What vitamins should smokers take? And what are the best vitamins for ex smokers? Let's look at the best vitamins for smokers to take before and after they quit. A smoker's health is a delicate one. You're loading your body with chemicals and carcinogens known to cause all sorts of fun stuff later in life. You're also adding to the cost of health care if you're a smoker.
What sort of effective vitamins and supplements should you take if you're a smoker?
I have a book at home called, "The Prescription For Nutritional Healing." It's sold over 8 million copies and gone through 5 editions. Phyllis A Balch put it together. She is Certified Nutritional Consultant with over 25 years in the field of natural health and wellness. Needless to say, she knows what she's talking about!
This book covers basically everything you'd need to know about health, wellness, vitamins, supplements, and natural health. In here is a section on smoking dependency.
We're going to look at what the book says is essential and very important for the current and non-smoker alike to be taking along the road to not smoking anymore.
CoQ10 or Coenzyme Q-10 is a oil-soluble and is vitamin like. Meaning it is used by an organism for a vital function. CoQ10 has it's highest presence in the heart, liver and kidney. CoQ10 helps with aerobic cellular respiration and ATP production, which is 95% of how the body creates energy.
CoQ10 also aids in blood flow and oxygen to the brain. It protects heart tissue, and can act as an antioxident to help protect cells and... wait for it... LUNG TISSUE!
Clearly, we don't need to discuss how smoking puts a strain on the lungs and heart, you all know that by now.
CoQ10 has been used in the treatment of heart disease, migraine headaches, cancer, and lowering high blood pressure.
The book calls for 200 mg twice a day. Me personally, I take it right before bed. Body heals and rejuvenates at night so I want to make sure it's well supplied to do the job! Definitely worth a try.
Now, if you prefer getting your CoQ10 from whole food sources, look to olive oil, sesame seeds, avocado and parsley. There are also high concentrations in chicken, beef, fish and pork.
Finally, the book also suggest taking your CoQ10 with Coenzyme-A from Coenzyme-A Technologies. Coenzyme-A works together with CoQ10 to help the body boot out toxic substances. Not a bad combo considering all the toxic substances your inhaling...
American Biologics - Oxy-5000 Forte
This powerful antioxidant blend will help beat down the free radicals produced in the smoke!
Oxy-5000's top 3 ingredients are:
- Catalase 10,000 IU - an enzyme that proceses hydrogen peroxide into oxygen the body.
- Superoxide dismutase 5,000 U - another enzyme that revitalizes cells and reduces the rate of cell destruction.
- Reduced L-Glutathione 10 mg - a very POTENT antioxidant that protects not only on a cellular level but the very tissue of the arteries, brain, heart, and wait for it... lungs!
Other ingredients are N-Acetyl cysteine 10 mg, L-cysteine 10 mg, Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 5 mg, Vitamin E (Natural) 5 IU, Thioproline 1,000 mcg, Folic acid 60 mcg, and Selenium (from 25 mcg sodium selenite) 11 mcg
Together this antioxidant cocktail will help get you ship shape again and give your body the nutrients it needs to clean you up from the inside out after years of smoking.
Pycnogenol or Grape Seed Extract
Both of these will help with protecting and repairing the lungs! Both also help with blood flow and have both been shown to have anti-cancer properties.
To note, Pycnogenol and Grape Seed Extract are both phytochemicals known as flavonoids. The long hard to pronounce term actually is Oligomeric Proanthocyanidins. Let's go with OPCs for short!
They can strengthen and help repair connective tissue, including the cardiovascular system as well as supporting over all immunity and aiding in slowing the aging process.
Smoking, as you know, speeds that deal up!
Vitamin B Complex
A good B-Complex will help your body in the production of energy and to make red blood cells. Not a bad start right?
B complex supplements can also help out with a few specific health conditions, such as anxiety, depression and fatigue.
Taking a B complex can also help with heart disease.
Another thing to consider is that taking a B complex can help increase your energy levels, boost the mood, enhance your memory, and stimulate your immune system.
Clearly, if you've goon a day or two without a cigarette, you'll understand the need for a B-complex as well as arming your body with the nutrients to repair itself!
For a good breakdown of the B Vitamins and what they do, check out Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B_vitamins
Vitamin C with Bioflavonoids
Hurray for Vitamin C! Two things to think with here!
Fist, Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that protects against cellular damage.
Secondly, smoking drastically reduces vitamin C in the body.
On a personal note and from experience, after I got off the smokey treats, my quarterly head cold went away. Seriously, I used to get a cold 4 times a year when I smoked. Since stopping [knock on wood] I usually only get sick once a year, sometimes less.
Also, I take 2000mg of Vitamin C no matter what and any time I feel my immune system compromised, like flying to Vegas for a 48 hour stint, I pop about 5000 a day plus all the places it shows up naturally in the diet!
Vitamin E is a very important and powerful antioxidant. Vitamin E can help protect your cells and your organs from the damage caused by cigarette smoke.
Vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin and can blast away at those free radicals.
If you're going to supplement with is, take the d-alpha-tocopherol form of it as it is biologically active version.
If you get it from whole foods, wheat germ, oils and nuts are all high in vitamin E.
For this deal, you want Vitamin A and not beta-carotene.
Beta-carotene has been shown to increase the risk of dying in smokers.
Well, that's important! Best place to get the good stuff is Cod Liver Oil. The antioxidants found in Vitamin A help in the healing if mucus membranes. Clearly something that gets beat up on when you smoke. Vitamin A also good when you got a respiratory infection.
This is obvious, but it's good for the lungs!
Rounding this off is Zinc. A personal favorite mineral of mine! Zinc is good for your immune system and balancing the endocrine system.
Zinc can not only improve the immune system, but speed healing, act as an antioxidant, and there is some talk about town as zinc having anti cancer properties.
As a smoker/ex-smoker, the best zinc is a lozenge form. So if you're in the process of not smoking anymore and need to put something in your mouth, pop a lozenge or two throughout the day.
Keep in mind, you can get too much zinc, so don't over do it!
What did you think? Learn anything new? Take the poll over here and/or leave a comment below! Always appreciate feedback!