Here are some of my absolute favorites that I have been using in practice this year, from products to supplements and a few reasons why my patients and I love them so much.

Liposomal Glutathione: I’m a fan of the one by quicksilver as it seems to be the highest quality ingredients without soy or corn. Glutathione is found in virtually every cell of the body and plays an important role in protein synthesis, enzyme function, synthesis and repair of DNA, transport, and cell maturation. It’s also a key player in my cold and flu arsenal, remember what they say about an ounce of prevention… The highest concentration of glutathione is found in the liver where it offers antioxidant support for liver tissue protection and promotes p450 phase II conjugation pathways to support detoxification, this is very important for hormone balance. So why liposomal? Let me explain while I tell you about my next favorite supplement…

Liposomal Vitamin C: It’s not too often I recommend vitamin C to patients unless we are trying to repair adrenal issues. Oral vitamin C found on store shelves is not only synthetic (yuk) but also very poorly absorbed by the body. Vitamin C on its own is water soluble, this is a problem seeing as our cells are made up of fats. So now comes the liposomes, these are similar in structure to our own cells which makes them more bioavailable. They protect the nutrients inside and in theory this allows the vitamin C to pass through our digestive barrier into our bloodstream to be utilized by our cells. Liposomal vit C has a 90% absorption rate compared to oral versions which when taken at doses of 1000 mg or higher will have you peeing out 50%…. that’s expensive pee. Not to mention the fact that oral vit C is not tolerated well by the body due to the fact that it brings water into the colon(in order to be absorbed) leading to cramping and diarrhea.

Grass Fed Collagen Powder: This stuff is awesome added to basically anything. I add it to my coffee or coffee substitute beverages everyday. Gelatin is an awesome source of amino acids, which support healthy mood, strong bones, and proper muscle synthesis. It is important to get gelatin from a grass fed/pastured animal to avoid hormones, pesticides and heavy metal contamination. Gelatin contains glycine, which we need for detoxification from exposure to toxic chemicals in our everyday environment. If we do not have enough glycine we won’t produce enough glutathione, which is crucial for Phase II liver detoxification as I mentioned above. It can also help increase HCL (stomach acid) that needed for digestion and absorption of nutrients. Glycine also helps regulate insulin and prevent hypoglycemia along with helping the body to make glutathione, which is crucial for helping to remove excess estrogen.

With the high levels of chronic stress we suffer in today’s society, our body requires MORE minerals and amino acids, which can be found in high quality gelatin. Certain experts believe that gelatin may help rejuvenate the renal organs (kidney, adrenals, bladder) which help us deal with stress and cortisol.

Collagen powder is also a staple in my gut healing protocols when leaky gut is present, which is basically all of us.

Magnesium Chloride: Liquid magnesium on the soles of my feet at bedtime is probably the easiest thing I’ve ever done the packs the most punch. Most of us are deficient is this must needed mineral, however due to a high level of the population having absorption issues due to poor gut health we need to supplement differently, this means transdermal application (applied to the skin). What many don’t realize is that we actually need even more in the winter months so be sore to double that dose. Some like to use magnesium bis-glycinate, this is another favorite as well.

BroccoProtect: OK this one is a little on the pricey side but it’s one of my favorites. Healthy hormonal balance is key to basically everything from mood to digestion and even weight loss. Problem is that if you are not detoxing those excess estrogens you are likely recycling them back into your bloodstream to wreak havoc on your systems leading to health issues such as estrogen dominance. This particular supplement contains SULFORAPHANE, which neutralizes dangerous QUINONES (which have cancer causing properties) that are produced when our phase 2 detox pathways are not detoxing and removing excess estrogens.

You may be saying, hey this stuff comes from cruciferous veggies like broccoli, yes it does so why not eat broccoli instead? You would need to consume 500 grams of fresh broccoli or 100 grams of broccoli sprouts daily to get what you are able to from one little capsule of this supplement. I know many of you like convenience so there you have it.  This is fantastic for those suffering estrogen dominance, excess estrogens (these are two different things) and issues with phase 2 detox pathways.

Probiotics: Most of you who follow me know I prefer Natren above all others, the quality is there and it outperforms any of the others on the market. I have seen many practitioners argue that they know the brands they use are excellent and see results, but here is the thing. You can still see results form even the crappiest of probiotics, you won’t see the maximum benefit though unless you use high quality, properly packaged supplements. Ask yourself this,is your probiotic in plastic or glass? Is that package light protected by tinted glass? Is it protected from moisture in how it is packaged and sealed? Is it cold packed from point A all the way to point Z? None of this enteric coating bullshit either… and did I mention strains need to be seperated because bacteria are antagonistic by nature? If you probiotic isn’t doing all of this and then some you need to make the switch. Take them at night to give you liver extra help. Read more here

S. Boulardii: This is a beneficial yeast you may have heard recommended to travel with for travelers diarrhea, however it’s also a go to in my practice for those who suffer specific imbalances. If you have tested positive for a pathogenic bacteria known as C. Diff I recommend this over any other probiotic supplement. C. Diff causes a build up of toxins that can affect the brain leading to symptoms such as depression, anxiety, ADHD and OCD, this is due to the fact that C. Diff inhibits an enzyme known as DBH  which converts dopamine into norepinephrine, when this doesn’t happen we end up with a build up of dopamine which has psychotic effects, yup too much of this is a very bad thing (some people have variations of this gene but that is a whole other post).

Another use for this is if you present low levels of something called SIgA. Now looking at the old literature we are taught this is our first line of defense in our gut against pathogens, parasites and yeast overgrowth however…it now found that it performs the primary function of helping good gut bacteria grow, fifteen times as fast when IgA is present than when it is absent. This means it doesn’t kill off the bad guys as much as it helps the good guys.

Bitters: You can make your own or buy them, I don’t care where they come from as long as they are part of your daily regime. Taken 15 minutes before you sit down to a meal they help the digestive process, add in a little sauerkraut and you are on your way to fantastic digestive health. Digestive health is key to overall health, we are what we eat but we are also more what we digest.

Betaine + Pepsin: For this purpose I don’t recommend it to be with fenugreek but rather specifically pepsin. I won’t go into the protocol (but feel free to reach out if you want to know!) Like I said digestion is key and with chronic stress being a reality for many of us we need to pay special attention to our HCL (stomach acid). I wrote a helpful article on this a while back, check it out here.  For those suffering with or who suspect they may be suffering from h. Pylori I do not advise using this method, it would be counterintuitive due to increased risk of damage to the stomach lining.

L-Thianine: I LOVE this supplement! Most people just don’t utilize GABA as a supplement, it’s a waste of time and money. Some (10% of the population) have the ability to utilize small amounts (less than 10% of what’s consumed) within the body, however this does not cross the blood brain barrier which is where we need it to go. This is why I recommend thianine… When we look at  L-Theanine vs GABA, we need to make note that L-Theanine is much more effective at crossing the blood-brain barrier than GABA is yet it has similar properties – it’s calming and relaxing and may help to improve focus and mood. It also helps to counteract the jitters associated with coffee (caffeine) consumption.

Enzymes: I love proteolytic enzymes, proteases to be more specific, but not for what you may be thinking. I like to take those in two ways, one is prior to a meal for digestion but another is for their primary function which isn’t digestion but rather repair. Take them away from food, at night before bed and let them help your body repair all night long. This is especially fantastic for athletes and you gym rats out there. Pop a few of these on leg day and see the difference. Just Be sure you aren’t grabbing one high in amylases, those are crap enzymes used as fillers. If that is one of the top ingredients put it back, you know it’s a garbage supplement.

I could go on for days but these have been my top picks for 2017, what are some of yours?

Holly is a certified clinical nutritionist with a background in functional medicine. She is a noted expert in women’s hormones and thyroid issues as well as a member of the Trubalance Physicians Network for Bioidentical Hormone Replacement therapy. Having trained under the industries leading clinicians Holly is able to bring the most up to date treatments, tests and protocols to each individual in the way that matches not only your individual needs but also addresses our unique genetic composition. Having trained in functional genomics for the past 5 years combined with her product development knowledge Holly can sleuth out the bullshit better than most.