Have a Vita-Plan! Supplementing Safely

Everyone is used to taking Vitamin C during cold and flu season, and others may take a multivitamin when they eat their breakfast. Seniors can also benefit from adding supplements to their diet. While these don’t replace meals, they can help the body continue to do what it’s supposed to do. However, it’s equally important to make sure these supplements are added safely to the person’s diet. 

“Supplements can provide an extra boost for vitamins or minerals that seniors need to be as healthy as possible,” Halie Dickinson, Community Outreach Director of YourLife™of Tallahassee. “If you’re looking into this for your loved one, the question usually turns to what supplements do they need and what’s the safest way to take them.” 

In this blog, we’ll go over how supplements can benefit seniors and how to take them safely. 

How Can Supplements Help Senior Health? 

The National Institute on Aging states that individuals over the age of 50 may need more vitamins and minerals in their diet. They may need supplements for the following:
 

  • Vitamin B12. This helps promote healthy blood cells and nerves. 
  • Calcium. This is necessary for bone strength. 
  • Vitamin D. Vitamin D also helps keep bones strong.

If your loved one isn’t getting enough of a certain vitamin through their diet, taking a supplement is an easy way to get their levels up. Your loved one’s doctor can recommend where they would benefit from taking supplements. Maybe they need more calcium in their diet and need to take something daily, or having a certain supplement at the beginning of the day can help with energy levels. 

While prescriptions aren’t necessary to get supplements, you’ll want a healthcare professional’s opinion before your loved one starts taking them. Your loved one will have unique needs depending on their current health conditions and other medications they’re taking. A supplement could react with their medication, or will not benefit your loved one even though it’s marketed as “natural.”

Doctors can also make sure your loved one isn’t overdoing it. While one may think that taking as many supplements as possible will improve their health, this isn’t the case. Taking too many supplements can add too much of certain vitamins and minerals to one’s system, and create other health effects. 
 

Safe Supplement Options for Seniors 

If your loved one needs supplements, then it’s important to know how to take them safely. Their doctor can answer questions about what they need and how much so it balances out their nutrition, but you may wonder about the way they’re going to get them. 

Sometimes, supplements can come in the form of large pills. Swallowing these pills could present a possible choking hazard. But there are different forms other than pills: 

  • Gel Capsules
  • Tablets
  • Powders
  • Liquids

With these options available, your loved one will likely be able to find one that is safest to take. Even if they don’t have issues with swallowing, they may prefer a powder in a drink to having to take a pill. 

Learn About the YourLife™of Tallahassee Lifestyle

When your loved one has a balanced program that provides them with the nutrients they need, they’re going to feel their best. They’ll have strength, energy, and their immune systems will help them stay healthy. 


YourLife™of Tallahassee focuses on providing our residents with a well-rounded approach to their health so they can lead the life they want in this community. Our team is always ready to talk. Reach out to us today.