13 Anti-Aging Supplements Doctors Trust the Most
These anti-aging supplements may help keep your skin supple, your bones strong, and your brain and body aging gracefully.
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Consider adding these supplements to your regimen
If you’re eating these anti-aging foods on a regular basis and already know the anti-aging secrets that might add years to your life, you’re off to a good start. And although there’s no fountain of youth, there are some supplements that experts trust and might make sense as part of your anti-aging routine. However, check with your doctor to see if taking one of these supplements is a good idea. Keep in mind that supplements are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration in the same way as prescription drugs. And avoid taking certain types in combination with other supplements or prescription drugs, (Some types of supplements can be dangerous.)
Cell Protection: Nature’s Bounty CoQ10
When it comes to anti-aging supplements, you may be overlooking CoQ10. “This is a supplement that protects against oxidative cell damage,” says Janette Nesheiwat, MD, medical director of CityMD in New York City. “This includes protection of the skin, the blood vessels, and the muscles. The supplement is even recommended for heart patients and people with fibromyalgia. ”
Inflammation: ENERGYbits Spirulina Tablets
“Algae is nutritious for humans,” says Nicole Avena, PhD, assistant professor of neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City and author of Why Diets Fail. She points out that spirulina is among the top anti-aging supplements because it may have benefits as an antioxidant, an immune booster, and an anti-inflammatory agent. Spirulina in powdered form can be blended small amounts into breakfast smoothies. (Chlorella vs. spirulina: here’s how these two supplements compare.)
Skin health: Nature Made Vitamin C
When considering anti-aging supplements, think about which ones will benefit your skin. “Vitamin C is one of the more popular vitamins because of its ability to protect the skin and repair and regenerate tissues,” says Farshad Fani Marvasti, MD, MPH, director of public health, prevention, and health promotion at The University of Arizona College of Medicine in Phoenix. “Vitamin C is an antioxidant that blocks damage caused by free radicals, which is largely associated with the aging process and may play a role in other chronic conditions like heart disease. Although we recommend getting your daily vitamin C from foods like oranges, green peppers, and berries, it can also be absorbed through supplements.” The vitamin can also help your skin stay youthful. “As we get older, collagen is lacking—and vitamin C can protect and strengthen the skin,” says Nesheiwat. See which vitamin brands doctors trust the most.
Skin Health: Heliocare
“This oral supplement is a strong antioxidant derived from the fern plant,” says Tsippora Shainhouse, MD, a dermatologist in Los Angeles. It may even act as an oral sunscreen, she says. “It helps prevent both UVA- and UVB-induced skin cell toxicity and DNA damage.” These can lead to the destruction of collagen—the support structure for your skin—and sow the seeds for cancer, says Dr. Shainhouse. “It is anti-inflammatory and may help suppress skin cancer formation. It should be part of your daily sun safety routine, which includes sun-protective clothing and a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or above.”
Skin health: Biophix Nicotinamide
“This supplement has been demonstrated to reduce the incidence of new non-melanoma skin cancers by 23 percent in people who have already had skin cancer,” says Dr. Shainhouse. “Skin cancers develop due to UV exposure. Most of the time, UV-induced skin and DNA damage is repaired by the body’s DNA repair enzymes and molecules. However, not all the damage can always be fixed. Topical and oral versions of nicotinamide help the skin replenish some of the molecules needed for skin repair. This supplement is geared for patients who have already had skin cancer or who have underlying immune suppression, which can increase the risk of developing UV-induced skin cancer. This supplement is not yet recommended for the general population.”
Nail Health: Vitafusion Gorgeous Hair, Skin & Nails
“Aging of your hands is hard to hide, but when you have healthy nails you can make your hands look much more youthful,” says Avena. “Biotin is key, and you can get it through a yummy gummy.” One serving of Vitafusion’s Gorgeous Hair, Skin & Nails gives you not only biotin but also the antioxidants vitamin C and vitamin E. In addition, you get 12 nutrients that further support hair, skin, and healthy nails. Inform your physician that you are taking a supplement containing biotin, since it can interfere with certain blood tests, including ones that may indicate a heart attack.
Hair thinning: Viviscal Professional Hair Growth Program
“Hair loss or thinning is a common concern, and while there are countless products claiming to thicken hair and encourage growth, I recommend Viviscal Professional Supplements to achieve stronger healthier hair,” says Joel Schlessinger, MD, a dermatologist, cosmetic surgeon, and president of LovelySkin.com. “While it contains some tried-and-true ingredients like vitamin C and biotin, the AminoMar complex in the supplements is what makes them unique and effective. The formula combines shark cartilage with marine-based compounds, and the results are visible not only in hair but in the skin and nails, as well.”
Brain Health: MegaFood Daily Turmeric
“Turmeric is a very strong anti-inflammatory,” says Dr. Marvasti. “It also has benefits for heart disease prevention and dementia. We notice in cultures that eat more turmeric that people have a much lower incidence of dementia. Turmeric absorption in supplements can be increased with piperine or black pepper. However, these ingredients may interact with certain medications, so it’s best to consult a physician prior to taking a supplement containing them.” Turmeric is also a goto for Nancy Bono, DO, associate professor and chair of family medicine at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine in Old Westbury, New York. “The curcumin found in turmeric may be helpful in combating certain ailments associated with aging, such as high cholesterol,” she notes.
Brain health: Terry Naturally Vectomega
“Lots of studies are now starting to tout the effects of omega-3 fatty acids,” says Niket Sonpal, MD, assistant professor of clinical medicine at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine in New York City. They seem to boost mood and memory, he says, and support skin, hair, and nails..” William Sears, MD, co-author of The Dr. Sears T5 Wellness Plan, agrees that this is an important supplement—but before adding it to your anti-aging supplements routine, he says, “Ask yourself, ‘Do I eat two to three fistfuls of wild salmon every week?'” Omega-3s occur naturally in fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines, and herring. “If not, then you should take supplements,” he says.
Brain health: NOW Foods Phosphatidyl Serine
“Phosphatidylserine contains amino acids and fatty acids,” says Warren Willey, DO, a doctor of osteopathic medicine in Pocatello, Idaho. “It helps build and protect cell membranes and is of particular importance in the brain. It has been shown to slow the rate of cognitive decline, help battle depression, and may even improve athletic performance. I have had great luck in my practice with it with men and women who are stressed to the hilt and having a hard time sleeping.”
Gut health: Nordic Naturals Nordic Flora Probiotic Comfort
Maintaining a healthy gut and immune system are important for any stage of life, and you may want to add a probiotic to your anti-aging supplements list. “I recommend a probiotic for immune function and gut health,” says Lisa R. Young, PhD, RDN, an adjunct professor of nutrition at New York University and author of Finally Full, Finally Slim. “We know that healthy bacteria in the gut is so important for immune function and overall health.” Find out which nutrients even nutritionists don’t get enough of.
Bone health: Life Extension Vitamin D
“Here in the rainy Pacific Northwest, I find myself counseling patients about vitamin D almost daily,” says Brady McNulty, PharmD, a geriatric pharmacist in Roseburg, Oregon. “It plays a role in allowing for the absorption of calcium, thereby making stronger, healthier bones to support you through the years. It also blocks the release of parathyroid hormone, which reduces the re-absorption of existing bone tissue. There is some data indicating it can help reduce the frequency and severity of falls. Before taking vitamin D, someone should first talk to their doctor and see if they would benefit.” See the silent signs you aren’t getting enough vitamins.
Sleep: OMG! Nutrition Magnesium Bisglysinate Chelate
“Magnesium has been shown to decrease palpitations and slow the heart rate, but magnesium absorption decreases as we age,” says Suzanne Steinbaum, DO, director of women’s cardiovascular prevention, health, and wellness at Mount Sinai Heart in New York City and an advisory board member for OMG! Nutrition. “For so many of my women patients who have trouble falling asleep at night, magnesium has been effective in calming their hearts and enabling them to get sleep. Stress and inadequate sleep can age you, and getting a good night’s sleep is essential. Finding an absorbable form magnesium is important and can truly help you recharge.” Check out these magnesium benefits that could save your life.
- Janette Nesheiwat, MD, medical director of CityMD in New York City
- Nicole Avena, PhD, assistant professor of neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City and author of Why Diets Fail
- Farshad Fani Marvasti, MD, MPH, director of public health, prevention, and health promotion at The University of Arizona College of Medicine in Phoenix
- Tsippora Shainhouse, MD, a dermatologist in Los Angeles
- Joel Schlessinger, MD, a dermatologist, cosmetic surgeon, and president of LovelySkin.com
- Nancy Bono, DO, associate professor and chair of family medicine at NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine in Old Westbury, NY
- William Sears, MD, co-author of The Dr. Sears T5 Wellness Plan
- Warren Willey, DO, a doctor of osteopathic medicine in Pocatello, ID
- Lisa R. Young, PhD, RDN, an adjunct professor of nutrition at New York University and author of Finally Full, Finally Slim
- Brady McNulty, PharmD, a geriatric pharmacist in Roseburg, OR
- Suzanne Steinbaum, DO, director of women's cardiovascular prevention, health, and wellness at Mount Sinai Heart in New York City