Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Supplements

1. What supplements should I take?

The right supplement or supplement combo for you depends on your unique need.

Population group

Likely required

Children less than 5 years 

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D

Supplements may not be needed when the vitamins are catered for in the diet.


  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D2

Women within childbearing age

  • Folic acid
  • Vitamin D
  • Iron

Breastfeeding women

  • Vitamin D
  • Calcium
  • Folic acid
  • Iron
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin B6
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B12
  • DHA-docosahexaenoic acid (a form of omega 3 fat)

Individuals with insufficient sun exposure

  • Vitamin D

People older than 50 years

  • Vitamin D
  • Folate
  • Vitamin B12
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin B6




Supplements for general optimal health are Multivitamins, Magnesium, Omega 3 Fish Oil, Calcium, Magnesium, Vitamin D, and Fiber.

Looking for supplements with anti-inflammatory properties? Consider taking:

  • Lactobacillus
  • Garlic
  • Curcumin
  • Omega 3 Fish oil
  • Alpha Lipoic Acid
  • N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC)
  • Vitamin C
  • Resveratrol
  • Ginger
  • Spirulina
  • Oregano Oil
  • SAM-e
  • Zinc
  • Olive leaf
  • Vitamin D
  • Pomegranate

Here is a list of all supplements with anti-inflammatory properties.

If you have some difficulty with your bone and joints, here are supplements to boost bone and joint health:

  • Glucosamine
  • Chondroitin
  • Collagen
  • Boswellia
  • Devil's Claw
  • Cod Liver Oil
  • Omega 3 Fish Oil
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • MSM
  • Vitamin D
  • Ginger
  • Nettle
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin K2
  • Potassium
  • Rosehips
  • SAM-e
  • Curcumin
  • Boswellia

Want a natural boost to burn fat? Here are supplements for fat loss

  • L-carnitine
  • Acetyl L-Carnitine
  • Green tea
  • Fat burners
  • Berberine
  • Omega 3 fish oil
  • Glucomannan
  • Fiber
  • Caffeine
  • Vitamin D
  • Garcinia cambogia
  • BCAA
  • Whey protein
  • CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid)
  • Bitter orange
  • 7-Keto DHEA
  • Amla
  • Caralluma
  • Forskolin
  • White kidney bean extract
  • Red raspberry
  • appetite suppressant
  • MCT oil
  • D-limonene
  • Alpha-lipoic acid
  • 5-HTP
  • Guggul
  • Stevia


Looking to boost your liver health? Here are the supplements for liver health.

  • Milk thistle
  • Holy basil (Tulsi)
  • Dandelion root
  • Selenium
  • Alpha-lipoic acid
  • Artichoke
  • Vitamin B complex
  • Vitamin A
  • vitamin D
  • folic acid
  • curcumin
  • betaine HCL (TMG)
  • pectin,
  • vitamin C
  • lecithin
  • N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC)
  • L-glutathione
  • L-taurine
  • coconut oil.


Supplements for cardiovascular health

  • Butcher's broom
  • Nattokinase
  • Omega 3 fish oil
  • Coenzyme Q10
  • Vitamin D
  • Hesperidin
  • Red yeast rice
  • horse chestnut
  • policosanols
  • garlic
  • gamma oryzanol
  • magnesium
  • nopal (prickly pear)
  • resveratrol
  • psyllium husk
  • krill oil
  • citrulline malate
  • glycine
  • 5-HTP
  • whey protein
  • L-arginine
  • skullcap
  • safflower oil
  • L-taurine
  • curcumin
  • vitamin B3 niacin
  • alpha-lipoic acid
  • grape seed extract
  • pycnogenol
  • green coffee bean extract
  • astragalus
  • olive leaf
  • ashwagandha
  • potassium
  • spirulina
  • berberine
  • horny goat weed
  • beet


Looking for supplements for other health reasons, see a complete guide to supplements by health topics here.

2.       What are supplements?

A supplement is a carefully prepared and properly labeled product offered in the form of pills, capsules, or tablets that supplement one's diet and are safe for consumption. It could refer to a vitamin, mineral, or natural extract taken as a pill, capsule, or tablet to meet dietary deficiencies and enhance body function.

Like the word itself suggests, supplements are additions made to cater to deficiencies. The goal with supplements is to deliver to the body essential nutrients that may be insufficient or lacking in the diet.


Supplements may range from plant or food sourced to animal-sourced. They are carefully prepared to cater to the body's requirement of the nutrient they contain.

Common classes of nutrients contained in dietary supplements include amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and fibers, all of which are essential to the proper functioning of the body. Supplements have greatly improved human health, and over 50,000 dietary supplements are now known.

While supplements are not a substitute for healthy diets, they help improve health especially for population groups with specific needs.

  1. How long does it take for collagen supplements to work?

The result time frame for collagen supplements largely depends on what result you're expecting and vary due to various factors. Collagen supplements take anywhere between four weeks to about a year to work their magic. So, if you're taking a collagen supplement and bothered that there are no visible results within the first two weeks. There is no cause for alarm.

Expected Result by Time frame  

  • Skin support: 4-12 weeks
  • Reduced soreness after training: few days (about 2 days)
  • Joint health: 4-6 months
  • Hair: indistinct
  • Nails: 24 weeks
  • Tendon support: 3-6 months when combined with strengthening physical exercises
  • Enhanced muscle mass and strength: 3 months combined with resistance training.
  • Bone health: 12 months


Skin support benefit: 4 to 12 weeks ( likely up to 12 weeks)

Results of a randomized, placebo-controlled blind study show patients had enhanced skin elasticity, improved hydration and density when given collagen supplements. This study recorded significantly better results at 12 weeks.


When using collagen supplements for your skin, you may see visible improvements after a few weeks of use. However, it is best to stick to collagen supplementation for about three months to ensure maximum results.


Relief of soreness after physical training: few days (2 days)

For relief after a strenuous exercise, you should have your expected results by the second day of use. On the other hand, if the goal is enhanced muscle mass, results might take up to 12 weeks. Note that collagen supplements work for enhanced muscle mass when combined with resistance training.


Joint health: 4-6 months

If you're using collagen supplements for joint health support, results may take anywhere between four and six months to show. A study found that participants experienced general enhanced tendon function after three months of collagen supplementation paired with strengthening exercises. Another similar study conducted confirmed improved joint mobility at 12 weeks and reported that the patients had knee-health support at 13 weeks. However, this same study suggests that global joint support will take longer-up to six months.


Bone health: 12 months

Results of collagen supplementation on the bone usually take up to a year due to the physiological timeline for bone turnover and development.


Hair and nail health

There are inadequate pieces of evidence to give a fixed time range for expected collagen supplementation hair results.

For nails, studies show notable results are visible at about 24 weeks.


4. How to take calcium supplements for best absorption?

Calcium is best absorbed when taken in bits as against taking in larger volumes. Do not take more than 500 milligrams of calcium per time. So, if you're required to take 1000 milligrams per day. Have this split over two or more doses in the day to give your body the best absorption.

The best way to take calcium supplements for maximum absorption also depends on the type of calcium supplement. While calcium citrate can be taken with or without food, calcium carbonate should be taken with food for maximum effectiveness. This is because the stomach acid produced while eating helps the body in absorbing calcium carbonate.

Avoid taking calcium supplements with very high fiber meals. Fiber can bind with calcium and reduce the net amount available to the body for use.

Contact your doctor before use if:

  • You have a pre-existing medical condition
  • You're currently taking some medications or other supplements,

Please contact your doctor for possible interactions between your medication and calcium supplements before you go ahead. Also, ask your doctor for the best time to take your calcium supplements for maximum effectiveness and safety, given your medications.  

5. How to take iron supplements for best absorption?

Iron is best taken in the morning on an empty stomach with about an 8-ounce glass of water or with a drink containing vitamin C. This helps your body take in the iron and ensures maximum absorption.

However, if you have a sensitive stomach or iron causes you diarrhea, stomach cramps, or nausea when taken on an empty stomach, you should take your iron supplement after a light meal or small amount of food.

Ensure you avoid high fiber meals and beverages containing caffeine when taking your iron supplement as they may interact with iron and reduce its absorption.

6. What supplements should I take to lose weight?

For fitness and fat loss, consider these supplements:

  • L-carnitine
  • Acetyl L-Carnitine
  • Green tea
  • Fat burner
  • Berberine
  • Omega 3 fish oil
  • Glucomannan
  • Fiber
  • Caffeine
  • Vitamin D
  • Garcinia cambogia
  • BCAA
  • Whey protein
  • CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid)
  • Bitter orange
  • 7-Keto DHEA
  • Amla
  • Caralluma
  • Forskolin
  • White kidney bean extract
  • Red raspberry
  • Appetite-suppressant
  • MCT oil
  • D-limonene
  • Alpha-lipoic acid
  • 5-HTP
  • Guggul
  • Stevia


If you have a pre-existing medical condition, please contact your physician to ascertain the best suitable supplement for you.

7. How to increase oxygen in blood with supplements?

Take iron supplements.

Iron aids in the production of hemoglobin which is responsible for carrying oxygen in the blood. Iron is also a vital element in the production of connective tissues in the body. Hence, iron supplements may help your body produce more hemoglobin and ultimately increase the oxygen in your blood.

In case of low blood oxygen level due to anemia, supplementing for the deficient nutrient helps the body return to its normal function and boost its oxygen level. In this case, get at least the recommended daily intake of vitamin B12 and Folate into your body.

Remember to consult your physician or doctor before taking supplements to boost your blood oxygen level if you have a medical condition relating to your circulatory system.

8. What supplements can I take to lower my A1C level?

Top Supplements you can take to lower your A1C level are cinnamon, ginseng, aloe Vera, probiotics, Berberine, Gymnema, vitamin D, magnesium, alpha-lipoic acid, Chromium.

Other supplements that also help lower A1C levels are Vitamin B1 (Thiamin), Vanadium, bitter melon, Resveratrol, Psyllium Husk, amla, Fenugreek, Acetyl L-Carnitine, inositol, L-Taurine, manganese, vitamin C, Ginseng, propolis, and stevia.

  • Probiotics: probiotic supplements, composed of beneficial microbes and bacteria, are used by many to keep their health in check. Probiotics can boost the body's handling of carbohydrates and have been proven to help manage diabetes. In a study to determine the effect of probiotics on glucose metabolism in patients, it was discovered that consuming probiotics may improve glucose metabolism to a modest degree as the results showed an average of 16-mg/dl decrease in fasting blood sugar and about .53% decrease in A1C as against patients given a placebo. Plus, probiotics are healthy for general consumption, except your immune system is greatly severed, in which case it may lead to an infection. Hence, it is best to contact your doctor before taking probiotics if you have a damaged immune system.
  • Cinnamon: Studies show that cinnamon may help lower blood sugar, reduce the risk of diabetes, and combat diabetes (if already existing) via its insulin-imitating properties. Cinnamon helps by increasing insulin sensitivity in the body. This, in turn, increases efficiency in moving glucose into cells for metabolism. Ultimately, cinnamon lowers fasting blood sugar and may decrease hemoglobin A1C.
  • Aloe Vera: A research on Reduction of Fasting Blood Glucose and Hemoglobin A1c Using Oral Aloe Vera involving nine studies showed a decrease in fasting blood sugar by about 47mg/dl when aloe supplements were used by type 2 diabetes patients for about 4-14 weeks. Hemoglobin a1c was also reduced by 1.05% in these patients. The results obtained from these study supports the use of oral aloe vera to significantly reduce FBG and HbA1c.
  • Magnesium: magnesium functions in insulin action in the body's tissues and plays a role in normal insulin secretion. Little wonder low blood levels of magnesium are common among people who don't have their blood sugar under control. Hence, Magnesium supplements equip the body to secrete insulin as it should.

A review also showed a 3% decrease in fasting blood sugar with each 50mg increase in magnesium for individuals with low blood magnesium levels.

Be careful when taking magnesium supplements as they may interact with other supplements and/or medications.


  • Gymnema: Gymnema may boost cells' uptake of sugar from the blood and has been proven to have a beneficial impact on patients with type 1 diabetes.


A study in which people with type 2 diabetes took 400mg of Gymnema extract daily for 18-20 months recorded a 29% drop in fasting blood sugar. This study also reported a decrease in A1C by about 3.4%.


  • Alpha-lipoic acid

Though it may take a few months, Alpha lipoic acid helps improve insulin sensitivity and boosts the cells' uptake of sugar from the blood. In a study conducted to determine the status of patients with type 2 diabetes following oral administration of alpha-lipoic acid, it was found that the fasting blood sugar and A1C decreased with an increased dose of ALA.


  • Chromium: chromium deficiency hampers the body's ability to metabolize carbohydrates for energy and increases the body's insulin needs. Chromium supplements help compensate for this deficiency and enhance efficient metabolism.

A report considering about 25 studies also states that chromium supplements decreased A1C by around 0.6% in type 2 diabetes patients. The review also reported an average decrease of about 21mg/dl in fasting blood sugar.


9. What supplements should women take?

Popular supplements with women's health benefits are omega 3 fish oil, vitamin C, MSM, women's multivitamins, biotin, black cohosh, soy isoflavones, red clover, chaste berry (vitex), fenugreek, folic acid, inositol, zinc, probiotics, vitamin D, magnesium, vitamin A, folate, vitamin B complex, fiber, lutein, and zeaxanthin.


10. How to increase dopamine with supplements?

Supplements that may help increase your dopamine levels hence boost productivity and brain function are:

  • Fish oil
  • Vitamin D
  • Magnesium
  • Ginseng
  • Ginkgo
  • L-tyrosine
  • Mucuna
  • Omega 3 Fish Oil
  • .Carvacrol.
  • L-theanine.
  • Vitamin D.
  • Probiotics.
  • Saffron extract.
  • Rhodiola Rosea
  • Kava kava

Want a mood boost? See all supplements with mood benefits here.


11. When is it best to take magnesium supplements?

Magnesium supplements can be taken at any time of the day, provided your preferred time allows for consistency. However, if you're taking magnesium supplements to help you sleep better, we recommend that you take your supplements an hour or two before bed.

12. What supplements lower blood pressure?

Magnesium, potassium, vitamin D, CoQ10, garlic, and fish oil are all supplements that can help lower your blood pressure.

13. What supplements help with weight loss?

B vitamins (B-1, B-2, B-3, B-5, B-6, B-7, B-9, B-12), vitamin D, Iron, magnesium, green tea extract boosts your body metabolism hence helping weight loss.

Supplements that work for fat loss include: L-carnitine, acetyl L-Carnitine, green tea, fat burners, berberine, omega 3 fish oil, glucomannan, fiber, caffeine, vitamin D, Garcinia cambogia, BCAA, Whey protein, CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid), bitter orange, 7-Keto DHEA, Amla, Caralluma, forskolin, white kidney bean extract, red raspberry, appetite suppressant, MCT oil, d-limonene, alpha-lipoic acid, 5-HTP, guggul, stevia

Get supplements for fitness and weight loss here.

14. What are zinc supplements good for?

Here are some potential benefits of zinc supplements…


  • Restore normal body zinc level
  • Improve immune function
  • Enhance blood sugar control
  • Combat acne
  • Reduce duration of cold symptoms


  • Improve heart health
  • Accelerate wound healing
  • Decrease inflammation
  • Reduce the risk of age-related diseases
  • Reduce ADHD symptoms in children
  • Slow down macular degeneration
  • Improve hypogeusia
  • Reduce sickle cell disease symptoms and duration

15. When to take supplements chart?




When to take

Recommended daily intake

Alpha-lipoic acid

To reduce  A1C

In divided doses before meals

600-1200 mg


To reduce A1C and fasting blood sugar in diabetic patients

Any time of the day, Take with a meal to boost absorption

250-350 mg


To decrease A1C

Promote cells uptake of sugar from the blood

Twice a day with meals

400 mg


For better sleep

An hour or two before bed


Vitamin C


Any time of the day, take with a meal if gut problems occur when taken on an empty stomach

Men : 90 mg

Women: 75 mg

Folic acid

Prenatal health


may be taken with a meal to reduce the risk of nausea

0.4-0.8 mg

Vitamin B complex


Morning or after waking up

Women: 425mg

Men : 550 mg

Thiamin (B-1)

For adult health

Morning or after waking

1.2 mg

Riboflavin (B-2)

For adult health

Morning or after waking up

1.3 mg

Niacin (B-3)

For adult health

Morning or after waking

Men : 16mg

Women : 14 mg

Vitamin B-6

For adult health

Morning or after waking

Men between 19-50 years: 1.3 mg

Men above 50 years: 1.7 mg

Women between 19-50 years: 1.3 mg

Women above 50 years: 1.5 mg

Pantothenic acid (B-5)

For adult health

Morning or after waking

5 mg


For adult health

Morning or after waking

400 mcg


For adult health

Morning or after waking

30 mcg

Vitamin B-12

For adult health

Morning or after waking

2.3 mcg

Thiamin (B-1)

For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

1.4 mg

Riboflavin (B-2)

For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

1.6 mg

Niacin (B-3)

For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

18 mg

Vitamin B-6

For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

2 mg

Pantothenic acid (B-5)

For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

7 mg


For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

600 mcg or equivalent


For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

35 mcg

Vitamin B-12

For the pregnant or breastfeeding woman

Morning or after waking

2.8 mcg


For bone health and high blood pressure control

Calcium citrate: on empty stomach or with food

Calcium carbonate: take with food

Age 19-50 years: 1000 mg

Women above 50: 1200 mg

Men above 70: 1200 mg




Age 19-50 years: 2300 mg

Age 50-70 years: 2000 mg

Above 70 years: 1800 mg




150 mcg




Men : 8mg

Women between 19-50 years: 18 mg

Women above 50: 8 mg




Men between 19-30 years: 400mg

Men above 30 years: 420 mg

Women between 19-30 years: 310 mg

Women above 30 years: 320 mg




Men : 2.3 mg

Women: 1.8 mg




55 mcg

Vitamin A


Take alongside meal

Men : 900 mcg

Women : 700 mcg

Vitamin D (calciferol)


Take alongside meal

Less than 70 years: 15 mcg

70 and older: 20 mcg 

Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)


Take alongside meal


Vitamin K


Take alongside meal





Men : 11mg

Women : 8mg




19-50 years : 1500 mg

51-70 years : 1300 mg

Above 70 years : 1200 mg


16.What supplements should not be taken with thyroid medication?

Supplements that contain iron, calcium, or magnesium should not be taken with thyroid medications.

We suggest that you stay away from supplements that contain iron, calcium, or magnesium for a minimum of four hours after using your thyroid medications. You should also avoid multivitamins that contain these elements or minerals. 



Another vital supplement to stay away from is biotin. While biotin doesn’t affect the effectiveness and absorption of your thyroid medications, it may interfere with thyroid testing and tamper with the perceived results. It is recommended that you stop the use of biotin 1-2 weeks before your thyroid blood test as biotin can meddle with the accuracy of the test. 



If you take iodine supplements too, it will be a great decision to watch your iodine intake and ensure you're not going beyond the prescribed intake amount for you. You must do this because excess iodine may cause undesirable levothyroxine interactions.


It’s always best that you speak to your endocrinologist or doctor so that you can find out about supplements that may be unsuitable for you, given your health conditions. 



When taking thyroid medications, watch your fiber intake. While the consumption of an adequate amount of fiber is healthy, one must be careful when taking thyroid medications. This is because fiber may interfere with the rate of absorption of your thyroid medication reducing the body’s ability to absorb it.

A diet rich in high-quality fiber is great. However, if you’ve recently adjusted your diet to include more fiber or you now take fiber supplements, you should talk to your health care service provider to find out necessary adjustments that may be needed to manage your diet change. A probable change is adequately spacing out your mealtime from when you take your thyroid medications to allow your body to make the most of the two. Still, it is best to find out from your endocrinologist what’s best for you. 


Here are some things you should not do when taking a thyroid medication

  • Do not take levothyroxine with food. 

Levothyroxine is ideally taken on an empty stomach at least thirty minutes before meals. Taking levothyroxine with a meal reduces the body’s absorption of the thyroid medication and may affect its effectiveness.

  • Do not take coffee with thyroid medication

Leave a time-space of at least an hour between your thyroid medications and your morning coffee. Coffee decreases the body’s absorption of thyroid medications 

  • Do not take iron, calcium, or magnesium supplements with your thyroid medications 
  • Remember not to carry out a thyroid blood test when taking biotin as you risk obtaining inaccurate results.

Common medications that interact with levothyroxine include:

  • Esomeprazole (Nexium)
  • Pantoprazole (Protonix)
  • Calcium carbonate
  • Aluminum containing antacids
  • Raloxifene
  • Sevelamer
  • Cholestyramine
  • Orlistat
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Iron supplements
  • Sucralfate
  • Rifampin
  • Carbamazepine
  • Phenytoin
  • Fluoxetine
  • Omeprazole (Prilosec)
  • Ranitidine
  • Pantoprazole
  • Fosphenytoin
  • Amitriptyline 

Please note that no interactions were found between certain drugs and thyroid medications. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean there are absolutely no interactions whatsoever between them. Hence, always consult your healthcare service provider before taking another medication or supplement with your thyroid medications.

17. How to lower estrogen levels with supplements?

Estrogen detox supplements include: 

  • Omega 3
  • N-Acetyl Cysteine
  • Ginger
  • Antioxidants
  • Curcumin
  • Dandelion root
  • Spirulina
  • Chlorella
  • Milk thistle
  • Methylated B vitamins
  • Calcium D glutarate
  • Indole-3-carbinol
  • Sulforaphane
  • DIM Diindolylmethane 

18. What are dietary supplements?

Dietary supplements are products specially prepared to supplement the diet. Dietary supplements are not intended to diagnose, suppress or treat ailments however this may be a by-product of their use. They are not prepared to treat or improve any disease condition. They only supply needed nutrients to your body and reduce the risk of encountering health problems that may result should a deficiency occur. 

While these supplements may help impede the occurrence of opportunistic health conditions, they are not made to treat them. Dietary supplements may come in various forms. They may be Tablets, Capsules, Powders, Pills, Gel capsules, or Extracts. There are even liquid dietary supplements. 

Certain dietary supplements may improve your overall health and help with managing some health conditions but remember they are designed to be used as medications or as alternatives to medications. 

Dietary supplement products come with a supplement fact label. This label entails the active ingredients present in the product, its dosage (i.e. the amount present per serving of the product), and also highlights other ingredients present in the product. You should ensure that you read the fact label when purchasing a diet supplement. 

Products such as multivitamins, garlic tablets, fish oil capsules, are common examples of dietary supplements.

19. How to take zinc supplements?


Zinc supplements are best taken at least 1-2 hours after meals. This ensures effective absorption. Nonetheless, if taking zinc supplements this way brings you stomach upsets, you can take them with meals. Just ensure you speak to your doctor or health care provider before taking zinc supplements with meals. 



The recommended dose for zinc supplements will vary from person to person depending on your age, health state, and vital signs. 


A summary of the recommended dietary allowance for zinc is given below. If you find discrepancies between RDA given below and your doctor's prescription, ensure you follow your doctor's prescription. This is best because your doctor’s prescription was specifically made for you after putting all key factors into consideration.


Recommended Dietary Allowance table for zinc




0-6 months

Adequate intake : 2mg per day

Adequate intake :2 mg per day

7-12 months

3 mg per day

3 mg per day

1-3 years

3 mg per day

3 mg per day

4-8 years

5 mg per day

5 mg per day

9-13 years

8 mg per day

8 mg per day

14-18 years

11 mg per day

9 mg per day

12 mg per day if pregnant

13 mg per day if breastfeeding

19 years and above

11 mg per day

8 mg per day

11 mg per day if pregnant

12 mg per day if breastfeeding


What is RDA?

RDA stands for the recommended dietary allowance. RDA refers to the average daily level of intake of a mineral or vitamin sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of virtually all healthy individuals (i.e. about 97%-98%).  


Adequate intake

Adequate intake is the intake amount of a mineral or vitamin assumed to guarantee nutritional adequacy. It is a measure often used when there is insufficient evidence to establish RDA. 


Please note: When using zinc supplements to address zinc deficiency, the prescription is completely dependent on the state of the individual and the severity of the deficiency. Hence, the suitable intake amounts can only be determined by the prescriber or health care provider. 

20. Why protein supplements?

Protein is key to the proper functioning of the body and is crucial in every organ of the body. Potential benefits of taking protein supplements include:

  • Muscle Growth

Protein is vital for muscle growth. Little wonder many athletes take consume protein shakes or take protein supplements to enhance muscle mass. A 2018 analysis supports this use of protein supplements. The research suggested that protein supplementation yields significant improvement of muscle size and strength in healthy adults when it is combined with resistance training. 

  • Weight Management

Taking protein-rich meals or protein supplements may help you feel fuller for longer. This in turn means that you need not give in to hunger cravings by consuming unhealthy junk that may result in unwanted weight over time.  

A review also concludes that whey protein supplementation may reduce body weight and fat mass in obese or overweight individuals. Whey protein supplementation may also lower cardiovascular risk factors in overweight and obese patients. 

  • After-Exercise Recovery

Protein supplements do not only help in building muscle mass. They also aid recovery from soreness after strenuous training or physical exercise. Hence, athletes and gym enthusiasts may use protein supplements to quicken recovery after a workout session. 

A report on the Effect of Timing of whey protein supplement on muscle damage markers after eccentric exercise supports this use of protein supplements shows that protein supplements can contribute to after-training recovery by: 

  • Reducing muscle damage
  • Enhancing muscle performance
  • Boosting muscle protein synthesis 

This study also found that the timing of the whey protein supplements did not affect the above benefits in any way.

  • Improved Nutrition

The recommended daily intake of protein for adult males is 56 g while it is 46g for adult women. 

Anyone finding it difficult to meet this recommended daily Intake may easily do so by taking protein supplements. Protein supplements are an easy, convenient go-to source of high-quality protein. 

  • Bone Density Improvement

As we grow, our bones do the same. Over time we begin to lose bone density as we age. Protein supplementation could help supply your body with sufficient protein helping cells responsible for bone tissue formation.

Pair protein supplementation with adequate exercise and you need not worry about having an unhealthy bone density. 


Protein supplements may be particularly useful for:

  • A growing teenager who requires protein for growth and physical activities
  • An individual new to fitness trainings and about to start a fitness program
  • A person recovering from an injury (e.g. sports injury)
  • A person raising his/her workout intensity 
  • Someone going vegan: going vegan means that you may be cutting back on some diets that normally supply protein to your body. This cutback may be compensated for with protein supplements. 

21. What supplements cause hair loss?

Over supplementation of selenium, vitamin A and vitamin E have been linked to hair loss.

Nutritional deficiencies may also affect both hair growth and hair form. Here are some deficiencies that may result in hair loss:

  • Iron Deficiency

The world’s most common nutritional deficiency is iron deficiency. Unfortunately, it is also a renowned cause of hair loss. 

Iron is key to hemoglobin production in the body. And, hemoglobin is essential to the supply of oxygen and required nutrients to hair follicles. Hence, iron deficiency in the body may impede healthy hair growth. 

  • Zinc Deficiency

Zinc plays a key role in ensuring that the glands surrounding hair follicles work efficiently. It is also vital to healthy hair tissue growth and tissue repair. Hence, zinc deficiency may result in hair loss. In fact, hair loss is a common symptom of this deficiency. 

  • Vitamin D Deficiency 

Vitamin D deficiency may cause hair thinning and impede the hair’s overall growth. Some research also shows low vitamin D levels are linked to alopecia.


Top vitamins for improving hair growth are:

  • Vitamin A: Required by the hair to grow and remain moisturized
  • B Vitamins: Required to carry oxygen and nutrients to the scalp for hair growth. 
  • Vitamin C: Required for collagen production which gives anti-aging hair properties. 
  • Vitamin D: Aids hair growth regulation and prevents hair shedding 
  • Vitamin E: Required to relieve oxidative stress and boost growth
  • Iron: Needed to help red blood cells carry oxygen to hair follicles
  • Zinc: Essential for hair tissue growth and repair. 

22. What supplements should I take daily?

Here are the top 9 vitamins suitable to be taken daily. 

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K
  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Zinc

These supplements are suitable for general health. Nonetheless, ensure you might need to check in with your doctor if you have a deficiency, a pre-existing condition, or intend to take them with other supplements or medications. 

  1. What supplements should I take to gain muscle?

Great supplements to gain muscle are creatine, protein supplements, weight gainers, beta-alanine, carnosine, BCAAs, Beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate (HMB), and carnitine. 


  • Creatine

Creatine is a naturally produced compound in the body. It is usually produced in the liver, kidneys, and pancreas. Once produced, creatine is stored in muscles throughout the body. Creatine boosts the function of several body parts and seems to play a key role in determining physical appearance and muscle tone. 

Creatine supplementation may bring about muscle mass enhancement. A review of 22 studies supports this as studies found that creatine supplementation improved the maximum weight participants could lift by about 8%. How many times they could lift weights were also improved by about 14%.

By improving performance and supporting muscle growth, creatine may help you gain muscle.  

  • Protein Supplements

Protein is important for many functions in the body including muscle growth. Resistance exercise may damage muscle cells. Proteins help the repair of these muscle tissues. Dietary protein supplementation may significantly improve muscle health, strength, and growth. 

  • Weight Gainers

Weight gainers are supplements specially prepared to help you easily take in more calories and protein at a go. 

Weight gainers are a great option for increasing muscle mass if you’re looking to gain muscle but find it somewhat difficult to eat enough food. Or otherwise put, you’d rather have a bottle of weight gainer shake than consume a meal that’ll supply you with the equivalent amount of calorie contained in the shake.

  • Beta Alanine or Carnosine

Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid that produces carnosine in the body with the help of histidine. The carnosine produced is then stored in skeletal muscles. 

Carnosine may improve athletic performance by decreasing lactic acid accumulation in the muscle tissues. 

Beta-alanine aids athletic performance by:

  • Reducing body fatigue
  • Raising endurance
  • Improving performance in HIIT 

Summarily, beta-alanine may help you exercise better for longer. 

A study on the effect of beta-alanine supplementation on performance and body composition in collegiate wrestlers and football players also revealed that taking 4 g of beta-alanine daily for eight weeks resulted in increased lean body mass. 

  • Branched-Chain Amino Acids 

Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are essential for muscle growth and health. BCAAs are made up of three essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine, and valine amino acids; and they collectively make up about 14% of the total amino acids present in muscles. 

BCAA supplements would be highly beneficial for you if you’re unable to consume diets rich in high-quality protein. In which case, they may improve muscle growth and reduce muscle loss in the body. 

  • HMB (Beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate)

HMB is a compound that is naturally present in the body and is responsible for reducing the breakdown of muscle proteins. Taking beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate supplements may help you increase HMB levels hence enhancing its function. 

  • Glutamine

Though essential for the body, research does not show significant evidence that glutamine increases or improves muscle gain in young and middle-aged active adults. However, glutamine supplementation has been proven to have some muscle mass benefits for the elderly. 

  • Carnitine

Carnitine improves muscle mass health in elderly individuals. However, it has not been found particularly effective for enhancing muscle mass in young active adults and middle-aged. 

24. What are BCAAs supplements?

BCAAs supplements refer to branched-chain amino acids supplements. The branched-chain amino acids are leucine, isoleucine, and valine. These are essential amino acids i.e. they are not produced naturally in the body hence they have to be supplied in the consumed diet. 

BCAA supplements are often taken to enhance muscle growth and improve exercise or athletic performance. BCAAs supplements may also be taken to relieve fatigue after a strenuous exercise as well as to help with weight loss. 

Here are some proven benefits of BCAAs:

  • Boost muscle growth
  • Reduce muscle soreness
  • Decrease exercise fatigue
  • Prevent muscle wasting
  • Improve health in people with liver disease
  1. What supplements should vegans take?

You should incorporate the following supplements into your diet if you’re vegan

  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D
  • Long-chain omega 3s
  • Iron
  • Calcium
  • Zinc
  • Iodine 
  • Vitamin K-2
  • What supplements does Joe Rogan take?

Joe Rogan takes vitamin supplements, probiotics, omega 3, fish oil, omega 6, MCT oil, creatine, spirulina, glucosamine chondroitin, chlorella, zinc, shrooms, nootropics, electrolytes, neuro gum, quercetin, alpha brain, and protein supplements. 

27. How long does it take for calcium supplements to work?

Calcium is pivotal to bone health in man. The bone in the skeletal system is a living tissue hence it is constantly remodeled and old ones are resorbed. However, it may take up to 10 years for complete bone renewal.  

28. How many supplements can I take at once? 

You can take multiple supplements at once provided:

  • You’re not using supplements as a replacement for healthy diets
  • The supplements you intend to take together do not have any adverse interactions
  • You’ve checked with your doctor and he has confirmed them safe for use as a duo or trio.
  • You know your prescriptions and you’re sticking to it
  • You’re not going over the upper allowance intake for the mineral you’re supplementing for. 

Whatever supplement combo allows you to check all of these boxes is fine. However, note that taking too many supplements at a time may reduce their absorption and effectiveness. 

29. What vitamins and supplements should not be taken together?

Vitamins and supplements that have negative interactions when paired should not be taken together. 


Vitamin Combinations to Avoid 

  • Vitamin C with Vitamin B-12

Both vitamins are key to the proper functioning of the body. However, studies show that taking vitamin C with vitamin B-12 may reduce the body’s absorption of vitamin B-12 as the former may break down vitamin B12 in your digestive tract. We recommend that they be taken at least two hours apart. 


Vitamin A with Vitamin A-Rich Meals

Again, vitamin A is highly beneficial to the body. But never forget that there is a recommended daily intake for every vitamin and mineral. You should not go beyond the upper allowance intake for the vitamin you're supplementing for. Consuming diets with high vitamin A content during vitamin A supplementation puts you at risk of overdosing with vitamin A. And, vitamin A overdose may negatively impact your bone density and structure as you age. 


Vitamin E and Vitamin K

While vitamin E supplementation is known to increase bleeding in some people, vitamin K supplements are often prescribed by health care providers to aid blood clotting. Taking vitamin E and K at the same time may result in one vitamin canceling out the influence or effect of the other as they seem to be at the extreme ends of a vital function.  

If you intend to take these vitamin supplements together, please speak to your doctor first to be sure it is safe for you and will not worsen your health condition. If they are both prescribed to you by your doctor, ensure you find out the best time to use them to ensure the maximum absorption of both. 


Copper and Zinc Supplements 

No doubt, copper and zinc are both key elements that play pivotal roles in the body. However, taking these supplements simultaneously may leave them both competing for absorption in your digestive system. Ultimately the absorption of one is impaired by the other. We recommended that you leave a minimum time-space of two hours when taking these two supplements. 


Calcium with Zinc, Magnesium, or Iron

Calcium is essential for bone and tooth health. However, it may interfere with the rate of absorption of other minerals such as magnesium, zinc, and iron. Before taking this supplement combo, ensure you talk to your doctor to find out the best timing perfect to ensure utmost absorption a well as avoid harmful interactions. 


Vitamins D, E & K

The body’s absorption of vitamin K is reduced in the presence of other fat-soluble vitamins. That is, while taking these vitamin supplements together may not necessarily pose an enormous health risk, it is not advisable as the body is unable to absorb them maximally. 


Fish Oil and Gingko Biloba

Omega 3 fish oil is known as a great supplement for cardiovascular health and ginkgo is amazing for improving cognitive function. Nonetheless, it is advised that these two supplements never be taken together to prevent excessive bleeding as they both possess blood-thinning properties. 


Iron and Green Tea

Green tea is known to offer many health benefits and is frequently used by individuals for fitness and weight loss. Iron, on the other hand, preserves many vital functions in the body. Hence, it is easy to think that these two will make a great duo when combined. However, iron supplements and green tea counteract each other when taken together.

Iron may reduce the efficiency of green tea, while, green tea may also cause iron deficiency. If you’re required to take both supplements we suggest using them alternately i.e. stay away from green tea on days you take your iron supplements. 

If you want more detailed advice that suits your health needs? Please contact your doctor to investigate the safety of this supplement combination for you and also find out how best to use them.                          

30. What supplements are good for rheumatoid arthritis?

Here are supplements that are good for rheumatoid arthritis:

  • SAM-E 
  • Boswellia serrate
  • Capsicum frutescens
  • Turmeric
  • Curcumin
  • Avocado-soybean unsaponifiable (ASU)
  • Uncaria tomentosa
  • Fish oil
  • Omega 3 fatty acids
  • DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) 
  • Gamma linolenic acid (GLA)
  • Ginger
  • Vitamin D


31. How many supplements is too much?

The key is to check that you do not go beyond the recommended daily intake of the minerals and vitamins contained in your supplement. While taking more than one supplement during a certain period might be good for a unique health state at the time, taking too many supplements at a time may reduce their effectiveness. This is because some interactions may occur and certain minerals may reduce the absorption of others. 

If you have to take more than one supplement at a time, please consult your health care provider to ascertain that the supplements you intend to take together may not be harmful to your health when taken simultaneously. Your doctor may also give you additional information on when to take each of these supplements for maximum absorption. 

You may be surprised by the level of interaction between minerals and vitamins you’d normally think should augment one another. 

For vitamins, here are some key things to note…

  • Vitamin E: vitamin E is great for reducing macular degeneration and for managing heart diseases. It also offers a couple of other essential health benefits. However, ensure that you do not exceed the recommended daily intake or your prescribed intake amount for any vitamin regardless of how beneficial it is. The upper tolerable level of intake for vitamin E is 1,000mg daily
  • Vitamin B-6: vitamin B is a water-soluble vitamin hence it may be excreted with urine if taken in excess. Nonetheless, it is safe that you consume only the recommended daily intake or take it as prescribed by your health care provider. The upper tolerable limit for vitamin B-6 intake is 100mg per day. Vitamin B-6 when taken in high doses that go beyond the tolerable limit may cause temporary nerve damage in individuals.
  • Vitamin C: pretty easy to assess and consume, one can easily take in 5000 milligrams of vitamin C in a day. Some even take more, close to 10,000mg. The upper tolerable limit for vitamin C intake is 2,000mg. This means that you shouldn’t take beyond this amount daily. At best, stick to the amount prescribed by your doctor or the recommended daily intake for your population group.

Can excess vitamin C cause you any harm? Well, yes. 

Excess consumption of vitamin C may increase the risk of kidney stones in people prone to this disease. Going beyond the upper tolerable limit of vitamin C may also cause diarrhea and bring about symptoms of food poisoning. 

Remember, it is always best to stick to your health provider’s prescription no matter how simple or safe you think a vitamin or mineral is.

Vitamin A: yes vitamin A is great. It may:

  • Improve your bone health
  • Promote healthy growth and reproduction
  • Boost your immune system
  • Protect your eye from age-related deterioration
  • Aid your bone health.

Nonetheless, it should only be consumed in certain amounts. The upper tolerable limit of vitamin A for adults is 10,000 IU (3000 mcg). 

Vitamins are great for the body but it is never a great idea to overdose on them. Unsure what amounts you should take? Please check in with your health service provider to ensure your maximum health and safety. Also, remember to read food labels to avoid going overboard with minerals and vitamins.