Dietary Supplements – Should I take one?

People have mixed feeling on dietary supplements and there are so many different ones that are available. While I would like to believe that I could get all of my daily vitamins and minerals from the foods I eat, I know that it doesn’t happen. We eat so many processed foods that have the nutrients we need to be taken out of them through that processing that we need to have them added back in before sending them out to stores.

I personally try to eat a diet based on whole foods and minimize the amount of processed food that I eat. But somedays I still want to have that grilled cheese sandwich of white bread and American cheese, so I know that I need to take dietary supplements to counteract those food choices.

doTERRA has a dietary supplement, the Lifelong Vitality Pack which contains three separate supplements that provide the necessary vitamins, minerals, and nutrients we need to be healthier human beings.

Lifelong Vitality comes with Alpha CRS+, xEO Mega, and Microplex VMz. These supplements are created to provide the most bioavailable forms of the nutrients your body needs.

Alpha CRS+

Alpha CRS+ is the Cellular Vitality Complex. It is a proprietary formula that combines potent levels of natural botanical extracts to support healthy cell function and the metabolic factors for cellular energy.

It helps support healthy cell function, mental clarity and brain function, and includes a tummy tamer botanical extract blend to help prevent stomach upset.

xEO Mega

xEO Mega is the Essential Oil Omega Complex. It contains a unique formula of CPTG essential oils and a proprietary blend of marine- and land-sourced omega fatty acids.

Omega fatty acids help support joint, cardiovascular, and brain health and support healthy immune function.

Also comes in a vegetarian formula vEO Mega.

Microplex VMz

Microplex VMz is the Food Nutrient Complex. It contains bioavailable vitamins and minerals that are deficient in modern diets. It provides antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, and E, and an energy complex of B vitamins. Microplex VMz also contains minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and zinc for bone and metabolic health.

Also comes in a vegan formula Vegan Microplex VMz.

A daily serving of these supplements is taking 4 of each of the supplements, 2 of each in the morning and 2 of each in the evening. Now I know that you are going to say that is 12 pills/supplements each day! The reason that you need to take 4 of each total every day is that the supplements are in a bioavailable format. Traditional vitamins and supplements are compressed into solid pill format while doTERRA’s supplements are in capsules. This allows the body to absorb more of the nutrients from the supplements giving your body the biggest bang for your buck.

In order to get all my supplements in I take my morning dose with breakfast and then my second dose with my lunch. I also take a variety of other supplements that doTERRA offers so I am taking about 10 pills with breakfast and 10 pills with lunch. It is definitely a lot but it is very doable.

I notice a difference in my energy levels and in my general health when I take these supplements. I stopped taking them for about a week when I was moving from Georgia to North Dakota. I felt tired throughout the day and managed to get a cold the week that I didn’t take them. Once I restarted taking them, my energy levels increased and my cold went away immediately.

Where Have I Been?

north dakota train bridgeWell, I have been a busy little nurse lately. Over the last almost 2 months now of living in Bismarck, North Dakota I have planned to make blog posts but have been busy doing other things constantly.

My weeks here have been filled with work, working out, and a little bit of exploring.

For work, I still generally only work my 3-day shifts, with occasional extra shifts. The majority of days I will walk to work since I amazingly live only 8 blocks from the hospital. People are amazed that I walk to work every day, but the days that I do drive to work, it takes the same amount of time.

For workouts, I have gotten in some yoga classes at Yoga for You, they have a variety of different classes and I like that they offer classes at noon a few days a week. I also have been doing a lot of running, I completed my C25K training app and have moved on to the 10K training portion of the app. I was initially running around the neighborhood that I live in but have had to expand to going to a park that connects to the Bismarck trail system in order to have enough distance to run now that my runs are longer.

I also chose to join a gym here in Bismarck to have the ability to take classes and do strength training. I joined Verge Fitness which is a local gym here in Bismarck. They were offering a 6-week transformation program so I signed up for that and am loving the results that I am seeing. I take 2-4 Regymen classes and do a group training session each week. The classes are intense and I burn about 500 calories per class.

I have done a little bit of exploring around my neighborhood to some of the local restaurants but definitely, plan to do more. I have also explored the North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum. I went on a rainy day that also happened to be prom so I don’t have as many pictures as I wanted to get so I’ll have to make another trip to the museum.

There are so many more trips and things to explore here and throughout North and South Dakota that are on my list. I want to get to Mount Rushmore, see some of the various military forts that are around the state, and visit so many other places.

Hopefully, this catches everyone up on where I have been and you will definitely be seeing more posts soon. I’m making it a point to take this afternoon and write up a bunch so that you will all have some things to read and learn about.

Anti-Inflammatory Blend

This anti-inflammatory blend is something I created myself for myself in order to combat some terrible inflammation in my feet and ankles due to bug bites that happened while I was living in Augusta, GA. I found out the hard way that fire ants and fleas are not fun things to live and deal with.

I made this roller bottle of oils that would be not only skin nourishing but also would treat the inflammation that was giving a bad pair of cankles. It worked wonders and now I am only dealing with a little bit of discoloration left from the bug bites.

Anti-Inflammatory Blend

3 drops Frankincense

3 drops Wild Orange

3 drops Lemon

3 drops Marjoram

3 Drops Melaleuca (Tea Tree)

Fill the rest of the roller bottle with Jojoba Wax/Oil

The reasons I used these specific oils was that each had properties that were useful in my current situation.

Frankincense – has analgesic properties, is an anti-inflammatory and is a cicatrisant (skin healing).

Wild Orange – has analgesic properties, is anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, has astringent properties, and enhances skin penetration of oils.

Lemon – has analgesic properties, is anti-inflammatory, has astringent properties, and enhances skin penetration of oils.

Marjoram – has analgesic properties, is anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial.

Melaleuca (Tea Tree) – has analgesic properties, is anti-inflammatory and antibacterial.

Jojoba Wax/Oil – I used jojoba because it a skin nourishing oil, but you can use whatever carrier oil you prefer.

 

Working Out

Working out is one of my favorite activities to do when I have a day off. I like a variety of different types of workouts including barre, running, yoga, Pilates, walking, and recently Krav Maga. I like being able to do something different all the time yet am able to be familiar with my workout. I generally do not try new types of workout because I enjoy it a lot and then want to do it all the time, aka I haven’t met a workout that I don’t like.

My first loves were yoga and Pilates. I started doing both of these more than 10 years ago through Rec Department classes. The classes were very basic and repetitive but I really enjoyed the relief and energy I got from taking them. I stopped taking these classes when the teacher that I had stopped teaching. At this point, I really stopped doing any exercise at all.

I went back to school in 2010 and decided that working out was a good thing again. I decided that I was going to give running a try. I was always the person growing up who thought that the only running I would do was if a murderer or a bear was chasing me. I downloaded a Couch to 5K program and the rest is history, ok it took a while but now I definitely understand why people like running. I have completed a few different 5K races including the Dirty Girl, Famous Racing Sausage Run/Walk, Glow Run, and many days of just running a 5K. I have also managed to complete a Terrain Race.

Right before I became a travel nurse a new workout studio opened down the street from my house, Barre District. It was a barre studio; I had tried a barre class through the Rec Department and figured that since the first class was free at Barre District I would try it out. Well, I was hooked. I bought an unlimited membership at the grand opening and took as many classes as I could during the time that I had left at home. I managed to cram 100 classes into a period of 60 days. I still make sure that when I am able to go back to Milwaukee that I get in a few classes and hang out with all of the awesome women that I have met there.

Once I started travel nursing I found it difficult to keep on my workouts, as I was working night shift. During my first assignment, in Fayetteville, AR, I was able to keep up with running, as there were many paved running/walking paths around the area that I lived. I occasionally did a barre DVD but it definitely was not the same.

During my second assignment, in Iowa City, IA, I managed to go running about 3 times and barely did any workouts on DVD unless I was visiting home and could go to Barre District. Night shift work and winter make life complicated.

On my third travel assignment, to Charlottesville, VA, I decided to work day shift and was able to reclaim my love for exercise. I found a local barre studio, Barre.[d] and once again fell in love. I could walk to the studio from my apartment and not only get a workout in but also some good walking. I loved the people I met through the studio and will definitely be back if in the area. I was also able to get some running in while on this assignment as the apartment building that I lived in had a gym. I was excited about exercise again and looking forward to continuing this on my next assignment.

Moving to Augusta, GA for my next assignment, I knew that I needed to find a gym that could meet my workout needs. I found Oxygen Fitness and was able to get in all the barre classes that I could have wanted plus I took a class called OxyBlast on a few of the mornings I had off. During this time, I also was reacquainted with yoga, hot yoga to be exact. My love of barre and taking as many classes as possible allowed me to complete a barre challenge while there, taking 16 classes in 30 days, I managed to get all 16 completed in 8 days since I worked or was on vacation during the other days of the challenge. One of those days, I even drove straight from the airport to get to the studio to take a class. OxyBlast was great because it gave me the opportunity to try something new, it involved intervals of an exercise opposite and interval on the treadmill, it definitely got the heart pumping and the muscles burning. Hot Yoga was a new experience for me, I was unsure how I was going to like it since I had never done hot yoga and had not really done any yoga for almost 10 years. Hot Yoga was and still is definitely a challenge and something I enjoy as it challenges me to use and move my body in ways that I previously have not. I also find it to be an amazing way to relax.

I was also able to get a lot of running and walking outside done while on this assignment. Only a few blocks from where I was living was a trail that was more than 3 miles long. I was able to run and walk for almost all of the 5 months on the assignment, as it really didn’t get cold consistently until late December.

Now in Atlanta, GA I have found myself working night shift again and not living in a place where it was convenient to get to a barre studio. I was driving one of the first days here and I saw a building that said Krav Maga on it and thought it could be interesting. A few days later one of my friends posted online about going to a Krav Maga class and it reminded me of what I had seen. That evening I signed up to take a free class, I was sold after that class and signed up to participate for the next two months. I tried to keep up with the classes but sleep would allude me when not working and after work, I needed so much sleep it was ridiculous. The classes that I did take I loved, it has given me a great appreciation for martial arts and skills for self-defense. I was able to participate in a Women’s Self-Defense class through the gym and was given hands-on opportunities to use the self-defense skills and attempt to escape from an attacker. It was a great opportunity to see women of all ages learning to defend themselves and for those of us who had been taking classes to assist in showing others how to properly use those self-defense skills.

I am excited to see what workout opportunities my next travel assignment to Bismarck, ND will bring me.

Downtown Duluth

One of my favorite things about traveling to different cities is to be able to explore the city that I am living in. Currently, I am living in Duluth, GA and the downtown area is small but full of interesting art/sculpture. I spent an afternoon walking the downtown, looking at the sculptures, and enjoying some of the local shops and restaurants.

I started the afternoon off with a stop at a local shop, Personify and found a beautiful Georgia card. I always try to find small souvenirs from each place that I live. Being a travel nurse means that I have to fit all my possessions in the car so small souvenirs are the best. The card is by Rifle Paper Co., they make such beautiful paper goods.

georgia card

My next stop was to walk around the downtown and see the sculptures that were all around. The first one that I found was this colorful whirligig. I love the bright colors, especially since it was such a drab and gray day.

whirligig

I continued and found an awesome Emergency Workers Memorial. I love that the members of the different military branches, the police, and fire departments are holding up the monument. I find this meaningful in that our country is held up on the backs of those who give their service for us and those who gave their lives for us.

vetrans memorialI went back on a nicer day to get some better pictures of the workers holding up the monument.

Next, I came upon the sculpture of children painting a flag on a window. The colors were so bright in the flag compared to the statues and the weather. One thing I found interesting about this sculpture is that the downtown area allows people to adopt (sponsor) each of the children in the sculpture and post information about why they adopted the sculpture. Next to this is another sculpture of a little girl and dog who are singing “God Bless America.”

Finally, on my way to lunch, I found this mural depicting downtown Duluth. It was neat to see how old-time Duluth was perceived to look.

historic duluth

For lunch, I stopped at a local brewery and restaurant, Good Word Brewing. I enjoyed their GWB Cheeseburger and some of the local beer. The first beer I tried was an Ophelia, a sour ale, and a StriWi, which is a Gose. The food was great and I enjoyed the beer.

Duluth, Ga is also the site of the Eastern Continental Divide.

FLOOM

Floom is an immunity boosting blend of essential oils. It can be taken internally or used in a roller bottle. Floom contains Frankincense, Lemon, On Guard, Oregano, and Melaleuca (Tea Tree). These oils have many different properties that help support the immune system and many other systems in the body.

Frankincense– is often used in conjunction with other oils in blends that provide immune support and may even have antiviral properties. It is helpful in joint pain and inflammation and can help relieve neck and head tension.

Lemon– is great for disinfecting and being antibacterial. It blends well with other oils that provide pain and inflammation relief.

On Guard – this is a doTERRA specific blend that provides immune support. Other essential oil companies provide oils that have similar properties to this oil. This oil is a blend of Wild Orange, Clove, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus, and Rosemary.

Oregano– is great for supporting the immune system and is an antioxidant. It also has antibacterial, antifungal and anti-parasitic properties.

Melaleuca (Tea Tree) – this oil is antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antiviral. It is a great oil to support your immune system and help with any infection that you might have.

The recipe for a FLOOM Roller Bottle is:

8-10 drops Frankincense

8-10 drops Lemon

8-10 drops Oregano

8-10 drops On Guard

8-10 drops Melaleuca (Tea Tree)

Fill the rest of the 10mL roller bottle with a carrier oil of your choosing. Apply roller to the bottoms of your feet. If you are going to use this on young children use only 1 drop of each oil in the same size roller bottle.

Recipe for FLOOM for Internal Use is:

2 drops Frankincense

4 drops Lemon

2 drops Oregano

2 drops On Guard

2 drops Melaleuca (Tea Tree)

Put the oils into a veggie capsule and swallow

If you would like to diffuse FLOOM to cleanse the air in your home add 3-5 drops of each oil to your diffuser.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Skin Sensitivity

Dilute

  • A category of essential oils that should be mixed with a carrier oil. The carrier oil will help “carry” the essential oil into the skin.

Neat

  • A category of essential oils that can be applied topically without dilution because of their extremely mild chemistry.

Sensitive

  • A category of essential oils that should be diluted for young or sensitive skin.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

All info from www.doterra.com/US/en/brochures-magazines-doterra-living-fall-2016-essential-oils-for-beginners

Safe Uses

Traditionally, certain essential oil application methods have been preferred or used exclusively. However, as the research surrounding essential oils continues to develop, a greater understanding of application methods is now understood. All application methods are safe when used appropriately, including aromatic, topical, and internal methods. One or multiple application methods can be used for a wide range of emotional and physical wellness applications. They can be used a single oil at a time or in complex blends in on of three methods.

Aromatic

The sense of smell is a tool that can elicit powerful physiologic, mental, and emotional responses. Essential oils are quickly absorbed by the smell receptors, which have a direct link to the limbic system by way of the olfactory nerve. The limbic system is part of the brain that supports a variety of functions including smell, emotions, behavior, and memory. For this reason, essential oils have an especially powerful effect via aromatic application. Some essential oils induce uplifting or invigorating effects, while others are more calming.

Diffusion is one of the simplest methods for using essential oils aromatically. Diffusers that use cold air or water are ideal. However, using essential oils aromatically does not require any special diffusing devices. You can achieve the same health benefits by simply placing a few drops of essential oil in the palm of your hand that is then cupped around the nose as you breathe deeply.

Additional aromatic uses methods of using essential oils include:

  • Apply oil to a cotton ball and place in the air vents of your vehicle.
  • Mix oils in a spray bottle with water and mist over furniture, carpet, or linens.
  • Add oil to a batch of laundry or to dryer sheets.
  • Use in household surface cleaners.

Topical

Topical application is a very effective method for applying essential oils. Because essential oils have low molecular weights and are lipid soluble, they easily penetrate the skin. Once absorbed, they stay in the applied area for a localized benefit. Although essential oils are readily absorbed, there are many ways to increase absorption. Using a light massage will increase the blood flow to the area of application, in turn improving distribution throughout the body. Use of a carrier oil can also increase absorption, especially in skin that is dry or flaky as it helps moisturize the skin and slow evaporation of the oil.

To decrease the likelihood of developing a skin sensitivity, especially on young or sensitive skin, it is advisable to use a carrier oil to dilute more potent oils and when trying an oil for the first time. The recommended dilution ration is typically one drop of essential oil to three drops of carrier oil.

It’s always advisable to use several small doses throughout the day rather than a single large dose. Start with the lowest possible dose (1-2 drops). A topical dose can be repeated every 4-6 hours as needed. Because every individual is unique, the dose will vary for each individual based on size, age, and overall health status.

Beneficial Areas You Can Apply Essential Oils:

  • Neck
  • Forehead and temples
  • Chest
  • Abdomen
  • Arms
  • Legs
  • Bottom of feet

Other Effective Methods of Topical Application:

  • Add a few drops of oil to a warm bath
  • Make a hot or cold compress by soaking a towel or cloth in water, adding essential oils, and then applying to the desired area
  • Add oil to a lotion or moisturizer and then apply to skin

Sensitive Areas to be Avoided:

  • Some facial areas, such as the skin around the eyes
  • Eyes
  • Inner ears
  • Broken, damaged, or otherwise injured skin

Internal

Certain essential oils have a rich culinary history and can be used as dietary supplements supporting a variety of health conditions. When you sprinkle cinnamon on your oatmeal, sip a mug of peppermint tea, or add fresh basil leaves to your spaghetti, you are actually consuming some volatile aromatic essential oil compounds. Essential oil contributes many health benefits as well as flavoring and aroma properties of foods. When in their concentrated form, essential oils can be used as dietary supplements for more targeted and potent health benefits.

Internal use is a very safe and effective method of application because of the sophisticated physiologic processes of our bodies. When ingested, essential oils directly enter the bloodstream via the gastrointestinal tract, where they are transported throughout the rest of the body. Essential oils are lipid soluble so they are readily transported to all organs of the body, including the brain. Then, like all things we consume, essential oils are metabolized by the liver and other organs and are then excreted.

The composition of essential oils is highly complex. Each constituent possesses a unique set of biochemical properties that react with cell and organs in different ways. Although these mechanisms of action are not completely understood, the positive end results have been demonstrated. However, the body is only equipped to handle appropriate doses of essential oils. Proper dosing according to labeling recommendations and other professional guidelines should be strictly followed to avoid toxicity.

Effective Methods of Internal Application:

  • Use oils in recipes for cooking or baking to replace fresh or dried herbs and spices. Remember that essential oils are much more potent than dried or fresh herbs and spices, so start with a very small amount. For more potent oils, it may be better to administer them with toothpicks (dip the end of a clean toothpick into the oil and then add to the food) rather than drops.
  • Add essential oils to water, smoothies, milk, tea, or other drinks.
  • Take essential oils internally in a veggie capsule or add to a small amount of applesauce or yogurt.

All information from https://www.doterra.com/US/en/essentialoils-using-oils-safely

Top 10 Oils

Lemon

  • Properties: cleansing, revitalizing, uplifting
    • Add to a spray bottle of water to clean tables, countertops, and other surfaces.
    • Use to remove gum, glue, or any other sticky residues.
    • Add to your favorite desserts or beverage for zesty flavor.
    • Take internally to support healthy digestion.*
    • Diffuse to purify air and create an uplifting, refreshing aromatic experience.

Lavender

  • Properties: soothing, calming
    • Diffuse or add a few drops to your pillow or feet to prepare for a restful night’s sleep.
    • Apply topically to help reduce the appearance of blemishes.
    • Add a few drops to a warm bath to help soak away stress.
    • Consume 1-2 drops to help calm the nervous system.*

Peppermint

  • Properties: cooling, energizing, natural bug repellent.
    • Take internally to help alleviate occasional stomach upset.*
    • Apply a few drops to the back of your neck to cool off.
    • For a clearing, refreshing aroma, diffuse at night beside your bed.
    • Rub on head and neck for a soothing sensation when feeling tense.
    • Add to shampoo or conditioner for a stimulating scalp massage.

Frankincense

  • Properties: renewing, beautifying, rejuvenating, grounding.
    • Take internally to support healthy cellular and immune function.*
    • Apply topically to help reduce the appearance of skin imperfections.
    • Diffuse during meditation for a sense of relaxation and balance.

Melaleuca (Tea Tree)

  • Properties: soothing, cleansing.
    • Combine 1-2 drops with your facial cleanser or moisturizer for added cleansing properties, or apply to skin after shaving.
    • Apply to fingernails and toenails to keep nails looking clean and healthy.
    • Add a few drops to your shampoo or massage into the scalp for added cleansing.
    • Add to toothpaste or swish with water for a quick and easy mouth rinse.

Oregano

  • Properties: cleansing, purifying.
    • Take one drop in a veggie cap or 4 fl. oz of liquid daily to maintain healthy immune function.*
    • Add one to two drops to a veggie capsule to support healthy respiratory function.*
    • Put one drop in place of dried oregano in spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, or on a roast.
    • Put 10 drops in a 16-ounce spray bottle with water for a surface cleaner.

Breathe – Respiratory Blend

  • Apply topically to the chest to breathe deeply.
  • For a clearing aroma, diffuse at night by your bedside.
  • Apply diluted to your upper lip and inhale to invigorate and clear your senses.
  • Apply topically for an invigorating lift when you stay home from the office on a cold, rainy day.

Deep Blue – Soothing Blend

  • Apply on feet before and after exercise.
  • Make your muscles happy after your workout by applying to targeted areas.
  • Massage on your lower back after a day of sitting at the desk or doing manual labor.

DigestZen – Digestive Blend

  • Take a couple of drops internally to promote healthy digestion.*
  • Add to water or tea and consume to help maintain a healthy gastrointestinal tract.*
  • Reduce bloating, gas, and indigestion.*

On Guard – Protective Blend

  • Add two to three drops in a Veggie Capsule or take directly for an immune boost before traveling or during seasonal changes.*
  • Diffuse in your home or office during fall and winter months.
  • Add to water and use as a natural surface cleaner.

In future posts, I will delve deeper into each oil and the various ways that each can be used.

 

 

 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

All info from www.doterra.com/US/en/brochures-magazines-doterra-living-fall-2016-essential-oils-for-beginners

Methods of Use

Aromatic

  • Essential oils that can be used aromatically. Diffusion is one of the most popular ways to enjoy the aromatic benefits of essential oils.

Topical

  • Essential oils that can be used topically, which means you can apply them directly on to the skin or mix them with carrier oils or other personal care products.

Internal

  • Essential oils that can be used internally. You can add oils to beverages, take them in doTERRA Veggie Caps, take doTERRA essential oils supplements, or use them in your favorite recipes.

 

 

 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

All info from www.doterra.com/US/en/brochures-magazines-doterra-living-fall-2016-essential-oils-for-beginners