Confusing Supplement Schedule?

white pillsHow do you figure out when to take all your different supplements – especially when some of them need to be consumed on an empty stomach. And what do you do if some of your supplements are not compatible with each other?

Here are some tips to help you figure out your supplement schedule:

* Take the supplements that are absorbed the fastest, first.

* If a supplement does not specify that it needs to be consumed on an empty stomach, then it’s probably okay to take it together with other substances.

* If a supplement is recommended to be taken on an empty stomach, is it because the empty stomach is a pre-requisite for adequate absorption? Or, is it because it’s a substance that needs to have a clear surface to apply it’s healing properties? Supplements like slippery elm, aloe vera juice, and marshmallow root fit into the latter category and therefore can easily be taken together – since they’re all trying to accomplish the same thing.

The trickiest supplements for everyone to schedule are probiotics vs. anti-pathogen agents like wild oregano oil. Here are the shortcut rules to keep in mind for these two substances:

1. Probiotics have to be taken completely on their own – 2 hours away from any antibiotic or anti-pathogen (this includes wild oregano, potentized garlic, olive leaf, etc) and 20 minutes before food, or 2 hours after food.

2. Wild oregano oil is best taken on an empty stomach, but can be combined with any healing type of substance that also requires an empty stomach – like aloe vera, MucosaHeal, slippery elm, marshmallow root etc. It needs to be taken 20 minutes before food, or 2 hours after food.

Note: Immune booster herbs like astragalus and maitake are best on an empty stomach, but away from probiotics. They can be taken together with wild oregano, aloe vera, MucosaHeal, etc. And they don’t NEED to be on an empty stomach, they are just more potent that way.

You can also download this daily supplement schedule I developed for people on The IBD Remission Diet, since it gives you a specific break-down of how to work in all the shakes and supplements throughout the day.

Read on to see how these guidelines are applied to a real-life situation. This correspondence between myself and one of my readers also demonstrates how sometimes you have to experiment to determine the best schedule to achieve maximum potency and effectiveness from your supplements….


Hi Jini,

I Need some help, I’m confused. Perhaps you could share your schedule of how you took or take your supplements. How far apart (time limit) should the following be taken from each other?

1. Natren’s probiotics and Psyllium?
2. Natren’s probiotocs and DGL?
3. Natren’s probiotics and L. Glutamine, NAG &
Slippery Elm( these 3 taken together) ?
4. Natren’s probiotics and George’s Aloe Vera Juice?
5. Psyllium and vitamins & minerals?

The problem I am experiencing is that I take:

1. Natren’s 3 time a day (A.M, NOON & P.M-bedtime)
2. Psyllium twice a day (AM & NOON best if taken before meals??)
3. DGL before or after each meal
4. L. Glutamine, NAG & Slippery Elm 3 times a day on empty stomach
5. Aloe Vera Juice juice before retiring for the night
6. Vitamins & minerals three times a day

My concern is that Natren’s states on their bottle that any herbs (DGL, Slippery Elm, aloe vera juice) should be taken at least 2 hours apart from their probiotics. I can only assume that herbs may kill the good bacteria in Natrens.

I hope that you can see my dilemma. I follow the Minimize Gas & Bloating Diet and it will be one year in Sept. that I am Colitis free. I’ve improved my bones from osteoporosis to osteopena. Your book “Listen to Your Gut” has been a God send. Any input you
can pass along will be greatly appreciated. Thanks Jini for all you do for us.

Warm Wishes,
K.B. Canada


Dear K.,

Congratulations on your wonderful progress! I think you’ll also see some really good results from Jini’s Wild Oregano Oil Protocol. Also, you can speed up your bone-building even faster if you use nanoparticle-sized minerals – my whole family takes these now and for your condition you would definitely benefit from both the Trace Minerals and the Bone Support. Here are my suggestions in response to your questions:

Keep in mind that our food can contain many natural antibacterials (like garlic, onions, etc.) and Natren has had to set a time limit that applies to a wide variety of substances at all strengths/potencies. For example, if you’re taking Wild Oregano Oil or Olive Leaf, then you definitely cannot consume the probiotics sooner than 2 hours as you’d be wasting your money, however, other supplements (and foods) are far less potent against bacteria. Therefore, you may be okay to implement the following schedule:

Before a meal:
take the Natren Probiotics
wait 20 minutes
then take the NAG, L-Glutamine, Slippery elm and psyllium (in that order – you’re taking the most rapidly absorbed substances first) after the meal take the DGL

Before bed:
take the Natren probiotics
wait 20 minutes
then take the George’s aloe vera juice


You may want to try this schedule:

Before each meal:
take the NAG, L-Glutamine, George’s aloe vera juice, Slippery elm and psyllium (in that order – you’re taking the most rapidly absorbed substances first) after the meal take the DGL (or in this case, you can also take it before the meal, if you prefer, since you’re not consuming the probiotics at this time)

Before bed:
Take 1 – 2 teaspoons of each Natren probiotic (Megadophilus, Bifido Factor, Bulgaricus)

Perhaps you may want to experiment with both schedules and see which one gives you better results. The Natren probiotics may work better for you in multiple doses and may not be affected much by the other supplements, or, they may work better taken on their own in a large dose. A good way is to test both and see which one works best.


Hi Jini,

Thank you for the two schedule suggestions, this clears up my confusion. I’m confident that I’ll have better results from my supplements now that I have a clear understanding of how to take them. I tell my husband I have two Bibles, one to save my soul and one to save my gut. Thanks for your wonderful support, God Bless.

Regards, K.

Visit our LTYG Holistic Health Shoppe to find out which supplements I recommend and to learn more about them – you don’t need to order from there, just use it as a resource to find out which brands I recommend and why, then you can write them down and have your local health store order them in for you.


Jini Patel Thompson’s books on natural healing for digestive diseases have sold in over 40 different countries. Her health articles have been published in journals and magazines in the U.S., Australia and U.K.


19 thoughts on “Confusing Supplement Schedule?

  1. Hi Jini and friends,

    I recently started taking a very small dose of Oreganol…and I think it might be too strong for my system…a lot of burning in my stomach, and heat, and very severe die off. Have you found Olive leaf to be a little gentler on the stomach? or is there a supplement that you have found makes taking either herbs easier to take? I am testing as needing both supplements but I am trying to figure out a way to take one or the other….for the inital die-off phase. And to find one that I can take consistently. I was also taking probiotics away from the antimicrobials……but even that seems to be irritating me now….

    thank you

  2. Aloe vera is always a good one to coat the stomach and can be taken with anything (except probiotics).

    Also, drink LOTS of water following ingestion.

  3. Thank you Jini;

    one more question for you…did you find it was necessary to prepare your system with any supplements before doing the detox? I am finding the die off so strong for me and so stressful on my systems, and I am wondering if its because I am already depleted b/c of having been so sick for years prior…..are there any supplements you recommend… set the body up for the detox process?

    thanks so much for your time….

  4. Well, first of all, we don’t do detox unless we are at a decent weight where we could lose a few pounds and still be okay. Then, people with IBD or other chronic illness need to detox VERY slowly – to avoid triggering flares. So you would cut back the dosage to as low as possible and just go very slowly, increasing very gradually, over a period of time.

  5. Pingback: When should I take all of my supplements and probiotics? | JPT HOLISTIC HEALTH

  6. Jini,
    My apologies for asking this question here, but can’t find any other way to send this to you.

    Can you tell me if the probiotic powders have a taste? The reason I ask, without going into a ton of detail, is that my elderly mother is recovering from C-diff and wants to try them, but said she would prefer the capsules because she doesn’t think she’ll be able to stand the taste of the powder. I think the powder will be more beneficial to her, because she still has some diarrhea unless she’s taking an over the counter medicine to keep it in control (but she tests negative for C-diff).

    Also, if you can suggest the dosage, that would be great. I’ve been through your book, but C-diff isn’t really addressed.

    Thanks so much.

  7. Hi Clare, the dairy-based powders taste like powdery skim milk when mixed in water. When mixed in yoghurt or raw milk, they are indetectable. The non-dairy-based powders have a stronger taste (chick pea base) so they might not work for her.

    You can get the powdered probiotics encased in capsules and as they are only veggie caps, they MAY dissolve quickly enough for her to derive some benefit. But definitely do not use the Healthy Trinity capsules with diarrhea.

    You use the same “high dose” dosage: 1 tsp of each species, 3x/day

    Nicole Paull (my old assistant and still writes for our Infoletter) used the Natren probiotics this way to clear up her mother’s C. difficile infection.

  8. Thank you so much! Is the probiotic regime indefinite, or should she take it for say 3 months or so??? And can she take them with other meds (she takes 3 different types of high blood pressure medicine in the morning, calcium and vitamins and niaspin for cholesterol at noon, and calcium and mevicore for cholesterol and an 81 gram aspirin in the evening) when should she take the probitics? At the same time or before or after the above dosing?

    I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the help – it’s been a long 6 months for her!

  9. Hi Jini,

    Because of recently watching a few Dr. Oz clips on his website and connecting with the issues talked about, I have decided to take the following:

    1.) Omega 7 (Sea Buckthorn)
    2.) Glucomannan
    3.) Raw Probiotics
    4.) Enzymes (to aide in digesting gluten and dairy)

    Like some people, I read and re-read the bottles and still have trouble figuring out the optimal time to take these, I am sure you can help.



  10. Omega 7, enzymes should be taken with food.

    Glucomannan on an empty stomach.

    not sure what you mean by “raw” probiotics – if they are a fermented food, then you can likely take them either with food or together with glucomannan – follow the direction on the package.

  11. I purchased the raw probiotics (kept in frig) at a health food store. The brand is Garden of Life. It is for women “50 & wiser” and contains 85 billion live cultures and 33 strains.

    The Omega 7 directions say to take on an empty stomach. You suggest with food. Which should I do? If taken on an empty stomach, can I take with the Glucomannan and probiotics or avoid taking together?

    This is where I get confused.

  12. That’s different – usually omega supps (fish oil, flax, etc.) are best taken with food.

    So I would follow their directions.

    As I say in the post above, traditional probiotics should be taken 2 hours away from any other supplement – but the Garden of Life may contain soil organisms, in which case, you can probably take them anytime (not that I like soil organisms!) but…

    so it looks like you can take the glucomannan and omega 7 together and then follow directions for the GOL.

    I only know the dosing/intake details for the products I recommend – but you can always call each of the companies to get more details.

  13. Hi there,
    I wrote to the service email of the holistic health shoppe and was told to try submitting a question here.
    My problem is not anything to do with IBS and the like, however it it very close to the descriptions of the symptoms and problems.

    I am suffering from a bad bout of Graft versus Host Disease(GVHD), following a bone marrow transplant i underwent four years ago.

    The disease has greatly affected my gut, with my absorption greatly diminished which has caused me to lose a substantial amount of weight, have acute exzema, skin tightening and thickening especially at my feet and legs, skin discoloration, joint stiffening, raw mouth(can’t eat spicy foods), extremely dry eyes with photophobia,and lately due to constipation an abcess that formed a fistula.

    I am wondering if Absorb plus is suitable for me, as i am taking immunosuppressents and steroids in low doses to cope. In addition. i am eating well with a good appetite due to the steroids, but weightwise it has made only a slight difference. I am seeking help on the diet i should take, as in how many shakes to go with my 3 to 5 meals that i am currently consuming.

    I have a lot of faith in your products and efforts, and i am simply looking for guidance. Please get back to me.

  14. any chance that taking the mini minerals for the first time could cause dark green diarrhea the next day?? I’m worried!

  15. Hi Andi,

    We’ve never heard of that happening to anyone from use of any of the mini-minerals products. Which product(s) are you using, specifically?

    Kind regards,
    Customer Care

  16. Thanks for responding so quickly Justin. I took the mini minerals of life (62 trace minerals) yesterday. The only reason I’m wondering about them is that it is the only thing I did differently yesterday. Every other supplement remained the same as what I’ve been doing, and all I ate was bone broth, and shakes of yogurt, brown bananas, sunwarrior protein, vital whey and udos.

  17. Hi Andi,

    I figured there was an outside chance that you had used the angstrom iron which could have potentially explained the green color. I wish I had a better answer for you but I’m afraid we haven’t heard of anyone experiencing anything like that from using the Minerals of Life. You may want to consult your physician if that symptom wasn’t just a one time thing as he or she may be able to elaborate further.

    Kind regards,
    Customer Care

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