Welcome to another edition of the Doctor’s Note where we talk about what’s on our minds when it comes to your health.
In this week’s Common Sense MD episode, I had the amazing opportunity to talk with nutritionist and biochemist Dr. Andy Clark.
For those who don’t know, Dr. Andy Clark is on the team that developed DigestShield.
(As you know) I’m big into vitamins and supplements for myself and my patients, therefore interested in talking with him about what some of his favorites were for people over 50.
It turned out to be a wonderful conversation that was fun and insightful. You can check that out here.
In this Note I’m going to list out Dr. Clark’s Top 4 Vitamins for people over 50 with a short explanation that I think will help you better understand how vitamins and supplements work.
Dr. Andy Clark’s Top Vitamins For People Over 50
Back when we were young we were able to make Vitamin D out of our skin, but once you get over 50 you don’t have that ability to convert ultraviolet B radiation to vitamin D3 (active form of Vitamin D) in the body. Our doctors are telling us to cover up and not get the sun exposure because we are not as capable of making that conversion anymore. Seventy percent of people over 50 are deficient in Vitamin D3.
To get your D levels back up to where they need to be, Dr. Clark recommends 5,000 iu’s in gel form. This supplement allows the Vitamin D3 to be absorbed effectively.
Note: I completely agree with this. Vitamin D3 is my top vitamin.
Calcium Citrate (Particularly for Women)
Obviously you would like to get Calcium from your food. Green leafy vegetables are a rich source of calcium as are dairy products, but if you can’t tolerate dairy, he recommends taking DigestShield.
Most of the time you aren’t going to get enough Calcium from your food, and that’s why he recommends supplementing it: Calcium Citrate- 1200 MG per day with some Vitamin D3 taken with it.
Note: If you have to take a calcium supplement for osteoporosis this is the one to take. I prefer you get it from your food.
Fish Oil (Krill Oil)
In the United States, in particular Tennessee, there is a major problem in the ratio of Omega 3 to Omega 6 fatty acids. Omega 6 fatty acids are pro inflammatory. We find these in vegetable oils like corn oils, sunflower oil, or safflower oil, and as a result our ratio of Omega 3’s to Omega 6’s begins to increase.
Most Americans are 12:1. Teenagers are 24:1. This happens because they’re eating processed foods that are cooked in vegetable oils and as a result their Omega 6’s go up and they become pro inflammatory.
Ideally you want the Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio to be 3:1. I run a lot of Cleveland Heart Panels on my patients which shows this ratio, and I rarely see a 3:1. I’m lucky if I see a 5:1.
He recommends a 1 gram capsule of Fish Oil or Krill Oil. Krill oil is absorbed a little bit better. He also said to get it enteric coated, which means it won’t fall apart in your stomach. This makes sure it will get to the small intestine.
Note: I also look a lot at Linoleic acid, which is one of the bad Omega 6’s that are inflammatory. I try to get that down to 25. Linoleic acid is probably just as bad as sugar is for your arteries, and I HATE sugar. It’s no doubt the enemy. And remember how bad vegetable oils are for you. Stay away from vegetable oils!
If you can’t tolerate Fish Oil on your stomach, put it in the freezer so it will be released in your small intestine and not in your stomach.
He recommends this right now especially because of COVID-19.
80MG in a chelate form. The chelated form basically means it’s more absorbable.
Note: I recommend 50MG of Zinc.
*All of these recommendations are in addition to the main stays in Vitamin C and DigestShield.
This conversation was so much fun for me. We got real nerdy in the interview so if you want to dive a bit deeper on supplements you can listen here.
A few things to note that I want you all to take from this:
- There are different forms of supplements. You really need to know what you’re doing. For example, sometimes there are supplements that are competing for the same transport system to your bloodstream. This is the case with Copper and Zinc because they are so closely tied together.
- Increase the amount of Fiber in your diet. He mentioned this at the end of the interview and I couldn’t agree more. Dr. Clark estimates that around 80% of people in the United States do not eat enough Fiber. This is what’s feeding the bacteria in the colon! You have to give them something to eat. You don’t want problems with your colon!
- He also mentions B12, CoQ10, and Glucosamine for the over 50 crowd.
- As you know, my number one vitamin is Vitamin D3 followed by DigestShield.
Lastly, remember to always check your levels!
Note: For those who want more vitamin recommendations: Dr. Rogers’ Recommended Vitamin List By Age