A Beginner's Guide to Supplements

We’ve all seen those super cute packets of made-for-you supplements on our Instagram feeds and in our fave influencers’ vlogs. They arrive at your doorstep decorated with your name and a fun fact and inside are the capsules that promise to take all of your troubles away. Iron deficient? A few milligrams of iron are enclosed in your baggies. Looking to promote a healthy immune system? There’s a handful of botanicals to choose from. 


Although these aesthetically pleasing products promise to offer your body just the right amount of vitamins and minerals missing from your diet, are they actually worth the hype? Perhaps you’ve never even taken a gummy multivitamin before and have no idea what I’m talking about! If so, this article is for you—today we’re debunking all your supplement inquiries.


According to WedMD, most people in good health don’t always need to take supplements. One reason young people might be persuaded by their doctor to take a multivitamin supplement is that their diets might not be diverse enough. For example, vegans and vegetarians are encouraged to take a B12 supplement since the only edible source of the vitamin is meat. If you have a health condition, such as celiac disease, liver disease or IBS, your body has trouble absorbing vitamins and minerals, so taking a multivitamin gummy or a few capsules in the morning won’t hurt.


Jerlyn Jones, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, said that in recent years, Americans have started to see some deficiencies in the following vitamins and minerals: vitamin D, calcium, potassium, magnesium and iron. Did you know that if you live in the northern part of the United States, it’s likely that you’re naturally deficient in vitamin D? If you begin to notice some changes in your body, then talk to your doctor about getting a blood test—that way you can figure out which vitamins and minerals are missing from your diet!


Taking supplements has become a wildly common habit incorporated into peoples’ morning and/or night routines (That’s right! Some are best absorbed at night for a great sleep.). But, keep in mind that not all supplements are necessary to take for your well-being, and some lack research behind their claims. It’s also possible to go over the recommended Daily Value, or you still might not be getting enough by just taking one capsule! That’s why it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider, even if you want to hop on the supplement subscription train like everyone on YouTube and Instagram.


I’m no certified healthcare professional, so I’m not going to give you a list of supplements to buy at CVS or Duane Reade. Talk to your primary care physician if you want to know which supplements are the right ones for your body! Once you do, look into getting your daily supplements shipped to you for ease and convenience! There are so many companies to choose from: Nurish by Nature Made, Care/of, Ritual and Seed. For more information (that’s backed up by the pros) check out the index here.