A young person in my life (she’s under 30) is getting married this month, and from what I can gather, planning a wedding these days is a rewarding, yet stressful process, full of non-stop surprises. It’s been quite some time since I was in those bride-to-be shoes, as my husband and I tied the knot back in 1995.
There are numerous ways to handle the stress of impending nuptials. Staying organized, delegating, getting adequate sleep, and eating healthy are all wonderful strategies recommended by some of the most popular wedding blogs around. Personally, I would throw in exercise right along with the aforementioned tips. Surprisingly, I did not find any stress relieving recommendations that suggested supplements to help support the immune and nervous systems during wedding preparations. I think taking supplements during what can be an exciting and anxiety-provoking time in life can provide both support and relief.
I gave the previously mentioned young person, who is planning a rather large affair, a good supply of vitamins ten days prior to her wedding, and she said they helped a bunch!
Here are my favorite 5 supplements to relieve wedding planning stress:
1. Vitamin D3
It is challenging to get the proper amount of vitamin D in food; the best way to obtain it is from the sun (via the skin), or via oral supplementation. Although referred to as a vitamin, vitamin D is actually a hormone pre-cursor. The traditional medical community now recognizes that vitamin D supports bone development in synergy with calcium. Vitamin D does much more than foment bone growth. According to an abstract by Cynthia Aranow, published in the Journal of Investigative Medicine in 2012, vitamin D is crucial when it comes to immune support. When the body is deficient in vitamin D, increased autoimmunity, as well as a propensity to infection may occur. Budding brides may want to supplement with vitamin D prior to their big day. When I am under stress I take 5,000-10,000 IU of Vitamin D daily for one week. If you are going to take mega-doses of this vitamin it is critical that you have your vitamin D levels tested (at minimum) quarterly, since vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and can be toxic in large doses.
2. Vitamin C
According to an article published in Nutrients by Alexander Michels, ascorbic acid (the reduced form of vitamin C) is an essential component of our diet. Large amounts of vitamin C can protect against oxidative damage. Vitamin C is water-soluble and can be taken in extremely large doses. When I am experiencing an increase in MS symptomology I get an IV infusion of 10,000 mg (or more) of vitamin C at a local clinic. For our blushing bride, I recommended 1,000 mg of vitamin C orally per day for the ten days prior to the wedding.
Zinc is a metal ion that is a vital trace element. Intoxication by excessive exposure to zinc is rare, however, zinc deficiency is widespread and can negatively impact growth and immunity. Zinc helps to protect against cold, flu, and respiratory infection and is a natural aromatase inhibitor –meaning it can keep “good” hormones from turning into toxic estrogens. For my stressed out bride, I recommended 30 mg of zinc per day for 10 days to ameliorate a potentially compromised immune system to which the stress of a wedding can lead.
4. B Complex
According to an article published in Nutrients in 2013, “dietary intake of vitamins, in particular B-vitamins, may have a number of positive effects on mood and stress.” The B-vitamins may mitigate stress by optimizing cortisol secretion. They’re my go to and fabulous to support equanimity during the stress of a wedding. I gave our bride the Ultra B Complex from Douglas Laboratories which contains 11 different B vitamins, and which I myself take on a daily basis.
According to my colleague Dr. Frank Lipman, “l-Theanine supplements are nature’s ‘chill pills.’” My own physician, Dr. Robert Rountree, recommended l-Theanine to my boys and myself back in 2004. l-Theanine assists with falling asleep (especially great when we travel). l-Theanine is found in green tea –it is the calming component that can smooth out the effects of caffeine in this anti-oxidant rich beverage. For our bride, I recommended a dose of 200-400mg of l-Theanine before bedtime, to encourage ease in falling asleep and assist with staying asleep.
It is critical to purchase supplements from trusted sources so that you know the product is “clean,” i.e., free of toxic added fillers. In the text above, I have linked to each of the brands of supplements I use and trust for my family.