Sorting out the Supplements: Some Really Make a Difference!

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Hello, friends, it has been a very long time since my last post — we’re already into autumn! I hope this finds you well. As for me, it’s been a busy few months. I suppose the silver lining is that because I took shortcuts with some supplements and (purposely or otherwise) dropped others, I’ve learned that some of those that I was on really, truly do make a difference in how my body responds, physically and otherwise.

Here’s the lowdown.

Body breakdown

In the spring, I filled you in on the pretty extreme stress I’d been going through for several months and how everything in my body felt inflamed. To top it off, while sleeping (sleeping!), I managed to do some damage to my right shoulder and left hip. (I was crunching my body up so tightly that I tore some tendons in both).

When that happened, I didn’t realize at first what had happened — I thought I just had muscle soreness or slept poorly or something and besides, between mom care and work and then the coronavirus hitting, I didn’t have time to get it checked out. But what I did do was freak out that maybe the collagen that I’d had nearly daily for a couple of years was somehow aggravating the situation — maybe just too much collagen in the joints or something like that (that’s what I thought at the time).

So, I promptly dropped the collagen in late February.

With everything else, I was spotty at best. I’d kept up with the Vegan Smart shakes and Garden of Life 50+ on and off through the spring and in May/June when I tried Nutrafol, I got a little better about the shakes because the Nutrafol capsules are so large that the only way I could take them was to empty the capsules into my shakes. But I wasn’t treating the shakes as meals, as far as calories go, so I ended up gaining several pounds from the extra 300 calories each day.

Here’s what happened when I dropped the supplements

Frustrated from that, I dropped the shakes — and along with them, the Nutrafol and Garden of Life supplements — in late June/early July. And, sadly, up until last night, I hadn’t made my supercharged BioGaia yogurt since then, either.

My hip healed by about June but my shoulder is just now starting to feel much better, eight months later. And as far as everything else goes (hair, yes, that’s the key barometer), without the supercharged yogurt, my right eyebrow is nearly gone, the left is there but sparse and my eyelashes have been coming out again.

Importantly, too, the hair on my head (the tiny bits that I have) is very significantly thinner, totally dull, brittle, lifeless. There is nothing good about it, it looks deader than dead. And my scalp has the dead feeling that it gets when things go bad.

This is a big change in my little world: There was a point last year when I thought my hair was downright lovely (all 600 or so hairs that I had then), in that it was shiny and soft but strong (to the point where I thought heck, if I could only have 10x as much, I’d even consider going without a wig! Ballsy move, that would have been, but that’s how lovely the little bit of it was).

In addition, the hair on my arms and elsewhere has mostly disappeared (I know that doesn’t sound like a bad thing but trust me, no one would have accused me of having hairy arms on a good day, and the little bits of hair that were there were a good barometer of how things were going). And my nails are noticeably more brittle, ridgy and dull.

Here’s what I’m going back to and why

Given all this, here’s what (I believe) I know:

  1. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, my body absolutely needs the supercharged yogurt. I made a batch last night, just had my first yogurt in several months and I will commit to making this and keeping up with it. It just makes a huge difference.
  2. I’m going back on the Vegan Smart shakes with the Garden of Life 50+ and the collagen. The collagen didn’t cause or exacerbate the tendon tears and pain and had I stayed on it, it may have helped them heal a bit more quickly.
  3. As for additional supplements, I’ll keep up with Vitamin D and Vitamin A daily, as well as iron as needed (I can tell when I need it, my energy drops to nil) and B12 as needed (I get a good deal from what I eat, but like D and A, my body doesn’t process it efficiently, so I need a boost sometimes).

I know I’ve promised photos in the past, but since I’ve backslid so many times on keeping up with the yogurt and other supplements, as well as dabbled in new ones that went nowhere, I haven’t actually shared photos because it can be so depressing, like when I’d take “before” photos as I’d embark on a new workout regimen and then backslid and a couple of months later my “after” photos look worse than the “before” pics!

So, I’ll take some today so we have them for documentation. And in in a handful of months, after I’ve been back on my proven-supplement regimen (proven for me, at least), I’ll take some more and hopefully, there will be a big difference. As always, time will tell.

Stay safe and well, friends, as autumn gets underway. xoxoxoxo

{Note: These are my own experiences with holistic healing and a whole slew of self-experiments and aren’t meant as medical advice for anyone else. But, I know a lot of friends and family members are grappling with a huge variety of autoimmune issues and other ailments, so I’m happy to share my experiences. And if this is your first visit and you’d like to follow chronologically, click here. Otherwise, enjoy!}

Photo by Vlad Chețan from Pexels, thank you!


  1. Hi, thanks for the excellent questions. I get some additional zinc through the Vegan Smart shake and the Garden of Life supplement — it’s any easy supplement to overdo, so I don’t take extra beyond that.

    Re: Vitamin D, my body has had a hard time processing it for decades, I think it’s at the root of my autoimmune stuff, basically since I started cloaking myself in sunscreen resulting from my melanoma at 15. But I managed to get it up significantly this summer (I just had a D test in August), I think it was the bits of late-day sunshine I got during my floats!

    3. Shoulder and hip, xrays and confirmation from doctor of osteopathy and PT. Hip all better, shoulder getting better but it’s taken a long time! Exercises from DO and ice and time. xoxoxoxox


  2. 3 questions:

    1. Why no zinc? I hear such great stuff about it. You are outside walking so much. Do you not absorb D? That’s what I learned about myself.

    2. Why did you go off the yogurt? I know you really thought it was great?

    3. Omg. Your shoulder and hip. Did you get X-rays? How did you know torn? That is horrific. What were you doing to get better???

    Oh 4. I love you ❤️


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