Nutrition for Timeless Beauty   

Nutrition for Timeless Beauty

Is it worth tossing your make -up kit away for supplements that promise timeless beauty?

Make-up is most women's instant beauty fix, but its effect also instantly vanishes. Is there another way to look gorgeous longer and intrinsically?

There is a way to look beautiful inside and out, says Dr Diane Grace, a distributor of international beauty products. That way is food supplements, either in capsule or beverage form.

Dr Grace lives what she sells. She wears no makeup, but drinks aloe vera supplement, uses aloe vera shower cream and shampoo, and slathers aloe vera balm or lotion before she starts her work day.

It's worth it, she says. Others, looking at her, agree. She certainly looks younger than her 57 years. There is debate today on whether people need to take supplements. The experts against taking them say that if you eat a healthy, balanced diet, you don't need supplements for beautiful skin and hair.
Proponents of supplementation, however, point out that lifestyles today are no longer what they used to be.

Unlike our grandmothers' time, modern people are eating too much fat and too little fibre, partaking of foods loaded with preservatives, pesticides and other toxic ingredients, and dealing with pollution, stress and other pressures that make our diet inadequate in coping with the needs of our minds and bodies.

If you believe that supplements are for you, the variety of products in the market will, however, stump you. Which one should you take? What is best for you? Should you take antioxidant vitamins like A, C and E? Or botanical-based supplements like ginkgo biloba, fibre and evening primrose oil? The list goes on and on.

Don't be confused, advises Dr Grace. "Get only what your body needs."

The purpose of supplements is simply to supplement the diet, according to the US Food and Drug Administration. As the term suggests, supplements 'increase' or 'enhance'.

If you don't or can't meet the recommended dietary guidelines for certain foods, supplements will help you reach the amounts of these foods that your diet lacks to meet your body's needs.
Supplement manufacturers should not claim that their products treat or prevent any disease.

If you're anaemic and need energy, you may take a supplement rich in iron.  For firm, supple skin, you could reach for a pill rich in copper. Acne-prone skin? Increased intake of zinc could be the solution.

But don't pop a supplement just because everybody endorses it. What works for others may not please your body. "It really depends on your body.
Sometimes you have to use trial and error and wait for seven days to three months to know which is best for you," Dr Grace says. And for safety and best results, consult a doctor before taking any supplement.


Which is the more effective form of supplement? Pill or liquid? Liquids or beverages, Dr Grace answers. Liquids are directly and easily absorbed by the body; capsules have binders and are more slowly digested. If you really prefer capsules, choose the gel type. Gels dissolve faster, she explains.

But whether you take liquid or pill, Dr Grace advises drinking lots of water with supplements.
Drink the prescribed eight glasses of water every day.
"Drinking dissolves the supplements effectively, making the body flush out toxins faster."


Can you over-dose on supplements? Dr George Alvin writes in his article Vitamin Overdose: "These products are intended to boost your health, but they can be anything but healthy if you grossly overdo it. Taken to excess, you actually can over-dose on vitamins and other food supplements."

Dr Alvin spells out the rule of thumb when supplementing. Anything taken in excess, including water and oxygen, can be toxic. "Provided that supplements are taken in the amounts recommended on the pack by the manufacturer or retailer, and the recommended doses are not exceeded by combining too many different supplements, then it is highly unlikely that supplements will cause toxicity."


What about supplements in combination with prescription medicines? A big no-no! They may lead to unwanted effects and have life-threatening results.  Some dietary supplements interact with specific drugs - calcium and heart medicine, magnesium and thiazide and loop diuretics, vitamin Kanda blood thinner, for example.

Nutri-tip You can overdose on vitamins A, B12, D, E and K as the body doesn't flush out excess amounts of these nutrients.

As for combining supplements, vitamins combine best with minerals, says Dr Grace. Without each other, vitamins and minerals are less effective as supplements. The two work well together to enhance health.

Dr Alvin says combining supplements would normally not interfere with the way they work and may even be beneficial in some cases. However, "certain supplements may interact with each other. For example, there is competition within the gut for the absorption of different minerals and a large dose of one might decrease the absorption of another or cause excessive absorption of another".

But this should not be a problem in general. Vitamin D and calcium, for instance, are good together. "No matter how much calcium you take, it will not be anywhere as beneficial as if you took a moderate amount of both vitamin D and calcium," notes Dr Alvin.

Keep in mind that it's always best to consult your doctor before taking any supplement. Supplementation is not meant as a quick fix for your beauty problems, but a doctor-guided option to getting all the nutrients that you may be missing out on. A glowing skin and glossy locks are good by-products of choosing a healthy lifestyle.

Happy reading,

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