Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, January 14, 2012
Flu Vaccine: No Good Evidence
by Damien Downing, M.D.
(OMNS, Jan 14, 2012) Is it wise to have the flu vaccine, or Tamiflu, or would you get better protection just from taking vitamin D? Having a vaccine should be a matter of personal choice; we don’t think that government or insurance companies or medical societies should be telling you what to do. If you’re bothering to read this then you’re clearly smart enough to make your own decisions about your own health. While you are deciding, here is a second opinion.
So What About Vaccines?
Read More »
I received this question via email about nursing with protein and supplement needs. I thought I’d share my answer with everyone…
I would like to say I really enjoy your blog! I am very interested in the raw food diet. I have made a few changes over the last 2-3 weeks to eat more raw food. About 3 weeks ago I bought a juicer and my husband and I juice everyday…so much fun. I started making almond milk this past week and love it with my protein powder every morning instead of cow’s milk.
I am not vegan or vegetarian, which is slowly changing one day at a time but in reality I don’t really have that much animal products, and if I do its from organc-grassfed-sustainable-local farms. I have been eating organic food for the last 2 years. My question is, I am nursing my 3 month old little girl and of course need protein, where do I get protein if I consume less if any animal products? Also, I do supplement with ‘juice plus’ capsules and vitamin D everyday. Are there other vitamins, minerals or supplements I need to take?
I still take my prenatal newchapter pills. Thank you so much in advance. Keep up the great work!
Thanks for following my blog, Stephanie, and for taking the time to ask this great question! And, congrats on eating healthier for you and your family. :) That’s awesome!
Regarding protein, what I’ve read suggests lactating moms should get somewhere between 50-65g of protein per day. Honestly, I don’t usually count my grams but I’m confident that most days I accomplish that amount, and on a few days I might be light, but that’s okay to me – I don’t stress about it. As a general rule, for most adults, protein needs do not need to be high. It’s a common misconception. However, when it comes to pregnancy and breastfeeding, I tend to support getting a little extra protein because in both situations my body is doing extra work and I’m feeding both my baby and myself. It makes sense to me to increase my protein levels.
So, where do I get it?
Well, on days when I have some cooked vegan, organic food, I’m getting higher protein levels from things like oats, lentils, black beans, tofu, tempeh, whole grains, etc. For the raw foods I eat, I get protein from leafy greens, green juice, green smoothies, fruit, nut (or seed) milk, nut (or seed) butter, and nuts (or seeds). But… what really helps ensure I get higher amounts of protein while breastfeeding (or if I were pregnant) would be hemp seeds, hemp protein powder, and Sun Warrior protein powder (chocolate is my favorite flavor but if you’re avoiding chocolate they offer “natural” and “vanilla.” I can drink a quick shake made with water and 2 scoops of Sun Warrior’s protein powder and have half of my day’s protein needs satisfied. I also sometimes take supplements like chlorella, wheat grass tablets, and green powders. These are concentrated sources of protein, even if a small amount, they pack a punch.
Regarding supplements.. According to The Vitamin D Solution (a book I highly recommend! I plan to write a review on it soon), a breastfeeding mom can take 4000-6000 IUs of vitamin D (but this is still being studied), even more (it’s important to ensure there is enough in breastmilk). You might want to get your levels tested and remember that I’m not a doctor so I’m not suggesting how much someone should take, but want to give you a data point based on the book I read. Personally, I take Deva’s Vitamin D2 and I usually end up with 3000-6000 IUs a day depending on other supplements I’m taking which might include it) – UPDATE – Dr. Holick’s overall recommendation is around 2000 IU a day. If you’re not consuming animal products be sure to get a Vitamin B12 supplement – very important (and make sure it’s a sublingual and the methylcobalamin variety. This is the one I take). Also, get your omegas. I take a daily vegan DHA supplement – there are a few good brands out there (NuTru, Deva, and Udos).
I received the following on one of my posts about pregnancy but thought I’d also include the information here.
I’m newly preggo for the second time (first time being 4 years ago). My diet and knowledge have changed a lot since. I’ve been researching your blog and have a couple of questions. First what prenatal vit did you end up liking the best? Why did you stop taking vitamineral green and fruits powders while you were pregnant? And, just out of curiosity, why do you use both hemp powder AND seeds in your smoothies and not flax?
Love your blog, you rock.
Here is my response:
Congrats on your pregnancy.
You ask great questions….
1) I was partial to Vitamin Code’s prenatal in spite of the controversial vitamin D3 being/not being vegan, especially for people who couldn’t get enough vitamin D from sun exposure due to where they live. However, I have since learned that vitamin D2 (vegan) is just as effective as vitamin D3, so supplementing with extra vitamin D2 and taking a truly vegan prenatal is an option. The high amount of vitamin D in Vitamin Code is great - they are way ahead of the curve with respect to this. I don’t know of any other prenatals doing that and it’s so important while pregnant. I also like that Vitamin Code uses capsules instead of tablets…. usually means less processing. However, New Chapter is still great. They’ve been around a while and have many happy customers. :)
2) I stopped Vitamineral Green and Fruits of Earth while pregnant because of ingredients that could be questionable during pregnancy. I know of women who took VG during pregnancy, but I opted not to. You could consider their other product Greener Grasses though – good stuff! I’m taking it now while breastfeeding. (I think they might’ve changed their VG formula since then because I don’t see one of the questionable ingredients in there. There is parsley juice in it though, and parsley is known for affecting breastmilk, so it still might be better to go with Greener Grasses. If you decide to go with VG, you might want to double check with your midwife or physician.)
3) Hemp has a more ideal ratio of omegas than flax (read more about this here). I also like the higher protein in it which is why sometimes I used both hemp powder and hemp seeds.
Thanks for reading,