What You Need to Know About Nutritional Supplements
Dietary supplements are almost sure to be part of your daily routine after weight loss surgery or when you are dedicating yourself to health and weight loss. When you get the nutrients you need, you’re doing yourself all kinds of favors, including keeping up your energy and metabolism, maintaining bone and joint health, and strengthening your immune system. Staying nourished even lowers your risk for chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, some types of cancer, and dementia.
Making the Most of Your Nutritional Supplements
A healthy diet may not be enough to give you the nutrients you need, especially after weight loss surgery or when you are losing weight. One reason is that when you restrict food intake, you’re also restricting nutrient intake. Another reason for some patients is that their weight loss surgeries might reduce the amount of nutrients you absorb from food. Eating a healthy diet can help you make the most of your diet and supplements.
Proper Doses and Timing for Best Results
Something else to consider when planning your nutrient supplements is the dose. Ask your doctor which dose is best for you. You want enough, but not too much. Some nutrients, such as iron, are toxic when you get too much of them. Others, such as vitamin B12, are unlikely to cause toxicity, even in high doses.
Also ask your doctor how to best use your supplements. Some, such as iron and calcium, should not be taken together. Some, such as multivitamins, are best taken on a full stomach. Some are best taken with another nutrient; for example, taking calcium with vitamin D improves your calcium absorption, and taking iron with vitamin C increases iron absorption.
Commonly Needed Essential Vitamins and Minerals for Bariatric Patients
A good multivitamin is like an insurance policy against sneaky deficiencies. It gives you a range of nutrients without you needing to worry about each one. Your doctor may also suggest specific vitamins and minerals, such as the following:
You’re more likely to need certain supplements if you’ve had a type of surgery, such as gastric bypass, that interferes with nutrient absorption.
Additional Supplements for Health and Wellness
You may not want to stop at the bare minimum when it comes to your health. You can look beyond the vitamins and minerals that are essential for life to try to get further benefits. For example, fiber can help regulate blood sugar, improve cholesterol levels, and promote bowel regularity, while omega-3 fatty acids can support heart, eye, and joint health. Take a look at our offerings of supplements for health, including anti-oxidant products and products formulated to fight aging.
Choosing the Best Supplements for Yourself
There’s no one size fits all rule for dietary supplements. You might prefer traditional pills and capsules, flavored chewables and gummies or liquid drops. Or, you might want to avoid swallowing supplements altogether, and opt instead for patches to deliver your nutrients through your skin. It’s up to you!
When it comes to choosing a brand, think about quality. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for regulating dietary supplements, but it doesn’t keep tabs on them as closely as it does for foods and pharmaceuticals. Your best bet to be sure you’re buying a quality supplement is to opt for a brand you trust. Of course we recommend BariatricPal brand supplements, and we also stand behind the other brands we carry in our store.
Do yourself a favor and stay nourished as you lose weight. You may not be able to do it with a healthy diet alone, so dietary supplements can fill in the gaps and keep you healthy. Choose the ones that are right for you based on your doctor’s advice and your own preferences. We’re proud to have a hand it keeping you healthy!
- Alex Brecher