I hate to admit it, but I have a history of priding myself on not needing supplements, other than B12. This is a total ego trap and I feel like it’s a prevalent issue in the Vegan and plant based community. It’s as if I was reaching to achieve a level of purity by getting ALL my vitamins from diet alone. I’m also a wee bit frugal and hate spending money on supplements.
Having been through the desperation of a health crisis, I have had my share of Naturopathic Doctor visits – all who pushed loads of supplements on me. At some point I became jaded and very much anti-supplement. I’ll always be a minimalist when it comes to supplements but I’m softening my view to not be so anti.
No matter what type of diet you eat, please make sure your B12, D and Iron levels are in a good place. Ask your doctor to test your vitamin D, B12, ferritin and iron. Don’t let the anti-supplement-snobs make you feel bad for taking vitamin D or iron if you need it. An anti-supplement-snob comment may look something like this “you don’t need a pill, just get some sunshine!” – yay! So Easy right?
Unfortunately, SUNSHINE isn’t always enough to get adequate levels of vitamin D. I can personally attest to that as I spent 5 months in Florida this past winter, a lot of that time outside, and my vitamin D levels are at an all time low.
Vitamin D is what I call the Anti-Depression Vitamin – a mild deficiency can cause depression and fatigue, which is what I’ve been going through the past few months without realizing why. I thought I was just being a lazy couch potato.
I personally need to supplement with Iron, B12 (shots as I don’t absorb it well, not even sublingual) and vitamin D. If I’m not on top of this I suffer the consequences. The best Vegan supplements I’ve found are:
• Deva Vegan B12 (my hubby has taken this for over 5 years)
• Country Life Vegan D3 (when I take it, my levels are great)
• Polyride Fe Iron Supplement – certified vegan and easy on the tummy, I take it with water and a splash of lime juice.
*This is not an advertisement for these supplement companies, I’m only providing this list because they are the best I have found, that are easy for anyone to get (I get most of my supplements from Amazon or Vitacost).