Vitamins For Weight Loss 2023: How Do It Support & Best Vitamins

Reviewed by Drew Sutton, MD

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vitamins for weight loss

When it comes to weight loss, it’s not merely about cutting back on carbs and fat, or counting calories. It’s also not solely about exercise. The body needs to be in an ideal, healthy state in order to burn fat and lose excess weight, and one way to do that is to ensure the body is getting enough of certain vitamins and minerals – vitamins like vitamin D[1] and vitamin C which are necessary for a healthy immune system, and minerals like iron which help the body make energy from the nutrients we ingest. Let’s discover more key vitamins and minerals that play a role in weight loss.

Vitamins For Weight Loss

Getting adequate vitamins in your diet, whether through food or supplements, is an important part of weight loss. Each vitamin helps support the weight loss process in its own way. For example, magnesium helps to lower blood pressure and when we lose weight, our blood pressure can drop – they are intrinsically linked. Other vitamins and minerals that are needed for weight loss include a multivitamin, vitamin D, B vitamins, iron, vitamin C and calcium.

vitamins for weight loss
Magnesium is an important vitamin for weight loss

How Do Vitamins Support Weight Loss?

What’s important to understand is that vitamins alone do not work as a “weight loss” pill, but rather, they help the body function properly (even optimally) so that weight loss is possible and more effective. Different vitamins support the body in different ways, but it all adds up to putting the body in an ideal, healthy state so that it is more susceptible to weight loss, healing and overall well-being.

vitamins for weight loss
Vitamins support weight loss

7 Best Vitamins For Weight Loss


It not only helps to lower blood pressure[2], but it’s also an element the body uses to make energy. Magnesium plays a key role in hundreds of necessary functions in the body, some of which include regulating our blood glucose levels (an essential component of weight management) and managing our nervous system. Magnesium can also aid in constipation relief – another necessary factor in maintaining a healthy weight.


Multivitamins are great to have on hand to cover your nutritional bases. While a multivitamin may not be enough to address major deficiencies in any one particular vitamin or mineral, they allow for a wide spectrum of support in the main elements that the body needs to function. Some multivitamins are tailored to specific demographics based on what support they need more of. For example, older women may need more calcium. Here are some of the best multivitamins for women over 50.

Vitamin D

Most people are deficient in vitamin D[3] because the best way to get it is from the sun, which most people don’t get enough exposure to. It can be hard to spend time outdoors in our modern world, and even when we do, we have to be careful not to expose ourselves too much to the sun which would lead to sun damage. Yet we need vitamin D for a variety of reasons: Digestive health, immunity, weight loss and mental health. Indeed, vitamin D leads to improved mood as much as it does improved physical health. Keeping your vitamin D levels in a normal range is important for weight loss. In fact, some studies have shown a connection between obesity and vitamin D deficiency. 

B Vitamins

From B1 to B12, there are many B vitamins[4], all of which have their own role to play in supporting a healthy metabolism, immune system and overall working body. One of the main jobs of vitamin B is to metabolize the food we eat, specifically macronutrients (protein, fat and carbs), and to help the body utilize the energy from these foods. Therefore, not having enough B vitamins can inhibit weight loss by interfering with how the body metabolizes food.


Iron is an essential mineral which, when depleted, can make people feel weak and in some cases, they can become anemic[5]. One of iron’s main functions is transporting oxygen into each cell of our body and oxygen is a necessary component of weight loss. Having low levels of iron can inhibit this oxidizing process, which means a harder time losing weight. Another thing to consider is that, with low iron comes low energy, and without energy, it’s difficult to exercise regularly. Without enough exercise, we inhibit the weight loss process.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is probably best known for its immunity-enhancing powers, but it does many other important things in the body, one of which is supporting weight loss. It does this by slowing down the loss of age-related lean body mass, while at the same time, assisting in fat reduction. Together, these elements are needed to sustain a healthy body weight. It’s also been suggested that having enough vitamin C can keep stress hormones at bay, which may otherwise cause the body to hang onto visceral fat, particularly “stubborn belly fat”. In this sense, supplementing with vitamin C may not only reduce pounds/kilos, but also waist circumference.


Calcium is another mineral that supports good metabolism and the body’s ability to burn fat. That being said, many calcium rich foods (such as dairy) are fattening, making losing weight more difficult. If you’re low on calcium and want to lose weight, it’s best to get your calcium from low-calorie, non-dairy sources such as leafy greens and nuts. Taking calcium supplements may also be a useful strategy to ask your healthcare practitioner about.

Supplements For Weight Loss That Are Ineffective

Many supplements and supplement brands claim to be effective at helping individuals lose weight, whether by suppressing appetite, burning fat faster or promising some other “silver bullet” result. However, very few of them have been studied extensively enough to support these claims. This does not necessarily mean that they definitely don’t work, but rather, that there’s no scientific evidence to show that they do work. In some cases they have been studied and the findings show that they are ineffective at helping people lose weight. Some of these ineffective supplements[6] include:

  • Capsaicin
  • Beta-glucans 
  • Bitter orange (synephrine)
  • Carnitine
  • Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)
  • Forskolin
  • Chromium picolinate
  • Fucoxanthin
  • Garcinia cambogia

Side Effect Of Consuming Supplements For Weight Loss

Every vitamin and mineral has their own benefits as well as side effects. The side effects you may encounter when taking vitamins for weight loss will depend on the vitamin itself. For example, magnesium may cause stomach irritation, while iron may cause constipation. This will vary not only from vitamin to vitamin and mineral to mineral, but also from person to person. 

If you’re consuming a weight loss supplement specifically, rather than individual vitamins, you may experience side effects such as reduced appetite. And for those taking a weight loss prescription drug, such as a stimulant[7], side effects can be more severe and include elevated heart rate, insomnia, nervousness, blindness and headaches. 

vitamins for weight loss
There are various problems with consuming supplements for weight loss

When Should You Consult A Doctor

Any consideration of taking new supplements, even vitamins and minerals, should be discussed with your doctor. It this important to get a thorough medical workup to assess your levels of vitamins and minerals to detect any deficiencies before assuming it’s healthy to take certain vitamins. It’s also good to rule out any underlying medical issue that may be causing you to feel like you need to be taking more vitamins (for example, extreme fatigue and/or rapid weight gain could be a sign of a thyroid problem).

It’s important to remember that vitamins and minerals are meant to be present in the body within certain ranges and you can have too much. Not only can too much of certain vitamins and minerals be harmful, but some may have contraindications and interact poorly with other medications you’re taking.

All individuals should run their concerns by their doctor before starting new supplements, but particularly those with serious medical conditions, those on certain medications, pregnant or breastfeeding women, and people with suppressed immune systems. 


Vitamins and minerals play essential roles in how our body functions. We need the right balance of different vitamins and minerals in order for our bodily systems to operate at full capacity, which then supports healthy weight loss. While one vitamin or mineral alone does not reduce fat or build muscle, they work together as a team to help the body metabolize food, use energy from the food, carry oxygen into our cells, and reduce stress, all of which allows weight loss to happen more smoothly and efficiently.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I take a multivitamin instead of individual vitamins?

This depends on your health goals. Most multivitamins have small amounts of many vitamins, however, you may need higher doses of specific vitamins. 

Is it better to get my vitamins and minerals through food or supplements?

It’s always best to get your nutrients through food, however, it’s not always possible. You may require higher amounts of nutrients that would be too difficult to get through food alone. This is especially true if you have certain dietary restrictions (lactose intolerant people may need to get their calcium from non-dairy sources).

How long will it take me to lose weight once I start getting enough vitamins?

The body needs time to adjust to new levels of vitamins – the results are not immediate. Additionally, getting adequate vitamins alone is only part of the weight loss process. You will also need to watch what you eat, exercise a few times a week, manage your stress and get enough sleep every night. If you’re doing all these things, you can expect to start seeing some results within 4-8 weeks.

+ 7 sources

MIDSS adheres to strict procurement guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutes, and medical associations. We work mainly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure the accuracy of the information. We avoid the use of tertiary references. You can read about how we ensure the accuracy and timeliness of our content in our editorial process.

  1. Perna, S. (2019). Is Vitamin D Supplementation Useful for Weight Loss Programs? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Medicina-lithuania, [online] 55(7), pp.368–368. doi:
  2. Craig, W.J. (2009). Health effects of vegan diets. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, [online] 89(5), pp.1627S1633S. doi:
  3. Heaney, R.P. (2008). Vitamin D in Health and Disease. Clinical Journal of The American Society of Nephrology, [online] 3(5), pp.1535–1541. doi:
  4. Hanna, M., Jaqua, E., Van Tang Nguyen and Clay, J.T. (2022). B Vitamins: Functions and Uses in Medicine. The Permanente Journal, [online] 26(2), pp.89–97. doi:
  5. (2017). Iron Deficiency Anemia and Weight Loss. [online] Available at:
  6. Cafasso, J. (2018). 5 Vitamins and Minerals to Boost Your Metabolism and Promote Weight Loss. [online] Healthline. Available at:’t-work.
  7. Leigh Ann Anderson (2012). Side Effects of Weight Loss Drugs (Diet Pills). [online] Available at:


Heather Freudenthal, Health Coach
Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, Wellness Writer
Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and Wellness Writer with a holistic and functional medicine/root cause mindset. My writing style is engaging, relatable, and educational, designed to help readers digest and relate to complex topics in nutrition, gut health, hormone health, mental health, and spiritual health, then inspire them to take action.


Drew Sutton, MD
Medical Writer & Editor
Drew is a retired ENT doctor who now lives in the Southeastern US. He was a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngology and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He has a bachelor’s degree in Biology and Psychology and an MD degree. He completed his internship in General Surgery and Residency in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and practiced for almost 30 years in all aspects of ENT, including a specialization in disorders of the ear and skull base. Drew is passionate about communicating his clinical experiences and making his knowledge more accessible to the general public by medical writing.