When it comes to dietary supplements, some great products can be easy to overlook. Popular, oft-recommended supplements can overshadow lesser-known supplements that can work excellently for certain health needs. Here is a look at six supplements that you might not have heard of before, two of which begin with 'A', 'B', and 'C' respectively.
Why This List of Supplements?
There are hundreds of different dietary supplements available in the market, but there are a select number that stand out from the others for their versatility and effectiveness across many fronts. Other supplements often remain out of sight, even when they might be the ideal product for the needs of some people. Because of this, here is a supplement list that narrows things down and is arranged solely by alphabetical placement (A, B, and C - two of each), rather than by their uses. Read this to hear about six oft-overlooked supplements.
Alfalfa leaves are harvested from the alfalfa herb and made into an oral supplement. They contain a variety of essential nutrients and bioactive compounds. Alfalfa is a strong antioxidant. Alfalfa leaves have a few generally applicable benefits. Their antioxidant properties can reduce oxidative stress and lower chances of heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic diseases. Alfalfa leaves are also a diuretic, meaning that they support urine flow and can help flush bacteria from the body.
Astaxanthin is a fat-soluble ketocarotenoid that, like alfalfa, has strong antioxidant properties. It can bolster the immune system by supporting the production of white blood cells and NK cells, which work to combat invading agents that enter the body. Astaxanthin can also reduce inflammation, which contributes to rheumatoid arthritis, celiac disease, and heart disease, and it can help prevent these diseases.
Beta glucan is a substance derived from the cell walls of yeast, commonly harvested from barley and other plants. It is most known for its ability to reduce levels of negative low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Beta glucan also works in a couple of different ways to support immune cell production. Other potential benefits include supporting bone cell progenesis, which can combat osteoporosis, as well as reducing hypertension.
Bilberry is a shrub which has a few different specific medicinal uses. The anthocyanins contained in bilberry could help protect the retina. For this reason, bilberry is often suggested for treating retinopathy, as well as preventing macular degeneration. Bilberry also has a general application in preventing diarrhea, by reducing intestinal inflammation.
Cod liver oil is similar to regular fish oil in that it contains omega-3 fatty acids, but it also includes vitamins A and D. The nutrients in cod liver oil can work in multiple ways to combat chronic inflammation. Studies have also shown cod liver oil can reduce joint pain and stiffness characteristic of rheumatoid arthritis. Using cod liver could also reduce the markers that contribute to heart disease.
Coral calcium is made from refined coral sand deposits. It is composed mostly of calcium carbonate, as well as small amounts of magnesium and other trace minerals. This combination of nutrients can be beneficial to bone health; One study suggests that coral calcium is more easily absorbed by the body than regular calcium supplements. Coral calcium has been linked to a lowering of systolic blood pressure, especially helpful to those with high blood pressure.
If any of the above supplements match your health needs, then give them your consideration. Talk to your healthcare provider before taking a supplement for the first time, as some supplements can have mild side effects or interactions with certain medications.