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Supplements and Vitamins Pros and Cons

Some of the plant-based nutrition experts like the Blue Zone Diet, T. Collin Campbell who wrote Whole and, Dr. McDougall say you don’t need supplements on a plant-based diet except for, perhaps B12 which is a must if you are vegan for more than a few months. They feel that eating whole foods should be enough. After all humans lived without supplementation of any kind for thousands of years. But soil, water, air, and food were untainted back in the good old days!


Supplements are a newish phenomenon

Vitamins and other supplements have only been around since 1912 and are often made with questionable materials. Who are we to think we can improve on nature? Everything in our bodies works in synergy and by pulling out a few nutrients and then adding them back into our bodies artificially we can throw off the whole system doing our bodies more harm than good.

But can we really get all we need from our diet?

Whether you are eating a super healthy organic diet or a Standard American Diet (SAD) many experts no longer believe that food alone can really give us everything we need these days.

Unless you strive to buy all your food locally, Most of our food is flown long distances, picked before it is ripe and grown in unnatural conditions that can strip out a lot of the vitamins and minerals that would naturally be in the food itself. On top of that our air and water quality are not what they once were. wouldn’t all these factors make supplementation a reasonable thing to do?

People who live in places with great soil condition, fresh air, and mineral-rich water, who are eating all locally grown, fresh foods may be getting everything they need. But For the rest of us, I can’t help but wonder if herbs and supplements might really help us feel better if used correctly.

Mistakes with supplements on plant-based and vegan diets

Dr. Joel Fuhrman, plant-based expert, suggests B12, EPA and DHA and vitamin D, especially for vegans. This doesn’t mean we should overdo it with supplements. More isn’t always better.

Omega 3 supplements from a contaminant-free algae source may be necessary for vegans. There has been a link to decline in brain function in vegans who don’t supplement.

According to Dr. Gregor of Nutrition Facts, no one should take fish oil because of the contamination of ocean fish.

What is really in your supplements?

Supplements are not well regulated at all in the US, so often you don’t know what is really in them. It can be a guessing game and you can be doing yourself more harm than good. 

After seeing the movie Vitamania I stopped taking everything except B12, an algae-based Omega 3 supplement, for a while. I recently switched to a plant-based diet and have been eating lots of greens every day, beans tubers and whole grains.

For a while I felt fine without taking supplements. But I noticed after 4 months of no supplementation I was starting to have allergies again and sinus congestion.

Integrative medicine experts have had amazing results in treating cancer with high doses of intravenous vitamin C and other super doses. But some folks get into the attitude that you can eat whatever you want as long as you are taking tons of supplements and, green drinks.

I started taking some Ayurvedic herbs and added a new brand of organic vegan supplements I just found from Ora. The company is transparent about ingredients and everything is packaged in glass and wood and is recyclable.

Using real medicinal herbs and supplements from a trusted source, that are high quality and come from real plants may be the best bet if you are transitioning to a healthy diet.

Mega vitamin therapy as an alternative treatment

Integrative medicine experts have had amazing results in treating cancer and other diseases with high doses of intravenous vitamin C and other super doses of various vitamins. The information has been around for years, but many in the medical institutions have tried to suppress it and ridicule the results doctors have gotten and even harassed doctors who use vitamin therapy.


Many vitamin therapies have not been tested with double blind studies because the cost of these studies would not yield high enough payouts. Some doctors have decided not to wait for studies but have begun treating patients with these therapies because they have found that it works well in many cases.

Many doctors using vitamin therapy have moved their clinics out of the US so that they can practice in peace.

In Conclusion

Some experts have the attitude that you can eat whatever you want as long as you are taking tons of supplements, superfoods and, green drinks. But a healthy diet is still your first resort with supplementation as needed.

If you are worried about levels of different nutrients in your body, you can do simple lab tests to see if you are low in anything. Many of these lab tests can be taken by mail. But if you have a good naturopathic doctor or integrative medicine doctor who understands nutrition and can help you interpret the results that is even better.

A great source for organic vegan supplements

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I'm a natural health writer and designer at and and a creativity blog. I'm also a former Pilates trainer and sports massage therapist, currently working on my Plant-Based Nutrition certification.

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