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Daily supplements plan

Updated on June 13, 2015

What you will learn from this article;

  1. reason why both adults and children should take supplements.
  2. The dosage of the essential supplements per day.
  3. The maximum dosage the our bodies can tolerate without causing harm.
  4. The forms of supplements in the market and what to watch out for in each of them.


With a lot processed foods in our kitchen cabinets it is clear we don’t consume enough nutrients and vitamins that our bodies require. A balanced diet isn’t always possible and this is where supplements come in. Everybody regardless of age requires enough nutrients and if they are not getting these nutrients in their diet it is advisable to supplement.

It is controversial as to whether kids should be given supplements or not. At the end of the day kids require nutrients to grow keeping in mind children have the highest rate of growth and development. Pediatricians recommend supplements for kids above 4 years under the following conditions;

  • Kids who are physically active.
  • Kids who eat a lot of processed foods.
  • Kids on vegetarian diets or similar diets.
  • Kids are picky eaters as well as those who hate eating.
  • Kids who take a lot carbonated drinks, these leech out the existing nutrients.

Care should be taken when dealing with children so that treat these supplement as candy.

Before taking any supplements one should consult their doctor on drug interactions with any of the supplements especially if one is on medication.



1. Calcium

Adequate intake

  • Age 1-3: 700 mg/day
  • Age 4-8: 1,000 mg/day
  • Age 9-18: 1,300 mg/day
  • Age 19-50: 1,000 mg/day
  • Women age 51+: 1,200 mg/day
  • Men age 71+: 1,200 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • Age 19-50: 2,500 mg/day
  • Age 51 and up:2,000 mg/day

2. Iron

Adequate intake

  • Men: 8 mg/day
  • Women age 19-50: 18 mg/day
  • Women age 51 and up: 8 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 45 mg/day

3. Folic acid(Folate)

Adequate intake

  • 400 micrograms/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 1,000 micrograms/day

4. Magnesium

Adequate intake

  • 400 micrograms/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 1,000 micrograms/day

5. Phosphorus

Adequate intake

  • 700 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • Up to age 70: 4,000 mg/day Over age 70:3,000 mg/day

6. Zinc

Adequate intake

  • Men: 11 mg/day
  • Women: 8 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 40 mg/day

7. Vitamin A

Adequate intake

  • Men: 3,000 IU/day
  • Women: 2,310 IU/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 10,000 IU/day

8. Vitamin B3

Adequate intake

  • Men: 16 mg/day
  • Women: 14 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 35 mg/da

9. Vitamin B6

Adequate intake

  • Men age 19-50: 1.3 mg/day
  • Men age 51 up:1.7 mg/day
  • Women age 19-50: 1.3 mg/day
  • Women age 51 up: 1.5 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 100 mg/day

10. Vitamin C

Adequate intake

  • Men: 90 mg/day
  • Women: 75 mg/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 2,000 mg/day

11. Vitamin D

Adequate intake

  • Age 1-70: 15 micrograms/day

    (600 IU, or international units)
  • Age 70 and older: 20 micrograms/day

    (800 IU)

Upper tolerable limit

  • 100 micrograms/day

    (4,000 IU)

12. Vitamin E

Adequate intake

  • 22.4 IU/day

Upper tolerable limit

  • 1,500 IU/day

But specific supplements are recommended for some population subgroups. Vitamin D supplements are recommended for pregnant and lactating women (10 µg/day) and people aged 65 and over (10 µg/day). Supplements containing vitamins A, C and D are recommended for children under 5 years.

Iron supplements may be necessary for women with very heavy menstrual losses and women who enter pregnancy with low iron stores. Folic acid supplements are recommended for women who might become pregnant and for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.

Don’t let the numbers worry you because there are tablets that come inclusive of all the nutrients thus one does not have to buy the supplements individually. Also individual supplements are available in most pharmacies.

Another supplement people often forget is probiotics.They are not a nutrient source thus not really required to be healthy.However these micro-organisms help with digestion and offer protection against harmful bacteria.

People often confuse probiotics and prebiotics.Probiotics are the good bacteria while prebiotics are the nondigestible carbohydrates that act as food for the probiotics.When probiotics and prebiotics are combined they form synbiotics ie. good bacteria and its food.Synbiotics are often found in dairy products eg. youghurt.

The 'take away' of this article

In the market supplements come in form of;

  1. Multivitamins tablets-check the dosages of each component to make sure it does not exceed the amount the body requires in a day.
  2. Cod liver oil-it often the supplement for vitamin A and D .Don't exceed 2 teaspoons of the oil.High amount leads to toxicity.
  3. Probitics-take enough of them and your overall health will be fine.

Which is the most important supplement you cannot do without?

See results

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