Ditch your Multivitamin?

Micronutrients from Supplements:

Ok, so we first covered why you want to get key Micronutrients (zap hunger between meals, ditch nutritional deficiencies, be able to burn fat, feel energized)...

As much as possible from real FOOD.

And The Perfect Health Diet recommends a fabulous way of planning some key daily/weekly "supplemental foods" (and some alternative ideas)...to get most of the Micronutrients that you need. Please see Module 5A, to see these highly recommended Protein Daily/Weekly Micronutrient-rich foods.

So additionally, when we're talking Micronutrients--the Drs. Jaminet also recommend some strategic supplements for "nutritional insurance"...because the mineral content from water & soil has become depleted, and it can be quite challenging to get all of the micronutrients that we NEED, from food alone…

That our bodies still expect (they haven't evolved yet to adapt to function optimally without them).

And, sometimes it's just easier & more convenient to take a few "supplements" to make sure you're indeed getting soil- & water-depleted Micronutrients.

So let's talk powders & pills (supplements) for a moment...And the Jaminets present one of the most fascinating (to me) ideas in their book, that:


You want to ditch your Multivitamin.

They detail that there are two main reasons WHY multi-vitamins are not doing anyone much good (and quite possibly a lot of bad).

First: some micronutrients are quite large—and the recommended daily dose of them will NOT fit into a standard multi-vitamin-size pill!

For example, Magnesium is a really big micronutrient that's too bulky to fit inside a multivitamin pill.

Second: multivitamins give you too big of a dose of many micronutrients on a daily basis—and not only can some of them be TOXIC in large doses (like B6)--also, the daily cascade of these micronutrients begin to feed gut bacteria...

And unfortunately, not the “good” gut bacteria either!

The Drs. Jaminet assert that this constant flow of daily micronutrients can also build biofilms (iron comes to mind here!), where pathogens can hide in and behind, making having a good, balanced gut flora population even more difficult.

Also, it's just powerful to take as few supplements as you can (especially when it comes to synthetic forms of vitamins & minerals)...as supplements are often not 3rd party tested...they can have weird preservatives and mystery filler ingredients...and they can prove to be more harmful than helpful, when it comes to your overall health & energy.


multivitamins build biofilm and feed bad gut bacteria


So no to over-feeding bad bacteria & building bio-films with a constant flow of a "daily multivitamin" micronutrients…or missing out on getting enough of the “bulky” needed micronutrients like Vitamin D and magnesium!

Let’s get strategic, instead! 🙂


So if the Daily Multivitamin is out…what’s IN then?

And again—when you’re going for eating the Daily & Weekly Protein Supplemental Foods (see Module 6)—you’ll be getting lots of micronutrients (while getting the macronutrients you need) at the same time.

Most people will want to supplement with soil- & water-depleted micronutrients though,  because even with strategic weekly meal planning, it can be hard to get everything you need…

And the depletion of minerals in our soils (and water) has led to the need for additional supplements beyond whole foods.

The Drs. Jaminet share that it’s a chain-depletion that gets passed on to us from plants grown in over-farmed soil or when animals eat plants that grew in over-farmed soil…plus the *water* we had access to as Paleo people contained way more minerals like calcium & lithium in it…than the water we have access to now.


Other supplements you want to ditch too:

Besides getting rid of your daily Multivitamin—the Drs. Jaminet also recommend getting rid of Fish Oil pills and synthetic calcium supplements (although additional food-based supplemental calcium is recommended by them if you're lacking/pregnant, more deets below).

With fish oil pills, the fragile Omega-3 fish oils can become rancid in the pills…and having whole fish instead--that’s been frozen after being caught--preserves this fragile & needed Omega-3 content way, way more reliably.

They recommend if you can’t get in around/up-to 1 pound of salmon or cold-water oily fish/shellfish a week—to use refrigerated fish oil instead of pills, as this has a better chance of having non-rancid omega-3’s.

With calcium supplements, there's multiple research studies that confirm a link between calcium supplements and heart attacks. Apparently the supplemental calcium gets delivered to the wrong place in your body (your heart) and is aggravated by Vitamin D & K2 deficiencies—not good!

The solution is to get your Calcium from several places: edible bones, dairy, leafy greens, a pasture-raised bone meal supplement…or by drinking 1 - 2 liters a day of Mineral Water

Also, Dr. Chris Masterjohn does recommend supplementing with pasture-raised Bone Meal if you need/have to supplement calcium..Plus adding in Vitamin K as well! Vitamin K is a seriously under-appreciated vitamin, that essentially directs calcium to *usable* places in your body…instead of your heart and arteries. So fascinating!! (More…below)

So let's talk a few key Strategic Supplements you can take...

And I'll share how I recommend putting this into action below.


Give your body what it needs to THRIVE

And again, this idea of Burning Fat & building muscle & having fabulous energy…is that you want to give your body all of the NUTRIENTS (both Macro & Micro) that it needs…so that you don’t:

A> Overeat, looking for these missing nutrients and

B> allow your body to function optimally, burn fat…and not be limping along with missing ingredients we need to THRIVE (we are made to THRIVE and age well :))

But truly, you can’t “supplement” your way to good health:

So these missing soil- & water-depleted micronutrients are so important…however, they're just one piece of the energy puzzle.

Because here's the thing--it's NOT about "supplementing" your way to health (as some supplement companies would like you to believe)...

Instead, it's fundamentally about two things:

--Getting rid of foods that cause a toxic or inflammatory response in your body...

--while eating nourishing foods to get a "perfect" dose (based on aaaaall the math I've been sharing with you) of each Macro & Micro-nutrient instead.

So with that in mind, let's look at some key ways, in addition to those DAILY & WEEKLY PROTEIN FOODS (and alt ideas)...to use supplements strategically.


How to Supplement (additional key Micros)

Ok, so in addition to the DAILY/WEEKLY PROTEIN SUPPLEMENTAL FOODS you want to be sure you're "getting in" to get these crucial vitamins/minerals/micronutrients...and some alternate ideas if you don't want to eat them. 🙂

Here are a few additional Supplements to consider:

This bonus module will cover how to add (soil & water-depleted) supplements into the mix to cover all of your bases & be nourished.

Also--as a side note: I want to share that some of these links are Amazon affiliate links--thanks for supporting my blog if you purchase through these links. I did not choose any of these products based on their affiliate programs--they are my best picks that I use myself (and am recommending based on their content/quality). Ok--with that said... 🙂

It’s easy to be malnourished

All right--so even though you can get all the micronutrients you need from really fresh, well-farmed food to do that. Adding in some key supplements to the mix just makes life easier.

And when it comes to “getting in” your Micronutrients—the authors of The Perfect Health Diet, Drs. Paul & Shou-Chin Jaminet point out that--it is indeed easy to be malnourished. Dr. Paul Jaminet writes about a study that analyzed 4 popular diets: the South Beach Diet, the Atkins for Life Diet, the DASH diet, and the Best Life Diet.

And according to this study, these diets averaged in these common deficiencies:

58% of the RDA for pantothenic acid (vitamin B5).

29% of the RDA for biotin.

34% of the RDA for vitamin E.

56% of the RDA for choline.

9% of the RDA for chromium.

34% of the RDA for iodine.

73% of the RDA for potassium.

Dr. Paul Jaminet writes:

"It’s important to take some care, therefore, to eat a nourishing diet.  Especially nourishing foods include seaweed, green leafy vegetables, organ meats including liver, and seafoods.

Cooking style is also important:  Cooking should be done in a way that doesn’t throw away drippings from foods, but rather preserves them as a sauce or soup.  Also, very high cooking temperatures which can destroy or denature nutrients should be avoided. 

Even with these steps, supplementation is probably necessary for optimal health."


A simple supplement approach to take could generally be:

Vitamin D from food, sunshine & supplements

Vitamin K (100 or 200 mcg daily)

Magnesium (300 mg daily)

Iodine (on the days you don’t eat seafood, 225 mg daily) + Selenium if needed

—plus 1.25 tablespoons of unfortified nutritional yeast daily for most B vitamins & a good amount of Zinc


And I'll talk a little bit about how to make sure you're getting enough Folate...and the best food sources for Vitamin C, B vitamins, Potassium and whether you should worry about supplementing or not.

Again--this module is covering common soil- and water-depleted Micronutrients. You want to plan to get these Micros ^^on the DAILY, in addition to the Micronutrients you can get from strategic Protein choices:

Protein Micronutrients again include making sure you're getting enough of a body-usable form of Vitamin A (from desiccate liver supplements, refrigerated cod liver oil or sustainable-grown red palm oil)…Zinc/Copper daily from foods (or a supplement)…Choline & Arachidonic Acid (from egg yolks/whole eggs or alt. ideas)…

Collagen/Glycine…Plus, Calcium from adequate dairy, edible bones and green leafy vegetables....and Omega-3 good fats, every week.


What about kids?

And then the Drs. Jaminet recommend these supplements for kids:

Vitamin D in the winter, K2, zinc, iodine, potentially calcium and magnesium depending on diet.

**Also, if you have a medical condition, you should check with your doctor or research yourself too, to make sure it is safe for you to take. Supplements are no joke! They can be great, but they do warrant caution too.

A bit more about these Vitamins & Minerals:

Ok, and first:

What are vitamins, in general? A great summary from How Stuff Works:

“…vitamins are organic (carbon containing) molecules that mainly function as catalysts for reactions within the body. A catalyst is a substance that allows a chemical reaction to occur using less energy and less time than it would take under normal conditions. If these catalysts are missing, as in a vitamin deficiency, normal body functions can break down and render a person susceptible to disease.”

So important! And here first are some important Vitamins & Minerals that you can get enough of, from strategically planning your FOOD, using these Eating for Energy guidelines:


Strategically get from mainly food:

Vitamin C:

You can get sufficient Vitamin C from eating the recommended amount of fresh (raw & gently cooked) fruits and veggies. Organ meats, like liver & desiccated liver supplements, also contain a good amount of Vitamin C, as well.

Dr. Chris Masterjohn recommends that you would want to consider supplementing with additional Vitamin C if you’re prone to getting sick easily, fighting an infection, feeling fatigued, or dealing with a chronic health challenge….More about how to supplement Vitamin C in his video here, if this applies to you.

B vitamins:

One of the best places to reliably get a good amount of your daily B Vitamins is from grass-fed desiccated liver supplementsbecause in liver, B vitamins come neatly packaged already as a B complex, and this is way more effective than taking a synthetic B complex supplement.

This is another reason why I highly recommend the grass-fed desiccated liver supplements on the daily.

A second fabulous source of many B vitamins is non-fortified Nutritional Yeast. Not just a hippy salad topping...truly, non-fortified nutritional yeast is an amazing daily addition to your diet…

Just 1.25 tablespoons a day contains almost ALL of the B vitamins you need each day. Plus, it’s a great source too of that elusive daily Zinc! :0

Singing the praises of 1.25 tablespoons daily of non-fortified Nutritional Yeast:

This is my favorite brand. I enjoy it on salads (with apple cider vinegar)…on top of potatoes and sweet potatoes (to take the place of butter)…and on water-sautéed/steamed veggies too. It has a light, buttery kind of flavor.

Lots of nutritional bang for your buck with non-fortified nutritional yeast for most all of your daily B vitamins.

Which when I use cronometer.com to track my Micronutrients—I found this solved my problem of not getting enough Thiamin (B1) on the daily. I find it’s hard to get enough B1 (which Dr. Chris Masterjohn calls the “carb burner” vitamin) from regular food. A little daily non-fortified nutritional yeast solves that problem.

However, non-fortified Nutritional Yeast is not a good source of Riboflavin or B12.


You may need to supplement with extra B12 if your bloodwork/lab tests shows you’re low in B12…With Vitamin B12: Many vegetarians can be deficient. B12 is an essential vitamin required by every cell in the body, and it’s only found in meat, fish and dairy products (and some mushrooms).

Dr. Chris Masterjohn goes into greater detail in how to get B12 from your food choices here.

B12-rich foods include sea clams (or called surf clams, often sold as frozen, chopped clams); oysters; liver; certain mushrooms like black trumpet, chanterelle, and shiitake (but not others); and nori seaweed. Desiccated liver supplements are a great source, too.

People with poor digestion and Vegetarians can often be deficient in B12.

B12 is a good nutrient marker to check when you’re doing blood testing…and the grass-fed liver supplement also has a good amount in it.


And supplementing extra B2 (riboflavin) has been shown to help improve some types of anemia more quickly (than just supplementing iron)…and can help improve the methylation process & prevent preeclampsia in pregnancy. More about B2 supplementation here.

For me, Riboflavin in a low dose (like this brand) has been really helpful to supplement! I noticed when tracking on cronometer.com that it’s very difficult to get enough from daily food choices…making riboflavin deficiency a common deficiency.


Folate is also a B vitamin…and it’s best to get Folate from leafy greens & vegetables, liver, and sprouted legumes. This would be way better than taking a synthetic folate supplement.

(Unless you are TTC or pregnant—then a methylfolate supplement on top of the recommended daily amount of food-based Folate would be important...see more from Dr. Chris Kresser here)

To make sure you’re getting enough daily Folate, here are a few key strategies from Dr. Chris Masterjohn:

First....how your prepare & cook your leafy greens & veggies (and legumes) is actually really important to maintaining the Folate content in them. The folate in frozen & desiccated liver is very stable, so you don't have to worry as much about them.

When it comes to getting Folate from your veggies & sprouted legumes, however:

You want to leave Veggies whole (not diced yet) while you wash them...and wash them with as little filtered water as needed to be food safe, because washing veggies (especially cut veggies) washes folate into the sink. Also eating veggies raw or gently cooked is best.

And, you want to be able to drink the cooking water with your veggies and your legumes too, in order to get the Folate…so when you make sprouted legumes, it's best to make them with just enough water, so that you consume it all together.


Plus, how can you tell if you're getting enough Folate? To get enough Folate on a daily basis, Dr. Chris Masterjohn recommends eating:

1-2 servings a day from these Tier 1 Folate foods would be enough:

--Lentils, chickpeas, lima beans, mung beans, black beans, pinto beans are the best beans

--Leeks, spinach, asparagus & broccoli are especially good Leafy greens/veggies

--Liver is a great source of stable Folate


OR 2 - 3 servings a day from these Tier 2 foods would be enough:

--Other legumes & other veggies


To “super-charge” your Folate status:

—Add in pastured egg yolks (as these chickens are eating grass…and their eggs have potentially many times more folate than conventional eggs, but the data is by far not conclusive & we shouldn’t count on them alone...however adding these in to the other recommended daily servings of Folate (see above) is an excellent way to “super-charge” your folate)

—And sprout your legumes! 🙂 (Folate increases as much as 6 times higher by the 4th day of sprouting...making sprouting at home a valuable process. When you buy pre-sprouted dry legumes (like from To Your Health brand) they are sprouted only 24 hours, still more than non-sprouted lentils, for sure!)

(Also if you are pregnant, or TTC, the grass-fed Ancestral Supplement Spleen supplement is very high in Iron and has some Folate, too…and I also like Doctor's Best methylfolate in this lower dose, too)

Recommended Supplements:

1. Vitamin D in the winter if you live in northern latitudes

How to get Vitamin D:

Let’s go next to Vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin/hormone…and it’s important to know that these vitamins work together: Vitamins D, K2, magnesium & calcium.

So anytime you’re supplementing one, you need to take the others into consideration as well. And Dr. Chris Masterjohn points out that if you take a blood test for Vitamin D & see that you’re deficient—that it may not be that you’re not getting enough Vitamin D…instead, you want to look at how much Calcium you’re getting…as low calcium intake creates a Vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin D level in the 20’s can be ok (you can order a 25(OH)D blood test)—but having a low level of 25(OH)D (the amount of Vitamin D you make in your liver from food & sunshine)…does NOT tell you whether you have low Vitamin D or Calcium (and it can be telling of both). You can get two calcium blood tests (PTH & calcitriol)…or he asserts that the easiest way to tell if you’re getting enough Calcium is to look at your diet & lifestyle choices…(More about Calcium in just a bit!)

Vitamin D from food & sunshine: going outside regularly & getting unprotected sun exposure (not burning)…do you eat fatty, wild-caught fish; pasture-raised egg yolks; or take cod liver oil?

If not, then you may likely be Vitamin D deficient.

Dr. Chris Masterjohn in his free Vitamins & Minerals 101 course, does recommend getting an “ancestral amount” of Vitamin D on the daily...

From a combination of food, sunshine (lying down flat at “solar noon” in the warmer months, as many minutes as it takes to NOT burn, sunning both sides of you) & supplements…to equal out to 3,000IU daily.


Foods high in Vitamin D: 6 ounces of Wild-caught salmon (142% DV), 1 cup of Crimini mushrooms exposed to UV light (139% DV), 1 cup of portabella mushrooms (122% DV), 1 teaspoon refrigerated Cod liver oil (75% DV), 1 cup Lifeway whole milk Kefir OR 16 ounce glass whole milk (33% DV), 1 large Egg Yolk (5% DV)


**With a Vitamin D supplement: You can also take Vitamin D as sub-lingual drops as well. Research shares it’s effective sub-lingually. Personally, I think that if you can avoid taking a capsule—then you avoid taking extra capsule ingredients—and you bypass your gut, which if you are having gut/digestion problems, can make vitamins & minerals difficult to absorb.

(Recommendations in my Supplement Guide, available on this page)

2. Vitamin K (100 or 200 mcg daily)

Getting Vitamin K

Vitamin K: So next up…let’s get into Vitamin K! Well, this one is a doozy because there are several different kinds and it is so, so important to your overall health—and very rarely talked about!

This article by Dr. Chris Masterjohn is excellent for more info. And to summarize, because different parts of your body use different kinds of Vitamin K—you want to optimize your Vitamin K by getting it from leafy greens (rich in K1), fermented foods (rich in MK-7 through MK-10), and animal products (rich in MK-4).

Vitamin K helps get calcium to the right places in your body (research shows it can de-calcify arteries and prevent kidney stones, hey!)…and it helps regulate hormone balance and manage insulin control.

Dr. Chris Masterjohn recommends:

Based on the current state of that research, I recommend 100-200 mcg per day of vitamin K2 for healthy adults. Although most of the benefit probably comes from the first 100 mcg, 200 mcg is harmless and may provide additional benefit…if you could stand to gain from the wide array of health benefits provided by the vitamin, I would use food or supplements to bring your intake closer to 200 mcg.”

Chronic kidney disease patients could use more (under doctor supervision)…and if you're taking anticoagulants, do not supplement Vitamin K.

Plus, besides directing calcium in your body & helping with insulin management, Dr. Paul Jaminet shares:

"Bone is particularly in need of certain nutrients: vitamins C, D, and K2; magnesium; and others. Unfortunately, the nutrients needed by bone are precisely the ones in which Americans are most deficient.

I believe that deficiencies in these nutrients are the main cause of the osteoporosis epidemic. Take vitamin K2. Most Americans are deficient in vitamin K2, which is needed for bone calcification."

Vitamin K helps you heal wounds & injuries, too…and most inflammatory bowel disease patients are deficient in vitamin K2...plus vitamin K2 is needed for proper Vitamin D function, too.

Veggie Foods high in Vitamin K1: 1 cup of Kale cooked (885% DV), 1 cup of broccoli cooked (183% DV), 1 cup of Brussels sprouts cooked (182% DV), 1 cup of cabbage cooked (136% DV), 1 cup of lettuce (47% DV)

Foods high in Vitamin K2: Natto, hard & soft cheeses, pastured egg yolks, grass-fed raw butter, chicken liver, dark chicken meat, ground beef, goose liver, sauerkraut, making home ferments with Dr. Mercola’s ferment starter kit


My recommendation: getting Vitamin K—all the kinds—in real food & since this micronutrient is not toxic & is kind of a master micro-nutrient (*and quite under-appreciated)…I do recommend supplementing with it!

Vitamin K (see my guide for suggestions)

3. Magnesium

Getting in your Magnesium

Dr. Mercola points out that an estimated 80% of Americans are deficient in Magnesium… and this is mainly due to this mineral being depleted in our soil and water, plus many people having impaired gut function which makes it difficult to properly absorb magnesium from food (or supplements). So, soil-mineral loss and impaired digestion account for this wide-spread deficiency.

Magnesium is a water-soluble vitamin…and it’s also needed for proper Vitamin D function. It’s a big mineral—that’s why a needed supplemental amount doesn’t fit into a multivitamin pill. And—it’s used in big ways in our bodies too.

Magnesium is used in almost every process in the body (!!)...including important jobs like activating muscles & nerves, activating ATP to create energy, helping digest protein, carbs & fats; and being a precursor for neurotransmitters like serotonin.

—Anytime you’re taking supplemental Vitamin D: you also need to take Magnesium…as taking too much Vitamin D without Magnesium can lead to further depletion of Magnesium & toxicity of Vitamin D.

—Magnesium and Vitamin K2 also go together to help prevent heart disease.

—It’s important to know that magnesium is key to Calcium absorption…and often, a magnesium deficiency can be a precursor to later calcium issues, because it affects calcium uptake. 

So again—anytime you're taking any of the following supplements: magnesium, calcium, vitamin D3, or vitamin K2, you need to take all the others into consideration as well, since these all work synergistically with one another.

Foods high in Magnesium: 1 cup of Spinach or Swiss chard cooked (37% DV), 1 6 oz fillet of tuna (26% DV), 1 cup of Kale cooked (18% DV), 1 1 oz square of 85% dark chocolate (15% DV), 1 medium potato (12% DV), 8 ounces mineral water (8%), 1/2 avocado (7% DV)


Magnesium supplement recommendations:

As you can see above—it’s pretty easy not to get enough Magnesium daily (and an estimated 80% of Americans are deficient in magnesium)—so that’s why it’s one of the most recommended daily supplements. 

One of the best forms of supplemental magnesium that’s easy on your digestion, and readily absorbable is magnesium glycinate.

If you have a history of kidney stones, then Dr. Chris Masterjohn recommends magnesium citrate

Also, many bloggers are promoting Transdermal Magnesium as a way to improve your magnesium status—with epsom salt baths or foot soaks, or transdermal lotions. There has not been enough research done of these methods, and the studies that have been done are not well-done at all.

(side note: there was finally a well-constructed study completed last year, and transdermal magnesium does show promise, but it's not best for athletic activity...)

And to really supplement magnesium & balance it with other vitamins/minerals and/or correct a deficiency—taking an oral supplement is the only proven way to do this.

That being said, I do like a good Epsom Salt foot soak or bath--very relaxing! 

With supplementing Magnesium, Dr. Chris Masterjohn recommends first optimizing your diet...and then keeping the dose low: 100 milligrams of Magnesium Glycinate with each meal 3x a day (and increase from there if your bloodwork shows you are deficient, more info & how to test here)

4. Iodine (on the days you don’t eat seafood)...and Selenium

Thyroid minerals: Iodine (and selenium)

Iodine is one of the most widely deficient micronutrients…and unfortunately, one of the most widespread symptoms of lack of Iodine is thyroid disorders:

“Thyroid function relies on proper levels of iodine, so too much (or too little) can cause many serious health problems. The thyroid is one of the body’s master glands responsible for balancing hormones, and thyroid disruption caused partially by a diet low in iodine-rich foods can create such negative reactions as fatigue, weight gain or loss, hormone imbalances, mood changes, and much more.”

Because Iodine deficiency is associated with stomach cancer, preventable brain damage, hypothyroidism, and reduced immunity...Iodized Salt was introduced into the national Swiss diet in the 1920’s to combat this wide-spread deficiency…

However, many people are now using Sea Salt & Himalayan Pink Salt, which don't usually have added Iodine...so you can see the renewed concern over Iodine deficiency.

So just go for it, with supplementing Iodine?

Well—some care is warranted here. Iodine and Selenium work together. If you’re low in Selenium, then taking additional Iodine could make thyroid conditions worse. However, Dr. Paul Jaminet cites a study with rats given the equivalent of 200 to 400 mcg of Selenium a day, their thyroids remained healthy with a wide range of iodine intakes, including a really large amount too.

The thyroid likes to have a similar amount of Iodine on a daily basis…and when you increase Iodine, you should do it gradually too.

Dr. Paul Jaminet recommends that the best way to supplement iodine is to regularly eat seafood—and on the days when you don’t eat seafood, take 225 mcg of either a seaweed-based standardized iodine supplement or potassium iodine. Or you could also eat 4 sheets of Nori (also on days when you don’t eat seafood).

*If you have Hashimoto’s disease, you should work with your doctor to assess if supplementing iodine would be right for you.

And you want make sure that your Selenium status is also optimized, too!

Optimize Selenium

Selenium is best obtained from food sources...and take great care with selenium supplements, because too much selenium is easily toxic. All meats have selenium (although the amount varies, based on the mineral content of soil), and the best sources are fish, shellfish, oysters, eggs, and kidneys

Organ meats and seafood are some of the best (most stable) sources.

Dr. Chris Masterjohn recommends testing your plasma selenium status at least once, to see how your selenium levels are doing…because there’s just such a wide variety of selenium content in food and soil (more about how to test here).

Also, Dr. Chris Kresser writes that Brazil nuts are a particularly rich source; just 2–3 a day will provide roughly 200 mcg of selenium, which is the amount used in many of the autoimmune thyroid studies.”

Here's a great source of sprouted Brazil nuts (you just need one of these)...or soaking Brazil nuts for 2 hours before eating them reduces their Lectin (anti-nutrient) content by 50%. You would want to optimize selenium daily like this if you're a strict vegetarian, or with the assistance of a one-on-one health care provider, in managing an autoimmune condition.

And again, there is also a huge variation in selenium content in Brazil nuts, so using them is also tricky. Eating organ meats (or supplements) and seafood may be the best bet.

Dr. Paul Jaminet writes, in The Perfect Health Diet book:

“To fix hypothyroidism, we believe it’s best to begin with a natural approach. First, eliminate grains, legumes, and vegetable oils. Then optimize intake of selenium, iodine, copper, iron, vitamin D, vitamin C, and magnesium. Vitamin A deficiency, if it exists, should also be corrected.

Iodine supplementation should start at 225 mcg per day or less…”

I would recommend even breaking the iodine supplement in half, and doing that for several days, before taking the entire supplement…

See my Guide for a good supplement recommendation…or do the 4 sheets of Nori (gradually work up to this)…however, my top pick is a seaweed food-based standardized supplement to know exactly how much Iodine you're getting…on days when seafood isn’t eaten.

And optimize your Selenium Status too…and get extra support from a medical doctor is you have a thyroid autoimmune disease to determine if supplementing iodine would be safe for you.

And just a few more parting thoughts about Iodine:

Dr. Paul Jaminet writes:

"Since immune cells obtain iodine by stripping it from thyroid hormone using selenium-containing deiodinase enzymes, a deficiency of either selenium or iodine will impair immune function. Be careful with Selenium though, toxic in high doses."

And, rapidly fluctuating iodine levels cause fluctuations in thyroid hormone levels…so that’s why your thyroid likes a steady, consistent, daily dose—and why I do think a regulated seaweed or potassium iodine supplement, or 4 sheets of Nori seaweed—on days when seafood isn’t eaten…is better than eating random quantities of seaweed daily (the amount of iodine in seaweed varies widely. Somehow they're able to accurately say how much is in a sheet of Nori though).

**Plus…these are not supplements, but instead Key Foods:**

Egg yolks daily (for that master-nutrient choline & Arachidonic acid)...or see my Alternative Ideas in Module 7…

Eat your Veggies (and liver) to get Folate…

Grass-fed liver (or supplements) for Vitamin A...

And I would add…Potassium & Salt

Potassium you can get from many different Vegetables, potatoes, bananas, & avocados!

Potatoes, sweet potatoes, and other tubers, tomatoes, green leafy vegetables, chocolate, avocado, beets, carrots, celery juice, jicama, seaweeds like pulse, and bananas...all are good sources of Potassium

Potassium is great for nourishing your adrenal glands and helping regulate cortisol, as well.

If you’re going of getting in your Veggies & Fruit every day, per the Eating for Energy guidelines...you will get some of the daily Potassium that you need.

What I’ve found is that choosing Root Veggies for my Safe Carbs—like potatoes and sweet potatoes—over white rice…is KEY for getting enough daily Potassium from food without having to take a supplement.

Again—a daily banana, plus having potatoes or sweet potatoes for 1 or 2 meals as your Safe Starch…plus veggies…is a solid way to get enough daily Potassium.

Just lots of Veggies and no potatoes?? It’s going to be hard to get enough daily Potassium…and truly this is a very common micronutrients deficiency that you can correct when you work in root safe starches, bananas and veggies into your daily meals.

If you want to know how to supplement safely with Potassium—check out Dr. Chris Masterjohn’s video here.

And don’t forget the…


--Salt: Don't fear the salt! Eat salt to taste! Sodium/salt is a key mineral that our bodies need. Sodium is lost while we sleep—and sodium, potassium & electrolytes are the things you want to be sure to replenish with Breakfast. Sodium can also be lost with fasting.

The Drs. Jaminet recommend this much Salt as a useful source of trace minerals--sodium and chloride--each day:

  • Appropriate amount: 1/4 tsp/day on carb-rich diet, 1 tsp/day on PHD/moderate-carb diet
  • If you’re working out: Eat sufficient salt – at least 1.3 teaspoons salt

Potassium & Sodium work together and are the main electrolytes in our bodies—keeping us cellularly hydrated and fueling our brains! Most Americans are eating too much sodium (from pre-made, processed, canned & packaged foods)…and too little potassium. It’s important to shift that balance!

“It’s more important to increase potassium than to decrease sodium. Increasing potassium is the key to control of blood pressure, kidney stones and osteoporosis.”

Potassium intake also allows you to build muscle!

You can meet the Potassium requirement with this PHD/Eating for Energy plan when you choose potassium-rich potatoes, yams , and taro most of the time, over white rice as your safe starches…choosing carrots, beets & banana as sugary plants…chocolate, avocado & nuts as snack foods…making pre-breakfast celery juice…and green leafy veggies & tomatoes as vegetables.

And with Salt, you don’t have to measure it so much…it’s safe to eat Salt to taste (as long as you’re cutting out pre-made foods that are overloaded with salt).


Plus...some people when they switch out processed foods & go for eating Whole Foods, think that they need to ditch the Salt. The opposite is true. You do need some salt...and if you're eating Whole Foods, you'll have to add it yourself. This is important--Dr. Chris Masterjohn details--because if you don’t get enough Salt, this can really hurt your ability to transport Magnesium into your cells.

Foods Rich in Sodium, Phosphorus and Chloride:

Sodium helps control your blood volume and blood pressure. Good sources of sodium include salt, milk, beets and celery.

Along with calcium, phosphorus helps build strong bones and teeth. You want calcium & phosphorous to be in balance with each other. Foods that contain substantial amounts of phosphorus include eggs, dairy products, fish, meat, poultry, nuts and whole bone calcium supplement, too.

Chloride helps maintain proper balance of fluids in your body: Tomatoes, lettuce, seaweed, olives, salt and celery contain high levels of chloride.

Extra Tip:

I recommend using an AM/PM pill box organizer to organize your supplements on a weekly basis!

It saves time, by organizing the pills on a weekly basis...helps you remember to take them...and saves wrist-strength too (opening fewer bottles). 🙂

Your Take Action worksheet:

Go ahead & plan your Supplements--to optimize important Micronutrients.

Remember though--you can't out-supplement or out-exercise "Bad Macros." So, getting your Weekly Meal Plan togetha with your Good Fats, enough Protein & Safe Carbs (and cutting out foods your body treats as toxins) is so important too!

Ok--I hope you enjoy getting organized & getting nourished!

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