Supplements for Women’s Health

Table of Contents

As a woman, it can be difficult to get all the necessary nutrients from food alone. Sometimes, supplementation can be beneficial in supporting overall health and well-being. However, with so many supplements on the market, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Here are some of the best supplements for women:
– Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for heart health, brain function, and reducing inflammation. They are found in fatty fish, but many people do not consume enough in their diet. Omega-3 supplements can help fill this gap and support overall health.
– Vitamin D is important for bone health, immune function, and mood regulation. It is difficult to get enough vitamin D from food alone, so supplementation can be beneficial, especially for those who live in areas with limited sun exposure.
– Calcium: Calcium is important for bone health and particularly important for women at a higher risk for osteoporosis. While dairy products are a good source of calcium, many people do not consume enough. Calcium supplements can help ensure adequate intake.
– Iron: Iron is essential for transporting oxygen throughout the body and is particularly important for menstruating women. While iron is found in many foods, some women may require additional supplementation to meet their needs.
– Magnesium is important for muscle and nerve function, regulating blood sugar levels, and maintaining healthy blood pressure. It is found in many foods, but supplementation can benefit those who do not consume enough.
– Probiotics: Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live in the gut and support digestive health. They can be found in fermented foods like yogurt and sauerkraut, but supplementation can benefit those who do not consume enough probiotic-rich foods.
– B-complex vitamins: B vitamins are important for energy production, metabolism, and maintaining healthy skin, hair, and nails. They are found in many foods, but supplementation can benefit those who do not consume enough.

It is important to note that while supplements can be beneficial, they should not replace a healthy diet. It is always best to get nutrients from whole foods whenever possible. Additionally, talking to a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen is important, as some supplements can interact with medications or have unwanted side effects.

In summary, these are some of the best supplements for women to support overall health and well-being. As always, it is important to prioritize a healthy diet and talk to a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Here we discuss with Doctor Jones, a doctor of acupuncture and integrative medicine on his thoughts on best vitamins for women’s health.

NourishDoc: Well, we are again talking about women 40 and above. This topic is supplements; we know our estrogen and progesterone are going down, and our cortisol is probably going up; all those things are happening in our bodies. So our bodies supplement to ensure that we are not nutritionally deficient. Well, that’s the topic today with Doctor Jones; Doctor Jones is a doctor of acupuncture and integrative medicine. Welcome. 

Supplements With Diet & Lifestyle

Dr. Meritt: Thank you so much for having me, Amita. I’m happy to be here. I was thrilled when you reached out because this topic is near my heart and something we work with. So, I’ll start with a quick rundown of who I am and what I do, and then I’ll jump in with this great topic. So, yes, my name is Dr. Meritt Jones. I am the founder and clinic director of Natural Harmony Reproductive Health here in San Diego, an acupuncture and integrated medicine clinic specializing in early dedicated to reproductive health and fertility; we use supplements a lot within our practice. So I have a lot to share.

Before I do, though, I wanted to touch on some quick housekeeping items around supplements, I guess, if you will. The first one is that I think this is important to say that supplements are a wonderful tool. again we use them very often, and I think it needs to be said that supplements in and of themselves there’s no magic pill, really supplements should be used in combination with nutrition strategy and lifestyle support for the best results; they’re meant to be used kind of synergistically and then also, I want to say, of course, that, yes, I am a doctor.

I am not your doctor unless, unless I am, if you’re a patient at Natural Harmony, then, fantastic but otherwise, the information here is meant to be educational and welcome questions, but if you have, if you guys, if you want to start taking something, please talk to your doctor about it. So, with that, let’s jump in. I wanted to focus first and foremost on resveratrol which is one of my favorites, and I think it’s become pretty well known. Resveratrol is a polyphenic compound famous for its antioxidant support and probably most famous for being found in wine, right? Whenever we talk about it with patients, that’s the first thing they say, oh, I can get that from wine, right? So, well, yes.

Resveratrol for women’s health

Yes, you can, but the truth is that the amount of wine you consume to get the therapeutic dose of resveratrol would put you in the hospital with alcohol poisoning before reaching that dose. So this is not the same; wine is a wonderful part of many cultures that can bring much joy. That’s great. But as far as getting resveratrol is not the best source, let’s talk about what it is and what it is used for.

So again, resveratrol is a polyphenic compound found in wine, found in other foods, grapes, of course, chocolate, and peanuts, but to get the therapeutic dose, you do need to supplement and what we use it for; I think it’s most well-known as a kind of an anti-aging supplement which it is and the reason that it can help with that is that it’s an antioxidant and antioxidant support reduces inflammation and supports mitochondrial function which is a fancy way of saying that it helps with cellular health and cellular health is the foundation for all aspects of reproductive health especially as we age and so the way that we the way that I use resveratrol the way that our practice uses resveratrol we use it usually for primary issues.

The first one, which I think is pretty well known, is for fertility and egg quality, especially in women over forty. Resveratrol again helps with mitochondrial function, which helps with cellular health. Egg cells require many antioxidants, and supplementing with a therapeutic dose of resveratrol can help improve egg quality, so that’s how we use it. A caveat there, there’s some research saying that resveratrol may not help with implantation.

So, suppose you’re actively trying to conceive and using resveratrol. In that case, you probably want to use it in the first half of your cycle and then, after ovulation, continue. Another way we use it is with PCOS; we work with many patients dealing with the polycystic ovarian syndrome, and it can help in a couple of ways; it helps to reduce androgen hormones which are those quote-unquote male hormones that can interfere with hormone function in folks with PCOS. It can also help to lower insulin levels; it can help with insulin sensitivity and insulin resistance. which is important for ovarian health in general. So using resveratrol to lower insulin levels can help promote more regular cycles and healthy ovulation, which is the game when trying to balance hormones if you’re still cycling.

That said, it can also be used for those of us who are not cycling; for folks in perimenopause or menopause, resveratrol is helpful because it’s a mild phytoestrogen and anti-inflammatory. So, it can support those of us headed into menopause. It can support cardiac health; it can help reduce the risk of breast cancer. can help with cognitive health. So, helpful for the spectrum, and then, the last condition we often use it for and that we work with a lot is endometriosis. So, a couple of years back, I did a deep dive into all of the research I was working on; a project centered around endometriosis and resveratrol just kept coming up as a supplement that kicked butt, if you will, or kicked into his butt.

So, it helped with estrogen metabolism for folks who have any estrogen-sensitive condition, which endometriosis is, it’s not the root of endo is certainly not hormonal, but it is highly estrogen sensitive; taking very gentle, very mild phytoestrogens can help with estrogen metabolism, and it can help to reduce inflammation. Some studies supported that resveratrol, in particular, could help to shrink endometriosis, which is really significant and pretty cool. So, those are the four ways that we use resveratrol, in particular, most of the time in our clinic, and to summarize kind of how resveratrol, in general, can help with hormones.

How and why would you use resveratrol?

I’ll go over that and then talk about how to use it, and then we’ll talk about other supplements that can also help. So as a summary, how do you how and why would you use resveratrol? It’s an antioxidant that can help with fertility. It can help with endometriosis. It can help with PCOS because of mild phytoestrogen, it can help with estrogen issues, it can help with estrogen that’s too high, and it can help with metabolizing bad estrogen. It can also support folks in menopause or perimenopause by balancing estrogen levels can lower androgen hormones which is why it’s helpful for PCOS. It can help with insulin sensitivity.

It also helps; I don’t think I mentioned this. However, it can help with thyroid hormone support which for women over 40 for people over 40 is often overlooked and important because as we start to age. Our hormones start to shift; the thyroid can sometimes go a little haywire. So, just another reason to consider spirituality, and again, it can help with breast cancer risk, which again, as we get older, becomes more of a concern. Inspired by what to look for in a resveratrol supplement?

You would want to look for trans-resveratrol, the most bioavailable, most active form of resveratrol, and you would want to make sure that its professional-grade supplements as a whole are not; it’s not a well-regulated industry, and so you do need to be mindful of where you’re getting them from you know, usually, through providers, professional-grade supplements are usually content providers, we’re going to be opening up an online store to make these products more accessible to because they are wonderful, they are powerful, and they’re not always easiest to access and good quality. As far as how to take it, referral, pretty gentle. You can take it with or away from food. I usually like it with food.

The standard dose is between 50 and two thousand mg’s a day, milligrams a day, depending on your use. I thought it would also be helpful to talk a little about when not to use it because, as it is, all supplements and medications are not appropriate for everyone. So if somebody has bleeding disorders or is on blood thinners, that would be a no-go because it is a slight blood thinner. If you have estrogen-sensitive cancer, that’s also when you wouldn’t want to use something like this, at least not without talking to your cancer care team. I think those are the two big ones for now.

There’s some information about how it might interfere with some drug metabolism. However, the information on that is limited, and hopefully, you’ll be talking to your doctor before you start it anyway; let’s see, and then I guess one thing I wanted to mention is if you’re digging around about trying to learn about resveratrol, you’ll probably come across resilient which is another supplement, very similar to resveratrol. Potentially more bioavailable, but there’s not much research out there yet.

So if you’re doing your homework to find which resveratrol supplement will be best for you, you come across tourist buildings. You can consider that some of the supplement companies are now combining resveratrol and but for now, we typically still recommend it just because we have a lot more info about it. So, with that, I think I’ll move into other supplements to support women’s health unless needed unless you have questions about their resveratrol. 

Supplements For Menopause & Peri-Menopause

NourishDoc: No, you covered it very beautifully, very detailed, and at the same time, very succinct. So, we want to focus on women 40 and above, supplements that women should consider when they start hitting perimenopause and menopause; you don’t have to go into many details, but just on a very high level that is something that they can do also. 

Dr. Meritt: Absolutely. I mean, resveratrol is definitely at the top of the list for all the reasons that we hit on with the estrogen support, cardiac support, cognitive support, all of that, and as an antioxidant, antioxidants, in general, work best in symphony with other antioxidants they can support each other and so there is a long list really of antioxidant based supplements that can support people over for you and went over forty. I’ll give you my top five to start, and then I will welcome questions if that’s helpful.


One of my very favorites to support healthy aging, to support women over 40 as they’re moving into menopause or as they’re preparing for, you know, Avia for egg quality support or whatever it is N-Aetylcysteine, which you’ll probably see most often abbreviated as NAC. It’s an amino acid precursor to glutathione, one of the body’s favorite antioxidants. So, it’s helpful for hormone, egg quality support, firm health, and a standard dose that depends on it. Can you go as low as 600 milligrams up to 1 500 or 2000, generally best taken away from food? However, if I had to pick one of my favorite supplements, resveratrol would be at the top of the list, but NAC would be right there with it; it’s wonderful for women’s health.


Another one is inositol which is particularly helpful for ovarian health, especially as we get older inositol can help with insulin sensitivity which is a common issue as we head into our 40s and insulin sensitivity or insulin resistance becomes more common; a supplement like an inositol can help to just kind of tilt the scales in your favor to help keep your ovaries functioning optimally for as long as they can and to help with the smoother transition, standard disc for that would be between 2000 and 4000 megs, you’d want to work up to that, it can be a little hard on the tummy. You’d want to start at a lower dose and work up.

Coenzyme Q10

What’s another one? Coenzyme Q10 is most famous for supporting cardiac health in women over 40 and, generally, for anybody over forty. But it’s also become a well-known supplement in the reproductive health world because it can help with aging. It can help with egg quality for our patients over 40 undergoing IVF treatment or looking to optimize egg health; CoQ10 is always on the list. We see a lot of reproductive endocrinologists recommending this one as well.

The standard dose for this for fertility is between 400 and 600, usually up to 800 mg, and for women’s health and hormone health in general. That’s probably, in combination with resveratrol, one of my favorites to support women over 40 just because of the cardiac support, so along with hormone health and generally reducing inflammation. It can help with cardiac health, which is an important topic for women as we age. Then, as I was digging, I found some information about how melatonin and resveratrol can support women over 40 in cognitive health.

So, as our estrogen and progesterone start to decline, it’s very common to hear, you know, hear about brain fog or just cognitive decline and melatonin; usually, a lower dose, probably between 2 and 5 megs in combination with resveratrol, can be supportive of just easy and smooth transition into the second half of life and then I think I’ll wrap up with my one of my most favorite easily accessible supplements is a good quality fish oil, high EPA, DHA, fish oil and that’s just going to help with everything.

It’s a helpful anti-inflammatory, helps with brain health, and helps with hormone health; it is a mild blood thinner, so you want to be careful if you’re taking blood thinners. But other than that, fish oil is one of those that almost everybody can pay for and has benefited from. So, I’ll wrap up with that. If you have questions or want to open it up for questions, I’m happy to take questions with this, please. 

Recommended Supplements For Hair Fall

NourishDoc: Sure. So, most of the women I talk to have a problem with hair loss, hair thinning, you know, is there any supplement? Of course, diet is important; we talked about phytoestrogens and all that, right? But is there any supplement women should take specifically for hair fall or thinning? That would be the question. I get a lot from women. 

Dr. Meritt: Anything that will support estrogen and androgen balance. So, many times as we head into this perimenopause land, we see an increase in androgens and a decrease in estrogen progesterone, which is one reason we get this hair loss. So, a lot of the supplements where you come here, resveratrol, would be great for that as a mild phytoestrogen, the inositol, which is going to help with androgen metabolism and insulin resistance, is going to help.

There are certainly other androgen metabolizing supplements on the market; the two that we use most often would be EGCJ, a green tea extract that can help support androgen hormones gently and will help with hair loss; there are potentially a couple of reasons that we see hair loss. However, that hormonal shift is a common one. Then the other that’s stronger that I would only recommend using with really talking to a provider and getting your hormones tested. However, it is a potent supplement, a soft palmetto, that can help keep those androgens in balance; I would recommend using it if you’re heading into menopause, probably with something to support those estrogen and progesterone levels. 

NourishDoc: That’s a very comprehensive list. I think most women have asked these questions, so I wanted to bring up these questions on supplements; of course, as you said earlier, nutrition, proper nutrition, is so important, not only when you’re pregnant or earlier but towards our later years, you know, as we start aging, so, supplement is only, you know, supplement but the nutrition is very important. Anything, last words, anything that Doctor Jones would like to share about your practice, or anything that you want to say before we wrap up today? 

Dr. Meritt: I mean, I appreciate you being here. We would love to connect with folks; you can find me on Instagram at Doctor Merritt Jones. Our clinic is Natural Harmony Health on Instagram or NHRH Integrative Fertility; an amazing team of five doctors, and we love what we do. So, I would love to connect with you all. Please sign in with me, and thank you again, Amita. This is fun. I appreciate the insight. 

NourishDoc: Thank you. We are launching programs for women 40 and over in a couple of months; we are partnering with Global Experts and bringing you all these workshops so that you can start taking care of yourself in a holistic way; there’s no one magic pill as Doctor Jones said there are multiple things you have to change your lifestyle fundamentally and that’s what we are going to help women do that systematically. With that, thank you so much.


Have a Question?