Originally published July 21 2009
Learn the Best Time of Day to Take Vitamins
by Melanie Grimes
(NaturalNews) The body performs different functions at different times of the day. Many people suggest adding food supplements at varied times of the day to accommodate for the digestion and assimilation of these nutrients.
At night, many suggest taking calcium. This is because calcium is utilized at night, and also because calcium can help you get to sleep when taken at bed time. Remember the adage of a glass of milk before bed? Calcium absorption is the reason this makes sense. Magnesium is needed to work hand-in-hand with calcium. Many people take magnesium along with calcium, in the same supplements, at bedtime, although some suggest that magnesium is best absorbed in the day time. If the calcium supplement contains magnesium, taking both at the same time is appropriate.
Many vitamins are best ingested with food, so taking them at meal time is advised. It's easy to remember to take vitamins with meals, since you are eating and drinking at that time, anyway.
Fat-soluble vitamins need fat in order to be absorbed, so they should always be taken with meals that contain fat. Fat-soluble vitamins include vitamins A, vitamin D, vitamin E and vitamin K.
Vitamin C lasts only a few hours in the bloodstream. It should be repeated every three hours for best results, or the entire dose should be divided up to take a third with each meal.
Fiber is best ingested in the morning upon rising. That way it will do its work in the colon without being impeded by food. Fiber can cause vitamins to not absorb, as it can act as a coating to the intestines, so it is best to not take vitamins before fiber. Iron is especially not absorbed well with fiber.
Probiotics are taken with meals and sometimes before a meal, usually about 20 minutes. Digestive enzymes are taken with meals as well, for best effect.
Stimulating vitamins, such as vitamin C, should not be taken before bedtime, as it can keep a person awake. Some even suggest that citrus juice and vitamin C cause nightmares, but this is unconfirmed.
If you are taking many nutritional supplements you might want to organize them in a pillbox that provides a separate box for each time of the day. A few minutes preparation can ensure that you take the recommended doses and that you remember to get all your doses in, in a timely manner. Setting the box near your dining area will remind you to take the vitamins when you eat. Even if you don't take vitamins at the "appropriate" time, adding nutrients to your diet will build health at any time of the day.
About the authorMelanie Grimes is a writer, award-winning screenwriter, medical journal editor, and adjunct faculty member at Bastyr University. She also teaches homeopathy at the Seattle School of Homeopathy and the American Homeopathic Medical College.
A trained homeopath, she is the editor of the homeopathic journal, Simillimum, and has edited alternative and integrative medical journals for 15 years. She has taught creative writing, founded the first Birkenstock store in the USA and authored medical textbooks.
Her ebook on Natural Remedies for the Flu is available at:
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