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How long does it take for vitamins or supplements to start working?

By December 22, 2008 - 2:38pm
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How long does it take for supplements to take effect? For example, I am taking calcium supplements and am wondering how long I will take them for before I see some results? I'm hoping to see healthier, stronger nails.

I don't depend on supplements for over-all health but am wondering if it takes just a couple of weeks to help, or months?

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Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

PABA is a great vitamin for acne.

March 23, 2011 - 2:04pm
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger (reply to Anonymous)

Anon - You're absolutely right, what we eat does affect our skin, which is the body's largest organ. The addition of vitamens and supplements and healthy foods to your diet should be helpful not only to your skin but also to your overall health. It's clear you've done some research to come up with this plan and want to do well. Good for you!

The next step is to set up some realistic expectations. No type of diet or vitamin is going to show you results in one week, so you will be a lot less frustrated if you can focus on finding ways to stick to your goals and to find ways to stay on the path you're on. There are hundreds of advertisements for various products that "promise" results in a short time and give the impression that this is what one should expect. The products don't work, and that's one reason why there are so many of them. The skills you learn now, if you stick with them, will not only help you in the short term but they will also help you become more healthy for the rest of your life, which will affect how you feel and look for decades. The good nutrition you're adding will start impacting your body within a week on the inside; it will take several weeks for the impact to show on the outside; the overall impact of what you do will show in the diseases and conditions that you have when you're older.

In terms of your acne, if you have tried over the counter products without results you may want to consider seeing a dermatologist who can evaluate your situation. In some cases the over the counter products aren't strong enough and a prescription product is needed.

Good luck, Pat

June 11, 2010 - 4:22pm

There is a strong suggestion that Americans have the most expensive urine....on one hand we are bombarded by clever marketing campgains not only for prescription drugs, but also for nutriceutical products. When selecting the right supplements, consumers must be smart shoppers. Not all supplements are created equal. People looking for "results" may be deceived by the idea that a miracle will happen once a course of supplements is started.

How quickly a supplement is absorved is not guarantee of "results". More important than asking this question is to ensure that there is a deficient on the supplement you are taking. If you are not, the body will just eliminate any excess. Remember, supplements only SUPPLEMENT your nutrition, they are not substitutes. Calcium, magnesium and other essential minerals can be obtained from natural sources like many other vitamins.

But if your nutrition is less than ideal then getting supplements is a smart thing to do. There are also supplement combinations, as Alysiak mentioned that will help with faster absorption. Calcium with vitamin D has a better chance of getting into the blood stream. Vitamin C also helps the absorption of many vitamins and supplements. The dosage of Calcium and magnesium should also be according to a 2:1 ratio to ensure proper benefit of both minerals. For example, 1000mg of Calcium should include 500mg of Magnesium. Taking Calcium alone may not be too healthy and you may develop reverse effects.

I am not sure why you are taking the supplement and what results you are hpoing to see. Maybe you can reply by letting us know why are taking Calcium at this time. Prevention of Osteoporosis is one reason for Calcium supplementation for example.

Most supplements when taken under consultation of a healthcare professional who has done blood tests to get a baseline and has identified defficiencies of certain minerals, vitamins, etc should provide you with appropriate dosage and combination and should also monitor blood tests to ensure the ideal levels are reached.

As a rule of thumb supplements take a week or so to get into the blood stream and the body will utilize what it needs and dispose of what is excess. Certain vitamins can cause overdose effects and could be a problem. Vitamin A is one of them. I suggest taking Calcium in combination with Magnesium to get the benefits and a symptom of overdose will typically be diahrrea which will stop once you lower the dosage or stop taking them.

December 23, 2008 - 12:45am

I think this really depends upon the individual's ability to absorb the vitamins. Additionally, there are other supplements that help your body absorb calcium, such as Vitamins D and C, and Magnesium.

"Calcium is mostly absorbed in the duodenum, the first part of the small intestine, which extends from the stomach. Normally, it takes about two hours for calcium absorption to take place. For people with delayed stomach emptying or who have had duodenal bypass surgery, it can take even longer."
Celeste Robb-Nicholson, M.D. Editor in Chief, Harvard Women’s Health Watch

How long does calcium absorption take?

How to increase the absorption of your calcium supplement

December 22, 2008 - 9:19pm
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