There seems to be a pill for everything these days. Some claim to help with that nasty cough or runny nose, others help you sleep and many others help with the many serious health issues people suffer from these days. There is that whole other class of pills though, they take up two or three aisles at most stores. They are organised alphabetically; from A to Zinc.

Supplements have flooded the market over the last few years. There are literally hundreds of them with more arriving each day. It’s fascinating going down these aisles, picking up a bottle just to see what these pills can do for you. Surely a steady diet of these will make any normal man into a superman. And that’s where my story starts…

My daily supplement routine consists of the following:

  • Adult Men’s Daily Multi-Vitamin. This pill has just about everything jammed into a nice small package for the maintenance of good health. Everyone takes these things because we don’t have a healthy balanced diet. I take one so I can eat anything I want.
  • Vitamin D, promotes bone and dental health. A doctor friend of mine suggested that someone my age should be taking these daily, they’re cheap, why not. I’m pretty sure my fingernails and hair are growing faster, a side effect. I still have to brush my teeth and I haven’t noticed any big difference in my bones.
  • Iron, for healthy hemoglobin. My doctor noticed my iron stores were very low and recommended a daily dose. Not the cheap stuff though, that can bother your belly. I had to haggle with the pharmacist for these. The good ones were $90 for 90. I got her down to $75 and she threw in a free parking pass.
  • Canadian Ginseng, helps promote a healthy immune system. Did you know this is one of Canada’s oldest exports? See more of that story below.
  • Omega 3 Fish Oil, for a healthy heart. One of my favourites. I like the ones that cause the fish burps, you really know something is going on with those.

I take these supplements daily. I even have a miniature bento box for my pills when travelling. Do they work? I have no idea, it could be a psychological thing for me. Like my other routines, I tend to stick to them until I have good reason not to. I haven’t had any negative effects, except for longer nails. I can tell you that I rarely get colds and when I do, they only last a few days. Basically, I’m keeping the common cold at bay for a couple bucks a day. But all that could easily be attributed to my exercise regime.

Some interesting facts on American ginseng found on this site:

American ginseng is one of America’s oldest exports. Shortly after being “discovered” near Montreal in 1716 by a Jesuit missionary who had heard of the Asian species and the value placed upon it, a booming export business developed which was primarily facilitated by French, English and later American fur traders. John Jacob Astor’s financial empire was built upon American ginseng and Daniel Boone is reported to have exported more than 50 tons of wild American ginseng during his lifetime.

I would encourage you to visit your local supermarket or big box store and walk down the supplement aisle. You’ll need a magnifying glass to read the micro-print, a chair and your imagination. One of these bottles will cure whatever ails you, even if it’s all in your head. Remember, believing is half the battle (in the original version of this post I wrote ‘believing is half the bottle’ by mistake).


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