To be healthy, energetic and vibrant, our bodies need adequate amounts of macronutrients (CHO, protein and healthy fats) as well as the full spectrum of micronutrients. Micronutrients are vitamins (water and fat soluble) and minerals needed by the body in small amounts. Micronutrients perform a range of important functions, including enabling the body to produce essential enzymes and hormones. The impact of micronutrients on the body’s health is critical, and a deficiency in any one of them can cause severe and even life-threatening conditions. Whilst both severe and chronic micronutrient deficiencies can cause visible and dangerous health conditions, even slight deficiencies can lead to subtle reductions in energy levels, mental clarity and overall capacity.
Our bodies get out of balance when we give them too much of what they don’t need and not enough of what they do need!
Where do micronutrients come from?
All micronutrients are available in food – particularly from a Whole Foods Plant Based Diet (WFPBD). When they are derived from food, they are in their most bio-available form…meaning the body can easily and effectively use them.
Variety and quality of food is key in ensuring micronutrient balance and sufficiency.
To ensure a healthy and adequate balance of all micronutrients, as Functional and Lifestyle Medicine practitioners, we encourage clients to eat at least two-three from each colour group of the RAINBOW of foods each day (see diagram), and to include all the following food groups:
fruit, veggies, nuts, seeds, fermented foods, fresh herbs and spices.
Each of the different coloured foods, and the various food groups contain a different combination of important micronutrients.
The depletion of the soil and the use of pesticides and herbicides in industrial agriculture affect the quality of food. and thus the variety and availability of micronutrients. Eating whole foods which are ‘close to the earth’ (unprocessed and unrefined) and food that is as ‘clean’ as possible (organic) are important proponents of ensuring micronutrient sufficiency.
Is supplementation necessary?
Lets start with diet: if we eat the Standard South African Diet (S..SAD), we will develop the standard south african diseases: obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, anxiety & depression, high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol, hypertension, early onset dementia, auto-immune conditions, hormone imbalances…
The supplement industry is a multi-million dollar industry and certainly has its place in the optimization of health, energy and vitality. But supplements should be just that…SUPPLEMENTS…meaning in addition to, not in place of.
Stress, illness, infection, chronic underlying conditions, chronic medication, anti-biotics, statins, proton-pump-inhibitors (Nexium, trustan), excessive physical exertion, surgery, poor sleep, inflammatory foods, smoking, exposure to environmental toxins, poor gut microbiome, alcohol intake…all put a higher demand on the body and deplete our micronutrients.
Getting all the micronutrients our bodies need from food and/or oral supplements requires the digestive tract to be healthy so it can breakdown, extract and absorb.
The digestive tract and the overall state of our gut health are easily affected by lifestyle factors, which can decrease the digestive tract’s ability to effectively break-down food or oral supplements – thus decreasing the bodies ability to extract and absorb.
Enter IV drip therapy.
Because an IV vitamin and mineral drip goes directly into the vein (bypassing the gut), higher concentrations of micronutrients can be delivered faster and more effectively.
So, how often should I get an IV Vita Drip?
We need to constantly evaluate the balance:
Where am I getting my micronutrients from vs how quickly are they being used by the body?
Is my gut health sufficiently optimized to ensure that micronutrients are being adequately extracted and absorbed from food or oral supplements or do I need to bypass the gut/digestive tract and get an IV Vita Drip?
BIO: Chantal is a B.Sc.Hons Allied Health with an international certification in Functional Medicine Health Coaching. Chantal is a passionate Gut Health advocate and works as a Functional Medicine and Lifestyle Coach, facilitating the improvement of her clients health conditions through healing leaky gut and correcting dysbiosis (imbalance) of the gut microbiome.
Over her 25 year career, Chantal has held various positions within the health and wellness industry – including 10 years as the Executive Head of Vodacom’s corporate wellness & mobile health programs. Chantal is the owner/ founder of the DripBar which offers vitamin and mineral drip therapy in improving micronutrient deficiencies. She is also the founder/owner of a Kombucha brewery which produces the brand of ‘booch’ called theFarmacy.
Chantal is a competitive cyclist, a plant strong vegan and mom to two grown up girls.
to Book your Functional health and Lifestyle coaching session: email: email@example.com
This blog post contains information that is not designed to take the place of,
substitute, or replace any form and method of professional or medical advice
and treatment or medicine. All content is the author’s opinion and is not
intended to diagnose and remedy. The facts and figures contained in this
document are presented solely for informational and educational purposes