4 supplements a day keep aging at bay.

Despite conflicting advice about longevity—from whole-food diets to centenarians’ best-kept secrets like drinking one glass of wine a day—an expert who has dedicated his career to studying aging has revealed the supplements he recommends.

In addition to following a Blue Zones-style plant-based diet, Dr. Michael Greger, who specializes in nutrition, told Business Insider that he takes a mix of supplements containing vitamin D, vitamin B12, and more.

He takes a vitamin D supplement every day and says it helps with the absorption of calcium and phosphorus, which is vital for strong bones and teeth. It has also been linked to a lower risk of developing cancer in one study.

These are the vitamins that promote better health, according to an expert.  Katelin – stock.adobe.com

These are the vitamins that promote better health, according to an expert. Katelin – stock.adobe.com

While the sun and certain foods provide vitamin D, data from 2022 revealed that just under half of Americans get the recommended amount of 600 international units (IU) per day.

A recent report investigated how much vitamin D adults really need, and the study authors concluded that it could be up to 10 times more than the current recommendation. The maximum recommended amount, however, is 4,000 IU.

In addition to following a Blue Zones-style plant-based diet, Dr. Michael Greger, who specializes in nutrition, told Business Insider that he takes a mix of supplements containing vitamin D, vitamin B12, and more.  nutritional information

In addition to following a Blue Zones-style plant-based diet, Dr. Michael Greger, who specializes in nutrition, told Business Insider that he takes a mix of supplements containing vitamin D, vitamin B12, and more. nutritional information

Vitamin B12, vitamin D, algae-based DHA and a blend of minerals with other health benefits are a daily necessity.  Getty Images/iStockphoto

Vitamin B12, vitamin D, algae-based DHA and a blend of minerals with other health benefits are a daily necessity. Getty Images/iStockphoto

Greger said he takes 2,000 IU of vitamin D3, since he doesn’t get enough of the vitamin through diet and sun alone.

Vitamin B12, which helps in nerve function, red blood cell formation and DNA production, is also a vital nutrient in the diet, but like vitamin D, it is found primarily in animal byproducts, which represents a deficiency risk for foods of plant origin. people.

While the recommended daily intake is 2.4 mcg, according to Healthline, the body absorbs a small percentage of vitamin B12 in a supplement.

“People who follow a plant-based diet should ensure a regular, reliable source of vitamin B12 throughout their lives,” advised Greger, who takes 2,000 micrograms each week.

Greger also consumes algae-based DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid, which is important for brain function. If you are deficient in DHA, you may develop skin and eye irritation, hair changes, joint stiffness, and an increased risk of depression.

Lastly, Greger explained that he wraps ground turmeric, black cumin, ground ginger, and gooseberry powder in an edible film as a homemade supplement that together has an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immune-boosting effect.

“These are whole foods. They’re not really supplements,” he told Insider. “You put the powders that taste horrible, you wrap it like a wonton, you dip it in water and then you swallow this little bag.”

Greger said he only buys high-quality supplements with USP verification.  forenna – stock.adobe.com

Greger said he only buys high-quality supplements with USP verification. forenna – stock.adobe.com

But not all nutrients are created equal, Greger cautioned, since the Food and Drug Administration doesn’t regulate supplements the same way it does other medications. According to the FDA, manufacturers and distributors are responsible for “evaluating the safety” of the product before it hits shelves, meaning they do not require FDA approval before being sold like medications do.

Previous studies have shown higher-than-advertised levels of melatonin in sleep aid supplements, raising concerns about labeling accuracy. For this reason, Greger is skeptical of supplement manufacturers.

“They’re just not concerned about purity because there’s really no incentive,” said Greger, who only purchases dietary supplements verified by the United States Pharmacopeia (USP), which guarantees high-quality products.

“The only thing they want is to make something very cheap so they can sell it. That’s why I’m worried about pollutants.”

By Sam