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CR/WB Supplement Central

Member Forum >> Other Nutritional Supplements >> CR/WB Supplement Central

Bob Niland

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Posted: 12/31/2015 6:03:29 PM
Edited: 12/15/2021 12:56:11 PM (20)
CR/WB Supplement Central

CR/WB Supplement Central

Edition 0.93: 2017-05-21T1255
(DRAFT; item count: 93)

Table of Contents

  About : Presumed Diet : Diet Potency : Navigation Tip : On CR Links
General Rationale
  Why are supplements even needed?
Supplement Admonishments
  Dose : Regulation : : On Expirations : “Inactive” Ingredients
Core Supplements
  Iodine : Magnesium : Omega 3 DHA & EPA : Prebiotic Fiber : Probiotics : Vitamin D
Extended Supplements
  CoQ10 : Folate : Iron : Potassium : Sodium : Vitamin B12 : Vitamin K1 : Vitamin K2 : Zinc
Conditional Supplements
  Aloe Vera Gel : L-Arginine : Betaine HCL : Bile Acids : Biotin : Creatine : DHEA : Estrogen : Glutamine : Lutein : Melatonin : Niacin : Progesterone : Red Yeast Rice : Rhodiola : Strontium : Testosterone : Tryptophan : Vinegar (Apple Cider) : Zeaxanthin
Cautionary Supplements
  Aspirin : Calcium : Multi-Vitamins : Omega 6 : Vanadium
Miscellaneous Supplements
  Aged Garlic Extract : Alpha Lipoic Acid : Astaxanthin : Benfotiamine : Berberine : Bitter Melon : Boron : Boswellia : Caffeine : Carnosine : Choline : Chromium : Cinnamon : Citrulline : Chondroitin : Copper : Curcumin : Exogenous Ketones : Ginseng : Glucosamine : Glutathione : Grape Seed Extract : Hyaluronic acid : Lycopene : Lysine : Manganese : Methionine : MSM : Molybdenum : NAC : Nattokinase : Omega 3 ALA : Omega 9 : Pantethine : Pantothenic Acid : Piperine : Pregnenolone : Pycnogenol® : Quercetin : Riboflavin : Resveratrol : Rutin : SAMe : Selenium : Silymarin : Sulfur : Taurine : Thiamine : Vitamin A : Vitamin B6 : Vitamin C : Vitamin E : White Bean Extract


This article is intended to be a periodically maintained all-in-one-place directory of Wheat Belly (WB) and Cureality (CR) insight on supplements, a very few medications, as well as touch on other supplements frequently asked about. This article is unsponsored, and is not an official WB/CR document (it began as part of an annual review of my family’s supplements, and the narratives may reflect my personal view in many cases). Any mention-of / links-to specific products or brands are informational only, and no endorsement is implied unless specifically stated.

This directory is not authoritative. Its goal is to provide a clue, within the context of the CR/WB approaches, to whether or not you might want to consider adding an item to your regimen, and links to resources to support a decision. It is not a substitute for, and often differs from widely available consensus references on supplements. It won’t be a full clone of content in Wheat Belly Total Health (WBTH) or Cureality documents. At each item topic, the heading name is a link to a general reference on that substance.

The present article is primarily concerned with Wheat Belly / Cureality implications, with a focus on general diet, and due to the Track Your Plaque heritage on this site, cardiovascular considerations. The focus may be expected to follow any strategic directions for the site. I’m following Dr. Davis’ lead on this, and he has said:
While I love the world of nutritional supplements, I also regard most of them as fluff with relatively trivial effects. I also believe that using supplements like drugs also yields unanticipated effects over time that may not be so desirable. So there is a greater burden of proof required when something foreign to the human adaptive experience is purported to provide some benefit.

Many of the entries here are (placeholder), terse comments, or links to other articles. They will only be locally populated with data and commentary when I become aware of material WB/CR-specific insight for them. CR members are invited to use PM feature to make comments, or comment in any “(CR Forum thread)” link to an existing forum discussion about the item.

This directory presumes general compliance with a WB/CR diet, one that minimizes anti-nutrients and supplies various nutrients and micronutrients that won’t be covered here in detail. Certain diets, such as vegetarian (which I address in a separate article), may need attention to things not covered here in depth.

Your diet may well include ample quantities of many suggested micronutrients. It’s always worth investigating that contribution, but keep in mind a caveat: the nutritional breakdowns available from various reference sources may be based on legacy analyses, and not representative of modern soil conditions, crop strains, field practices and artificial ripening. Unless you are consuming heirloom organics, reference data may overstate your uptake.

Tip: for terms not in the Table of Contents or the Index, use the find feature of your browser (typically [Ctrl]+[f] on a PC) to locate items of interest.

General Rationale

Q. Why are supplements even needed when following a Cureality or Wheat Belly lifestyle?

A. Because it’s not practical to fully emulate a genetically optimized ancestral lifestyle (or even possible at all, in most places, or to those of mixed ancestry), and if we did, we could expect some authentic pre-agricultural outcomes we might prefer to avoid, such as pathological parasites, severe infections, exposure, different deficiencies and probable injuries, perhaps all resulting in generally lower life expectancy.

Even on an optimized diet of carefully selected available modern foods, we still need to contend with:

  • Getting ample DHA&EPA from seafood is now generally a modern sea water pollution exposure risk, and getting it from upland game requires consuming organs, regularly.
  • Getting probiotics the ancestral way (casually cleaned root crops, consuming animal intestines and poor general hygiene) is hazardous.
  • Crops (even organic heirloom) from depleted soils are usually deficient in key minerals.
  • Drinking water is no longer raw stream water, so is likewise mineral-deficient (being filtered), and now also has iffy amendments and treatment residues.
  • Thyroid antagonist compounds are today pervasive, and iodine is depleted (other than in seafood).
  • Few of us live where getting Vitamin D from the sun is practical.
  • We live longer than our hormone systems (including Vitamin D from the sun) are adapted to produce at full capability.

So we supplement.

Supplement Admonishments

On dose: more is rarely better, and could be harmful.

Doses discussed are for adults without contraindicating or acute conditions. Mentioned conditions are not exhaustive lists.

Understand what the nutrient or micronutrient does. Many have a U-shaped effect curve, and are ineffective at too low a dose, and wasteful, unpleasant or frankly toxic at too high a dose. WB/CR recommendations sometimes exceed official AI/EAR/RDA. Satisfy yourself that this is safe and effective. Some WB/CR dosings (such as for iodine) are imprecise, as just how much above RDA to go is unsettled.

The supplement market in the U.S. is largely unregulated, which is both a benefit and a hazard. The FDA usually rouses itself to action on supplements only in egregious cases of contamination, undeclared drugs, or when producers are being either too deceptive (about ingredients or effects) or too honest (about effects). FDA does not routinely test for potency (well, they might, but they rarely tell us about it unless it suits their political agenda).

Private organization (CL) does routinely test supplements for potency, purity, economy and other issues. It’s a subscription site, and easily worthwhile for anyone serious about supplements. Just finding out which products provide the most benefit for the money can save you the cost of a subscription. At each topic here, for the benefit of ConsumerLab subscribers, a link is provided to their current test results/advice page for each supplement (or a statement of no test). Detailed CL product advice is not repeated here, as it is updated frequently.
Note: CL’s editorial posture is based on consensus medicine. Form your own assessment of whether any particular supplement, or dose thereof, is beneficial.

Another private organization, the International Fish Oil Standards Program, offers free-to-consumers test reports specifically on fish oil. They only test member products, and members control whether their results are published. The parent organization, Nutrasource Diagnostics also operates a similar program for enzyme products.

On expiration dates, seek supplements that claim potency is assured until expiration date (perhaps with a caveat that they must be stored as directed). Skip supplements that claim potency "at time of manufacture" (other than for things indefinitely stable, like minerals). Treat the lack of any statement about potency as if “time of manufacture”. You usually won’t be able to see actual expiration dates in on-line views, but you can often see the potency claim.

One thing the FDA, CL and IFOS are not fully up to speed on are “inactive” ingredients that are no such thing, commonly fillers, excipients, binders, sweeteners, colorants, flavoring, preservatives, encapsulation, and “other inert”. You need to watch out for these on your own. When buying on the internet, rely only on resellers who serve images of the entire product package, showing both the full Supplement Facts panel, the Ingredients list and any claims about potency.

Specific ingredients to avoid are:

  • flours, commonly rice (WGA and As hazards) or wheat (routinely insist on a gluten-free claim)
  • calcium, too common in tablets
  • real sugars, simple, complex and most sugar alcohols (e.g. dextrose, maltitol, sorbitol)
  • artificial sweeteners (e.g. acesulfame potassium, aspartame, cyclamates, sucralose)
  • alternative sweeteners other than erythritol, inulin, monk fruit, stevia or xylitol
  • food coloring of any kind (unnecessary and thus suspicious)
  • emulsifiers (e.g. guar, lecithins, polysorbate 80, xantham)
  • adverse inflammatory oils (Omega 6 PUFAs like canola, corn, rapeseed, safflower, soybean, etc., high in linoleic acid)
  • preservatives
  • light metal and silica elements and compounds such as non-native aluminum compounds, silica, talc (magnesium silicate) and titanium dioxide

The above list is prioritized, as you may have to pick your battles. TOC | Index ]

Core Supplements

  Iodine : Magnesium : Omega 3 DHA & EPA : Prebiotic Fiber : Probiotics : Vitamin D

Most people need these unless they are unusually situated or have well-tuned diets, such as a deliberate ancestral diet. These nutrients and micronutrients are needed by anyone, on any diet, and modern diets rarely provide them in sufficient amounts.

Iodine Iodine supplementation might not be necessary for those consuming ample seafood, or foods grown in non-depleted coastal soils, and also avoiding non-native halogens that compete with iodine at the thyroid. Therefore, the majority of moderns need to supplement.
Aliases or Related I, iodide
Roles crucial for proper thyroid function, which has moderate to severe systemic effects in untreated hypothyroid (pandemic) or hyperthyroid (rare)
Preferred Forms kelp, potassium iodide, iodide drops
Cautions and Contraindications It is always worthwhile to get a meaningful thyroid assessment (fT3, fT4, rT3, TA, and sure, TSH) before undertaking optimal iodine supplementation. Absent such testing (which can be hard to get from many MD’s), do not exceed RDA without some confidence that there is no concerning pathology present, including but not limited to Grave’s Disease, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, thyroid cancer and hyperthyroid generally.
Other Interactions Personal opinion: Minimize your exposure to non-native halogen compounds: bromine, chlorine and fluorine (astatine exposure is pretty unlikely). Non-native means not-naturally-occurring, essentially something your ancestors would never have been exposed to. Humans, of course, require ample chlorine as salt (sodium chloride, NaCl), and are adapted to trace amounts of the other halogens as naturally occuring compounds. What we aren’t adapted to are novel compounds, and excess amounts of native Na compounds other than NaCl. Things to avoid might extend to chemicals in municipal drinking water and toothpaste.
Dose/Titer US RDA for non-lactating adults is 150 mcg/day. Dr. Davis suggests 500 to 1000 mcg per day, with further discussion in WBTH about cultures where intake is substantially higher. Make any increase slowly. Note that iodine supplementation alone may be insufficient to rectify many instances of hypothyroid. See WBTH or the Cureality Thyroid Track for advice on how to obtain effective thyroid hormone treatment. Iodine supplementation dose is apt to be substantially different after total thyroidectomy, or if using T3+T4 replacement therapy such as Armour, and is beyond the scope of this directory.
Timing Dr. Davis: “timing of iodine supplementation, whether as potassium iodide drops or kelp tablets, also does not matter.
Product Guidance Kelp capsules tend to be the most economical way to obtain iodine in a shelf-stable form. Look for generous expiration dates. Seek North Atlantic sourcing if you’re worried about Fukushima radiation. Nori and other forms of seaweed provide unreliable iodine dosing. Iodide-fortified table salt is also unreliable. Never consume topical (tincture of) iodine, as the dose is many orders of magnitude too high, and is directly toxic. ConsumerLab has not tested iodine supplements, other than very infrequent tests of radio-protective potassium iodide.
References CR: Thyroid Health Track » Improve Thyroid Health
WBB: Thyroid Tune-up: Update
WBTH: (extensive coverage throughout the book)
Discussion (placeholder) TOC | Index ]
Magnesium Mg supplementation might not be necessary for people consuming ample local foods in locales where the soils are not depleted of Mg. Therefore, the majority of moderns need to supplement.
Aliases or Related Mg, magnesia
Roles blood sugar control, bone density, cardiovascular health (including blood pressure and minimizing arrhythmias), neuromuscular health (minimizing cramps in particular), gut motility
Preferred Forms Seek magnesium malate, magnesium bicarbonate (aka magnesium water, made with milk of magnesia). The glycinate form might be better tolerated if high doses are desired. The magnesium stearate form found in many tablets is basically for manufacturing convenience and is not well absorbed.
Cautions and Contraindications Impaired kidney function requires monitoring of Mg serum levels.
Other Interactions Do not take with Iron
Dose/Titer Wheat Belly recommends 400 to 500 mg per day. That’s the elemental Mg, which corresponds to 2667 to 3333 mg malate. Adult RDA is 400 mg in most locales, with a recommendation of no more than 350 mg at one time.
Timing Split across the day in 2 or 3 doses to avoid undesired motility effects. Some sources suggest biasing dose toward evening to enhance sleep.
Product Guidance ConsumerLab has tested magnesium supplements
A Cureality forum user recommends NutraPure (ReachForLife) “Nature’s Life” Mg Malate 1300mg (250ct product on Amazon).
References CR Program Guide: multiple sections (PDF)
CR Tracks » Bone Health » Bone Health Minerals
WBB: Mind Your Minerals
WBTH extensive: see book Index
(Cureality Forum thread)
The jury is still out on magnesium-L-threonate, awaiting the results of (hopefully unconfounded) human trials. TOC | Index ]
Omega 3 DHA and EPA DHA & EPA supplementation might not be necessary for people consuming ample seafoods, or wild or small game snout-to-tail. For reference, 3 small cans of sardines per day provides about 3 grams of DHA+EPA per day. Therefore, the majority of moderns need to supplement.
Aliases or Related fish oil, n3, ω3 fatty acids, docosahexaenoic acid, eicosapentaenoic acid
Roles crucial for cardiovascular and neurological health
Preferred Forms High quality fish oil, triglyceride form (preferred) or ethyl ester (may be less well absorbed) in capsules or refrigerated bottled liquid. Vegetarians may source from marine algae. Do not use Krill oil (economic issue). Do not use cod liver oil (excess Vitamin A and mercury exposure issues). Watch out for excess amounts of other micronutrients in combination products. Avoid prescription fish oil unless you have no other way to afford it, and even then, the co-pay may exceed the price of a quality OTC product.
Cautions and Contraindications Dose:
Dose may need to be lowered with certain lipidemias, or raised if dealing with certain ailments, such as Lp(a). Doses below 2 grams (2,000 mg) per day may be below a therapeutic threshold. Taking less is probably a waste of money, but such low doses sure are popular in so-called nutrition studies.
Other Interactions (placeholder)
Dose/Titer 3,000 to 3,600 mg/day (of DHA+EPA, not just total fish oil) on typical diets, of which at least 1,000 mg is DHA
Timing Split dose across two or more meals, typically morning and evening. Take during or just before meal. Avoid taking on empty stomach.
Product Guidance Endorsements:
Various Ascenta Sea and Nordic Naturals products. Sam’s Club Member’s Mark Fish Oil (Note: Sam’s SKU 21311 also contains 2,000 IU of Vitamin D3), which may not be the ideal amount of D3 if that’s your sole source of 3+ grams ω3). ConsumerLab has tested Omega 3 supplements.
References CR Program Guide pages 31, 32 (PDF pages 41, 42)
CR Tracks » Cureality Diet » Diet Principle #3
WBTH: (pages 177-179)
Discussion DHA&EPA supplementation also avoids the growing problems of mercury and microplastic ocean contamination. TOC | Index ]
Prebiotic Fiber Those consuming ample ancestral tubers and non-starchy vegetables might be getting all the prebiotic fiber they need. The majority of moderns, however, need to deliberately attend to this requirement.
Aliases or Related soluble fiber, resistant starch
This is what your gut flora (the probiotics) eat.
Roles Not yet completely tallied, but already include: blood glucose control, blood pressure control, immune system support, intestinal health (including gut wall integrity), lipid control, mood and neurological function generally, SCFA production and sleep optimization
Preferred Forms Typically, a course of quality probiotic is useful when starting a prebiotic regimen. Use multiple prebiotic products, including but not limited to: acacia, green banana (whole, raw), IMO (isomalto-oligosaccharides), GOS (galacto-oligosaccharides), inulin (chicory root), konjac, legumes (see WBB GOS article), plantain (raw), PGX (commercial product), potatos (raw), potato starch (raw), and Prebiotin (commercial product)
Cautions and Contraindications Ramp up dose slowly, and stop if serious gastro-intestinal issues develop. Some pre-existing dysbiosis conditions must be separately addressed before adopting a daily prebiotic routine. Do not cook starches (above 135°F/57°C), as it converts the "resistant" carbohydrates to available carbs. Re-cooling cooked starch may be expect to revert only a fraction of the available carbs (perhaps less than 15%) to the resistant form.
Other Interactions None known.
Dose/Titer Start with 5 grams per day, and gradually increase to approximately 20 grams. Intestinal distress may arise at materially higher doses.
Timing Dr. Davis: “timing does not seem to matter
Product Guidance Do not use raw banana flour or raw plantain flour until further notice (net carbs are too high, apparently due to mechanical heating during processing). ConsumerLab has not tested prebiotic fiber supplements.
References CR Program Guide pages 181-189 (PDF pages 191-199)
CR Tracks » Topic » Bowel Flora