Figuring this out and which supplements to take for what problem often involves winding through a maze of internet sites. I want reputable, research based advice. I want to avoid unreliable claims from commercial sites, for example, that are trying to sell their product. I want to know what supplements have been researched and what the research says.
The University of Maryland Medical Center's Complementary and Alternative Medicine Index is a great resource that covers all the essential bases. Here you can browse specific supplements and herbs and find out how to take them, for what purpose, and at what recommended dose. Or you can start with a particular condition, such as Depression, and read about recommended nutritional strategies and alternative treatments (St John's Wort, for example). Supporting research references from peer reviewed journals are listed as well as potential complications and interactions with medications.
So what are some of my daily supplement choices? A multi-Vitamin for the broad spectrum approach. A B-complex for general life stress. Magnesium glycinate for the prevention of osteoporosis (my grandmother had it) and as a wind-down-to-sleep aid. Melatonin on nights when I have trouble falling asleep because my sleep cycle has been irregular (my preferred cure for "sunday night insommnia"). Fish oil for Omega-3 Fatty Acids because, as the UMM site tells me,
"Extensive research indicates that omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and help prevent risk factors associated with chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. These essential fatty acids are highly concentrated in the brain and appear to be particularly important for cognitive (brain memory and performance) and behavioral function. In fact, infants who do not get enough omega-3 fatty acids from their mothers during pregnancy are at risk for developing vision and nerve problems. Symptoms of omega-3 fatty acid deficiency include extreme tiredness (fatigue), poor memory, dry skin, heart problems, mood swings or depression, and poor circulation."
So what are your favorite nutritional supplements and why? Any preferred sites for researching alternative medicine?