it on an empty stomach (I do have a sensitive stomach, so sometimes even with food these hurt me).
B vitamin complex: the complex has all the B's you need, right now I have New Chapter Organics Coenzyme B Food Complex, not sure what I will switch to when I run out. My daily vitamin has plenty of the B's, but if I'm feeling just too tired to make it these always give a great pick me up (say if you just couldn't sleep or partied too hard, yeah... these are great).
C Vitamin: Have been taking the Deva Vegan C Vitamin for a while now, and this time of year it is a must have. Also, if you are a smoker (as I was up until recently, and many of my friends are) or are very likely to get whatever is going around (a teacher, have kids, work around a lot of people like as a server or in retail) these are a must have no matter how much OJ you inhale daily.
Magnesium supplement: Today will be my first day on Deva's Vegan Cal-Mag Plus, and I will let you know how it goes. Please check out the link to find out what the "Plus" is for!
Grapefruit Seed Extract: I get the liquid kind and at it to juice (usually orange juice, which I water down so it can last a lot longer). It's extremely bitter and cannot be taken on it's own, but can be used for so many things. I even mix a bit with my shampoo to help keep dandruff & dry scalp under control. I love things with multi purposes!
A bit ago I read an article that lists the 4 vitamins you should always remember to take, and those kinds were on the list. While most of the details have left my memory, it was written by someone who worked in a situation like doctor's without boarders or something, someone that had to travel to many places all over the world where leaving your cell phone at home was in no way an issue (no cell towers, anyway).... if anyone can remember it or send me the link please do so that way I can link it here please & thank you!
That article was a lot of help, I was looking for something to help me in the right directions, but I think things could be better. Would be great if there was a site that let you choose what you were looking for... say, a daily vitamin for a women that's vegan (though having them all vegan really isn't a problem in any way) and then can pick the extra stuff you have in it (like the magnesium for me).

What vitamins/supplements do you take/love? A certain brand you have sworn loyalties to? Please, feel free to share in the comments below. I know getting advice from others has been the main thing helping me stay vegan and healthy at it, too...