By Charlotte Traas, New Chapter® Director of Education and Board-Certified Master Herbalist
What are the best supplements for women… those must-haves that really meet you where you are in life and can be seamlessly woven into your day? As an herbalist and supplement educator, I get this question a lot! Let’s meet a few essential supplements for women’s health and find out why they make my “can’t miss” list.
Women’s Nutritional Needs
Women want nutrition that meets their current needs. You can support your unique lifestyle and life stage with healthy eating patterns plus some key dietary supplements. There are a few things that are constant, of course—our bodies always need protein, carbohydrates, and fat from a variety of healthy foods. (Top tip: eat a rainbow of fruits and veggies throughout the week!) Women also need certain essential micronutrients, such as calcium, magnesium, and B vitamins.
Best Vitamins & Supplements for Women to Take
Every body is different. Fine-tuning your eating patterns and your supplements to find what suits you can be a lifelong (and worthy!) pursuit. The following are good supplements for women to consider adding to their day. Definitely check with a healthcare professional if you have questions about the best supplements and vitamins for you.
Picking out your multivitamin is like picking your best friend. Who do you want beside you when you go through the REALLY hard stuff? A good women’s multivitamin can help fill in nutritional gaps while, hopefully, going the extra mile in other ways. Like the powerful women in your life, good multivitamins MULTITASK. They take on more and deliver more than you might expect. When choosing a multivitamin, it’s important to look for one that fits your age and life stage.
Living the active life? Look for a daily multivitamin for women that has all 8 B Vitamins as well as Iron, A, C, D3, E, and Zinc. New Chapter® recommends taking women’s vitamins made with whole-food fermented nutrients. The “unlocking” process of fermentation helps to deliver vitamins and minerals within the complexity of fermented whole foods.
Pregnant or trying to conceive? If you’re at the baby-possible stage of life, you’ll want to make sure your multi has important nutrients like folate. The possibility of pregnancy will have you wanting to set up your folate levels to support the neural tube development of the baby starting right at conception. *
Want to nourish healthy, graceful aging? As we age, we may not utilize B vitamins as well, especially B12. A multivitamin expertly crafted for your age and life stage, like New Chapter’s Every Woman’s One Daily 40+, may be a great option since it includes higher levels of certain B vitamins compared to our regular women’s one daily.
How about specialized supplements for women over 50? Since the immune system slows down over the years, seek out a multi with extra immune support—like from powerhouse plant-nutrient ASTAXANTHIN.* This carotenoid is a powerful antioxidant that fights free radicals in the body.* With aging, we’re oxidizing every day, so who couldn’t use Astaxanthin in their foundational nutrition routine?
During different cycles of life, the body’s need for Iron may increase or decrease. Women who experience their menstrual cycles each month may choose to enhance iron intake through diet or supplementation. Iron is also important during pregnancy, as it helps the mother’s body transport oxygen to her growing baby. However, after menopause, Iron needs for women are reduced. No matter what, the body consistently uses iron to carry oxygen, as well as for many metabolic functions.
Fermenting Iron puts Iron into the Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast cell for a delivery system that your body can recognize and utilize. Iron bisglycinate is a chelated form of Iron (meaning the mineral is partnered up and bound to an organic compound, in this case the amino acid glycine) that has great research on delivering two times the absorbability compared to isolated iron (ferrous fumarate) alone . Look for iron supplements for women that deliver fermented Iron or Iron bisglycinate—or both.
While Vitamin D often gets classified as a vitamin, it’s actually a necessary prohormone that the body needs. Prohormones can be converted by your body into hormones. While you can make your own Vitamin D when sunlight hits your skin, things like clothes, sunscreen, and long days at the office can prevent you from making enough Vitamin D for your body.
A study in 2011 found over 40% of the 4,495 adults studied were Vitamin D deficient. Vitamin D is needed for the body to use calcium properly. Supporting healthy vitamin D levels supports healthy bones, teeth, immune function, and even heart health.*
The word collagen comes from the Greek word “kolla,” which means “glue.” I like to think of collagen as the glue that keeps it all together! Collagen is a structural protein that provides building blocks for healthy hair, skin, nails, and joints.* New Chapter’s collagen supplement is made with 12g of humanely raised, multi-sourced collagen. Fun fact: collagen is the most abundant protein in your body and makes up about 60% of your cartilage.
B Vitamins are versatile, water-soluble nutrients that take on many tasks to support your overall health . How much B6 did you get yesterday? If you don’t know, a reliable B supplement can give you B6 to help support your nervous system and your immune system.* What about B12? Essential for red blood cell development, B12 also plays a crucial role in how your body creates cellular energy. Then there’s Biotin, also known as B7, which is essential for helping to break down carbohydrates, fats, and proteins to fuel the body. Biotin also supports your natural production of keratin, which is the protein that makes up your hair and nails.* That’s why B7 is a key ingredient in some of the best hair supplements for women. New Chapter’s fermented multivitamins and also our Hair, Skin & Nails formula are formulated with fermented Biotin for your body to recognize and use.
Digestive health sets the stage for whole-body wellness, and probiotics support the internal balance of your microbiome .* While your microbiome is made up of trillions of bacteria, viruses, and even fungi, some clinically studied probiotics can show effectiveness at just 10 Billion CFU (colony forming units, a standard measure of strains in probiotic supplements).
While we tend to associate probiotics with digestive health, the diversity of your gut microbiome and the balance within affects your immune health and even your brain health. Serotonin, one of the feel-good hormones, is made primarily in the gut.
According to research , half of the US population consumes less than the recommended amount of magnesium. The prevalence of refined foods and loss of nutrients in our soil has led to reduced magnesium in our diets.
Magnesium is necessary for many functions in the body, including muscle health, bone health, nerve health, and even blood sugar health.* To make sure you’re getting a highly absorbable form of this essential mineral that your body can use effectively, New Chapter uses chelated Magnesium bisglycinate in our Magnesium + Ashwagandha tablets . This form offers 2.5x better absorption than the leading brand (as shown in preclinical lab testing on buffered Mg bisglycinate). Our addition of Ashwagandha, an herb revered for relaxation and calm, makes this product a winning combination for women.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3s are essential for both brain and heart health. Your brain is predominantly made of fat , and needs healthy fats to function properly. From a heart-health perspective, Omega-3s may support the reduction of triglycerides in your blood. If you’re looking for a supplement that’s as versatile as your day, Wholemega™ Fish Oil gives you 17 different types of Omegas, including Omega-3s. Wholemega is clinically studied to help retain healthy triglyceride levels and other heart health markers.* It also supports brain, eye, and joint health.*
The Bottom Line
Supplementation is not one size fits all. Everyone’s regimen and needs are unique, as they should be! So, look for the supplements that support YOUR personal wellness goals. Build routines that help you do you, well. New Chapter is here for you with revolutionary vitamins and supplements made with excellent quality ingredients from nature to bottle!