How to Make the Most of Your Vitamins

A collection of multivitamins.
How to Make the Most of Your Vitamins

While a balanced diet can go a long way in helping you reach all your nutritional goals, taking a daily vitamin, supplement, or multivitamin can help you bridge the gap. A doctor or a Los Angeles pharmacist may even recommend that you take supplements as part of helping treat a condition. Certain stages of life or lifestyles can make you more susceptible to a vitamin or mineral deficiency, such as pregnancy, a vegan diet, or a health condition. The most common nutritional deficiencies seen in Americans today are:

  • Magnesium
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin C

Although these vitamins can be easily found in over the counter supplements, it’s important to continue to eat a balanced diet. Supplemental vitamins lack the fiber, phytonutrients, and antioxidants found in whole fruits and vegetables.

Over the counter vitamins and supplements can be expensive, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting the most out of your purchases. In today’s blog we’ll go over a few ways that you can make sure you’re getting the most nutritional value out of your vitamins.

Lowering Acidity

Higher than usual acidity in your body can interfere with your body’s ability to absorb nutrients from both food and supplements, as well as increasing your risk of various health problems. Testing your pH, or acidity levels, is simple. Pharmacies or health food stores often sell pH testing strips that you can use to test your saliva, which should be done first thing in the morning. Match the resulting color to the guide on the package to see your pH. Vegetables, soy, nuts, and dairy are all good ways to lower your body’s pH, which should ideally be around 7.2.

Check the Label

Checking the label is important for anything you put in your body, from food to over the counter supplements. Certain phrases on the label of a supplement can help you find out if it’s the best kind for you. Supplements are often available in multiple forms, but capsules are generally the most easily absorbed. Looking closely at a label can also help you avoid any unwanted ingredients. Lower-quality supplements may include binders, artificial colorings, fillers, sugar, or other unnecessary ingredients. These can sometimes cause digestive discomfort, and looking at the full ingredient list is especially important for those with food allergies or sensitivities. 

Speak With a Pharmacist

Before stocking your medicine cabinet with an array of supplements, it’s important to figure out exactly what you need. Taking supplements for vitamins and minerals you already get through your regular diet is unnecessary, and they’ll simply pass through your body. Speak with your doctor or a pharmacist at a Los Angeles specialty pharmacy, and they can help you understand which vitamins you’re most likely to be missing out on. A blood test can help determine levels of vitamin D and iron, too.

It’s also important to speak with a medical professional because some supplements may interfere with medication. Calcium, for example, can disrupt the effectiveness of commonly prescribed thyroid medication. If you take over the counter or prescription medication regularly, be sure to contact your doctor or pharmacist to ensure there won’t be any interference.