Somethings just work better together; Peanut butter and jelly. Macaroni and cheese. Batman and Robin. Of course you could have one without the other, but when they compliment each other so effortlessly, why would you? Well the same applies to your supplements. Studies have shown that many of our everyday vitamins and supplements are actually more effective when taken together, than on their own. It's no surprise than men and women have unique nutritional needs. Knowing which supplements to take and when, can be overwhelming and confusing. With father's day approaching, we have turned our focus to men's health and the 3 best supplement pairings for the heart, brain and exercise recovery. Garlic and Fish oilBenefit:Heart Health Did you know that heart disease is the second leading cause of death in Canada and men are 2 x more likely to be diagnosed with heart disease than women! Garlic is used for many health conditions relating to the heart including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, coronary heart disease and hardening of the arteries. Fish oil contains an abundance of essential omega-3 fatty acids (omega-3s) that have been shown to lower triglyceride (blood fat) levels, minimize inflammation and clotting, and increase HDL (“good”) cholesterol. By combining a garlic and fish oil supplement, studies have shown a significant reduction in cholesterol. Its a no brainer that maintaining a healthy, wholesome diet and regular exercise are important steps to reduce you risk of heart disease but this powerful supplement combo provides some great additional support too. When to take: Take fish oil and garlic supplements with a meal that contains some form of healthy fat, such as coconut or olive oils or avocados. The fats in the foods will help your body absorb the fish oil and reduce the likelihood of and fishy or oily burps. Probiotic and CaseinBenefit:Exercise recovery A popular protein supplement among men is casein, a dairy-based protein often used as a post-workout. Casein is slow digesting protein and as a result, it provides your body with a steady stream of amino acids to support muscle growth and recovery. A 2016 study has shown that when a lactobicillus probitoic is combined with a slow digesting protein, tended to reduce indices of muscle damage, improve recovery, and maintain physical performance subsequent to hard exercise. The reason behind these added benefits is that probiotics help to support intestinal digestion and absorption of nutrients, while reducing overall inflammation to help your muscles heal faster. When to take:Probiotics should be taken on a regular basis for overall gut health and improved digestion. Casein is slow-release and absorbing protein, so it's often recommended to be taken within 30-90 minutes after strenuous exercise or before bed to provide a long supply of protein to recovering muscles overnight. Omega-3 and Vitamin DBenefit: Mood boosting and cognitive functionVitamin D along with marine omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA), are important for serotonin synthesis, release, and function in the brain. It also suggests that vitamin D and omega-3s could work together to improve cognitive function and social behaviour with particular relevance to overall mental health. DHA makes up a large portion of the gray matter of the brain. DHA and EPA promote healthy blood flow, which is essential to optimal brain function. Otherwise known as the 'sunshine vitamin', Vitamin D plays a critical role in many of the most basic cognitive functions, including learning and making memories. A number of studies have linked higher vitamin D levels to better cognitive function in older men and women and when combined with EPA and DHA, healthy levels of seratonin; the 'feel good' hormone, are more easily maintained. When to take: Take EPA/DHA and vitamin D with your evening meal. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and absorption is improved if taken with a fat, such as an EPA/DHA supplement. As our evening meals tend to be more substantial, the natural fats in these foods can improve the absorption of both the EPA/DHA and vitamin D.