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November 2022

NEW: Nutrient-Rich Food Charts

As the supplement industry booms, more people report regularly taking single and multivitamin products. Some patients might require a supplement to manage deficiencies. But in many cases, people are taking supplements for nutrients they could easily obtain from foods. We recently developed several new charts to help providers counsel patients on increasing nutrient intake via the diet.

One of the most talked about nutrients today is vitamin D. While there’s an ever-growing supply of vitamin D supplement products, vitamin D levels can also be increased through sunlight exposure and dietary changes. Before pointing patients to the supplement aisle, encourage them to focus on increasing intake of vitamin D-rich foods. Calcium is another big one. Like vitamin D, encourage patients to incorporate more calcium-rich foods into their daily diet before trying a supplement.

In some cases, a supplement might still be necessary, particularly when nutrient depletions are caused by prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. For example, proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) like omeprazole (Prilosec) can affect the absorption of many nutrients, particularly magnesium. Incorporating more magnesium-rich foods into the diet may help some patients – others might require a magnesium supplement. Similarly, both loop and thiazide diuretics have the potential to deplete potassium – incorporating more potassium-rich foods may benefit some patients, while others might need a supplement.

Check out all of our new nutrient-rich foods charts to learn more. And take advantage of our nutrient depletion checker to screen for drug-induced depletions.

The information in this brief report is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions. Copyright © 2022 Natural Medicines Inc. Commercial distribution or reproduction prohibited. Natural Medicines is the leading provider of high-quality, evidence-based, clinically-relevant information on natural medicine, dietary supplements, herbs, vitamins, minerals, functional foods, diets, complementary practices, CAM modalities, exercises and medical conditions. Monograph sections include interactions with herbs, drugs, foods and labs, contraindications, depletions, dosing, toxicology, adverse effects, pregnancy and lactation data, synonyms, safety and effectiveness.