HomeAnswersDo supplements work?

Do supplements work?

This question is about Nutrition
Sarah Achleithner
Yes, supplements can work, however, not all supplements are created equal. Furthermore, supplements are not a replacement for consuming a nutrient-dense diet. 
Research has shown that supplementation may have significant benefits for specific groups and indications [2]. For example, alpha lipoic acid has been shown to be beneficial for cholesterol reduction and vitamin C may reduce the duration of cold symptoms [3, 4]. 
To maximize the effectiveness of your supplements, look for a personalized supplement service, underpinned by science, that conducts third-party testing on their product (e.g. Elo!). 
At Elo, our Smart Supplement service marries at-home biomarker testing, the latest nutrition research, expert 1:1 coaching to provide exactly the right supplements for you at the right dose.
Learn more about joining Elo here.
man holding an assortment of supplements


  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2020, September 3). Office of dietary supplements - dietary supplements: What you need to know. NIH Office of Dietary Supplements.https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/WYNTK-Consumer/
  2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2019, January). Using dietary supplements wisely. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/using-dietary-supplements-wisely.  
  3. Baziar, N., Nasli-Esfahani, E., Djafarian, K., Qorbani, M., Hedayati, M., Mishani, M. A., Faghfoori, Z., Ahmaripour, N., & Hosseini, S. (2020). The beneficial effects of Alpha Lipoic acid supplementation On Lp-pla2 mass and its distribution between HDL and apob-containing Lipoproteins in type 2 Diabetic patients: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1155/2020/5850865 
  4. Hemilä, H., & Chalker, E. (2013). Vitamin C for preventing and treating the common cold. The Cochrane database of systematic reviews. https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD000980.pub4