Is there a certain schedule in taking supplements?

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Basically, you would follow the directions on each container assuming they are accurate in having you ingest the product in a manner that would allow the best results. Most people can take their health supplements with meals all at once, unless directions on the bottle specifically state not to -- which may be the case for iron supplements. For example, a multivitamin and mineral formula (MVM), an omega-3 fish oil capsule and a calcium supplement are considered health supplements and all can be taken at the same meal. If your health professional tells you that you need to add 1,000 mg per day of calcium in the form of a supplement, you would take it in two doses: 1 - 500mg tablet with a morning meal and 1 with an evening meal for best results.

If you are taking fitness related supplements, they are generally very specific on when you take them throughout the day based on exercise times or best times for complete absorption -- i.e. ingested with or without food or on an empty stomach.

Below is an example of a typical health and performance program instructions for many NBA players:

Active multivitamin mineral formula (2 tabs daily)
  • Take 1 tab with a meal twice daily
Super Omega 3 Fish Oil
  • 1 tab daily with a meal when not consuming fish
Superior Antioxidant
  • 1 tab daily with a meal
Super Calcium
  • Use if you do not meet the daily needs of calcium (~1000-1200 mg) and Vitamin D (1000 IU) from sunlight, multivitamin and food intake. Take accordingly with meals
Training Supplements AminoBoostXXL (before and after training/games only)
  • Take 2 scoops 10-30 min before workout (may add a Gatorade-type product)
  • Take 2 scoops immediately following workout
  • Take 2 scoops within the same window of time as the AminoBoost: 10-30min before workout or use favorite dotFIT® bar for convenience in place of the shake
  • Take 2 scoops 20min post workout (or 2 bars if more convenient)
Pre/Post Workout Shake
  • Take 2 scoops within the same window of time as the AminoBoost: 10-30min before workout or use favorite dotFIT® bar for convenience in place of the shake
  • Take 2 scoops 20min post workout (or 2 bars if more convenient)
  • Use anytime as a meal if necessary

Continue Learning about Dietary Supplements

Dietary Supplements

Whether you're visiting the drug store, grocery or natural food shop you'll likely find an aisle where there are jars and bottles of things for you to put in your body that are neither foods nor medicines. Ranging from vitamins an...

d minerals to fiber and herbal remedies, these supplements are not regulated in the same way as either food or medicine. Some of them are backed by solid research, others are folk remedies or proprietary cures. If your diet does not include enough of certain vitamins or minerals, a supplement may be a good idea. Natural treatment for conditions like constipation may be effective. But because these substances are unregulated, it is always a good idea to educate yourself about the products and to use common sense when taking them. This is even more true if you are pregnant or taking a medicine that may be affected by supplements.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.