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Omega-3 Deficiency: Symptoms & Solutions

Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fats you must get from food sources. If you don’t get omega-3 fatty acids from food sources, then you may have omega-3 deficiency.

Symptoms of omega-3 deficiency can include skin irritation, brittle or thinning hair, joint pain and stiffness, brain fog, dry eyes, and fatigue.

Fortunately, omega-3 deficiency is easy to address: you can take an omega-3 supplement or add more of certain types of food to your diet.

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about omega-3 fatty acid deficiency, including symptoms and possible solution.

How Omega-3 Fatty Acids Work

Your body needs multiple types of fats to function. Your body can make most of the fats it needs on its own.

Your body cannot, however, make omega-3 fatty acids. They’re considered essential fats, which means your body cannot make these fats on its own. Instead, you need to get omega-3 fatty acids from food sources.

Omega-3 fatty acids play critical roles throughout the body. Studies have linked omega-3 fatty acids to cardiovascular health, hormone production, and critical tasks at the cellular level.

There are three main types of omega-3 fatty acids, including:

  • Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)
  • Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
  • Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)

ALA is the most common omega-3 fatty acid. It’s the type found in vegetable oils, nuts, and leafy vegetables. EPA and DHA, meanwhile, are considered marine omega-3 fats because they mostly come from fish.

10 Common Symptoms of Omega-3 Deficiency

If you’re deficient in omega-3 fatty acids, then you could experience a range of symptoms – from minor issues to major symptoms to no symptoms whatsoever.

Here are the 10 most common signs you may have omega-3 deficiency:

  1. Skin Irritation & Dryness: One of the first symptoms of omega-3 deficiency is skin dryness or irritation. Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for supporting your skin’s barrier effect, and increased skin inflammation or other issues could be a sign you’re deficient in omega-3 fatty acids.
  2. Dry Eyes: Your eyes rely on omega-3 fatty acids to stay lubricated.
  3. Joint Pain & Stiffness: Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for keeping joints healthy and controlling inflammation. Lack of omega-3 fatty acid could increase joint pain issues.
  4. Changes in Hair Quality or Thinning Hair: Changes to hair could indicate an omega-3 deficiency. Your hair needs omega-3 fatty acids for good structure, and poor hair quality or a sensitive scalp could indicate omega-3 fatty acid deficiency.
  5. Increased Dandruff: In addition to a sensitive scalp, you could notice increased dandruff because of your omega 3 deficiency.
  6. Brittle Nails: Omega-3 affects more than just your hair; it also affects your nails. Brittle, thinning, nails could be a sign of omega-3 deficiency.
  7. Mental Fog: Omega-3 is crucial for cognition, and some studies have even connected omega-3 fatty acids to degenerative brain conditions. If you experience symptoms of mental fog – including confusion, poor concentration, and lack of attention – then it could be omega 3 deficiency.
  8. Depression or Mood Changes: There’s some evidence omega-3 is important for mood, and some studies have connected depression and other cognitive conditions to omega-3 fatty acids.
  9. General Fatigue: Do you regularly feel tired? You could be deficient in omega-3.
  10. Increased Thirst & Other Signs of Dehydration: If you regularly feel thirsty or have a dry mouth and throat, then it could be a sign of omega 3 deficiency.

Surprisingly, some people with omega-3 deficiency also experience excessive buildup of earwax because of their condition.

Science-Backed Benefits of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Researchers have linked omega-3 fatty acids to a range of effects – from cognition to heart health. Below, we’ll review some of the scientific evidence explaining why omega-3 fatty acids are critical for multiple aspects of health.

Cardiovascular Health

Omega-3 fatty acids appear to be beneficial for heart health, and multiple studies have validated this claim.

Studies suggest omega-3 fatty acids help with cholesterol, blood pressure, and overall heart disease:

  • A 2007 study, for example, found the polyunsaturated fatty acids in fish oil were linked to a lower risk of fatal cardiac events. In that study, researchers were attempting to determine why people who ate fish regularly tended to have better cardiovascular health than people who did not.
  • A separate study from 1999 examined the effects of omega-3 fatty acid supplements on heart attack survivors. Participants took 1g of omega-3 fatty acids every day for three years. In a follow-up, researchers found participants in the omega-3 fatty acid group were significantly less likely to experience a second heart attack, stroke, or sudden cardiac event than a group taking a placebo. In fact, those in the omega-3 fatty acid group had a 50% lower risk of sudden cardiac death.
  • Another study involving 18,645 patients examined the effects of 1,800mg of EPA with statin versus statin only. Researchers found sudden cardiac death and coronary death did not differ between groups, although patients in the EPA group had a 19% relative reduction in major coronary events overall.

For all of these reasons and more, doctors may recommend omega-3 fatty acid supplements to anyone concerned about cardiovascular health.

Diabetes & Cholesterol

Diabetics tend to have higher cholesterol levels than non-diabetics. Taking omega-3 fatty acids can help lower triglycerides and raise HDL, helping diabetics support overall heart health.

Studies suggest diabetics can particularly benefit from EPA and DHA as opposed to ALA (which comes from flaxseed and certain types of nuts). In other words, fish-based omega-3 fatty acids may be beneficial.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

As Mount Sinai explains, studies suggest omega-3 fatty acids could help people with osteoarthritis, although more research is needed to verify this connection.

Studies have found omega-3 fatty acids could reduce joint stiffness and pain, improve grip strength, and increase walking pace in people with osteoarthritis, for example. Meanwhile, a large review found some people with osteoarthritis experienced significant pain relief after taking omega-3 fatty acid supplements.

Cognition & Certain Cognitive Conditions

Omega-3 fatty acids appear to impact the brain and overall cognition in multiple ways. Some studies have even linked omega-3 fatty acid supplementation to relief from certain cognitive conditions.

  • In a 2015 review published in Integrative Medicine Research, researchers found a connection between omega-3 fatty acid supplementation and relief from depression. Researchers found multiple studies showing omega-3 fatty acids were “proving to be very effective against the treatment of major depression disorder” and certain other psychiatric disorders. However, researchers cautioned more evidence was needed to verify this connection.
  • Some small studies have also connected omega-3 fatty acid supplementation to bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, with people relieving certain symptoms of either condition with omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
  • Other studies suggest children with ADHD tend to have lower levels of essential fatty acids (including EPA and DHA) than children without ADHD. However, studies have not conclusively determined omega-3 fatty acid supplements can reduce symptoms of ADHD.
  • There’s some evidence omega-3 fatty acid supplements have protective effects against Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and other degenerative cognitive conditions. Many people take omega-3 fatty acid supplements daily for that reason. According to the Alzheimer’s Society of the United Kingdom, there is “good evidence” that eating fish “is good for your health” and there are “reports that it may reduce the risk of developing dementia,” although they cautioned more evidence was needed to verify this connection.

Check Your Blood for Deficiencies with a Painless, Accurate Blood Test Today

Science Nutrition Lab specializes in testing blood to provide crucial insight into your health.

Do you feel tired? Do you experience mental fog? Do you suddenly have joint pain or a general feeling of being unwell? None of these things are normal – and a deficiency could be to blame.

Order a Science Nutrition Lab blood test today to check how your bloodwork compares to an optimal range. 

9 Surprising Everyday Changes to Look Younger Today

You can find plenty of tips online for looking younger.

If you stop smoking, limit alcohol, and eat a healthy diet, for example, you can probably look younger in the very near future.

However, there are other underrated strategies, lesser-known tips, and science-backed ways to look younger as soon as today.

Keep reading to find some of the best and most surprising lifestyle changes you can make to look younger today.

Avoid Products that Irritate Your Skin

Certain skincare products irritate your skin. Some people continue to use these skincare products because they like how their bodies become used to the products over time. However, that’s not a good idea: your skin never adjusts to irritants in skincare products; if a product is burning, it could be making you look older.

Many popular skincare products contain common skin irritants. Many are sensitive to retinol, for example. Despite its popularity as an anti-aging cream, retinol may or may not be the right choice for you.

Talk to a dermatologist to find the optimal anti-aging skincare products while avoiding irritating your skin.

Make a Conscious Effort to Relax Your Face

This tip sounds funny, but it can make a meaningful difference in the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.

Some people keep their face in a scrunched or irritated position naturally. Think of how your face feels when watching TV or sitting at your desk.

Are you sitting at your desk relaxed? Or are you watching TV with your brow furrowed? The more you relax your face, the easier it will be to make fine lines and wrinkles disappear.

Check your Vision

Speaking of scrunched faces, poor vision can increase the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines – especially around the eyes.

If you need to squint to read or see items in the distance, then you may need to visit an eye doctor to update your prescription – or get glasses or contacts for the first time.

Don’t let declining vision make you look older than you really are. Sometimes, all you need is a simple optometrist visit to ensure you have the right prescription – and to avoid squinting your eyes.

Moisturize Your Hands

Many people moisturize their face and neck to look younger. However, a growing number of people are recognizing the importance of moisturizing their hands.

Moisturize your hands like you moisturize your face. It can help keep away the appearance of wrinkled, veiny hands (not that there’s anything wrong with naturally older-looking hands!).

Add Oily Fish to Your Diet

Eating oily fish twice a week can help you look younger. Oily fish can be healthy for many reasons, but they also contain a compound called dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE), which is the same DMAE found in many “mature” anti-aging skin creams.

DMAE supports muscle tone and skin elasticity, helping you look and feel younger. Eating oily fish regularly can help you look and feel younger while giving you the benefits of high-end skin creams.

Eat Antioxidant Rich Fruits, Vegetables, and Superfoods

Antioxidants are trendy for good reason: they help fight the effects of aging.

As your body gets older, you breathe oxygen and oxidize your body, leading to visible effects of aging. Antioxidants help fight back against damage caused by free radicals, helping you look and feel younger.

Many experts recommend eating a colorful diet – with colorful berries and vegetables – to maximize antioxidant levels. You can also check the ORAC level of certain foods to verify their antioxidant value.

Some of the best antioxidant-rich fruits, vegetables, and superfoods include:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Bell peppers
  • Spinach
  • Artichokes
  • Asparagus

Avocados, beets, lettuce, sweet potatoes, collard greens, kale, and coffee and tea are also rich with antioxidants.

From anthocyanins to vitamins A and C, the right foods can help you add considerable antioxidant value to your diet.

Avoid Foods & Drinks that Stain Your Teeth

Toothpaste commercials aren’t lying: your smile is one of the first things people notice about you.

If you have a bright, white smile, you tend to look younger than someone with a yellow smile. That’s why many anti-aging experts recommend avoiding foods and drinks that stain your teeth.

Some of the worst teeth staining offenders include:

  • Red wine
  • Coffee (especially coffee without a creamer or whitener)
  • Tea
  • Soy sauce
  • Dark-colored sodas
  • Balsamic vinegar

Seeing your dentist regularly can also help you look younger. Dentists can spot oral health issues before they become serious, helping you avoid dealing with serious tooth problems as you get older.

Make the Obvious Anti-Aging Strategies Part of Your Everyday Routine

There are obvious everyday anti-aging strategies you can implement today to make a meaningful difference in the appearance of your skin, the visibility of your wrinkles, and your overall physical and cognitive energy.

Here are some of the obvious anti-aging tips to make part of your ordinary routine:

  • Drink lots of water
  • Stay out of the sun
  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Use a moisturizer
  • Stop smoking
  • Practice a healthy, balanced diet and exercise routine

Take A Blood Test to Identity Nutritional Deficiencies

A single blood test can reveal changes to your body long before symptoms appear.

Unfortunately, the average blood test isn’t very good. A lab compares your bloodwork against a random selection of patients who recently visited.

A Science Nutrition Lab blood test is different. You visit a trusted lab near you, and we compare results to an optimal range based on your physiology. Then, our Dr. Jason Jumper reviews your results and builds a plan to address deficiencies.

Order a Science Nutrition Lab blood test today to spot deficiencies in your blood – and address those deficiencies – before they become more serious symptoms.

“Natural Viagra”: How the Right Vitamins & Minerals Could Support Sexual Performance

Many people take vitamins, minerals, and herbal supplements daily to support sex drive.

Do you have low sex drive or poor sexual performance? It could be linked to a vitamin or mineral deficiency.

Your body needs certain vitamins and minerals to produce sex hormones. Without those vitamins and minerals, you could experience symptoms of sexual dysfunction.

Keep reading to discover how certain vitamins, minerals, and nutritional supplements could act as “natural Viagra” and support sex drive in multiple ways.

Vitamin D: Supports Sexual Function and Sex Drive in Multiple Ways

Vitamin D is crucial for hormone production. If you’re deficient in vitamin D, then you could have imbalanced hormones. Your body produces vitamin D from exposure to sunlight. You can also get vitamin D from food.

Studies show people with low sex drive also tend to have low levels of vitamin D. Studies also show the greater your vitamin D deficiency, the lower your sex drive tends to be.

Researchers believe vitamin D is connected to sex through its effects on endothelial cells. Endothelial cells play a critical role in blood flow to sexual organs during sex. Vitamin D appears to protect endothelial cells from oxidative stress (i.e. inflammation), which could help with sexual performance.

Other studies have connected vitamin D to nitric oxide (NO), a crucial natural molecule for blood flow. NO expands blood vessels, making it easier for blood to flow to your sexual organs.

Vitamin D could also help support your body’s response to stress, depression, and anxiety – all of which could decrease sex drive.

Magnesium: Important for Relaxation, Nerve Function, and Mood

Magnesium is essential for the metabolism of nitric oxide. As mentioned above, nitric oxide (NO) is critical for blood flow. Your body produces less nitic oxide as you get older, which can lead to declining sexual function.

In one study involving 372 older men with chronic kidney disease, researchers found a connection between hypomagnesemia (low magnesium levels in the blood) and erectile dysfunction. Men with normal magnesium levels tended to have good erectile function and overall sexual function, while men with low magnesium levels did not.

Other studies have connected magnesium to hormone production in men and women and overall sexual function. Because magnesium is important for nervous system health throughout the body, magnesium deficiency can cause many effects throughout your body – from sexual function to athletic performance.



Zinc: Critical for Testosterone Production

Men who are deficient in zinc tend to have lower testosterone production than men who get their recommended daily intake of zinc. Zinc is crucial for multiple body processes – including testosterone production.

If you are deficient in zinc, then taking a zinc supplement could raise testosterone levels. One study found a specific connection between zinc supplementation and higher testosterone. Men with low testosterone took a zinc supplement or a placebo, with men in the zinc group raising testosterone higher than men in the placebo group.

However, this testosterone effect does not appear in men who already get sufficient levels of zinc. If you already get your recommended daily intake of zinc in your diet, then taking a zinc supplement may not raise zinc levels further.

Check your blood for a zinc deficiency with a Science Nutrition Lab blood test and compare your bloodwork against an optimal range based on your age and gender. A zinc deficiency could lead to sexual dysfunction and abnormally low testosterone levels.

Vitamin E: Supports Sperm Count and Inflammation

Vitamin E is one of nature’s best antioxidants. It’s critical for skin health, hormone balance, and oxygen and blood flow to your sexual organs.

Many people take vitamin E supplements (or apply vitamin E serums) daily for anti-aging benefits. Those same anti-aging benefits could help with sexual function: the antioxidant properties of vitamin E can support healthy inflammation, making it easier for blood to flow throughout your body.

Amino Acids: Blood Flow and Nitric Oxide

Some of the world’s best sexual health supplements work by addressing blood flow. By supporting blood flow, these supplements make you feel like you have a stronger sex drive, greater sexual stamina, and better sexual performance overall.

Amino acid supplements are some of the best for supporting blood flow and other related benefits.

L-citrulline is one of the most popular amino acid supplement ingredients for sex drive, and many people take L-citrulline daily for that reason. Your body converts L-citrulline into L-arginine, which is associated with nitric oxide and blood flow. In one 2011 study, men with erectile dysfunction, high blood pressure, and diabetes took 1.5g of L-citrulline daily to help with sexual function. After 30 days, L-citrulline supplementation improved symptoms in 50% of men.

Since your body converts L-citrulline to L-arginine, you can also take L-arginine supplements for sexual function. In one 2019 study, researchers reviewed 10 L-arginine trials involving 540 patients with ED. Participants took 1,500 to 5,000mg of L-arginine daily, then experienced significant improvements in intercourse satisfaction, orgasmic function, and erectile function. In other words, L-arginine supplementation appears to genuinely improve sexual function based on 10 trials involving hundreds of patients.

Unproven Herbal Supplements: More Hype Than Science

A quick search for “sexual health supplements” online reveals thousands of results. These supplements use herbs, plants, and other ingredients to target sexual function in various ways.

It’s rare for any of these sexual health supplements to be backed by major scientific evidence. Many of these supplements are formulated by marketing teams or businesspeople with limited medical experience. Others use unproven ingredients, proprietary formulas, or unsafe blends while claiming to target crucial body functions like hormones.

Generally, you can skip unproven herbal extracts because they’re more hype than science. Horny goat weed, fenugreek, maca, and ginseng may sound like good herbal supplements for sexual health, but there’s little largescale evidence in humans proving they work.

Final Word

Address nutritional deficiencies to support sexual function.

If your body is deficient in certain vitamins and minerals, then you’ll struggle to maintain good sex drive, blood flow, and sexual function.

Adjust your diet or take a supplement to address deficiencies affecting your sexual health. Or, take a Science Nutrition Lab blood test to identify deficiencies long before symptoms appear.

Liquid Chlorophyll & Chlorophyll Water: Does It Really Work?

Some people drink liquid chlorophyll – also known as chlorophyll water – daily for purported health benefits.

Like many trendy health supplements that have come before it, liquid chlorophyll has supporters and detractors.

Some claim the liquid chlorophyll wellness craze improves skin health, helps with weight loss, and detoxifies the body, among other benefits. Others claim liquid chlorophyll has no real scientific evidence and tastes gross.

Does liquid chlorophyll really work? What’s the science behind chlorophyll water? Keep reading to find what science says about one of the newest trends in health and wellness.

Fast Facts About Liquid Chlorophyll

  • Liquid chlorophyll has been a growing wellness trend in 2022, fueled by TikTok stars and other social media influencers
  • Some claim adding chlorophyll to water helps with skin, weight loss, detoxification, and more
  • One company has already trademarked the term Chlorophyll Water and sells a branded version of Chlorophyll Water online
  • Most liquid chlorophyll studies are small, and there’s limited largescale evidence proving specific benefits in humans
  • However, most studies suggest liquid chlorophyll is safe for humans to take in normal doses with no side effects

What is Liquid Chlorophyll?

Chlorophyll is the natural chemical in plants that makes them green. Plants use chlorophyll to absorb different wavelengths of light.

Liquid chlorophyll is a synthetic version of chlorophyll (i.e. chlorophyll created in a lab) designed to support specific benefits in humans.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen chlorophyll supplements rise in popularity: over the past decade, we’ve seen chlorophyll gels, tablets, and softgels. Today, liquid chlorophyll seems particularly popular.

To be clear, liquid chlorophyll supplements contain a different type of chlorophyll than what is found in plants. Supplements contain a human-made version of chlorophyll called chlorophyllin. Scientists have re-created chlorophyll in a lab by making minor changes to the natural ingredient.

How Do Liquid Chlorophyll Supplements Work?

Liquid chlorophyll supplements contain chlorophyll in or sodium copper chlorophyllin (SCC), two synthetic versions of chlorophyll. Some research suggests these nature-derived chemicals can support certain benefits.

You take chlorophyll supplements orally, and your body absorbs a certain amount of chlorophyll. Absorption varies depending on whether you’re taking liquid chlorophyll or other chlorophyll supplements.

One of the most promising studies on liquid chlorophyll was published in 2018, when researchers found chlorophyll exhibited anticancer effects against pancreatic cancer cells. Because of that study and others, a trial is underway to see if chlorophyll supplements can help with radiation therapy for pelvic cancer.

A separate study, performed on mice, found liquid chlorophyll could support gut health by balancing bacteria in your gut. Good gut microbiota balance is associated with good immunity and strong overall health.

Chlorophyll has shown some evidence of working when applied topically. A 2014 study, for example, found applying topical chlorophyllin (synthetic chlorophyll) could help support your skin’s natural defense against acne.

Another study, meanwhile, found chlorophyll could protect your body from the effects of carcinogens, or cancer-causing chemicals. However, researchers did not find enough evidence to remove chlorophyll supplementation for anti-cancer effects.

Chlorophyll detractors, meanwhile, point to other studies showing your body only absorbs a small amount of supplemental chlorophyll. This study, for example, found most chlorophyll is excreted via your feces and very little ends up in your bloodstream – even when eating a diet rich in chlorophyll or taking chlorophyll supplements.

Purported Benefits of Chlorophyll Supplements

Liquid chlorophyll and other chlorophyll supplements have surged in popularity. Social media and certain wellness practitioners have promoted the trend with various benefits.

Some of the purported benefits of chlorophyll supplements, according to various dubious claims online, including:

  • Clear your skin and help with acne, scarring, rosacea, and other conditions
  • Lose weight
  • Boost digestion
  • Help prevent cancer
  • Detoxify your body
  • Reduce inflammation, help with mental fog, and support general health and wellness

One writer at The Beet, for example, claims she noticed significant effects within days of drinking chlorophyll water for the first time. She reduced appetite cravings, cleared her skin, improved her digestion, and experienced other effects after taking chlorophyll for one week.

How to Drink Liquid Chlorophyll

On TikTok, Instagram, and other major social media, you can find plenty of influencers drinking weird, green-colored potions daily to support skin health and other benefits.

Most people take liquid chlorophyll by adding a few drops of concentrated liquid chlorophyll to a glass of water or a shake. Then, just drink it daily.

Liquid chlorophyll supplements come in a highly-concentrated liquid. You take 5 to 20 drops of this liquid daily to support the purported benefits (or follow the recommended dosage instructions on your liquid chlorophyll supplement).

Expect an unusual taste with liquid chlorophyll. Some never get used to the taste, while others require a few days to get used to it. Others mask it with strong-tasting shakes or smoothies.

Is Liquid Chlorophyll Safe?

Liquid chlorophyll and other chlorophyll supplements appear to be safe to take. Although evidence for their benefits is mixed, studies have linked liquid chlorophyll to few serious side effects when consumed in normal doses.

According to the FDA, it appears safe for healthy adults to take 100mg to 200mg of chlorophyll per day, and there’s no evidence chlorophyll is toxic. If you exceed the recommended maximum dosage of 200mg per day, however, you could experience side effects like:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Bloating
  • Diarrhea
  • Discolored stools

When applied chlorophyll supplements topically (directly to your skin), watch for signs of skin irritation. Some develop rashes or other irritation because of topical chlorophyll creams.

Other Ways to Increase Chlorophyll Intake

You could take a liquid chlorophyll supplement to boost chlorophyll intake. Or, you could eat certain chlorophyll-rich plants and foods.

Some of the best chlorophyll-rich foods include:

  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Arugula
  • Green beans
  • Collard greens
  • Parsley

These plants contain natural, plant-based chlorophyll – not the synthetic, plant-derived formula found in chlorophyll supplements.

Final Word

Liquid chlorophyll, also known as chlorophyll water, is a popular new health trend that surged in popularity in 2022.

There’s some evidence liquid chlorophyll can support overall health and hydration. Studies also suggest chlorophyll is non-toxic and safe for most healthy adults to take. However, we need more research to verify all of the advertised benefits of liquid chlorophyll.

Take a Science Based Nutrition blood test today to spot changes in your blood before symptoms appear. A single test can reveal crucial insight into your health – and determine if liquid chlorophyll is worth it for you.

Nutritional Supplements & Hair Loss: Facts Versus Fiction

Many supplements claim to reverse hair loss, regrow hair, and cure baldness.

Officially, the FDA has only approved two hair growth solutions: minoxidil (Rogaine) and finasteride. However, many supplements claim to offer similar hair growth benefits.

Are any hair growth supplements backed by science? Can a single pill really fix your receding hairline?

Today, we’re separating the facts from the fiction for nutritional supplements and hair loss.

There’s No Evidence Any Supplement Regrows Hair or Cures Baldness

First, let’s make one thing clear: there’s no evidence an oral supplement, pill, liquid, or smoothie will regrow hair on bald spots, reverse your receding hairline, or make you less bald than you currently are.

Instead, the goal of hair growth supplements is to maintain the current appearance of your hair or encourage growth in areas of your scalp with existing hair.

Despite this fact, many hair supplement companies market their products specifically to people who are bald with claims of reversing baldness and fixing a receding hairline – often overnight. There’s no evidence these supplements work.

Fortunately, there are science-backed ways to support hair growth.

Supplements Can Support Hair Growth, Fullness, Thickness, and Appearance

Supplements cannot regrow hair in bald areas or reverse a receding hairline, but they can support the appearance of your hair by supporting fullness, thickness, and overall growth.

Your hair needs certain vitamins and minerals to grow. If you are deficient in these vitamins and minerals, then your hair struggles to grow in an optimal way.

Here are some of the most important and science-backed supplements for hair growth:

B Vitamins: Multiple types of B vitamins are crucial for hair growth. Many people take B complex vitamins to support overall hair growth for that reason. Vitamin B7 (biotin) and vitamin B12 are particularly important for hair growth, and research shows they help strengthen and condition your hair. Alternatively, you can add more B vitamins to your diet by eating whole grains, meat, fish, eggs, nuts, and avocados.

Vitamin C: Vitamin C is one of nature’s best antioxidants. It also plays a crucial role in hair growth. Vitamin C’s antioxidant effects help support blood flow to the scalp and throughout the body. Good blood flow is crucial for hair growth. When blood flows to your scalp, it provides your follicles with the stimulation, oxygen, and nutrients needed for good hair growth. One 2006 study found a specific vitamin C derivative (ascorbic acid 2-phosphate) was particularly effective for promoting hair growth.

Iron: Iron could support hair growth, and there appears to be a connection between iron deficiency and hair loss. One study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found iron deficiency (the world’s most common nutritional deficiency) was linked to certain types of baldness and hair loss. Another study found screening for iron deficiency could help diagnose hair loss before it becomes too serious.

Vitamin D: Vitamin D deficiency is linked to hair loss. If your body does not have enough vitamin D, then it cannot produce new hair. Vitamin D deficiency is also linked to greater rates of shedding and overall hair loss. Some people get sufficient vitamin D through sunlight exposure, while others take vitamin D supplements.

Some Supplement Ingredients Are Overrated for Hair Growth

Some supplements claim to support hair growth with a blend of science-backed ingredients – but they fail to live up to the hype.

Keratin is a popular hair growth supplement ingredient, for example, backed by limited formal scientific evidence. Nevertheless, many of the world’s most popular hair growth supplements continue to contain keratin.

Overrated Hair Supplement Ingredient #1: Keratin: Keratin is one of the most abundant proteins in the body. It’s crucial for hair, skin, and nails. Today, many people take keratin supplements to support hair growth and overall skin and nail health. Unfortunately, there’s little proven evidence showing keratin supplementation meaningfully changes hair, skin, or nail health in humans – although keratin continues to be one of the most popular ingredients in hair growth supplements today.

Overrated Hair Supplement Ingredient #2: Vitamin A: Vitamin A deficiency is rare in the United States and most developed countries. If you are genuinely deficient in vitamin A, then taking a vitamin A supplement could help with hair growth. However, there’s little evidence most people can benefit from vitamin A supplementation. In fact, most studies on vitamin A and hair growth have worked on mice – not humans. Unless you know you’re deficient in vitamin A, consider skipping it.

Overrated Hair Supplement Ingredient #3: 90% of Hair Growth Supplement Ingredients: You can find plenty of hair growth supplements online and in stores claiming to reverse hair loss, regrow hair, and solve all of your hair-related problems. Unfortunately, 90% of ingredients within these formulas are not backed by science. Check the label, check the science, and verify the dosage and concentration of ingredients to ensure you’re not being scammed.

Other Science-Backed Diet & Lifestyle Changes for Hair Loss

There’s no evidence a supplement can regrow hair or fix baldness overnight. However, there’s plenty of evidence that certain diet and lifestyle changes can impact hair loss.

Here are some of the science-backed strategies you can implement today to support hair growth, boost the appearance of your hair, and give you the best possible chance of maintaining a full head of hair at any age:

  • Avoid hairstyles that pull on your hair, including cornrows, tight braids, and ponytails; these hairstyles can pull hair away from the scalp and loosen the bond between your hair and scalp.
  • Avoid chemically treating or bleaching hair. These processes destroy keratin, which forms the structure of your hair, and can leave your hair seriously damaged.
  • Use a better shampoo and avoid over washing. There’s no evidence specific shampoo ingredients cause hair loss, but you should avoid over washing your shampoo or using low-quality shampoos to give your hair the best possible chance of maximum growth.
  • Eat a diet rich with antioxidants, including colorful fruits and vegetables.
  • Avoid low level light therapy. Some clinics advertise low level light therapy as a cure for baldness. In reality, there’s little largescale evidence low level light therapy provides a meaningful difference in hair growth. Until there’s more science behind it, avoid low level light therapy and other unproven treatments.

Final Word

Are you experiencing hair loss? Have you noticed a decrease in the luster, fullness, or overall appearance of your hair? It could be a deficiency problem.

Many people are deficient in crucial vitamins, minerals, and nutrients linked to hair growth. These deficiencies can lead to hair loss problems.

Order a Science Nutrition Lab test today to compare your bloodwork to an optimal range.

Instead of checking your blood against a random selection of patients at a lab, Science Nutrition Lab compares your bloodwork against the optimal levels for your demographic, providing better insight into your health and future.


Top 5 Science-Backed Benefits of L-Carnitine

L-carnitine supplements have grown in popularity in recent years.

Today, many people take L-carnitine supplements regularly for everything from energy to brain function. The amino acid works by transporting long-chain fatty acids into the powerhouses of your body, boosting energy at the cellular level.

Is L-carnitine legit? Do L-carnitine supplements really work? Keep reading to discover the most science-backed benefits of L-carnitine.

How L-Carnitine Works

L-carnitine is an amino acid linked to energy, heart function, and brain function, among other benefits.

Your body produces L-carnitine in the brain, liver, and kidneys.

The most important function of L-carnitine is to transport fatty acids into the mitochondria of your cells, which is why L-carnitine is so important for energy production.

Although your body produces L-carnitine on its own, it needs vitamin C to produce sufficient L-carnitine. You can also get L-carnitine from certain animal products, including meat and fish.

You May Be Deficient in L-Carnitine

If you have low physical or mental energy, mental fog, or other noticeable issues, then you may be deficient in L-carnitine.

Having low energy isn’t normal at any age! A single test can check for L-carnitine deficiency.

Many vegans and vegetarians are deficient in L-carnitine, for example. Because the most common sources of L-carnitine are meat and fish.

Some people also have a genetic condition that makes it impossible to produce sufficient L-carnitine.

For all of these reasons and more, you may want to:

  • Take a painless Science Nutrition Lab test to spot changes in your blood before you notice symptoms
  • Take an L-carnitine supplement
  • Talk to a doctor about a customized treatment plan

Benefit #1: Weight Loss

L-carnitine could support weight loss and healthy weight management, according to multiple studies.

One of the largest reviews on L-carnitine found the amino acid led to average weight loss of 2.9lbs (1.3kgs) more than a placebo. That study reviewed 9 trials involving hundreds of participants taking L-carnitine in double-blind, placebo-controlled settings.

Now all L-carnitine studies have been conclusive for weight loss, however. One study found people taking L-carnitine over a four week period while riding a stationary bike for 90 minutes a day did not lose more weight than those taking a placebo, for example. In a separate 8-week study, 38 women experienced no difference in weight loss whether taking L-carnitine or a placebo.

Overall, L-carnitine could help with weight loss in some people. Although it’s not proven to work in everyone, it could support weight loss in some.

Benefit #2: Cognition & Mental Fog

If you experience mental lethargy, brain fog, or occasional cognitive issues, then L-carnitine could help. L-carnitine plays a crucial role in neurotransmitter production, helping to support messengers within your brain.

Many of the cognitive effects of L-carnitine are linked to a specific version of the amino acid called acetyl L-carnitine. Also known as ALCAR, this version may help prevent age-related mental decline. A separate study also found ALCAR enhanced learning capacity in aging rats.

Researchers gave ALCAR to a group of patients with Alzheimer’s disease to assess the effects. Participants took 2.5g of ALCAR per day or a placebo for 6 months. Researchers found this dose of ALCAR was associated with an improvement in certain cognitive symptoms of Alzheimer’s.

There’s even some evidence L-carnitine could help support mental acuity in people with addiction. In a 90 day trial, people with alcohol addiction taking 2g of L-carnitine per day improved all measures of brain function.

Overall, L-carnitine plays a critical role in mental and physical energy, and multiple studies have validated the effects of L-carnitine on brain health.

Benefit #3: Cardiovascular Health

There’s some evidence L-carnitine can help with blood pressure and overall cardiovascular health. One study found L-carnitine reduced blood pressure, for example, while another study found L-carnitine reduced cardiovascular inflammation, which is associated with heart disease.

Heart disease is the number one killer in most developed countries. Statistically, most are more likely to die of heart disease than any other cause.

In one 2009 study, researchers found daily intake of 2g of L-carnitine led to a 10-point drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number of a blood pressure reading). This number is considered particularly important for managing the risk of heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

A separate study found L-carnitine supplementation was linked to a significantly reduced risk of heart failure over a 12 month period.

Benefit #4: Blood Sugar

There’s some evidence L-carnitine can help with blood sugar, and some diabetics take L-carnitine supplements regularly for that reason.

Some of the blood sugar-linked benefits of L-carnitine include:

A 2010 study found a combination of L-carnitine supplementation and caloric restriction improved insulin sensitivity in patients with impaired glucose metabolism. Participants followed a restricted diet while taking a placebo or 4g of L-carnitine daily. Researchers found the L-carnitine group had better insulin sensitivity than the group following a restricted calorie diet alone.

A 2011 study found L-carnitine improved insulin sensitivity in a group of overweight and obese males. Participants took 3g of L-carnitine or a placebo daily. At the conclusion of the period, researchers found significant differences in body mass, fat percentage, and BMI between the L-carnitine group and placebo group, suggesting L-carnitine can provide “insulin-like” actions on tissues, according to researchers. However, the study was small and involved 16 male participants in total.

A separate study also found a connection between carnitine, fatty acids, and insulin resistance, and researchers found 2g of L-carnitine supplementation per day helped with the regulation of blood sugar.

Overall, there appears to be a connection between L-carnitine and blood sugar management, and many diabetics take L-carnitine supplements regularly for that reason.

Benefit #5: Athletic Performance, Endurance, and Recovery

Many people take L-carnitine supplements before a workout. In fact, L-carnitine is one of the most popular preworkout supplement ingredients on the market.

L-carnitine appears to work by supporting blood flow and nitric oxide production, which can help with stamina, endurance, and the longevity of your workout. Some bodybuilders take L-carnitine for a better “pump” and vasodilation, for example, while endurance athletes could take L-carnitine to workout harder for longer.

L-carnitine also appears to work by increasing the production of red blood cells. Your body needs red blood cells to transport oxygen to your muscles. When you’re working out, your red blood cells play a critical role in performance, endurance, and overall athletic activity.

Others take L-carnitine after a workout. Multiple studies have found L-carnitine could improve exercise recovery, helping your body repair muscles and tissues after a workout.

Final Word

We’ve known about the effects of L-carnitine for a while. However, growing research continues to connect L-carnitine to heart health, brain health, blood sugar management, energy, and more.

Do you have brain fog or low energy? Do you regularly feel tired? That’s not normal at any age!

Consider taking a Science Nutrition Lab test to check for L-carnitine deficiency and other deficiencies to address your low energy.  

Top 5 Natural Supplement Trends Predicted to Skyrocket in 2023

Each year, researchers discover exciting new benefits of plants, herbs, and fruits from around the world.

Acai berry surged in popularity 20 years ago because of a handful of reports linking it to weight loss. Garcinia cambogia and turmeric experienced similarly meteoric rises to fame.

What will be the acai berry of 2023? What are the best 5 natural supplements that could explode in 2023? Here are some of the most exciting fruits, plants, herbs, nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and more linked to growing benefits in multiple studies.

1) Irish Moss

Multiple types of seaweed and algae supplements have surged in popularity over the last decade. One type of seaweed called Irish moss could become particularly popular in 2023 and beyond.

After receiving a recent public endorsement from Kim Kardashian, Irish moss could be entering its heyday.

Irish moss is also known as Chondrus crispus or carrageen moss (derived from the Irish word carraigín, which means “little rock.”

Irish moss is a type of red algae that grows throughout the Atlantic coast of Europe and North America. Despite the name, it’s found in more than just Ireland. In fact, some people refer to the compound as Scotch moss.

Studies show Irish moss is rich with plant-based antioxidants, phytonutrients, and trace minerals capable of supporting a range of effects. Kim Kardashian claims to drink it in her smoothies.

We’re not the first to discover the benefits of Irish moss: studies show traditional Chinese medicine practitioners have used sea moss as far back at 600 BC. In fact, the people of the British Isles used sea moss as a food source for thousands of years, and it was a crucial nutrition source during the Great Famine in the mid-19th century in Ireland (which is why it’s most commonly known as Irish moss today).

We need more research to verify the effects of Irish moss, but with growing celebrity endorsements and multiple affordable supplements available online, Irish moss could be one of the hottest supplement trends of 2023 and beyond.

2) Mushroom Supplements

Like seaweed and algae, mushrooms have surged in popularity over the last few years. Studies show mushrooms are rich with plant-based antioxidants, beta glucans, vitamins, minerals, and more.

Some mushrooms appear to support immunity and immune health, helping your body defend against disease and illness. Other mushrooms can support anti-aging benefits, energy, or even sexual health, among other benefits.

Some supplement companies add a blend of mushrooms to their supplement to support a range of benefits. Others use specific varieties of mushroom.

Some of the most science-backed mushrooms that could continue to explode in popularity in 2023 include:

  • Turkey tail
  • Reishi
  • Lion’s mane
  • Chaga
  • Maitake
  • Shiitake

These mushrooms may be new to us, but they’ve been popular for centuries in certain types of medicine. Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners, for example, have regularly used mushroom extract to support immunity and various health goals.

One recent UCLA Health study found turkey tail mushrooms act as immune modulators, for example, helping the immune system function more efficiently. Another study connected lion’s mane mushroom to neurotrophic properties, suggesting it can help with brain performance, memory, and overall oxidative stress and inflammation in the brain, among other benefits.

For all of these reasons and more, mushroom extracts are expected to become increasingly mainstream in 2023 and beyond.

3) Beetroot Powder

We’ve known about the health supporting benefits of beetroot powder for years, but 2023 could be the year the world starts to recognize the true value of beetroot powder for cardiovascular health, blood flow, and overall wellness.

One recent study published in Nutrients found red beetroot increased nitric oxide (NO) availability, which could help with blood flow. As you get older, your NO levels tend to naturally decline, leading to poor cardiovascular health. Many people take beet supplements daily to counteract this effect and support NO levels.

Another study linked beetroot to the management of cardio-metabolic diseases, significant positive changes in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and decreased blood glucose, among other benefits.

Another perk of beetroot powder is its relatively cheap price: beets are affordable and easy to condense into supplement form, making the powder accessible to anyone who wants it.

4) All Types of Gummies

Gummies used to be considered candy for kids. Today, gummies are one of the most popular – and fastest growing – areas of the supplement industry.

Supplement gummies with science-backed natural ingredients are expected to continue surging in popularity in 2023 and beyond.

Some of the most popular types of supplements and gummies available today include:

  • Melatonin gummies
  • Ashwagandha gummies
  • Mushroom gummies
  • Daily green and red superfood gummies
  • CBD, CBN, and THC gummies

Studies show your body can absorb the active ingredients in gummies similar to how it would absorb other ingredients. In fact, a 2019 study found vitamin D gummies “had greater bioavailability than tablets” and provided high vitamin D concentration in the body over time.

As long as gummies contain science-backed ingredients with minimal artificial fillers, flavors, sweeteners, and additives, they can continue to be an option for anyone searching for health supporting supplements.

5) Collagen

Collagen has been one of the fastest growing supplement trends of the last few years, and that trend is expected to continue growing in 2023 and beyond.

Some of the reasons collagen continues to surge in popularity include:

  • A 2019 study found collagen supplementation improved skin hydration, elasticity, roughness, and density in a double-blind, placebo-controlled setting, with participants experiencing significant anti-aging effects.
  • In a comprehensive review on collagen and its benefits, researchers found collagen played a crucial role in skin regeneration, bone health, wound healing, oral health, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis, among other areas of the body.
  • Your body’s collagen production naturally declines with age, and your body has significantly less available collagen as you get older. This can lead to visible effects of aging, including drooping skin, wrinkles, and reduced smoothness and elasticity. A collagen supplement could help.

The best collagen supplements contain collagen with minimal filler ingredients. Collagen is the most abundant connective protein in the human body, and taking 5g to 15g of collagen per day is linked to anti-aging support, muscle development, and more.

Honorable Mentions

Every year, supplement companies introduce dozens of new supplements to the market.

Some are refreshed versions of old ingredients. Others are previously undiscovered ingredients used only in obscure, regional, traditional medicine.

Here are some of the honorable mentions of supplement trends and natural ingredients that could skyrocket in popularity in 2023 and beyond:

  • Pine needle tree
  • Mullein leaf
  • Bakuchiol and the babchi plant
  • Citrus bergamot
  • Snail mucin
  • Beef liver capsules

Whether trying to support immunity, health, weight loss, muscle growth, or other targeted benefits, the supplement ingredients above could surge in popularity in 2023 – or they could fizzle out and disappear.

Which new supplements work best for you? A Science Nutrition Lab test can answer that question!

Order a Science Based Nutrition test from Science Nutrition Lab today to get detailed insight into your physiology and ensure you’re taking the best supplements for your unique needs.


6 Surprising Signs of Oral Health Problems: How to Support Gum, Mouth, and Tooth Health

There are obvious signs of poor oral health – like bleeding gums and bad breath.

However, there are also less obvious signs of oral health issues, including bad digestion, clicking of the jaw, and respiratory infections.

Keep reading to discover some of the surprising signs of oral health problems along with science-backed ways to support the health of your gum, mouth, and teeth.

1) Obvious Symptoms of Oral Health Problems

First, let’s clear up some obvious symptoms of oral health problems. If you regularly experience any or all of the following symptoms, then you could have an oral health problem:

  • Mouth and jaw pain
  • Bleeding gums
  • Loose teeth or lost teeth
  • Recurring bad breath
  • Sores, pain, or pumps in your mouth

All of these issues could be linked to poor oral hygiene. Or, they could be connected to a serious oral disease.

2) Cardiovascular Disease

Oral health problems can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

When you have poor gum and tooth health, it increases the risk of heart disease in the following way:

  • Poor oral health increases inflammation in your gums and teeth
  • When you don’t brush or floss your teeth regularly, it causes the buildup of harmful bacteria; over time, this bacteria increases inflammation and causes periodontal disease
  • When left untreated, bacteria enter your bloodstream, leading to hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), which is a serious cardiovascular condition
  • Atherosclerosis significantly increases the risk of heart attack and stroke

Some studies also connect poor oral health to endocarditis (a fatal condition impacting the lining of your heart).

By cleaning your teeth regularly and practicing good oral hygiene, you can reduce the risk of heart disease – and keep your great smile.

3) Mental Fog

Poor oral health can impact your brain.

When you fail to brush or floss, it causes bacteria to build up throughout your mouth, leading to inflammation. This inflammation can kill brain cells, weaken memory, and contribute to mental fog, among other issues.

When left unaddressed, oral health issues can lead to dementia and other degenerative brain conditions. In fact, some studies suggest certain cases of Alzheimer’s disease are traced back to gingivitis and other harmful oral health conditions.

4) Respiratory Disease and Breathing Problems

Oral health problems can contribute breathing difficulties. Studies show poor oral health leads to poor respiratory health.

When you have poor oral health, it causes harmful bacteria to build up in your mouth. Every time you breathe, some of that harmful bacteria travels into your lungs, where it can contribute to serious respiratory conditions.

Some studies have linked poor oral health to respiratory infections, pneumonia, acute bronchitis, and COPD, among other issues.

5) Diabetes

Diabetics are more susceptible to oral health problems – including gum infections. However, gum disease and diabetes can also create a feedback loop, which each condition making the other worse:

  • When you ignore oral health issues like infected gums, it can imbalance blood sugar
  • Diabetics already have imbalanced blood sugar, and oral health problems can make this imbalance worse
  • As the imbalance grows worse, diabetics may struggle to manage their condition with diet, exercise, and medication

As diabetes and gum disease get worse, it worsens overall health and can lead to more significant problems.

6) Other Surprising Symptoms of Oral Health Problems

Other conditions that could trace their roots to oral health problems include:

Infertility: Studies show gum disease increases the risk of infertility in women. Oral health problems can make it difficult for women to conceive a child and carry that child to term.

Erectile Dysfunction: Men with oral health problems have an increased risk of erectile dysfunction. In fact, multiple studies have connected chronic periodontal disease (CPD) with ED. CPD occurs when gums pull away from teeth, creating pockets where bacteria can thrive. As bacteria enters these pockets and thrives, it leads to inflammation of the blood vessels, which can worsen symptoms of ED.

Autoimmune Disorders: People with gum disease tend to have weaker immune systems. Your immune system is battling against your oral health infection, which means it may not be powerful enough to fight other infections throughout your body. Oral health problems could increase your risk of rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and other conditions linked to autoimmunity.

Kidney Disease: Those same immune system issues can worsen symptoms of kidney disease. If you have gum disease, your weakened immune system could make you more susceptible to kidney disease.

How to Support Oral Health: What Does Science Say?

There are multiple proven, science-backed ways to support oral health.

Here are some of the best ways to support oral health and support your body’s natural defenses against the conditions listed above

  • Practice normal oral hygiene habits by brushing your teeth for at least two minutes twice a day
  • Floss your teeth daily
  • Avoid tobacco
  • Limit the consumption of sugary foods and beverages
  • Eat a well-balanced diet
  • Visit a dentist regularly for checkups and formal screenings

Final Word

At Science Nutrition Lab, we can screen your blood for signs of infection and disease sing a painless, at-home blood test.

Plus, we use Science Based Nutrition testing to compare your bloodwork against an optimal range based on your age and health – not against a random selection of people who recently visited a lab.

Your blood shows signs of health problems long before symptoms appear. Even if you think you have perfect oral health, your blood could be rich with harmful bacteria causing inflammation and immune dysfunction throughout your body.

Order your at-home testing kit from Science Nutrition Lab today.


Digestive Enzyme Deficiency: Symptoms & Solutions

Your gut needs digestive enzymes to break down the foods you eat. If you have digestive enzyme insufficiency, then you may experience a range of digestive health issues.

Digestive enzyme supplements have skyrocketed in popularity in recent years.

Digestive enzyme supplement companies advertise their products as a way to target gut irritation, heartburn, bloating, and other digestive health issues.

Today, we’re explaining everything you need to know about digestive enzyme deficiency, including symptoms of digestive enzyme insufficiency problems and science-backed solutions.

How Digestive Enzymes Work

Digestive enzymes are proteins that break down food in your gut. Your body produces these proteins in response to the foods you eat. They play a critical role in digestion.

If you have inadequate levels of digestive enzymes, then your body could struggle to break down food, extract the nutritional value of the food you eat, and maximize the energy of the food you consume.

Here are the basics of digestive enzymes and how they work, as explained by Johns Hopkins:

  • Your body creates digestive enzymes naturally. Digestive enzymes are proteins that break down food and help with the digestive process.
  • Your body starts to produce digestive enzymes immediately after you start eating food. Digestion begins in the mouth.
  • Your saliva starts to break down food immediately, easing the strain on the rest of your digestive system.
  • As food travels through your mouth and into your digestive tract, your body releases enzymes at various points throughout the process.
  • Your pancreas produces the most important digestive enzymes, including the enzymes that break down carbs, proteins, and fats.
  • Your small intestine, mouth, and stomach also produce other digestive enzymes.

Symptoms of Digestive Enzyme Deficiency

For various reasons, your body may fail to produce sufficient levels of digestive enzymes. You may have problems with your pancreas, for example, making it difficult for your body to break down fats, carbs, and proteins.

Common symptoms of digestive enzyme deficiency include:

  • Bloating
  • Diarrhea
  • Gas
  • Oily stools
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Belly pain or cramps

Sometimes, these symptoms are a sign of enzyme deficiency. Your body, for various reasons, may not be producing enough enzymes to break down the foods you eat. However, if these symptoms persist, you should talk to a doctor, as they could be a sign of a more serious medical condition.

Common Digestive Enzymes and Digestive Enzyme Supplement Ingredients

Your body produces amylase to break down complex carbs, and it produces lipase to break down fats. These enzymes and others play a crucial role in the digestive process.

Here are some of the most common digestive enzymes produced by your body – and the most popular digestive enzyme supplement ingredients:

Amylase: Your mouth and pancreas produce amylase to help break down complex carbs.

Lipase: Your pancreas creates lipase to break down fats.

Protease: Your pancreas creates protease to break down proteins.

Lactase: Various parts of your digestive system create lactase to break down lactose, which is the sugar in milk and other dairy products.

Sucrase: Various parts of your digestive system create sucrase to break down sucrose, a common type of sugar found in many foods.

Digestive Enzyme Insufficiency Conditions

If your mouth, pancreas, small intestine, and stomach cannot produce sufficient digestive enzymes, then you might have one of several digestive enzyme insufficiency conditions.

Some of the most common conditions linked to enzyme insufficiency include:

Congenital Sucrase-Isomaltose Deficiency: If your body isn’t producing enough sucrase to digest certain sugars, then you may have congenital sucrase-isomaltose deficiency.

Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency (EPI): If your pancreas cannot produce enough enzymes to digest carbs, proteins, and fats, then you may have EPI.

Lactose Intolerance: Many people are naturally lactose intolerance because they body doesn’t produce enough lactase, making it difficult to digest the sugar found in milk and dairy products.

Causes of Digestive Enzyme Deficiency

You may develop a digestive enzyme deficiency condition for various reasons – including genetic reasons, lifestyle factors, and other causes. Certain medical conditions also make it difficult for your body to produce digestive enzymes.

Some of the most common causes of digestive enzyme deficiency include:

  • Genetic causes
  • Lifestyle factors
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Cystic fibrosis (roughly 90% of people with cystic fibrosis have pancreatic enzyme insufficiency)
  • Gastrointestinal surgeries
  • Pancreatic cancer, chronic pancreatitis, and other conditions that disrupt your pancreas

Even if your parents have a healthy gut, you may have genetic factors increasing the risk of enzyme deficiency. Some genetic factors are present at birth and become worse over time, for example.

How to Support Digestive Enzyme Production

Many people take digestive enzyme supplements daily to support gut health and digestive enzyme production.

Here are some of the best and most science-backed ways to support digestive enzyme production and support overall gut health:

Digestive Enzyme Supplements: Digestive enzyme supplements are available over-the-counter, and they claim to help with gas, bloating, diarrhea, acid reflux, and other conditions. Digestive enzyme supplements clearly label their ingredients upfront, and most contain a blend of protease, lipase, amylase, and other common digestive enzymes.

Prescription Digestive Enzymes: If your doctor diagnosed an enzyme deficiency, then they may recommend a prescription-strength digestive enzyme formula. The FDA has approved pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy (PERT), and it’s the most popular digestive enzyme deficiency treatment recommended by doctors today. PERT can help your body with protease, amylase, and lipase production to break down proteins, complex carbs, and fats.

Lactase Supplements: If you are lactose intolerant, then a lactase supplement could help you eat dairy products with limited side effects. Lactase supplements give your body the digestive enzymes needed to break down lactose, the main sugar in dairy.

Alpha Galactosidase Supplements: Alpha galactosidase is one digestive enzyme your body cannot produce on its own – even if you have no digestive enzyme production issues. Your body needs this enzyme to break down galactooligosaccharides (GOS), a type of non-absorbable fiber.

Digestive-Enzyme Rich Foods: Some natural health experts recommend eating more pineapples and avocados because they’re rich with digestive enzymes. It’s true avocado and pineapple contain digestive enzymes (including bromelain). However, there’s little evidence they can specifically help with digestive enzyme production. Instead, it’s better to follow a balanced, whole food diet to support your body’s natural production of digestive enzymes overall. Avoid processed foods, fried foods, and fatty foods to help your body maximize digestive enzyme production.

As Johns Hopkins explains, most healthy people don’t need to take digestive enzyme supplements because their bodies produce digestive enzymes naturally. However, people with digestive enzyme insufficiency issues could benefit from talking to a doctor about digestive enzyme treatments and supplements.

Final Word

Digestive enzyme insufficiency can lead to bloating, gas and other issues.

By spotting the signs of digestive enzyme problems early, you can talk to a doctor for the help you need – whether it’s in the form of pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy (PERT) or digestive enzyme supplements.

10 Common Signs of an Unhealthy Gut – and 5 Proven Strategies to Help

Millions of people have gut health problems.

Common signs of an unhealthy gut include bloating, indigestion, heartburn, constipation, and diarrhea.

However, gut health problems can also lead to lesser-known symptoms like sleep problems, sugar cravings, depression, anxiety, and skin rashes.

Today, we’re highlighting some of the most common signs of an unhealthy gut – and 5 proven strategies you can use to support gut health.

1) Constipation, Diarrhea, Bloating, and Other Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Symptoms

We’ll start with obvious gut health problems: if you regularly experience constipation, diarrhea, bloating, and other IBS symptoms, then it could be a sign of poor gut health. These issues are not normal, and they could be a sign of IBS or other diagnosable gut health conditions.

2) Skin Irritation, Rashes, Psoriasis, and Other Conditions

Have you noticed skin rashes, acne, and other visible signs of skin problems in recent years? It could be a sign of gut health. Many skin conditions are traced back to bacteria in your gut. If you have an excessive balance of bad bacteria relative to good bacteria, then it could increase your risk of psoriasis and other skin conditions.

3) Autoimmune Conditions

Some research suggests around 70% of your immune system is linked to your gut. Your gut plays a critical role in immunity. It can prevent negative substances from entering your body, filter problematic ingredients out of your body, and ensure your immune system functions optimally. Over time, poor gut health can lead to chronic inflammation, which increases the risk of autoimmune conditions. Autoimmune conditions occur when your body attacks itself instead of harmful pathogens. Common autoimmune conditions include celiac disease, Graves disease, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and type 1 diabetes.

4) High Stress

Do you have a stressful life? Have you recently faced stress in your personal or professional life? High stress could worsen gut health. And, poor gut health could make stress worse. As your body becomes more stressed, it impedes digestion. As your digestion becomes worse, you become more stressed as your body struggles to absorb nutrients and break down the foods you’re eating. Over time, poor digestion is also linked to depression, anxiety, and other conditions.

5) Cravings for Sweet, Sugary, Fatty, or Unhealthy Foods

Do you frequently crave sweet, sugary, or fatty foods? Don’t blame poor self-control; instead, many people have excessive cravings because of gut health issues. Some people experience sugar cravings because of gut health problems, for example. Imbalanced gut microbiota can encourage you to reach for unhealthy foods in your kitchen.

6) Unexplained Weight Gain or Weight Loss

Have you lost or gained weight recently without a significant change to your diet or exercise program? Poor gut health may be to blame. Some unexplained weight gain and weight loss is linked to poor gut health. Your body may be struggling to absorb nutrients from the foods you eat. Or, leaky gut could cause excessive toxins to enter your body, making it harder to lose weight.

7) Fatigue, Low Energy, or Sluggishness

Gu health problems can lead to energy issues. If you frequently feel tired, have excessive lethargy, or lack motivation throughout the day, then your gut could be at fault. Your gut may be struggling to process food into energy, for example. Or, it could be spending so much energy digesting your food that there’s little energy leftover for you.

8) Difficulty Sleeping

If you have bad gut health, you’re more likely to have a bad sleep. Poor gut health makes it difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep, and enjoy a restful sleep. You might wake up in the middle of the night due to poor gut health. Or, you could fail to enter the deep sleep or REM cycles of sleep because of your gut health problems.

9) Mood Imbalances & Irritability

Your gut health plays a crucial role in mood. If you’ve been struggling with mood imbalances, irritability, or other issues lately, then your gut could be to blame. Your gut plays a critical role in your sense of wellbeing. Multiple studies have shown a connection between gut health, depression, anxiety, and fatigue.

10) Chronic Fatigue, Depression, Anxiety, and Other Unexplained Mood Disorders

If your mood issues progress to a point where you’re dealing with chronic fatigue, depression, anxiety, and other unexplained disorders, then gut health could be to blame. Many people with depression and anxiety have perfectly healthy guts. However, numerous studies have connected gut health to depression, anxiety, and other disorders.

5 Science-Backed Ways to Support Your Gut

You can support gut health using various proven strategies. Although serious gut disorders require medical diagnosis and treatment, you could support gut health by eliminating certain foods, taking specific supplements, and drinking more water, among other strategies.

Here are some of the best, most science-backed ways to support your gut:

Eat Probiotic-Rich Foods: Probiotic supplements are more popular than ever. However, many experts recommend focusing on probiotic-rich foods instead of probiotic supplements. Kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut, kombucha, and yogurt are all rich with billions of colony forming units (CFUs) of probiotic bacteria. Your gut needs these bacteria to break down the food you eat, extract their nutritional value, and maintain regular digestion.

Eat More Prebiotics: 95% of Americans don’t get their daily recommended intake of fiber. That’s a problem, because fiber is a valuable prebiotic. Your body needs fiber to fuel the probiotic bacteria in your gut. Eat more vegetables, fruits, and whole grains to supply your gut bacteria with the prebiotic fuel needed to support good digestion.

Drink More Water: Many people experience relief from certain gut health symptoms just by adding more water to their diet. This tip is particularly important if you drink a lot of soda, coffee, supplement drinks, or other beverages. In many cases, your gut simply need water to support good digestion.

Eat Slowly: Your digestive system can only process so much food at once. If you chew slowly, you give your gut more time to catch up to your mouth. Eating slowly breaks food into slower parts. Studies also show eating slowly can lower the risk of obesity and similar conditions.

Consider Seeing a Doctor: Sometimes, you do everything right but still experience symptoms of gut health problems. Consider seeing a doctor for gut health recommendations from a medical professional. The gut health problems listed above could be signs of a serious condition.

Final Word

Your gut health is crucial for overall health. From immunity to skin health to energy to mood, your gut is more valuable than you may think.

Learn to spot symptoms of gut health before they become serious. By spotting gut health issues today, you can tackle them as soon as possible.

10 Overhyped Superfoods That Aren’t Worth the Price

Not all superfoods are backed by science. Some superfoods are overhyped and overpriced.

Save your money and support your health by avoiding the superfoods below. They’re not as “super” as the internet has told you.

Cold-Pressed Juices

Cold-pressed juices are trendy and expensive. You can find them at health food stores and juice bars around the world. Some even make their own juice at home with high-end juicers.

Cold-pressed juices certainly aren’t bad for you. However, they’re not as good as many people think.

When you drink cold-pressed juice, you’re getting similar ingredients to regular juice: you get a lot of sugar and some vitamins and minerals, but not much more.

Most experts agree it’s better to eat the whole fruit, including the skin, flesh, and seeds of the fruit. It’s the way nature intended. When you eat fruit whole, it gives you fiber to fill you up and delay the absorption of sugar into your body.

Cold-pressed juices are trendy – but they’re not much better for you than ordinary fruit juices, and you’re probably better off taking whole fruits instead.

Acai Berry

Acai berry, like other overhyped superfoods on this list, isn’t necessarily bad for you – but it’s not as good as people think.

Acai berry is rich with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.

However, acai berry is not much more nutritionally relevant than berries you can easily buy at a local supermarket. It has similar antioxidant content to:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Cranberries

You can buy the berries above at a fraction of the cost – and enjoy similar benefits to acai berries.

Goji Berries

Goji berries occupy a similar space to acai berries: people throw around words like “antioxidants” and “nutrient-dense” when talking about goji berries.

However, there’s little evidence goji berries can reduce the risk of cancer, boost immunity, or improve cardiovascular health, among other benefits commonly advertised online.

In fact, many of the studies on goji berries come from studies on special goji extracts – not the berries themselves. These extracts are the equivalent to eating thousands of goji berries at once – and it’s not realistic to connect those benefits to adding a few goji berries to your smoothie each morning.

Coconut Water

People who drink coconut water love to talk about its hydrating properties.

Some people claim coconut water cures or prevents hangovers, for example. Others drink coconut water during or after a workout.

However, there’s little evidence suggesting coconut water has better hydrating properties than ordinary water.

Coconut water is also rich with sugar: each 8oz serving has 2 to 3 teaspoons of sugar and around 50 calories. If you’re looking to stay hydrated without the filler content, then water is a better choice than coconut water.


Have you ever taken a wheatgrass shot? You may have heard about the benefits of taking ingredients like chlorophyll. Someone might have told you about how wheatgrass is rich with vitamins A, C, and E along with minerals like iron, calcium, and magnesium.

Wheatgrass, like other so-called superfoods on this list, isn’t necessarily bad for you – but it’s not as good as people think.

The biggest problem with wheatgrass is that chlorophyll has no known nutritional value in humans.

Yes, wheatgrass is packed with vitamins and minerals – but so are multivitamin supplements and thousands of other fruits and vegetables.

Until science tells us there are specific benefits linked to the chlorophyll in wheatgrass, wheatgrass will continue to be an overhyped superfood deserving of its place on this list.


Search online for “best superfood drinks” and kombucha is sure to appear. Kombucha is a type of fermented black tea.

According to people online, kombucha is linked to benefits like:

  • Detoxification
  • Immune support
  • PMS relief
  • Energy
  • Digestion

That all sounds good. Unfortunately, however, there’s little concrete evidence linking kombucha to these claims.

In fact, most studies suggest ordinary teas like black or green tea – can provide superior benefits to fermented teas like kombucha. These teas are backed by thousands of studies – and centuries of use – linking them to heart health, immunity, and longevity.

Nevertheless, it’s not all bad news for kombucha drinkers: recent studies have found fermenting black and green tea can enhance its antioxidant properties. However, more human trials are needed to verify any of the benefits listed above.

It’s true kombucha, like other fermented foods, has probiotic bacteria. However, the levels of probiotics are smaller than you would get in yogurt, kefir, and other easy-to-find foods.

Certain Milk Alternatives

Milk alternatives are more popular today than ever before. Many people take nut or soy milk daily, for example, to enjoy non-animal sources of milk.

However, most milk alternatives are different than people realize. A typical nut or soy milk, for example, contains just 2% of the active ingredient. The rest of the beverage consists of water, vegetable oils, sweeteners, and additives. These additives enhance shelf life and flavor, but they do little for the nutritional value.

Consider making your own milk alternatives at home. You can enjoy all of the benefits of milk alternatives – with none of the additives or sweeteners.

Final Word

Don’t believe everything you read on the internet.

Some superfoods are backed by science, proven to work, and linked to genuine benefits.

Other superfoods are overhyped, overpriced, and overused.

6 Science-Backed Superfoods Available at Any Supermarket

People like to toss around the term “superfood”. However, there are plenty of genuine superfoods.

Some superfoods are rich with nutrients, fatty acids, fiber, vitamins, and minerals that can support health in various ways. They’re genuine superfoods backed by science to support health and wellness.

Other superfoods are overhyped. They’re not bad for you – but they don’t truly deserve to be called superfoods.

Here are some of our favorite science-backed superfoods available today – including superfoods available at any ordinary grocery store:


Food doesn’t need to be fancy and exotic to be a superfood. Eggs are a genuine superfood. They’re packed with:

  • High-quality protein to support muscle development and skin
  • Vitamin A, iron, phosphorous, selenium, B vitamins, and other vitamins and minerals
  • Antioxidants like zeaxanthin and lutein linked to eye health and vision
  • Choline to support cognition, memory formation, and overall brain health

Sure, eggs have high cholesterol content. However, studies show dietary cholesterol doesn’t impact your body’s cholesterol like previously thought. In this study, for example, researchers found people who ate 6 to 12 eggs per week did not have a higher risk of heart disease or diabetes.

In fact, one study found eggs increase HDL (“good”) cholesterol in some people.

For all of these reasons and more, eggs are a genuine, science-backed superfood.

Kale & Other Dark Green Leafy Vegetables (DGLVs)

Doctors often recommend getting more dark, leafy greens – and kale is one of the best dark, leafy greens you can take.

Kale, like other dark leafy greens, is rich with folate, zinc, iron, magnesium, calcium, fiber, and vitamin C.

Studies on dark green leafy vegetables (DGLVs) have linked their consumption to a reduced risk of illness and disease. In this study, for example, researchers found people with adequate intake of DGLVs like kale had lower levels of heart disease and diabetes.

Kale is also surprisingly rich with natural antioxidant chemicals – including carotenoids. Studies show diets rich with carotenoids may be associated with a reduced risk of cancer.

If you don’t like kale, then try other dark green leafy vegetables. Swiss chard, spinach, turnip greens, and collard greens all have similar benefits and nutrient content to kale.

Raspberries, Strawberries, Blueberries, and Other Berries

You don’t need exotic berries like acai to get your daily superfood intake; instead, some of the best superfood berries include common options like raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and cranberries.

All of these berries are rich with:

  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Fiber
  • Natural antioxidants

Studies show people with high berry intake in their diet tend to have a lower risk of heart disease and cancer. Other studies have found people who eat berries have less inflammation. Inflammation is linked with stress, aging, and an increased risk of disease.

Meanwhile, this 2018 study published in Nutrition Reviews found berries had beneficial effects on the digestive system, which led to significant benefits for the immune system. 70% of your immune system is found in your gut. Berries support microbiota in your gut, making it easier for your immune system to function optimally.

All berries have slightly different levels of nutritional value; however, any of the berries listed above are considered genuine superfoods.

Green Tea

Tea is the world’s most popular antioxidant beverage – and green tea is one of the best types of tea available.

Green tea is rich with antioxidants, polyphenols, and natural chemicals with potent antioxidant effects. Numerous studies have linked green tea to benefits like weight loss, disease mitigation, and stress and anxiety relief, among others.

One of the superstar ingredients in green tea is epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). This specific antioxidant compound is linked to a reduced risk of chronic disease, among other benefits – and it’s just one of several catechins in green tea.

In this 2018 study, researchers found EGCG lowered the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Meanwhile, this 2010 study published in Physiology & Behavior found green tea had significant effects on fat burning, fat oxidation, and weight loss.

If you’re looking for an easy, tasty, and science-backed superfood to add to your diet today, then green tea is one of the best options available.


People have prized garlic for centuries for its benefits. Today, we know more about how garlic works – and it’s clear garlic should be considered a superfood.

In this 2014 study published in the Indian Journal of Cancer, for example, researchers found garlic had potent effects on the cardiovascular system and immune system. Researchers found garlic reduced cholesterol and blood pressure while supporting immune function, for example. Since cardiovascular disease is the number one killer worldwide, garlic could help mitigate this risk.

Today, we know garlic gets its benefits from active compounds like allicin. Allicin is the principle bioactive compound found in garlic.

One of the largest therapeutic reviews of allicin was published in 2014.Researchers found allicin and other compounds in garlic could reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes while exhibiting anti-tumor and anti-microbial effects. However, researchers did not fully understand why allicin worked in these days.

Whether you like the taste or like the benefits, garlic is a science-backed superfood that could support blood pressure, heart health, immunity, and more.


Avocado is one of the world’s best-known superfoods. In fact, some people claim avocados are so nutritious you could live exclusively off avocados.

That may or may not be true, but studies show avocados are rich with monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) like oleic acid – similar to olive oil. In this study, researchers found oleic acid supported healthy inflammation throughout the body.

Other studies have linked avocados to potential benefits like:

In addition to being rich with oleic acid, avocados are rich with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats, making them one of the best superfoods you can buy in any grocery store.

Final Word

Some of the best superfoods are found in ordinary supermarkets – not in exotic online stores.

Adding berries, eggs, leafy green vegetables, green tea, and other science-backed superfoods to your diet can help in numerous ways.

Consider adding any of the superfoods above to your diet to support a range of science-backed benefits.

Top 7 Best Supplements for Mental Fog

Do you feel fuzzy, tired, or just “off”? It could be mental fog.

Millions of people deal with mental fog every day.

Fortunately, the right supplements can help. Some supplements support cognition and mental wellness. Others energize the brain, boost focus, or even enhance memory formation.

Keep reading to discover the top 7 best supplements for targeting mental fog and supporting your brain.

Caffeine, Coffee, and Green Tea

Caffeine, when used in moderation, is one of the best ingredients for mental fog. In fact, some see caffeine as the world’s most popular nootropic (brain boosting) ingredient.

Caffeine is a stimulant that interacts with pathways in your brain involved with focus, memory formation, and attention.

Drink a cup of green tea daily. Green tea contains ingredients like L-theanine that nullify the negative side effects of caffeine. L-theanine may also have its own brain boosting properties.

Coffee and tea are also rich with antioxidants to support your brain. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals in your brain, which could help clear up brain fog.

The combination of antioxidants, L-theanine, and caffeine could be a winning combination against your brain fog.

Of course, many people struggle with brain fog even with caffeine. For many people, a cup of coffee (or even a pot of coffee) has little impact on brain fog. In fact, some people experience worse brain fog with caffeine.

Antioxidant-Rich Fruits and Vegetables

We mentioned antioxidants above. However, antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables could provide further defense against brain fog.

Fruits and vegetables are rich with natural antioxidants like anthocyanins that neutralize free radicals in your brain, helping with brain fog and mental wellness.

Vitamin C Supplements

Fruits and vegetables are also rich with vitamin C, one of nature’s best antioxidants. Vitamin C is known for its effects on immunity but it can also impact brain health.

In one 2019 study, researchers found people with higher levels of vitamin C in their blood tended to score better on memory, attention, response time, and concentration tests than people with low levels of vitamin C.

One of the best ways to raise vitamin C levels in the bloodstream is to eat more fruits and vegetables. Alternatively, you can take a multivitamin or a vitamin C supplement.

B Complex Supplements

Low B-vitamin levels are among the most common causes of mental fog.

B-complex vitamins are crucial for physical and cognitive energy. If you have chronically low energy levels, then you may not be getting enough B vitamins in your diet.

Some of the most common symptoms of B vitamin deficiency are also common symptoms of mental fog, including:

  • Memory issues
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Lack of focus or poor cognition

Consider taking a vitamin B12 supplement to help with brain fog. In one study, researchers found a vitamin B12 supplement enhanced cognition in 84% of participants and improved memory and attention in 78% participants. The study involved 202 people with cognitive issues, mental fog, and low B-vitamin levels.

Vitamin D Supplements (or Sunshine)

Have you been outside in the sun lately? If not, you could be at a higher risk of experiencing mental fog.

Your body starts to produce vitamin D when sunlight touches your skin. Approximately 10 to 20 minutes of sunlight exposure is enough to get your recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin D.

However, due to climate, latitude, and seasons, you may be unable to get your daily recommended sunlight exposure. In this situation, you may want to take a vitamin D supplement. A vitamin D supplement can deliver an equivalent dose of vitamin D to support cognition and overall health and wellness.

Multiple studies have linked vitamin D to cognition and mental fog. In this 2020 study, for example, researchers connected vitamin D deficiency to depression. Other studies have linked vitamin D to mental fog and other cognitive issues.

Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements

Omega-3 fatty acids are well-recognized for their effects on brain health. Many experts recommend getting omega-3 fatty acids daily for brain health and cognition.

In one study, researchers took a group of 176 people with low levels of omega-3 fatty acids. These people took 1.16 grams of the omega-3 fatty acid DHA for six months. After six months, researchers observed significant improvements to episodic and working memory compared to a group that took a placebo.

Adding omega-3 fatty acids to your diet is easy: eat more fatty fish. Or, buy a fish oil or krill oil supplement. Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for memory, cognition, and overall brain health.

Magnesium Supplements

If you don’t get enough magnesium in your diet, then you could experience mental fog.

Some of the symptoms of low magnesium include:

  • Brain fog
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Worse responses to stress

The most common food sources of magnesium include green and leafy vegetables like spinach along with legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.

Magnesium supplementation could be more important as you get older. In this study, researchers found a group of 2,466 adults over 60 performed better on cognitive function tests (including attention and memory tests) and had lower risk of cognitive impairment when they had higher magnesium levels compared to those with lower magnesium levels.

Other studies have connected magnesium to focus, attention, depression, and anxiety, among other cognitive conditions.

You can add more magnesium to your diet. Or, you can take a magnesium supplement.

Final Word

You don’t need to suffer with brain fog.

There are science-backed ways to target and relieve brain fog. The supplements listed above can support your body’s natural defense against brain fog, helping you support memory, cognition, focus, and more.

Take a Science Nutrition Lab at-home blood test today to discover your nutritional deficiencies – and discover the root cause of your brain fog.

Dietitian Versus Nutritionists: What’s the Difference?

Many people use “dietitian” and “nutritionist” interchangeably. However, they’re different professions.

Dietitians and nutritionists work in similar fields but have different backgrounds and certifications.

To help you get the best and most science-backed nutritional advice possible, here are some of the differences between dietitians and nutritionists.

Dietitians Must Be Certified by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

In the United States, all dietitians must be certified by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Otherwise, they cannot practice as a dietitian.

Once certified, a dietitian can recommend specific foods to treat various health conditions.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics certifies dietitians as Registered Dietitian Nutritionists, or RDNs. An RDN is qualified to provide medical nutrition therapy (MNT), which means they recommend specific foods to take to manage certain health conditions.

After receiving RDN certification, dietitians may provide medical nutrition therapy in a private practice (say, by opening their own clinic or working for someone else). Or, they could work in a hospital, school, nursing home, food company, or public health office.

Nutritionists May or May Not Be Certified

Some nutritionists are certified, while others are not.

Unlike dietitians, nutritionists do not have a single, all-encompassing certification board like the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Instead, some nutritionists are certified by the Board for Certification of Nutrition Specialists (BCNS).

Other nutritionists are certified clinical nutritionists (CCNs), which means they have been certified by the Clinical Nutrition Certification Board.

Some states require nutritionists to be certified by the BCNS, CCN, or other organizations.

However, other states require no certification for nutritionists whatsoever. Instead, it’s legal for anyone with any qualification not offer nutritional advice to another person, regardless of whether they have 20 years of experience or took a 20-minmute online course.

Nutritionists May Specialize in Certain Fields

To be clear, the Board for Certification of Nutrition Specialists is a legitimate and well-respected organization.

Nutritionists can specialize in different areas. They can learn how to use food to treat different disorders.

Some nutritionists specialize in areas like:

  • Sports nutrition
  • Digestive disorders
  • Autoimmune conditions
  • Keto dieting
  • Weight loss

Other nutritionists are generalists: they provide general information about using food for health and wellness, weight loss, and other areas, for example.

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) Qualifications & Training

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics verifies dietitians have met certain qualifications before they can practice as Registered Dietitian Nutritionists.

To become an RDN and be certified by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, you must meet the following qualifications:

  • Hold a bachelor’s degree or higher qualification from a regionally accredited university or college in the United States
  • Receive approval for coursework from the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) or the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Complete 1,200 hours of supervised practice via an ACEND-accredited program
  • Complete an exam administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration
  • Complete additional professional education requirements periodically to maintain registration

Nutritionist Qualifications & Training

Some nutritionists complete additional training, while others do not. Many nutritionists receive certification from the Clinical Nutrition Certification Board (to become a CCN) or the Board for Certification of Nutrition Specialists (to become a BCNS).

To begin training to become a CCN, the Clinical Nutrition Certification Board requires an individual to meet the following requirements:

  • Hold a Bachelor of Science (BS), Masters (MS), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), or Doctor of Science (ScD) degree
  • Hold an advanced professional degree in another licensed healthcare field
  • If you meet these qualifications, then you must complete additional requirements to become a CCN. Specific requirements vary based on personal background and experience:
  • If you have a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree, then you must take a minimum of 3 course hours on topics like biochemistry, microbiology, and human physiology to become certified
  • If you have a more advanced degree, like a nursing degree or an ScD, then you can complete fewer training hours
  • Once training is complete, all CCNs must pass an exam
  • CCNs must complete ongoing training every 2 years to maintain their CCN designation

Once qualified, a CCN can provide personalized recommendations to clients for weight loss, exercise, supplements, and stress relief.

To become a Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS), meanwhile, nutritionists need to meet the following qualifications:

  • Hold an MS or doctoral degree in nutrition or a related field
  • Complete coursework from a regionally accredited institution
  • Complete 1,000 hours of documented, supervised practice
  • Complete a BCNS accredited exam
  • Maintain certification with continuing education credits every 5 years

Once these qualifications are complete, the BCNS recognizes the individual as a Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS).

Overall: Dietitians Versus Nutritionists

Dietitians and nutritionists both provide recommendations on using food to treat various diseases and illnesses.

However, the two professions have different qualifications.

Check your nutritionist or dietitian’s qualifications to ensure you’re receiving the best advice possible from a registered, certified, and experienced professional.

Top 6 Most Overrated and Overpriced Nutritional Supplements

Some people spend thousands of dollars per year on useless supplements.

They buy supplements backed by zero scientific evidence, for example. Or, they take supplements when they’re already getting enough of a specific ingredient in their diet.

Today, we’re highlighting the top 6 most overrated and overhyped nutritional supplements.

Testosterone Boosters

You can find testosterone boosting supplements at bodybuilding stores, big box retailers, and even pharmacies.

Unfortunately, there’s little evidence these supplements actually raise testosterone.

Instead, many of these testosterone boosters work by increasing blood flow or sex drive, making it feel like you have higher levels of testosterone.

Meanwhile, some of the less reputable testosterone boosters contain dangerous ingredients, stimulants, and artificial chemicals that have other, less desirable effects on your body.

Instead of taking a testosterone booster, the best way to increase testosterone is by:

  • Eating a balanced diet
  • Limiting stress
  • Exercising in moderation, including strength training

If you can do these three things, then you’ll increase testosterone more than any testosterone booster on the market.

Fat Burners

Want to lose weight without dieting or exercising? Fat burner supplements claim to be an easy and instant solution.

These fat burners all work in a similar way:

  1. Take one or two capsules per day
  2. Avoid dieting or exercising
  3. Lose significant weight in days or weeks

That’s it!

As you might expect, there’s little science behind most fat burner supplements. The best way to lose weight is by maintaining a healthy diet and exercise program – not by taking pills.

Fat burner supplements may contain some valuable ingredients – like caffeine, which is the world’s most popular fat burner. Studies show caffeine can induce thermogenesis, encouraging your body to burn fat.

Some fat burners also contain green tea, which is rich with an ingredient called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), an antioxidant linked to fat burning.

However, you don’t need an overpriced fat burner to get caffeine or green tea: just drink tea or coffee daily to enjoy similar fat burning benefits.

Metabolism Boosters

Some nutritional supplements claim to boost your metabolism.

These supplements are targeted to people who feel like they have a “slow metabolism.” You might struggle to lose weight, for example, because you have a slow metabolism.

It’s true: some people have a faster metabolism than others.

However, there’s no evidence that taking a dietary supplement can boost metabolism, increase your metabolic rate, or have a significant impact on the number of calories you burn per day.

Instead, the best and most proven way to boost metabolism is to exercise. Exercising increases the number of calories your body burns. Your body also continues to burn calories after the workout. If you want to maximize calorie burning, then exercise – don’t take a metabolism booster.

Nitric Oxide or Blood Flow Boosters

Many bodybuilders take nitric oxide boosters to raise blood flow before a workout.

These nitric oxide boosters claim to raise nitric oxide levels within your body, widening your blood vessels to improve blood flow. It gives you a better “pump” at the gym while boosting endurance.

Unfortunately, there’s little evidence that supplements can increase levels of nitric oxide in your blood.

Instead, many nitric oxide boosters contain stimulants like caffeine that trick you into thinking you have higher blood flow. You may feel better blood flow because of the stimulant, but it’s not because of higher nitric oxide levels in your body.

Instead, the best way to increase blood flow before a workout is to drink water before your workout. Staying hydrated will increase blood flow.

Garcinia Cambogia and Other Herbal Diet Pills

Garcinia cambogia has been one of the world’s most popular diet pill ingredients for the last decade. Unfortunately, there’s no evidence garcinia cambogia (and most other herbal diet pill ingredients) can help you lose weight.

The garcinia cambogia craze occurred after a single, small study linked garcinia cambogia to reduced appetite and better fat burning.

Today, supporters describe how garcinia cambogia is “rich” with natural fat burning ingredients like hydroxycitric acid (HCA). That may be true, but there’s no evidence that garcinia cambogia diet pills can block your appetite, activate fat burning, or make it easier to lose weight.

Instead, the best way to lose weight is to follow a healthy diet and exercise program. There are no herbal shortcuts to weight loss – no matter what garcinia cambogia supplement companies may try to tell you.

Collagen Supplements

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body, and it plays a crucial role in muscle development, joint health, and overall health and wellness.

Unfortunately, taking a collagen supplement won’t help you look 10 years younger overnight, nor will it eliminate all joint pain and wrinkles.

In fact, most collagen supplements are useless because our bodies already produce enough collagen. If you follow a healthy diet, then your body is already getting the collagen it needs. Taking a collagen supplement doesn’t change that.

However, collagen supplements may be useful if you’re deficient in collagen, have a low-protein diet, or have other dietary deficiencies. In this 2019 study published in Nutrients, for example, researchers found a collagen supplement improved skin hydration, elasticity, roughness, and density in a randomized, placebo-controlled, blind setting.

Final Word: Buy the Right Supplements

A good supplement supports your body’s deficiencies to support optimal health.

A bad supplement does virtually nothing.

Buy the right supplements today to ensure you’re getting the best value.

A single Science Nutrition Lab blood test identifies deficiencies, making it easy to take the right supplements.

Take a simple, at-home test today to discover your optimal supplement regimen.


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