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Do I Need to Add Supplements to My Diet?

Your body needs vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients to function at peak wellness. Getting all of the nutrients you need just from dietary sources can be a challenge, however. That's where dietary supplements come in.

At Alpenglow Pain & Wellness in Anchorage, Alaska, Nichelle C. Renk, MD, knows how difficult it can be to get this full range of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. That's why she recommends dietary supplements to patients who have a variety of health complaints, from depression and fatigue to aches and pains to pregnancy concerns.

Getting the nutrients you need

If symptoms like fatigue or dietary distress are disrupting your life, or if you have an underlying health condition that hinders your body’s ability to process certain nutrients, you may need supplements to stay in good health. Dr. Renk can test you for vitamin or nutrient deficiencies, and recommend the right supplements for you.

Dietary supplements are regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Dietary supplements aren't a good replacement for a healthy diet, but along with good eating habits, they can boost your overall wellness.

Supplements to know about

Dietary supplements can come from a variety of plants, minerals, and extracts. Here are some of the supplements that could take your nutritional health to the next level.


Also known as cocoa, this plant provides the basis for chocolate and other sweet treats. Raw, never heated cacao powder, nibs, or chocolate may be able to help you with chronic health conditions like heart disease and high blood pressure as well as chronic pain, due to their high levels of antioxidants called flavonoids.

These compounds appear to produce relaxation in your veins, potentially lowering your blood pressure. Cacao may also work for you as an anti-inflammatory.

Fish oil

Fish oil supplements boost your omega-3 fatty acid levels. Omega-3 fatty acids are naturally found in some vegetable oils and seeds, and they promote cellular functioning around your body.

While choosing foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids can improve your whole-body health, you may also need more from a fish oil supplement.  Fish oil can act as an anti-inflammatory and a natural antidepressant.


Bright yellow turmeric powder comes from a root, and it’s frequently used in Indian cooking. Turmeric works as a natural anti-inflammatory aid. Turmeric/curcurmin dietary supplements may be able to help you with digestive system troubles, arthritis, liver disease, and even depression.

Magnesium glycinate

Your body needs the nutrient magnesium to regulate processes around your body, including muscle and nerve function, blood sugar levels, blood pressure, and new bone growth. Magnesium naturally occurs in foods like leafy greens and nuts, and it’s also added to some fortified foods.

Most Americans but especially men over the age of 70 and all teenagers are likely to suffer from magnesium deficiencies. Over time, low magnesium can cause digestive issues like nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite, muscle cramping, as well as weakness and fatigue. With magnesium glycinate supplements, you can restore your digestive health, muscle relaxation, sleep, and overall energy levels.

Vitamin D

You need plenty of vitamin D to keep your bones and immune system strong. Vitamin D is especially important for developing children's health. In the autumn and winter, you don't get as much vitamin D from sunlight, making dietary supplements an easy way to help.

Methylated B complex

If you've been diagnosed with the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene mutation, you may not be able to absorb enough folate from your diet. This can increase your risks of cardiovascular disease, depression and anxiety, leukemia, and problems related to pregnancy.

With a methylated B complex vitamin supplement, you can provide the essential nutrients that your genetic condition causes you to lack and assist with your energy and stress levels.

To find out more about how these and other dietary supplements could support your whole-body health and wellness over the coming months, contact Dr. Renk at Alpenglow Pain & Wellness today. 

Call 907-313-2976 to schedule your initial consultation appointment. You can also send a message to Dr. Renk and the team here on our website.

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