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Handbook for successful ageing - 1.9 - 1.9.9


1.9 Nutritional supplement

If you take medication, check carefully the instruction leaflets to find out if any interactions result from the nutritional supplements given below.

In order to complete your diet, you should take Omacor (see above 1.4.1) from the pharmacy, prescribed by your physician, or, if he does not prescribe it, a replacement preparation from an internet pharmacy, Juice Plus+® (see above 1.7) from the manufacturer, magnesium, calcium, beer yeast and possibly zinc from the drugstore as well as Rhodiola rosea, ginseng, hawthorn extract, and, if you do not drink red wine, resveratrol from the internet pharmacy.

1.9.1 Magnesium

Magnesium is in about 300 enzyme reactions involved, and plays, among others, an important role in the metabolism of carbohydrates. It can lower the blood sugar level, improve the insulin sensitivity of cells, contribute to the prevention of calf cramps ("restless legs syndrome" RLS), and is, furthermore, important for the development of an optimal bone density during the youth.

The daily requirement of magnesium comes up to 300 mg for women and 350 mg for men. Adolescents need additional 50 mg of magnesium, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers should take 100 mg in addition and athletes need 150 mg magnesium extra a day.

There is an additional need with physical work, stress and strain, nerviness, inefficiency, depressions, frequent muscle cramps, loss of weight and underweight, high blood pressure, heart diseases, disturbance of blood supply, arteriosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, risk of stroke, migraine, gastro-intestinal diseases, regular consumption of alcohol, take of laxatives, medication against cardiac arrhythmias and "the pill".

Especially because of the increased demand, almost half of the German population, the older and sick ones, in particular, suffer from a magnesium deficiency, which, however, is seldomly diagnosed, since the determination of the magnesium level is hardly done due to financial reasons.

For the absorption in the body, it is important to divide the taking of magnesium over 2 to 3 times per day. If you suffer from sleeping disorder when taking magnesium, take the last portion already in the afternoon.

Brown rice, cocoa, almonds, peanuts (eat only the unsalted ones!) and hazelnuts are rich in magnesium. However, you should take into consideration that children may suffer from a peanut allergy with severe consequences.

1.9.2 Calcium and vitamin D3

In order that your bones do not lose their stability, i.e. you don’t get osteoporosis, you should, from the first medical check-up at the age of 35, after consulting your doctor, take 1.5 g calcium carbonate daily, in case you do not do sports regularly. If you start that only at the age of 50 or even later, let an orthopaedist precautionarily measure your bone density, to see if you may need additional medication. If you eat lots of fast food or even canteen food, you need more than 1.5 g calcium, since the extremely high amount of phosphate, which is part of many flavour enhancers in such products, binds calcium and thereby prevents its absorption out of the small intestine into the blood.

Especially for women, calcium can reduce the risk of cancer.

However, scientists from New Zealand have recently detected that calcium increases the risk of a heart attack. They therefore say that calcium should be taken in reluctantly. Due to its other positive characteristics, I leave it at my earlier recommendation, especially if you also take Hawthorn Extract, as I recommend in section 1.9.7.

In order to deposit calcium in the bones, we also need vitamin D3, which is mostly named vitamin D. It is especially contained in cod-liver oil. Under sunlight, it develops in the skin, in our lines of latitude, however, not to the required extent, especially not in winter and the body’s ability to produce it decreases with increasing age.

Vitamin D3 also contributes to the prevention from cancer, strengthens the immune system as well as the cognitive capability, declines the risk of coronary heart diseases, depressions, Parkinson´s, Alzheimer´s, muscle weakness and auto-immune diseases, such as rheumatism, type 1diabetes, multiple sclerosis and Crohn´s disease. Furthermore, it diminishes the danger of falling and slows down the process of ageing. In addition, a vitamin D deficiency can affect young women´s growth and cause overweight. According to an article of the German journal "Spektrum der Wissenschaft" (issue July 2008), we need 1000 international units = 10µg daily to be sufficiently protected against cancer and multiple sclerosis, in particular.

According to that, you should take a preparation of 1.5 g of calcium carbonate and 10 µg of vitamin D3 in total, such as Calcimagon®-D 3 chewable tablets from an internet pharmacy.

If you need L-thyroxine, take Calcimagon® at least two hours afterwards, since calcium carbonate can diminish the resorption of L-thyroxin.

Certainly, calcium and vitamin D3, alone, do not protect you sufficiently from osteoporosis. In order to keep your bones strong, you rather have to burden them by doing sports.

Addition to 1.9.1 and 2: Never take magnesium and calcium at the same time, but with an interval of several hours, since they else do not have an effect.

1.9.3 Beer yeast tablets

We need these tablets because of their high content of vitamins - especially the whole content of the vitamin B complex -, amino acids and trace elements.

1.9.4 Zinc

Zinc is important for the digestion of carbohydrates and proteins. It controls the production of insulin, activates numerous enzymes, and is part of more than 70 enzymes. Furthermore, it protects from infections, improves the protection of cells, accelerates the regeneration, stimulates wound healing, regulates the hormone balance and the acid-base homeostasis, has an antioxidant effect, and possibly prevents prostate cancer and Alzheimer´s. A zinc deficiency can cause night blindness and skin diseases.

Wholemeal products, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, peanuts and walnuts, meat, fish, eggs as well as milk and dairy products are very good zinc suppliers. If they are contained largely in your food, you do not have to take any zinc preparations. However, you have to take some, if you do without meat and, to a great extent, any other animal products.

1.9.5 Selenium

Some selenium compounds, such as those in tobacco, are highly toxic. Furthermore, selenium can increase the risk of diabetes. However, selenium is a free-radical-quencher, protects from different types of cancer, supports the body´s defences, protects from thromboses, auto-immune diseases, like the rheumatoid arthritis, protects eyes from cataract, and is involved in the activation of thyroid hormones. Furthermore, it is said to contribute to the excretion of heavy metals. A selenium deficiency possibly increases the risk of high blood pressure, heart diseases as well as liver and lung cancer, and causes the ageing of cells. The absorption of selenium from food, in case of a normal diet, is in industrial countries with their depleted soils hardly sufficient. As we, however, should partially do without meat and eggs, and since vegetable selenium is especially contained in lentils and asparagus, I recommend to take selenium, too.

1.9.6 Rhodiola rosea (roseroot)

This plant has not become very famous in Germany, yet. Its ingredients are available in capsules in internet pharmacies. They improve the body´s adaptability to heavy burdens, contain antioxidants, which protect the brain cells from free radicals, stimulate the brain´s metabolism and thereby increase the ability to think, to analyse, to calculate, to plan, to learn, to concentrate, to perceive something and to be attentive. They relieve stress, and diminish fear of heights and impotence. Furthermore, they are said to relieve stomach trouble, bowel complaint, infections as well as nervous restlessness.

Do not take the capsules during the first half of the day and with lots of coffee. Pregnant and breast-feeding women as well as children should do without them.

In order to not diminish the preparation´s effectiveness, it is recommended to take sometimes a different one for a short time. Therefore, I switch between Rhodiola rosea and ginseng.

1.9.7 Hawthorn extract

In order to strengthen your heart, take one tablet of this extract in the morning and evening (HeartCare™ Hawthorn Extract -, for example). But ask your physician if you are allowed to take those tablets in case you already take other medicine for your heart.

1.9.8 Resveratrol

The antioxidant and life-extending effect of red wine is attributed to the resveratrol contained. However, this part of red wine can also be bought in form of capsules. Take these capsules in case you drink less than a quarter litre of red wine per day.

1.9.9 Other nutritional supplements

However, you do not need vitamins from juices or even tablets as well as other dietary supplements, since our food contains enough of them. Moreover, superfluity of several vitamins can be harmful. Do not get insecure by advertisement.





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