Supplement 101

Natural Factors
Supplement 101

Frequently asked questions about supplements. 

What time of day should I take my vitamins?

The time of day you take supplements depends on the nutrient! For example, nutrients such as B vitamins are best taken morning to early-afternoon to support energy, while nutrients such as magnesium are ideally taken in the evening to support sleep. In addition, certain nutrients are best taken with food and other nutrients should be taken away from food. Read product label directions or speak to your health care practitioner to determine what time of day is best for you to take your supplements.


Can I take all my supplements at once or space them throughout the day?

Even though it may seem more convenient to take all your supplements at one time, it’s actually best to space supplements throughout the day. While some nutrients work together and should be taken together, other nutrients should be taken at different times to avoid potential interactions. Taking too many supplements at once can also lead to digestive upset. A supplement pill organizer can help you remember when to take your supplements throughout the day.


Should I take my vitamins with food or on an empty stomach?

Most supplements are best taken with food, however there are some exceptions to this. For example, fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamins A, D, E, and K should be taken with healthy fats such as avocadoes and olive oil. However, other nutrients such as iron should be taken on an empty stomach. Before taking any supplements, speak to your health care practitioner to find out if your supplements should be taken with meals or without meals.


Can I take my vitamins at the same time as prescription medications?

Interactions between drug and nutrients exist, so it’s not always possible to take vitamins at the same time as prescription medications. For example, iron supplements can interfere with the body’s absorption of thyroid medications, and antibiotics can kill off the beneficial bacteria provided from a probiotic. In case of these interactions, it’s best to separate nutrients and prescriptions by a few hours. Speak to your pharmacist or health care provider regarding any potential interactions.

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