Health : when is the best time to take them?
Many people take vitamins and minerals sometimes to combat certain deficiencies. There is no scientific evidence to suggest that taking vitamins and minerals at a specific time of the day would increase their effectiveness. But the most important thing is to take vitamins and minerals regularly.
Is there a good time to take your vitamins and minerals?
On the other hand, taking vitamins and minerals at specific times of the day can reduce the risk of side effects. For example, depending on the type of vitamin you take, taking them while eating can boost the amount the body absorbs and improve its overall health impact. In this article, we will explain the ideal circumstances in which to take the different vitamins and minerals.
When is the right time to take vitamins and minerals?
Is scheduling important for vitamins?
Different vitamins work in different ways. This means that certain vitamins and minerals have special considerations regarding how you should take them and whether or not you can take them during meals.
It is important to know that vitamins and minerals cannot replace healthy eating
Even though there is some scientific research with recommendations on how to avoid side effects, science doesn’t usually have specific recommendations that say to take the vitamins at a specific time of the day.
It is more important for people who take vitamins and minerals not to stop during the intake period and especially if the goal is to combat deficiencies of these vitamins.
In general, it is better to completely avoid supplements and take enough vitamins and minerals from a healthy diet. However, when supplements are needed, you should be able to include them in your schedule easily. The schedule for taking supplements can usually be very flexible.
The human body does not naturally produce and store water-soluble vitamins. We still need to consume these vitamins from animal, plant sources and sometimes from food supplements. One type of water-soluble vitamins are vitamin C and vitamin B.
Vitamin C is safe to take in the recommended doses at all times of the day. It is found naturally in a wide variety of plant products including orange juice, grapefruit and lemons. The body does not store vitamin C, so you should ideally take it regularly in small doses throughout the day.
When to take vitamin B?
Often people tend to take vitamin B to boost their energy and reduce stress. There are eight different types of vitamin B and each type has separate functions for the body. These types are: thiamine, riboflavin, vitamin B6, niacin, biotin, vitamin B12, folic acid and l’pantothenic acid.
It is generally safe to take several B vitamins at the same time. Some brands of vitamins and minerals also offer complex vitamins that are combinations of the recommended daily dose for each vitamin B.
Thanks to its energy-boosting capabilities, the best time to take vitamin B is after waking up. Also, recent scientific research indicates that vitamin B6 can potentially interfere with sleep and induce vivid dreams. So to avoid these side effects, you should try to take B vitamins early in the day. Even though B vitamins are safe to consume, it’s still more beneficial to try to get these nutrients from food sources.
Fat-soluble vitamins are needed in small doses for the body. However, taking very large doses of fat-soluble vitamins and minerals can be dangerous and even toxic to the body. Leather food does not get rid of their fat-soluble vitamins. Generally, a person can get all the necessary fat-soluble vitamins from the diet and does not need to supplement them. The fat-soluble vitamins are: vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E and vitamin K.
The fat-soluble vitamins dissolve in oil. It is for this reason that people who need to take fat-soluble vitamin supplements should take them with meals to improve their absorption. However, the majority of people who eat a balanced diet with a wide variety of different nutrients will not need fat-soluble vitamin supplements.
It is recommended that women considering pregnancy take between 0.4 and 0.8 mg of folic acid daily a few months before conception. It is also advised that these women should take prenatal vitamins daily and especially folic acid. Prenatal vitamins that combine folic acid with other nutrients such as iron and calcium also exist.
- Considerations: Taking prenatal vitamins on an empty stomach can cause indigestion and nausea, according to a review in 2019. If a prenatal vitamin increases the feeling of nausea, you can take it with a small amount of food.
Although the review notes that this does not happen often, taking prenatal vitamins while eating can reduce the risk of nausea. There are a wide variety of prenatal vitamins and you need to be careful when choosing which vitamins you are going to take. Even though the vitamins seem similar at first glance, each vitamin contains different amounts of nutrients and ingredients. Before you start taking prenatal vitamins, you should ask your doctor for suggestions. It is possible to consume too many vitamins and this can cause side effects for you and the baby. You should never take double doses of these vitamins!
Other vitamins and minerals
The human body needs both vitamins and minerals to function. As with vitamins, minerals are available without a medical prescription. Much has been said about the health benefits of minerals. Some examples of minerals are: iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc.
You should always be very careful before taking mineral supplements. These supplements can have beneficial effects and especially for those with nutritional deficiencies, but a lot of scientific research is only observational and laboratory studies are inconclusive.
It is also possible to consume too many minerals and this can have negative effects. You must take minerals daily with food. Taking supplements without food can cause side effects such as stomach problems.
Do you need to take supplements?
There is more and more scientific research indicating that taking vitamins and minerals has no beneficial or side effects for most people who take them regularly. For example, a 2019 prospective study found no association between taking dietary supplements and reducing the overall risk of mortality.
You should always take vitamins with care because these vitamins can have unintended consequences if you combine them with over-the-counter medications. There are certain vitamins like vitamin E and beta-carotene which can be harmful or even fatal if taken in excess.
Women must be very careful when choosing their supplements during pregnancy. For example, according to a 2019 literature review, high levels of vitamin A can cause birth defects. However, in the form of beta carotene, scientific studies have not found a connection between taking supplements and side effects. Folic acid, in particular, can help the development of the fetus and prevent spina bifida.
Experts suggest that the best way to get vitamins is not from dietary supplements. They recommend that people should eat nutrient-dense foods such as kale, spinach, nuts, fruits and lean meats.
A balanced diet appears to be the key to good health, not dietary supplements. That said, you should take multivitamins if you have deficiencies to help supplement your diet. There are also very few scientific studies supporting supplements for the prevention of heart disease, according to a 2016 study review.
However, the majority of vitamins have no side effects for the majority of people.
Risks and considerations
You should be very careful when choosing your vitamin and mineral supplements. Caution is necessary because the link between claims of efficacy and current benefits can vary widely. Many vitamins and minerals can also be harmful if taken in excess. Certain vitamins can also interact with certain medications.
There is little evidence from independent scientific studies to suggest that vitamin and mineral supplements have significant effects on general health. The time of day when you take your supplements can rarely make a difference other than reducing the risk of some rare side effects from B vitamins.
If you need to take vitamins to combat your deficiencies or during pregnancy, you should take them while eating for better absorption of these vitamins. Before you start taking vitamin and mineral supplements, you need to consult your doctor to make sure it will be right for you. You should always try to take vitamins and minerals from your diet first.