Health Focus: Some of my Favorite Anti-Aging Products from Quality of Life Supplements
Beauty bunnies! I discovered some great health and beauty supplements that I want to tell you about, but first, if you haven’t already, I urge you to read my philosophy on nutritional supplements (why I take them, how to tell if they’re quality or garbage, etc, etc.).
Okay, now that you’ve read that, let’s talk about this brand I discovered several months ago called QOL (Quality of Life). I first ran across QOL when I was fighting off a nasty cold and looking for some immune system boosting supplements on Amazon. I bought their AHCC Gold (made from medicinal mushrooms), and although I can’t say for sure if it shortened the duration of my cold (I was taking my tried and true Samento along with other herbs – not trying to do a science experiment – just trying to feel BETTER!), I was certainly intrigued by the brand. After seeing my Instagram story about their product, QOL offered to send me some other products to try out. I selected several that piqued my interest, and tested them for about a month and a half. Let me tell you about the ones that I really like.
There are basically two types of supplements – ones that have IMMEDIATE effects and ones that have long-term effects. Sometimes the long-term supplements require a leap of faith because the results are not easily measured, or they may be preventative in nature (a probiotic or multi-vitamin for example). More about that here.
Let’s start with a supplement from QOL that had an immediate positive effect for me – Melatonin-SR. This sustained release melatonin helps to put you to sleep and keep you asleep for up to seven hours. I have been taking melatonin for many years as a natural sleep aid. I don’t even travel without my melatonin – it’s great for jet lag since you can use it to sleep on the plane, or get to sleep in any time zone. I know some people (like my fiancé) say melatonin makes them sleepy but then they wake up after a few hours. This sustained release version of melatonin is designed to fix exactly that problem. I found that it kept me asleep and I didn’t wake up with a groggy feeling. Melatonin is something your body makes naturally, and taking it is not supposed to be habit-forming. Melatonin is not for everyone, but I love it and I know a lot of others do too. Like with ALL supplements, consult your health care practitioner first, then start with a small dose and see how it makes you feel.
The next supplement is one that has long term effects. It’s called Oligonol and it’s a polyphenol derived from lychee fruit and green tea extract. There have been studies to suggest that it may have an effect on cardiovascular health, reducing belly fat, lessening fatigue, increasing endurance during exercise and reducing skin wrinkles and brown spots, making it one of the great anti-aging products. Talk about a supplement that most people would want, right? Although there are several published studies for this supplement, many of them were done with small numbers of subjects, so keep that in mind.
That being said, the research for polypthenols in general is solid. Polyphenols are found in foods like coffee, green tea, pomegranate, blueberries, chocolate and red cabbage. They help to fight excess free radicals, lower inflammation, and increase BDNF (which helps you grow new brain cells). Polyphenols also feed some of your gut bacteria called Bacteroidetes. Studies ha ve shown a positive correlation between thin people and a ratio of higher Bacteroidetes to Firmicutes. Researchers have also found these imbalances in obese people (they tend to have fewer Bacteroidetes). You can take Firmicutes (such as Lactobacillus) in cultured food or supplement form but to get more Bacteroidetes, you need to provide them with the food they enjoy – polyphenols!
I’ve been taking Oligonol for about a month now and with these anti-aging products my skin is looking great. I’m not ready to say that’s a direct effect of the supplement (too many variables with recent hormone shifts, skincare, facials, etc.). BUT, I am going to continue to take Oligonol because I see a lot of promise, with no downsides (other than cost). I’ve been trying to lose weight for along time, so give me all the Bacteroidetes!
Another QOL supplement that my fiancé really likes it CardioChol. He had a near miss with a heart attack at a very young age, so we are not taking any chances with this health. CardioChol contains plant phytosterols, terminalia arjuna bark, CoQ10 and resveratrol, which can help lower cholesterol, maintain blood pressure and support healthy blood flow to the heart. I want to keep my soul mate around as long as possible, so we’re making sure he sticks to a clean diet, gets plenty of exercise, takes his doctor-prescribed medications, and takes supplements that can give him some extra support.
I think most people know about the heart-healthy functions of most of these ingredients. But arjuna bark was a new one to me. Arjuna bark’s cardio-protective action comes from several of its constituents, such as glycosides, which strengthen contractions of heart muscle, and flavonoids, which have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cholesterol-lowering effects. Arjuna bark decreases chest pain, increases coronary artery flow, decreases blood pressure, and increases ejection fraction (the ratio of blood flowing through the left ventricle).
Another supplement I really like is VitaPQQ. PQQ was discovered in 2003 and is considered the first new vitamin discovered since 1948. Isn’t it crazy how the health industry uncovers things like this? PQQ protects your mitochondria (ancient bacteria that lived with other living cells in a symbiotic way and then evolved to become the powerhouses of our cells) from damage, which can stave off fatigue, brain fog, oxidative stress, and overall health. There is SO much to learn about your mitochondria, and how we need to keep them healthy, create new ones, and even kill off weak ones. Mitochondria naturally get weaker and die off as we age, and it’s important to keep regenerating them. PQQ is one way to protect your mitochondria, but you can also follow a mitochondria-boosting diet, exercise regularly, keep inflammation down and get plenty of sunshine and sleep.
Do any of these supplements sound interesting to you? What are your favorite anti-aging products? If you’d like to try these or any other Quality of Life supplements, you can use my code BUNNY15 for 15% off!