Oh Holy Basil. // And Other Quick Supplement Facts!


Working in a health food store, I have my eye on a lot of supplements. I read over the backs of some of them to learn about their functions, dosages, etc etc and took some notes in the downtime, when the store isn’t so busy. After all, I could benefit, or share this knowledge as a health coach!

*I’ve linked to where you can find some of these supplements online; if you click on them, you’d be supporting my blog and youtube; this was certainly NOT an endorsed post. :)*

The most popular bars you can see are the quest bars, and the chips are also quite popular among movie-goers!

I came across the supplement Holy basil at the health food store and thought two things:

  1. I freakin’ love basil. It’s my favourite herb next to cilantro.
  2. This is an adaptogen…right?


I whipped out my phone and went to dr. google.

Holy Basil:

  • is an adaptogen; supports the adrenals
  • increases stamina if you have physical stress
  • lowers blood sugar
  • eases inflammation
  • reduces stress and anxiety by lowering cortisol
  • is an antioxidant that detoxifies the body

These are other notes that I’ve taken VERY BRIEFLY about each supplement. By no means do I endorse all of them nor do I know the full shpeel on exactly what their functions are, recomended dosages, or treatments are drawbacks are. I just thought I’d share what I have researched, and if you’re intrigued, please do some further research of your own!


  • detoxifies liver
  • typically taken with NaC (think of this combo as the gasoline and NaC is the fire)
  • skin-whitening?

NaC: Precursor to Glutathione that passes the blood-brain barrier; making it easier for the brain to utilize. Can help with addictions, mental dysfunctions and boost moods! An amino acid that removes toxins from the body. Aim for 1000mg-2000mg/day. 

Phosphatidylserine (PS)

  • cognitive functions
  • helps with short term memory

Ginko Biloba

  • increases blood flow overall; helps with overall circulation
  • helps with vertigo

Ubiquinol vs CoQ10: Both are used to aid heart health. Promotes healthy mitochondria, which are the powerhouses of energy for the body. Both are metabolized by the liver, which has over 400 different functions. CoQ10 is converted into Ubiquinol in the liver. Ubiquinol is therefore one step “ahead” than CoQ10, making it more absorable by the body.

Grapeseed extract: an antioxidant. Anti-cancer, anti-ageing. The active ingredient in this is resveratrol.

Glucomannan: helps with cholesterol control.

Red Yeast Rice: also helps with cholesterol control.

L-Lysine: antiviral. Helps with herpes, colds, flues…any virus.

L-Arginine: increases nitric oxide, decreases lactic acid. This helps athletic performance and buffers soreness, which means you can train harder and longer in your workouts. Athletes would benefit from this, or if you’re very physically active.

Lecithin: Usually two types: Sunflower, and soy. Sunflower is slightly better due to the fact that soy is estrogenic (meaning it mimics estrogen in the body which “tricks” the body into thinking there are more levels of estrogen than it really produces), can treat memory (can aid dementia) and used to lower cholesterol.

D-Ribose: used for energy recovery.

Tyrosine: a precursor to dopamine, a hormone that seeks pleasure and excitement. sometimes when you’re lacking motivation, you’re lacking this hormone). Also a component of the thyroid gland.

Pycnogenol: lowers blood pressure.

Hawthorn: also lowers blood pressure.

Chitosan: glues proteins together. lowers cholesterol.

Inisitol: helps boost your mood and promotes healthy hormones. Aids in the communication of hormones to their cell receptor sites so their messages are better acknowledge by the receiving cell.

Dandelion: A diuretic; increases bile flow

Fennel: Help debloat, helps mitigate flatulence (excessive gas in the intestines)

Ginger: helps with digestion, colds, is anti-inflammatory, helps with digestive disturbances

Raspberry Leaf: uterine tonic, helps with menstruation pain

Nettle Leaf: a diuretic, anti-inflammation for joint pain

Licorice: helps with chest pain and coughs, and quite frankly, I don’t like the taste!

Lemon Balm: help with digestive disturbances and sleep.

For blood sugar control/diabetics: Bitter Melon, Chromium, Berberine, Cinnamon, Gymnema (said to limit the absorption of sugar?)

Reishi: an adaptogen that helps lower blood pressure

Rhodiola/Relora: an adaptogen, mostly used to ~mellow out~

Ashwagandha: supports adrenals. increases energy yet promotes stress relief.

Passionflower: promotes relaxation and sleep.

Kavakava: also promotes relaxation and sleep.

Theanine: also makes you nice and mellow; is also the active ingredient in green tea.

Valerian: used for sleep and restlessness. (personally, I don’t like the flavour very much).

St John’s wort: stress relief.

MSM: Don’t confuse this with m&m’s candy. This one’s a pain killer 🙂

Glucosamine and Chondroitin: helps with joint repair.

White Willow Bark: pain killer. Is a natural Asprin.

Omega 3’s: found in fish like SALMON (OMG MY FAVOURITE). I used to take fish oil but most of generally rancid by the time they get to stores because the oils are SO delicate, that any light, oxygen, and heat spoils them. Your safest way is to get them naturally through eating fish. Even when I eat fish, I try NOT to cook it and eat it raw (that’s why I eat so much of my salmon raw) because baking, frying, and any sort of cooking damages the oils. Omega 3’s in their natural state are anti-inflammatory, is a precursor for hormones, helps with overall cell function, memory and brain health. Definitely something everyone should be getting in daily–I would eat a serving of fish 4-5 times a week. If you DO go looking for a supplement, look for a REPUTABLE BRAND, HIGH QUALITY, one that’s refrigerated and the bottle is dark/no light is spilling in to the capsules or liquid.

Omega 3’s are split into two strands: EPA, which enhances mood, and DHA, which improves cognitive functions. Aim for about 1000mg of each daily!

Magnesium: Promotes SO. MANY. FUNCTIONS. in the body and definitely something I think everybody needs to take on the daily. Magnesium is needed for every cell to function in the body and promotes relaxation for all the muscles too. I take a minimum of 400mg on a keto diet (you need more if you’re eating more carbs; about 54mg/g of carb consumed!) 30-60 minutes before bed. I like using this version of Natural Calm; it tastes great, is kind of fizzy and sweet and I just mix it with water. Oh yes–they were kind enough to send me over a sample to try 🙂 That’s how I know it’s a good one.

natural calm magnesium

While shopping for supplements, you’ll often find a lot of versions of the same type of element. For example, what’s the difference between Magnesium oxide, magnesium citrate, magnesium chelate/glycinate? Well, it all goes by the size of the particle. The smaller the particle, the easier it is to absorb and the friendlier it is on the gut. From largest to smallest, it goes:

  • Oxide
  • Citrate
  • Chelate/(bis)glycinate/elemental/ionic

Of course, the higher quality forms would cost more. So something like Zinc oxide would be cheaper than zinc chelate.


So… that was a lot of information. Do you take any supplements? Which ones, and what for?