Let's Talk about Supplements! What Do You Take?

By HeartHawk Latest Reply 2011-07-08 17:59:57 -0500
Started 2010-11-20 11:12:08 -0600

I have always found nutritional supplements to be among the most provocative topics I get involved with. Many of us like to steer clear of prescription drugs if possible and find more natural ways to address our health concerns.

One of the best ways to learn is to simply talk them, what you take, and the reason for it. Here is what I take daily and why (all under the supervision of my docs - always touch base with your docs first).

Vitamin C (1000mg): There are many theories about how much to take including a number of megadose therapies. Frankly, it has never done much for me at any dose and the studies I have seen do not support supplementation if your diet is good. I take it mostly out of habit and because at 1000mg it is fairly benign.

Vitamin D (8000IU): Blood testing has determined I need a fairly high dose to maintain a blood level of 60ng/dL. This number is higher than many traditional recommendations and is based on the heart disease prevention and reversal work of Dr. William Davis whose program I follow. Most of the studies I have read confirm Vitamin D is a powerful supplement for many diseases and the general population is woefully deficient.

Vitamin B Complex: I started taking it to reduce homocysteine but some of the latest studies cast doubt on whether it is effective. I continue to take it to address my macrocytotic (large cell) anemia. I just (yesterday) started working with a functional medicine doc to study whether my B vitamins are actually getting to the cellular level.

DHEA (25mg): My personal scourge is lipoprotein(a): Several studies have shown a modest decrease in lipoprotein(a) when taking DHEA.

Boswellia (750mg): We all now know that inflammation is a key component of heart disease. But, did you know the body has TWO inflammation pathways? Common anti-infallmatory agents block the cyclo-oxygenase (COX). Boswellia interrupts the lipoxygenase pathway (or so the theory goes). I am working with a forum group that is investigating this supplement.

Fish Oil (6000mg): Each new study confirms old benefits including anti-arrhythmia properties and anti-lipoprotein(a) among others. Be certain to talk to your doc about it! Note that I take 6000mg of the active ingredient (EPA/DHA) and does not include the weight of the inactive ingredients. I take it in liquid form (beats swallowing those all those horse pills).

Magnesium (200mg): I take the Citrate form and use it to address my minor arrhythmias and muscle cramping.

Iodine (225mcg): I get this from a kelp tablet to support my thyroid in addition to my hypothyroid medication.

Co-Q10 (200mg): I take this to counteract the muscle aches I sometimes get from my low dose statin.

Niacin (2000mg): I take this in a timed-release preapration to raise my low HDL and lower my lipoprotein(a). It also lowers my LDL and Triglycerides. Note that at this dose niacin should be considered a drug and I take it under the prescription of my cardiologist!

Any comments or questions? What do you take?

Finally, remember that supplements are powerful chemicals. Treat them as such. Always consult with your docs before taking them or changing your dose!


19 replies

lebarron1 2011-07-08 00:31:46 -0500 Report

I take a multi vitamin,i still take my meds,but i know vitamins are better for you if you can just take them.

calicocard 2011-06-17 22:12:17 -0500 Report

fish oil and I ARE not friends at all. The krill oil is better than the fish oil, doesn't come back to haunt you later, tastes way better the first time around any way. The expensive Omeg red tastes like vanilla, the cheeper stuff works just as well.

Te Ja
Te Ja 2011-06-16 19:35:15 -0500 Report

I take a multi-vitamin plus iron, 600mg of Cherry powder, and in the winter 1000mg of vitamin C.

CRASH1219 2011-06-17 11:48:18 -0500 Report

I take omege3 fishoil,a multivitemin,biotin,and I drink a shot of unfiltered apple cider vinagar mixed with aglass of orange juice everyday.I also drink lots of green tea and water all day long.

HeartHawk 2011-07-08 17:52:42 -0500 Report


I hear a lot about the cider formula but not much practical experience. Green tea is useful for its catechin content.


harley64 2011-06-11 00:40:36 -0500 Report

I also take Niacin (500 mg) I was wondering what the secret not to flush every day I take it. I have heard other people tell me to take my aspirin about an hour before the Niacin and I have also been told to try Benadryl to help with the redness from the flushing and even drink milk with the Niacin. It's not a new pill for me so I don't understand why I flush every day other than the dr. upped my dose. Please give me some advice.

HeartHawk 2011-07-08 17:56:46 -0500 Report


Some people have a worse reaction that others but aspirin is reputed to work. Also, the flushing will appear when you up your dose or even miss a dose (happens to me all the time). The flush usually disappears over time once your dose is consistent and you do not skip it.


Shirley Harper
Shirley Harper 2011-06-16 15:26:24 -0500 Report

I take the medication my cardiologist gave me & 1000 mg. Niacin(aspirin 1 or 2 if needed, half hour before.) Also take Omega 3- 3000mg a day. Want to try the Boswellia, might help my arthur. to.

HeartHawk 2011-07-08 17:59:57 -0500 Report


Boswellia is supposed to interupt the lipoxygenase inflammation pathway much like aspirin blocks the cyclo-oxygenase inflammation pathway. I would say that niacin and fish oil (along with vitamin D) are the top heart supplements.


tieleg 2010-12-01 05:01:39 -0600 Report

I take the medication my cardiologist has given me plus some fish oil tablets. I don't see the sense in trying all these different supposedly natural things that are just made so the companies can make a lots of money. They brainwash you with there garbage about how good it will do you. Take the proper stuff and make sure you stay alive

HeartHawk 2010-12-01 22:33:05 -0600 Report


You have hit the nail on the head. Take the stuff that is proper for you. That is why I always track what I take and what the results are to tweak my program. One works for one person may not work for another.


Shirl01 2010-11-30 13:05:07 -0600 Report

I take Calcium Citrate with Vit D, Omega 3 (3000 iu/day), and a Multiple Vitamin. These are prescribed by my Doctor. I just read an article on Vitamin D that states it is falling out of favor too. Apparently some research shows that high doses of it can be harmful. The article was on the internet this morning.

HeartHawk 2010-11-30 18:25:05 -0600 Report


Vitamin D can be harmful at blood levels above 100ng/dL. Most of the new recommendations shoot for around 40ng/dL. The rather aggressive program I am on shoots for 60ng/dL. Talk to your doctor regarding blood levels he or she is comfortable with as every person is different but most of the evidence I have seen is on the plus side.


Shirl01 2010-11-30 22:31:40 -0600 Report

Thanks for the response! I will talk to my cardiologist about it when I see him the next time.

heartfelt2518 2010-11-20 15:30:09 -0600 Report

Am very interested in supplements as opposed to rx drugs—
have been taking CoQ10 for 10 years with vitamin E and have
positive results - have heard good things about resveratrol- agree with your
regiment -knowledge is power!!!

HeartHawk 2010-11-20 17:09:48 -0600 Report


I also took Vitamin E for quite a while until it began to fall out of favor in some studies. Resveratrol is getting a great deal of interest with some powerful results. Seems the key will be to figure out a way to deliver an effective dose in a practical way.