Fundamentals

The supplements listed here have been extremely important in my journey and have been a great foundation for the rest of my supplementation routine. They are supplements that many of us whether living with ALS or not are frequently deficient in and can be of great help to restoring and maintaining important body processes. 

Magnesium:

Magnesium intake is crucial for so much in the body, and most of us are deficient. It is a needed component for more than 300 enzymes that regulate diverse systems in the body, by the nerves to send and receive messages, for muscle integrity and function, and for overall brain health. These benefits are all fantastic but magnesium is one of the most important supplements that I take on a far more practical level. As my symptoms have progressed and my muscles deteriorated, muscle cramping and constipation became a problem and magnesium helps me with both of these issues. I personally find that I need a lot of magnesium, so rather than taking a bunch of tablets I order pure magnesium powder on Amazon and add it to a daily smoothie.

           

–Magnesium Citrate: This form of magnesium is especially effective at keeping stool consistency soft and works great for reducing cramping as well. Be cautious with dosage until you know how your body reacts as too much can give you the runs!

               

–Magnesium Threonate: I recently found this form of magnesium. It has many of the same benefits of mag citrate, but is also the only currently known form of magnesium that can cross the blood brain barrier. This is huge as we want magnesium to get into our brain to exert a protective effect. It is more expensive, but for those of us with neuro-degenerative disease it may be important for magnesium to get into our brain.

Vitamin B Complex: 

B vitamins have a wide range of benefits and are an important part of my supplementation routine. Each of the B vitamins that exists has a unique structure and different benefits for the body, but collectively B vitamins are known for improving energy, lifting mood, and reducing stress. It is important to realize that not all B vitamins are created equal however. I like the supplement below because it has the active forms of B vitamins more readily used and absorbed by the body like methylfolate, a form of folic acid that is easy for the body to use. It is highly rated on Amazon and at the time of writing this is “Amazon’s Choice” in the B vitamin section.

Advanced Orthomolecular Research AOR Advanced B Complex

 

Vitamin D3:

Vitamin D3 is the same form of vitamin D that you get from sun exposure, and although the body can create Vitamin D on its own studies are showing that most people are deficient. Vitamin D has been studied for its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and potential neuroprotective properties in ALS including the release of protective neurotrophic factors. An early study at Harvard Medical School found that ALS patients taking at least 2,000 IU daily of Vitamin D experienced a slower decline in ALSFRS symptoms over time.

Trace Minerals:

One of the things that I like to do every few months is to take a hair test for toxic metals and essential element levels in my body. This allows me to see which elements and minerals I need more of so that I can adjust my supplement routine accordingly. These tests have revealed that my trace mineral levels are consistently low. From what I have read, poor absorption of nutrients and low mineral levels may be an issue with ALS patients. In addition, if you are doing any sort of toxin or heavy metal removal this may deplete trace mineral levels as well. There are many trace mineral supplements out there but I am linking the one that I like to use. 

Thorne Research Trace Minerals Complex

 

Sources:

Magnesium:

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/

Vitamin D3:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4712627/#R62

Trace Minerals: 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9726810

Hi! My name is Ryan Farnsworth. I’m a writer and poet, inspirational speaker, and person living with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS.) I was diagnosed with this neurodegenerative disease in 2015 and since that time I have been on quite the journey.

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