Nutritional supplementsBy Mayo Clinic staff
Nutritional supplements are meant to complement a healthy diet, not replace it. If you're generally healthy and eat a wide variety of foods, you probably don't need nutritional supplements. In certain cases, however, fortified foods and dietary supplements may be useful in providing one or more nutrients. For example, adults age 50 or older may not get enough vitamin B-12 in their diets and may need fortified foods or a nutritional supplement.
You may also want to consider a nutritional supplement if you don't eat enough healthy foods or don't eat a healthy variety of foods. Talk with your doctor or a dietitian about whether nutritional supplements might be appropriate for you. Be sure to ask about possible side effects of nutritional supplements you're considering — and if they have interactions with medications you take.