I’ve taken a few vitamin and mineral supplements over the years in an attempt to fill in the gaps in my diet. Over the last few weeks while writing this blog I’ve learned much about food and ways to get my daily nutritional requirements naturally. With the changes I’ve made in my eating habits I’m down to two supplements I’ll continue to take.
The first one is calcium. I’m concerned about my bone density and osteoporosis. I’m not worried about it now, my bones are fine. Keeping them strong into old age is my goal. My grandmother has osteoporosis. At my full adult height she and I were the same height. Before she passed away she was six inches shorter than me, had a hunched back and suffered back pain. One calcium tablet a day will still be part of my daily intake. I’ll get the rest of my daily requirement through food.
Glucosamine and chondroitin is a mineral complex that protects and comforts sore joints by lubricating and cushioning them. Due to many miles pedaled around the rolling hills of central Massachusetts I’d developed knee soreness particularly during the warm months. This supplement really helps. My husband has osteoarthritis in his knees and it has also decreased his knee pain somewhat.
I recently stopped taking a B Complex supplement. I think I’ve got these bases pretty well covered in my diet. There are eight B vitamins;
- B1 aka thiamine helps your body break down carbs. Wheat germ and oysters contain high levels of B1. I might have to work on this one.
- B2 aka riboflavin helps convert food to energy and aids in producing red blood cells. Mushrooms, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, asparagus and green leafy vegetables are rich in riboflavin.
- B3 aka niacin aids digestion, metabolizes food and produces the good kinds of cholesterol. Fish, chicken, liver, potatoes, peanuts, beans, fortified cereals and whole grains are high in niacin.
- B4 aka panothenic acid is found in most foods. It breaks down proteins, carbs and fats. To increase intake eat more eggs, chicken, potatoes, peas, avocados, oranges, mushrooms, tomatoes and oats.
- B6 aka pyridoxine is necessary for nervous system functions. Green leafyvegetables, asparagus, watermelon, organ meats, fish, chicken, watermelon and wheat germ are high in B6.
- B7 aka biotin helps your body synthesize glycogen, amino acids and fats. It also is linked to tissue maintenance and skin care. Oats, nuts, soybeans, potatoes, spinach, broccoli and cauliflower are high in biotin.
- B9 aka folic acid is required for cell growth and maintenance. Many foods are high in folic acid, including beans, peas, broccoli, beets, asparagus, turnip greens, spinach, mushrooms, cantaloupe, wheat bread and fortified juices.
- B12 aka cobalamin is vital to red blood cell production. It is primarily found in foods from animals. Vegetarians and vegans may need to take vitamin supplements to get the recommended daily allowance of B12. Look for other foods rich in vitamin B12, such as fortified cereals, seafood, milk and yogurt.
And yes, I rode my bicycle Sunday! This shadow picture make me look a bit chubby around the middle. No very flattering! Oh well, I like shadow pictures! I had to leave the hubby behind Sunday. He was down and out with a nasty stomach bug that he caught from me. After a slow recovery from that same bug I felt up for it Sunday and did 26 miles. It was great. Sunny, 50’s and a bit breezy but I bundled up and off I went. It felt so good. I turned over 200 miles for the year so far. Not bad considering we’re just getting over a pretty cold winter. I’ll soon be cranking out over 100 miles a week. I can’t wait until it’s warm enough to ride after work. My goal for the year is 3,000 miles.
I have another goal; To raise $10,000 for Boston’s Dana Farber Cancer Institute through their Jimmy Fund. Every year during the first weekend in August over 5,000 cyclists take part in the annual Pan Massachusetts Challenge. We are pedaling toward a goal of raising $40M this year and I’m excited to be riding for the 11th time. You can learn more about the PMC here http://www.pmc.org. If you’d like to consider sponsoring me you can do so here http://www2.pmc.org/profile/JS0126. You can also text to give by texting JS0126 to 20222. If you’d like to send me an old fashioned check send me a message. One hundred percent of your donation goes to the charity – not one cent is used for administrative costs.
Thanks for reading my blog!