Vitamin and mineral supplements have been an important part of my Multiple Myeloma (MM) journey to health. Even though nutrition is the ultimate way to pack the vitamins and minerals in, it is not always possible to obtain the high nutrient-dense fresh food needed to do this.
As you can imagine, supplementing my food with quality supplements is an expensive exercise which I would not have been able to maintain without the financial help of members of my family and friends. Words can never express the depth of my gratitude towards them. Faithfully, month after month, they deliver these health supplements.
Multivitamins are packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, probiotics, essential fatty acids and immune boosters. They support energy levels, promote a strong immune system, and encourage a healthy metabolism.
But, with a chronic, life-threatening disease, stronger doses of some of these supplements become necessary.
One of the concerns with MM is that it leaches calcium out of the bones. This makes the bones weaker, and the high quantity of calcium in the blood puts a strain on the kidneys making them susceptible to kidney failure. For this reason, eating foods and supplementing with the following minerals and vitamins (Magnesium, Vitamins D3 and K2) is immensely helpful for absorbing calcium from the blood back into bones. (I will give more detail of how this has worked for me in a follow-up blog when I speak of the modalities that I have used to help).
Magnesium contributes to increased bone density.
D3 is necessary for strong bones and muscles. It helps absorb calcium and phosphorous from the food we eat.
K2 promotes healthy bone mineral density by carboxylation of osteocalcin, a protein that binds calcium to bones.
Zinc helps your immune system and metabolism function.
Biocurcumin is a potent antioxidant and DNA protector. It is naturally found in turmeric and is a potent cancer inhibiter. It is sold in the form of capsules.
Lycopene is an antioxidant but with powerful anti-inflammatory properties. It is found naturally in the pigment of red and pink fruits like tomatoes. It is also sold in capsule form. I have been taking Lycopene since it was recommended by my sister in laws oncologist after she made it clear she wanted to follow the natural route. (I have since moved to her oncologist. (More about this in our next blog)
Omega 3 is an anti-inflammatory oil and is most effective when used together with vitamin E. Find the highest quality possible from a health shop. We have found the Wild Alaska fish oil capsules to be the highest quality (ask your pharmacist or health shop assistant for help)
Vitamin E (see Omega 3)
Vitamin C powder an antioxidant and functions in protecting the immune system.
Even though all these supplements are taken daily, I have monthly blood tests which show if my immune system or kidneys are struggling. If a problem appears, these supplements will be adjusted accordingly.