Figuring out dosages for vitamins and supplements

Decoding dosages

Q: I really want to try the natural approaches you recommend, but sometimes you don’t tell us how much to take. How do I know what the right dosages of all the vitamins and supplements you talk about should be?

Dr. Wright: I can understand your frustration, but there are some important reasons that the eTips and the articles featured in Nutrition & Healing don’t always include the dosage information used in various studies.

First, when learning of the nutritional benefits of certain supplements or foods, our natural inclination is to want to try them. But there are stark differences between studies in animals and studies in humans–and what is an effective generous dose for a rat may not correlate to a human’s needs.

In addition, different people may need different amounts of the same nutrient to achieve the desired effects. It’s often impossible to give an amount that would be correct for both a 200-pound male and a 115-pound female, not to mention everyone in between. Even when we do mention dosage amounts, I always recommend that you work with your doctor or an expert in nutritional supplementation so that your program can be tailored to your specific needs. That is the healthiest way to approach any nutrition or supplementation program.

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