Thursday, November 11, 2010

Which Vitamins When?
This list has been around for a while but apparently it's never been posted here on my blog. I pulled it from my OH profile (it's also in my protein book) -- and I'm getting it over here for quick reference too.

These are the basic interaction rules when figuring out when to take your vitamins:

Calcium and Vitamin D are Friends --- take them together, they help each other absorb better. Your body can only deal with 500mg at a time, so split up your doses into 3 or 4 doses per day to reach your 1500-2000mg daily goal. Calcium tends to absorb better when taken with a meal, so schedule it that way if you can.

Iron and Vitamin C are Friends --- Iron needs an acid environment to break down and Vitamin C does that job so make sure they are in your tummy at the same time. Iron does not like food, so take it on an empty stomach. However, if you get an upset tummy because of the iron, pick a non-dairy snack.

Iron and Calcium are Enemies --- iron and calcium fight for the same cell receptors in the body and calcium is bigger and badder and always wins. Which means the iron is simply excreted from the body and not used at all. Keep iron and calcium at least 2 hours apart from each other.

Vitamin B's are a Family --- they work together as a team and are best taken at the same time. Your Multi-Vitamin has many B's in it, so take it together with your biotin, B12 and B-complex if you're taking those too.



  1. How about magnesium? I've seen some calcium supplements with these so I thought that they also helped with calcium absorption.
    I never knew that about Iron and Vit C and calcium though. I had to take them both when I was having my daughters, I hope I knew this back then.

  2. Magnesium does help with calcium absorption. Dosing is typically 2:1 -- so 1000mg calcium per day would need 500mg magnesium. But don't start out at the maximum dose. You should calculate what's in your multi-vitamin and then add 100mg magnesium at a time, slowly over the course of a couple weeks. Too much calcium can cause loose stool -- so you want keep adding magnesium until you know when it's time to back off a bit. So even though the ideal ratio is 2:1, each body is different so you need to find out what yours is up to that max threshold.

  3. Great article! Looking more into vitamins. I use the garden of life brand. I take a multi, d, and k complex together. I want to start a b complex, is it ok to take them all together?

  4. @Anonymous - you can take your Vitamin B Complex with your other vitamins, it doesn't interact with anything else.


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