Might Your Multivitamin Be a Waste of Money?
Might Your Multivitamin Be a Waste of Money
Jonathan: Hey, everyone, Jonathan Bailor back with another bonus Smarter Science of Slim podcast. I’m very, very excited about today’s show because we’re joined with not only two brilliant researchers and authors, but also two good friends. I had the pleasure to meet Mira and Jayson Calton on the recent Low-Carb Cruise. It was just a delightful experience – many, many laughs, much talk about the wondrous subject we’ll cover today, which is micronutrients. And, as a challenge to myself, I learned that they definitely live up to their credentials, very smart people. Let me just really quickly, as a challenge to myself – it’s Monday morning, I’ve got to get my brain started – I’m going to introduce Mira and Jayson Calton along with all of the letters next to their names. Mira Calton, CN, FAAIM, DCCN, CMS, CPFC, BCIH; and Jayson Calton, Ph.D., FAAIM, DCCN, CMS, CISSN, BCIH, ROHP, AMP. Jayson and Mira, how was that?
Mira: It’s the first time that’s been done.
Jonathan: And maybe the last, because I think I just spit all over my computer.
Mira: We do not recommend that be done.
Jonathan: Hey, guys, I really appreciate you coming back on the show. We had you on a few months back to talk about your new book, Rich Food, Poor Food, but what I got to learn on the cruise is you guys have quite the back story and quite the passion for not only helping people find foods that are the richest in micronutrients, but just being experts in micronutrients all up. So we’re going to talk all about micronutrients. For folks that are not familiar with that, we’re talking about vitamins and minerals from a really high level, but we’ll certainly get deeper into that. What started the passion for this specific area of nutrition?
Mira: Well, I don’t know how many of your listeners know this, but when I was 30, I was diagnosed with advanced osteoporosis. So I had to basically face the fact that I was very, very ill. I had the bone density of an 80-year-old when I turned 30. The doctors basically gave me a little bit of information: Take some calcium and then get a whole lot of prescription drugs.
I started looking at the prescription drugs and thought, These are some scary, scary things, and I’m not putting them in my body. So I had to start doing a lot of research. The only place I could start was what they told me, Go take some calcium. So I started to do a little bit of research on that.
I had to sell my company in New York, I had to move and have my sister take care of me, was pretty much bedridden at that point. I started doing a little research on what I found out – at that point, I didn’t know, but they were the micronutrients. They were those essential building blocks.
They were supposed to have kept my bones strong, and unfortunately they hadn’t because I had become extremely deficient in them. That’s really why I started to look into it. Luckily, along that path, I found Jayson, who at that point I turned to for help. He had already been working with clients for over a decade. Luckily, I was led to his door, and we started looking more in-depth into these micronutrients together.
Jonathan: Jayson, what’s your role here? I mean, it sounds like Mira was suffering, she came to you for help, and this is your professional passion as well. I mean, you’ve gone quite deep into the science of what you call micronutrient sufficiency; correct?
Jayson: Exactly. At the time when I met Mira – and I’ve always been passionate about nutrition in general – but it turns out that there’s basically two sides to nutrition. There is the macronutrient side, so that’s the carbs, the fats, the proteins, the diet side. So a client comes in your office, they say, I’ve got headaches, I want to lose a few pounds, I don’t sleep very well; we talk about what they should eat and how many calories they should have, and how much fat they might want to take in.
And this is where the conversation usually goes. Now, there’s another side to nutrition. There’s the micronutrient side. This is the side that we touch on here and there with clients. We say we want to eat foods that are healthier for you, but what we really mean when we say that is foods that are higher in vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.
When Mira walked into my office, she wasn’t one of my typical clients. She wasn’t looking to lose weight, she wasn’t looking for better sleep patterns; she was looking for a way to rebuild her bones. Of course, she had been started on that path of trying to look for the essential calcium and vitamin D and a few other vitamins that her doctor had recommended.
At that time period, I was just starting to look into something called micronutrient competition. I had been introduced to the idea that somehow, vitamins and minerals may not act the way that we all think they did; meaning that you can’t just take a big multivitamin and think, Oh, she’s going to absorb everything. So this is what really got us into the study of micronutrients.
During that process of studying, we found all kinds of things we’ll talk about a little bit later today. The good news is that after we kind of sorted things out and got her on a good diet plan and good lifestyle program, as well as a good dietary supplement program, we were able to actually reverse that advanced osteoporosis in only two years.
Jonathan: It’s an amazing story. I’m curious, Jayson and Mira, about this taking the body from being deficient in things that it absolutely needs to making it sufficient in things that it absolutely needs. It certainly will benefit one’s health. I’m curious, in your observations – and I don’t want to go too off-track here, but it popped in my mind and for my own sake I want the answer.
We hear so much about certain types of diets benefitting people’s health. I’m going to give an example here of vegan or vegetarian diet, which certainly we’re very, very respectful of and appreciate. A SANE lifestyle can be one that does not include meats. But one thing I’m curious of is we see all of these observational studies that talk about when a group of people switches to a plant-based lifestyle, they experience these health benefits. Do you think it is the aversion of meat, or maybe that they’re eating foods that are more dense in micronutrients, so it’s not that they are avoiding meat, it’s that they have dialed up their micronutrients; and if one were to dial up their micronutrients while still eating meat, might they do even better? What are your thoughts on that?
Mira: Well, I do think that it is because they are eating a lot of these foods that have high micronutrient content. However, when all of these dietary philosophies have been studied, each of them have been shown to have innately in them, because of their food choices, some micronutrient deficiencies. For example, vegans and vegetarians tend to fall low in the B12; gluten-free dieters tend to fall low in the B vitamins because a lot of that is generally coming through the grains.
So there are great things with each of the dietary philosophies, and there are also problems with each of them. What we can say is that the one most important thing is that you can eat a junk-food diet in any of them and you’re not going to do well. So it’s really about eating the highest quality of foods that are going to be the highest in micronutrient content, regardless of your dietary profile.
Jonathan: To refine that a bit, one thing that I often hear people talk about is certainly if you eat a food that has more fat in it, if you were to look at nutrient density or total level of micronutrients divided by total calories, and you had two identical foods, let’s say you had a full-fat Greek yogurt and you had a fat-free Greek yogurt, certainly by definition, the fat-free Greek yogurt is going to be more micronutrient-dense just because of simple math. It’s the same food except one has more fat in it. So for those of us who are living a higher-fat, essentially lower-carbohydrate lifestyle, are there specific things we should watch out for to help us ensure micronutrient sufficiency?
Jayson: Like you said, if you’re just going to play with the numbers, it may look like, Hey, wow, look, I ate the same amount of micronutrients in my food, but my overall calories were lower; so therefore, I’m eating a more micronutrient-dense diet. Well, that’s not really what we mean.
What we’re going to be looking at is we want to be looking at how many micronutrients does our body need to take in across the board on a minimum level. In our case, we like to think of an optimal daily dose of how much we actually need in order to create optimal health. Of course, that’s going to be different for every single person.
The good news is that the RDIs give us kind of a great baseline as far as how many of these vitamins and minerals we need to take in across the board on a minimum level every single day. So instead of trying to say, My diet is higher or lower in micronutrients, we just look at it and say, Let’s try to create a diet, lifestyle, and supplementation program, a three-step approach – which is really what we’re well known for and what we actually created over time – so that every single day, we reach that minimum micronutrient sufficiency in, say, the 27 to 34 or so micronutrients that are considered to be essential in order to live a healthy life.
Jonathan: Jayson and Mira, sorry for these background questions, these are just because I’m curious, and they will lead us to fruitful conversation in the future, I promise.
Mira: No, we’re enjoying it.
Jonathan: Cool, cool. We’ve talked about a sufficient level of these essential vitamins and minerals, fatty acids, amino acids, and then we’ve talked about an optimum level. Is there a reasonable point of diminishing marginal returns, or maybe even negative marginal returns, saying… Let’s just take vitamin C, for example. Is a diet that provides 1,000 percent of your recommended daily allowance of vitamin C better than a diet that provides 100 percent? What are your thoughts on that general arena?
Mira: We don’t believe in huge megadosing, and there’s a really good reason. Most people, when they say that they’re going to take 1,000 of vitamin C, or whatever micronutrient they deem they need a ton of, they take that in, but what they’re not understanding is that concept, to go back to micronutrient competition. Because micronutrients compete in the body at the receptor site, if you take in too much of one, you’re not going to have any room in that receptor site for the other. So people unknowingly cause all sorts of problems for themselves. They actually cause themselves to become further depleted in the things that they’re not balancing properly. We see that as a major problem. People try to pick and choose supplements.
Jayson: I think also, too, if you’re taking in so much of one or two or three micronutrients, there’s only so many micronutrients that you can get in per day if you’re eating a medically-sound caloric daily value. So if you’re eating what the typical person might eat, let’s say somewhere between 1,500 calories and 4,000 calories, there are only so many micronutrients you can get in there. If we’re getting a whole bunch with the C and the Bs and beta-carotene and all these other things, not only are you going to get innate competitions taking place that are either going to create deficiencies theoretically in the overall spectrum of the micronutrients, but you’re also not going to more than likely be taking in a very wide spectrum.
So I’m eating a lot of plant-based foods, great. Yes, your kale might score a 1,000 on some kind of a micronutrient sufficiency chart made up by somebody who is looking at the amount of certain vitamins per caloric value, but don’t be mistaken. Just because salmon falls way down on that list because it doesn’t have so much of some of the different micronutrients as kale might, it has important micronutrients or potentially has important micronutrients that you may be deficient in if you’re not eating that particular food.
It doesn’t have to be salmon, you can make that another food. It could be anything, tomatoes. It doesn’t mean that we say that you have to have meat if somebody says that they don’t want to have those things, but they are going to have to really look at it. If you really look at what the negative connotations are about any real dietary profile – vegan, vegetarian, Paleo included – it is are you getting those essential micronutrients that you need or that we think you need from your food? It’s where the argument always goes.
Jonathan: That is a very, very important distinction, it sounds like. Hypothetically, how many essential vitamins and minerals are there, approximately?
Jayson: In a typical multivitamin, we always look at the base 27 to 34, just depending on who you’re listening to.
Jonathan: Okay, so let’s say approximately 30. So it sounds like what we just said is, let’s say a person comes to you and says, I have this diet which provides me with 600 percent of 29 of the essential substances I need and, in fact, that is just so great, and clearly, this is the healthiest diet ever, but it provides me with zero percent of that other one. It sounds like what we’re saying is having a diet and a lifestyle which provided you with 100 percent-plus of all of them is better than a diet which provides you with 1,000 percent of some of them and 0 percent of others.
Mira: Absolutely. I mean, look at my situation. I was probably doing extremely well in certain categories. I was probably having a lot of B vitamins through whatever I was eating, but no matter what kind of diet you follow, if your calcium, magnesium, your vitamin D, your Boron, your vitamin K2, if these things aren’t in place, you’re going to get osteoporosis. It doesn’t matter if I was really great in, say, the vitamin A and Bs, because those things didn’t count for what I needed.
Everyone is going to get an illness or a health condition or a disease if they are not sufficient in everything. And the combination of what you become deficient in is going to be what your body starts putting out there. Perhaps the sleep patterns, perhaps poor sleep, perhaps it’s bad concentration, all these different things, your skin. All of these things are just different combinations of different micronutrient deficiencies that people start getting over time. The larger the deficiency and the longer you are deficient, the larger and more serious your health condition or disease will be.
Jayson: I think that this is really an important point. Because I think a lot of people get confused and throw up their hands when it comes to the micronutrient deficiencies, because it’s not like it was in the old days. It’s not like, Well, if you’re deficient in C, you’re going to get scurvy. That’s a pretty straightforward one, that’s one deficiency. Or a deficiency in vitamin D, then you get rickets. This is how disease started and disease theory started.
We used to think, Okay, so if we get this condition, we trace it back to the deficiency of the essential micronutrient, and it was pretty straightforward. But the problem is today, heart disease might be a deficiency in five or ten different micronutrients. You don’t know what you’re deficient in and we don’t know what those deficiencies are going to manifest themselves as. But be assured, every lifestyle, health condition and disease we’re facing today has its roots in some micronutrient deficiency.
Jonathan: Let me give a plus-1,000 vote for what you just said. Listeners, Jayson and Mira are not overstating. Let’s take a step back from a common-sense perspective of the general point that all disease can be traced back on some level, unless we’re talking about maybe a virus or something like that, all lifestyle chronic diseases can be traced back to a micronutrient deficiency. Remember, when we talk about these micronutrients, we’re talking about essential substances, the very definition of them. Like the way something becomes classified as essential is if a deficiency in it causes disease. That’s why oil is essential to your car. If you do not put oil in your car, it may not break down tomorrow, but it is going to break down. While this may sound extreme, actually it’s the least extreme thing you could have. The definition of an essential nutrient is that which causes illness if it is lacking.
Mira: Totally. That’s what’s so cool about what we do. We get so excited because when we put people on a program – this three-step plan that we have in Naked Calories that we’re re-releasing in October, when we put people on this plan, it’s amazing the different things that happen. We don’t know what your benefit is going to be.
You might not even realize you’re deficient, and all of a sudden you start doing the program and you find out, Oh, my God, I’m sleeping through the night; or, I don’t need glasses anymore. We have had clients that, literally after years and years of wearing glasses, they don’t have glasses anymore; they didn’t realize that they were obviously blocking the nutrients they needed for their eyesight to get better. It really is the most amazing thing, and that’s what makes our job so much fun in that we’re always excited to hear what somebody’s benefits are.
Jayson: I think when we first started to come up with the idea of how do we want to bring nutritional education to the general public, we really flipped traditional nutritional education on its head. We said, Let’s not talk about diet right now. Everybody’s talking about diet, and we’re arguing, and it’s been very fractionated in the industry itself. You can’t put very easily a low-carb dieter and a vegan dieter in the same room together; there’s going to be a fight, there’s going to be an argument. They have basic inherent ideas that just don’t jibe.
But when we start to look at the micronutrient perspective, we start to realize, Hey, we’re all playing the same game here. Whether I’m vegan, whether I’m vegetarian, we must create a micronutrient-sufficient state in our diet, through our diet, whatever means that means to us, whatever we can believe in, whatever philosophy we want to adhere to, then we must create a micronutrient-sufficient state if optimal health is to be achieved. That’s just a simple truth.
Jonathan: It is so true, and I got little chills there. Because if people want to simplify stuff – people have tried to simplify things in terms of just saying just calories. In many ways, that’s the opposite of what we should be worrying about, is taking this many calories, that many calories.
Because when we just think about calories, we’re not thinking about micronutrients at all, and we’re missing that. Jayson and Mira, I can imagine individuals getting fired up about this, hearing this and saying, Okay, I want to make sure I’m getting all of my micronutrients, so I’m going to go to my local drug store and I’m going to buy a vitamin pill, and I’m going to continue eating my 100-calorie snack packs, and I’m going to continue drinking my soda pop because I’ve got my vitamin pill, so now I’m good. Right?
Mira: Here’s the problem with that thought process. One thing that people don’t take into consideration when considering if they’re going to be micronutrient sufficient is all the minuses. It’s great to say that you’re going to add it in because you’re putting a plus there, you’re adding in the nutrients by taking a vitamin.
But there are a lot of problems. One of the major ones that they’re not thinking about is the food you eat is actually going to deplete you of vitamins. You’re eating junk and your body is going to need to detoxify. What does it use to detoxify? It uses your micronutrients. Eating junk is actually like stripping yourself of these vital, essential, key building blocks. I mean, that’s one of the major problems. Besides the fact that you don’t even know if you’re choosing a good supplement and so many other things.
Jonathan: It sounds like there’s really three things we need to think about. Certainly, folks, hopefully you can see the depth of the science here is very, very cool and we can’t get to all of it today. But Jayson and Mira mentioned they are re-releasing their wonderful book Naked Calories; and they also have a second book called Rich Food, Poor Food. They also have a wonderful website with all sorts of free information and resources called CaltonNutrition.com, so please check that out.
Jayson and Mira, it sounds like there are at least three things we need to think about here. Most people are familiar with one of them, which is how many micronutrients, vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, fatty acids we’re taking in; but then we also have to think about how many we are losing due to lifestyle choices; and then we also have to think about how well or not we’re absorbing the ones we take in. Is that fair?
Jayson: Yes, so that’s the basic three-step program. When we broke everything down that we taught in Naked Calories, we came to that simple thing. No matter what you are – again, across the board, whatever kind of dietary philosophy you’re following – you want to eat foods that are rich in micronutrients. That’s the first step. We are big food-first people; we think that that’s really where you should focus to start with. That’s the plus side.
So those are all those micronutrients that you get in. Then you’ve got to start to look at your lifestyle habits. Are you exercising a lot; are you a person who might drink alcohol; maybe you live in a polluted city; do you have a lot of stress in your day; do you take over-the-counter prescription medications; do you just take over-the-counter medications. All these things – we go over them in the book – they’re called everyday micronutrient depleters, things that cause your body to either use up your micronutrients at a faster rate, or that cause you to not be able to absorb the micronutrients in the first place.
Those are the lifestyle habits, and we want to get rid of as many of those as we can and become aware of as many as we can so that we have a good idea as to how many more pluses we’re going to need in order to reach that optimal daily dose. Then, once we’ve evaluated our diet and our lifestyle, we make a very clear decision. We say, Hey, am I or am I not potentially reaching optimal daily dose every single day? If not, then the step number three next is to supplement. Of course, a supplement is not a substitute for a good diet. It is just as it indicates; it is a supplement. Yes, you have to make sure that you’re choosing a supplement that absorbs, and that’s probably one of the most important things to think about with step number three.
Jonathan: Jayson and Mira, I want to highlight here a personal experience I had. We’ve talked about whole foods first, then we talked about lifestyle factors, then we talked about just covering your bases with supplementation. Again, that word supplement, not replacement; a very much complementary approach.
This is an area where I have not done a huge amount of research. People ask me all the time, they say, Jonathan, do you think I should take a multivitamin? My recommendation to them is, It seems like a good insurance policy. But what I really appreciated about your work and our conversations was, just like we talk about the quality of food and the quality of exercise, the quality of the multivitamin that you’re taking matters a lot.
This is actually cool from my more tech-geeky side is – listeners, I had the fortunate opportunity to talk with Jayson and Mira in depth on the Low-Carb Cruise about an amazing supplement and amazing multivitamin – obviously, I’m maybe not giving it the credit it needs here, and I’ll let you guys talk about it more – that they created, which is really, really neat. It’s basically a reinvention of the multivitamin. I’ll let you guys talk about it more, but I think it’s a cool thing. I personally have been living with it and enjoying it for about three or four weeks. I’m a big fan. We’re going to have it listed up in the SANE store, and I’m pretty excited about it. Can you guys talk about it a little bit more?
Mira: Absolutely. First of all, this is what we created when I had my osteoporosis. We started doing the research. In order to take in everything I needed, I was taking in a packet before breakfast, a packet after breakfast. Four times a day I had little baggies of micronutrients, pills, that I had to choke down all day long, about 30 of them in a day, just to try to eliminate these competitions. Basically, I got sick of doing it. It works, but I was a miserable, miserable woman to live with. So what we started to do is we started to come up with this new reinvention of the multivitamin, and we’re thrilled to announce that we got the patent on it.
Jonathan: Oh, you did get the patent?
Mira: We did, we got it last week.
Jonathan: Congratulations, that’s awesome.
Mira: It is so exciting that the U.S. Government actually said, You’re right, this is a real reinvention of the multivitamin. So we’re really, really excited to have it out on the market.
Jayson: Basically, for the listeners, we looked at four aspects of what we thought was wrong with the typical multivitamin. We call it the ABCs of Optimal Supplementation Guidelines. It just happened to work into that, with an ABC and an S. So A stands for absorption. First and foremost, if your multivitamin doesn’t absorb, it’s not going to do you any good. When medical research looked at multivitamins right off the shelf, 51 percent of the ones that they researched didn’t even disintegrate. So it just makes sense to take a liquid multivitamin; it makes sense on a lot of levels.
First, you guarantee the disintegration of it. Second, a lot of people have a hard time choking down pills. Even if you don’t have a hard time choking down pills, like Mira didn’t at the beginning, after 30 a day for a year, 10,000-plus pills, you get a problem with it. That’s number one.
Number two, beneficial quantities. Just grab your multivitamin, don’t take our word for it. Look how much calcium is in it, look how much magnesium is in it, and all the others. You’re going to see thousands of percents of some and you’re going to see barely any of others. So we wanted to make sure that we created a multivitamin that had enough of the things that specifically Mira was going to need, but all of us need in a multivitamin. So we really looked at that 100 percent.
Mira: Additionally, a lot of multivitamins don’t take into account the fact that water-soluble vitamins wash through your body in 12 hours, so it’s kind of like, as they put it, wearing a condom half the time. It’s a crazy thing. Basically, you’re making sure that you are full for the first half of the day when you taking your vitamins; but the second half, you are really putting yourself at risk again. So we wanted to make sure it has a twice-a-day dose.
Jayson: The third one is C. This is probably the most important, and this is really where in our research we spent the majority of our time. Competition. Micronutrient competition. Just straightforward, vitamins and minerals compete for receptor sites in your body. I think we talked about it before, Jonathan, there are thousands of research papers on the benefits of vitamin C and vitamin E and vitamin D and calcium. But when it comes to the research papers on the benefits of multivitamins, there are very few.
In fact, some research papers say, Hey, multivitamins may not be that good for you overall. Why? The question is why. Why, when you take individual micronutrients, do we see all these great benefits; but when we put them together in one formula, we don’t see the benefits? In fact, we might even see some negatives. Well, it came down to something called micronutrient competitions, and that’s the exact thing.
So we said, Well, if it turns out that these guys are really competing for receptor sites, then how is Mira ever going to get these minerals and these vitamins that she needs? So we went to the research papers, we went to the peer-reviewed research papers, hundreds and hundreds and hundreds, and just pored through them. We looked for those micronutrient competitions that science had found.
We didn’t find any competitions on our own. We found the documented research of other people’s competitions, and we mapped it out. That’s really our big claim to fame. We mapped out over 45 different competitions, and we sat down with a piece of paper and we started to say, Well, how in the world are we going to create a formula so that none of these competitions exist? That’s what we did. We created an a.m. and a p.m. formula that are completely different, that they don’t include any micronutrient competitions. Then we took it one step further.
In our research, we also found synergies, instances where two micronutrients or more than two micronutrients taken together showed a greater benefit. Like the absorption factor of taking calcium with vitamin D, and there’s quite a few of those. Then we said, Well, we’ve got all these synergistic micronutrients, let’s add that to the formula, too, to enhance absorption. We did all that, and we created that product, Nutreince, and we’re very proud of it.
Jonathan: As you should be. One of the things that I really appreciate about your work here is that we all agree whole foods are really where it’s at, and there’s just so much, millions of years of brilliance in the packaging of whole foods. So if we start to stray away from whole foods, I want to make sure…
Again, we’re not straying away here, we’re complementing. But I want to make sure that we’ve done that very intentionally, very deliberately, very rooted in science. Now I look back and I think to myself I personally, Jonathan Bailor, Smarter Science of Slim, I was taking the shotgun approach. I was like, Oh, more multivitamin, the better. I was taking these packet things, and I’m probably taking in 10,000 percent of certain vitamins and not others.
And I look back and I say, That is not the correct approach. If you’re going to start to do things outside of the whole-foods realm, you better be very intentional, you better be very backed by science, and you better be very cautious and very respectful of the complexity that exists here. I believe you guys have done that. You’ve approached this very cautiously, you’ve approached this very scientifically, you’ve approached this very intentionally. Because of that, I appreciate it and I am very much enjoying the Nutreince shake that I have in the morning and in the evening, so it’s all good.
Mira: Thank you so much. We decided we wanted to make one using all-natural stevia as a flavor. And the one version, the original, actually has a citrus; and I think that’s the one that you’re taking. That one’s a sweetened citrus. Then the other one, we decided to do an all-natural with no stevia because some people just either have a problem with stevia or they just want to have it plain. So we offer both of those so that everyone can find something that they enjoy.
Jonathan: Folks, I just want to give a quick disclaimer here. We don’t mean to have this to be an infomercial. Certainly, we all try to do things in our lives that are beneficial for us. And when we find one of those things, we want to share it with those that we care about. Certainly we care about the entire Smarter Science of Slim family. I never really had a strong multivitamin recommendation, but when I found the Caltons and when I found Nutreince, and when I tried it myself and when I really enjoyed it, I wanted to make sure I shared it with you.
Also, Jayson, Mira and myself were talking before the podcast about how I enjoy Nutreince, which you can find in the SANE store. I do it in a very SANE way, very complementary to what we’re all hopefully already doing. In the morning, when I get my day started, I have a green tea and lemon blend in my Vitamix and then I end up throwing the a.m. packet of Nutreince in there. And it adds a wonderful flavor. And I usually take in some cod liver oil or something else to ensure maximum absorption. Then in the p.m., I usually just take it with my regular meal. Jayson and Mira, in addition to your commentary on that approach, I’m also curious. One last question I had is when we talk about micronutrient competition, does that happen in whole foods? Or if I take my Nutreince with a meal, could I cause less absorption? Could you talk about both of those things?
Jayson: Again, I think this is just a great conversation to have, talking about supplementation. It is a conversation that always should be taking place with your nutritionist or your doctor because, again, this is part of the lifestyle. You made a really good point. If you take the micronutrients or you take the Nutreince pack at the same time as your meal, yes, it’s going to compete with the micronutrients in your food, so we don’t want to do that.
We want to take the packets half an hour or 20 minutes before or after the meals, and we also want to take it with some kind of fat, whether it’s a cod liver oil or whether it’s a fish oil or whether it’s a coconut oil, whatever you like, because we want to be able to absorb some of those fat-soluble nutrients. Yes, competition is inherent within food but, like you said, food has millions of years of knowledge and we will never, maybe never, understand it completely.
There’s a rhyme and a reason to everything. All those micronutrients that are present in those foods are synergistic in some ways. Sometimes they are competitive. Like in the instance of cod liver oil, where you have a lot of A and a lot of D in one food; but yet, you don’t get toxic when you take it in. Because of that natural competition that takes place, it’s a regulatory method that food uses so that you can pretty much eat as much food as you want to and you’re not going to overdose on your essential micronutrients.
Mira: That’s another reason why supplementation is so important, because the food isn’t giving us enough micronutrients. We already know that, and we’ve tested numerous diets, and it’s nearly impossible in our studies to get all of your micronutrients in. Basically saying you’re going to eat more food when they have inherent competitions isn’t necessarily going to get you there, which is why we turn to supplementation and why the separating of the micronutrients in supplementation is so key to finally being able to absorb those essential micronutrients.
Jonathan: One point I want to make here is that folks might be saying, Well, what we’re talking about here, it might seem a little unnatural. Just isn’t eating food the way to go? One quick caveat there, folks. It is actually quite natural for humans to wilt and start to pass on when they reach ages that nowadays, we don’t actually think are that old. So let’s keep in mind that we’re actually trying to live relatively unnatural lives; certainly a lot of aspects of our lives are unnatural in terms of the toxins we encounter. So taking a very calculated, deliberate, intentional, and complementary ‘unnatural’ step may make sense in that context. What do you guys think?
Jayson: I love that idea. We look at it as we want to create optimal health for the longest period of time. Yes, you could absolutely go out, eat a whole-food diet, you could go out and live on a farm somewhere with no pollution, no pesticides, no whatever, and you can do probably very well. Whether or not you’re going to be sufficient in your essential micronutrients, more than likely not.
Are you going to notice it right away? Probably not. They’re going to create small holes over time and those deficiencies over time are going to create more than likely some kind of health problem; whatever it is, it’s going to eventually lead to your demise. Now, what we’re trying to do is we’re trying to say, I don’t want to get osteoporosis at age 30. I don’t want to get high blood pressure. I don’t want to get heart disease. I don’t want to get on some medication that’s going to allow me to live my life for the next 20, 30, 50, 60 years. I want to have a disease-free life. I want to have no health conditions or as few as I can. So again, we are talking about food first, we really hit that home in our book Rich Food, Poor Food; we are talking about doing what you can with your lifestyle; but we’re also realistic. We want a realistic and sustainable program, something that’s actually going to work for somebody who goes out to work every day, who has a family, and who wants to have optimal health in their life.
Jonathan: I love it. Folks, we’re really just scratching the surface. I have a list of notes here because I love this stuff, and Jayson and Mira are awesome people. But we’re going to have to let them get back to their day and maybe have them back on the show a third time, if they’re kind enough, because we didn’t get through all my questions. In the meantime, if you want to learn more, just very clearly again, in the SANE store, you’ll find the Nutreince product, both the flavored and unflavored, reinvention, and now patented multivitamin, which is really, really neat. You’ll find it in there along with all other things that I enjoy to help make SANEity as easy as possible.
Then, of course, Mira and Jayson have a wonderful new book called Rich Food, Poor Food, which as we all said, whole foods are where it’s at and where we should start, and that’s going to tell you all kinds of great information about that. They also have a re-release of the book that started it all coming out soon, which is called Naked Calories. Then, finally, you can check out their website CaltonNutrition.com for all sorts of free information right now. Jayson and Mira, thank you so much for sharing your time and insight with us. It’s a lot of fun as always.
Jayson: Thank you so much, Jonathan.
Mira: Thank you so much for having us back.
Jonathan: My pleasure, my pleasure. Listeners, I hope you enjoyed today’s show as much as I did. Remember, this week and every week after, eat smarter, exercise smarter, and live better. Talk with you soon.