You're not the only one! Taking supplements consistently is a common challenge for most women.
As midwives who are regularly prescribing supplementation protocols for women to treat their female health concerns naturally, we know vitamins and minerals are important aspects of our recommendations. Like many natural health disciplines, there are some strategies involved in making lasting habits out of your supplement routines. Come learn a handful of the best tips and tricks we have seen work most consistently for women.
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Women's Health Supplement Inventory
Before we get into the nitty gritty of ways to stay consistent with supplement usage and all those good things, we want to start with foundational pieces! I want you to head to your supplement cabinet (or wherever you store your supps!) and pull out what you currently are taking the most consistently. Ask yourself:
What's on your list?
Why does it make this list?
Is it needed for something specific or more general?
If specific, is it appropriate for you at this time?
Like all habits in life, they must remain flexible so that they continually serve us, not the other way around! It's so easy to start taking a supplement because you read it helps with something you are struggling with- all to realize months later that you have not noticed any improvement in that area or you don't have that particular problem anymore. Make the review of what you are taking and why a regular process in your supplementing routine.
Get everything out of your main supplement area that you are not taking regularly. You can create a back stock area in a closet or storage tub some other place in your home, or you may need to throw out some expired bottles, but only keep out what you are actively planning on using.
What Supplements Should Women Take?
Confused about what to take, what to prioritize and how to locate quality brands? We have it all sorted for you, and in these 3 categories to make it easy to navigate this area of health that can cause so much confusion and stress:
The source of your supplements matter! While we have really enjoyed creating supplement recommendations on Amazon (hello easy clicking and prime shipping), we have found a deeper well of options and quality at Fullscript Professional Dispensary. We're extending our therapeutic-grade options to our readers at a savings of 25% off retail, plus shipping is free and speedy. All you have to do is take 2 minutes to register for your own (free) account to get access to all our recommendation plus some pretty cool protocols for specific women's health issues. Check it out HERE.
Organizing Your Holistic Health Supplements
Here's the conundrum: When supplements are in my supplement cabinet, I so often forget about them. When they are out somewhere- like on the counter or next to my bed- I can't handle how messy it looks. Either way- I end up not taking them. It's literally the silliest thing, but unless they are organized just right, I often overlook taking them. Let's figure out what "just right" organization looks like for you!
Supplement Cabinet or Drawer Organization
After inventory, your next step is making a home for your supplements. If you want to get more consistent with taking your supplements, they have to have a place to live that meet the following criteria:
Easily accessible. Do not make this a place that you have to move things around just to get to or that is so remote that you never pass by or think of it. Do not pick a deep drawer or high shelf that you can not see or touch each bottle, you will never get them out, trust me.
The appropriate size. Is part of your organizational problem that you do not have enough space to see and access your supplements? You may need to designate a better space, or reorganize existing storage to accommodate your supplement space as a new priority.
Supplement Container Organization
Most women appreciate the rhythm and discipline of batch dosing their supplements. Portioning out what you should take each day for a week or so avoids the annoying complication of having to take every bottle out daily to open it. You just won't do it long term, and we are going for optimal consistency here, right?
You need a pill or vitamin organizer to hold your daily supplement doses. There are so many different types to choose from. You can find compact containers that fit in your purse, vitamin containers divided up by meal times, or supplement organizers that are pretty enough to keep out on your counter. We compiled all of our recommendations for supplement storage and organization on this Amazon List HERE.
One of my favorite hacks for portioning out vitamins easily each week is to write the dose on the bottle cap in a sharpie pen whenever I open a new bottle. For example, "2 caps AM" or "1x w/meal". That way I do not have to read the directions every time I want to quickly dish out each supplement into my container for the week.
Daily Supplement Habits + Routines
Now the real test, can you get them inside your body each day? Here are a couple ways to combat common barriers to daily supplementation habits:
Use a habit tracker: Get serious about taking supplements as a new habit by tracking your own compliance. Utilize a habit tracker (either printable or app-based) and be willing to learn some new ways of sustaining better health. Listen to Sustainable Health Habits for Women HERE to get some more ideas on this topic.
Use a reminder: Set a daily alarm or calendar event in your phone with notifications that go off during a time you know you'll be able to stop what you are doing and go take your supplements. This only works if you do it, so take the reminders seriously!
Streamline your supplement types: It's hard to take everything at once when you are taking a large variety of substances- pills, powders, tinctures, liquids, sprays etc. It may be worth looking into getting everything in the same form so that you can simplify the mode of supplement transport. Consider powder storage like THESE, or THESE. Managing supplements for multiple family members can create struggle in this area as well. Kids especially do well on liquids and gummies- one quality brand to check out for this is Mary Ruth.
Attach it to another habit: Never forget to check your email in the morning or brush your teeth? Write yourself a note or leave your supplement container in a place you can't miss it as you go about a daily habit you already have down.
Transition to Supplementing with More Whole Foods
It's not a secret that an excellent diet full of whole and nutrient-dense foods can help you source many of your vitamin and mineral needs from what you eat, and decrease your need for supplementing- which in turn decreases your need for consistency with supplementing (mind-blown!). So many of us need to supplement because we are not able to stay consistent with our diets, however, whole foods are going to supply nutrients that are easier and better forms for your body to use.
The most nutrient-dense foods fit into the category of what we call "Traditional" or "Ancestral" ways of eating. This includes regular incorporation of fermented foods, bone broth and quality, fresh meats and vegetables. Read An Intro to Traditional Foods for Female Health to learn more, or pick up one of our favorite books on this subject, Nutrient Dense Kitchen.
Lastly, our Beautiful One Community Membership has an entire in-depth 4-part course on how to adopt a nutrient-dense way of eating with guidance on quality food shopping, meal planning and prepping, while solving for nutrient deficiencies. You can learn exactly what foods can cover your bases and how much of them to get- what a pathway to freedom and empowerment in your health! The best part is, this course is only one small resource available inside our bursting-at-the-seams membership library.
Although we are licensed midwives by profession, we are not YOUR midwives. All content and information on this website is for informational and educational purposes only, and does not constitute medical advice. Although we strive to provide accurate general information, the information presented here is not a substitute for any kind of professional advice. For more information, click here.