The 9 Best Supplements for Bone Health, According to a Dietitian

Getting enough of these bone health nutrients is important no matter your age

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Best Supplements for Bone Health

Verywell Fit / Marcus Millan

Maintaining strong bones as you age is important for quality of life through aging and to reduce risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis. “Osteoporosis can actually become life threatening when you get older, and it’s not something to take lightly. That’s why we start screening all postmenopausal women for osteoporosis with bone-density scans starting at age 65, or younger if you went through early menopause,” says Dr. Jillian Gold, MD, family practice physician.

But it may be prudent to start thinking about your bone health at a much younger age. “By ages 25-30, our bones have reached their peak mass, so by ages 30-35, taking steps to preserve bone mass should be a priority,” says Kelsey Kunik, registered dietitian at Graciously Nourished. Kunik notes that eating a varied diet and regularly exercising is crucial for maintaining bone density, but supplements can help fill any gaps in your diet.

While most people think about calcium as the most important nutrient for bone health, vitamin D, vitamin K, magnesium, and zinc all play an essential role for bone health. And emerging research points to potential benefits of boron and soy isoflavones, either from diet or supplements. When considering a supplement for bone health, you’ll want to take into account your individual diet, lifestyle, and any medical conditions to determine which supplement (if any) is right for you. 

When selecting our top supplements for bone health, our registered dietitian interviewed experts including other registered dietitians and a family medicine doctor and considered ingredients, form, dosing, any third-party or in-house purity and potency testing, and price.

Editor's Note

Our team of registered dietitians reviews and evaluates every single supplement we recommend according to our dietary supplement methodology. From there, a registered dietitian on our Expert Review Board reviews each article for scientific accuracy. Always speak with a healthcare professional before adding a supplement to your routine, to ensure that the supplement is appropriate for your individual needs and which dosage to take.

Best Overall

Theralogix TheraCal Bone Health D4000

Theralogix TheraCal Bone Health D4000


  • NSF Contents Certified

  • Contains essential nutrients to support bone health

  • Gluten-free and vegetarian

  • Calcium supplements may not be recommended for some populations

Theralogix TheraCal Bone Health 4,000 tops our list of supplements because it contains a blend of vitamins and minerals known to support bone health including vitamin D, magnesium, vitamin K, boron, and calcium. It’s NSF Contents Certified, a trusted third-party organization that tests for ingredient accuracy and no harmful contaminants. It’s also gluten-free, dye-free, and vegetarian.

TheraCal Bone Health is available with either 1,000 IU or 2,000 IU of vitamin D. The Endocrine Society notes that adults over 50 may benefit from 2,000 IU of vitamin D3. However, this will depend on your individual vitamin D status, so discuss the best option for you with your healthcare provider. Per two tablet serving, it also provides 38% Daily Value of calcium, 24% Daily Value of magnesium, 1.5 milligrams (mg) of boron, and 50 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin K.

Calcium Supplements and Bone Health

While calcium is one of the most important nutrients for bone health, new research suggests that the best way to get most of your calcium is through food, not supplements. Dr. Gold notes that there are clear risks of excess calcium from supplements, which includes increased risk of kidney stones, heart disease, and nerve dysfunction, and minimal demonstrated benefits to calcium supplements.

It’s rare that someone can’t get enough calcium through diet, but if you are concerned you’re not getting enough, be sure to discuss calcium supplementation, including the calcium found in this supplement, with your healthcare provider. Calcium as a bone health supplement is also discussed under “Supplements for Bone Health We Excluded From Our List”. We included this supplement as our top pick because it provides a variety of bone building nutrients, and it is not very high in calcium.

Price at time of publication: $66 ($0.18 per serving)

Key Specs
Tablet | Type: Vitamin D, Calcium, Magnesium, vitamin K, Boron | Dose: 1000 or 2000 IU Vitamin D, 500mg Calcium, 100 mg Magnesium, 50 mcg vitamin K, 1.5mg Boron | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 360

Best Budget

Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU

Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU


  • USP verified

  • Research backed dose of vitamin D

  • Gluten-free

  • Does not some other essential nutrients for bone health

While you can get adequate amounts of most nutrients for bone health from food, vitamin D is an exception. It’s estimated that at least 30% of the U.S population is vitamin D deficient, and many more are not getting enough vitamin D but not quite deficient (blood vitamin D levels < 30nmol/L). So if you’re on a budget and want to prioritize one nutrient to supplement for your bones, we recommend vitamin D. 

Nature’s Made Vitamin D3 is our top choice because it provides 2,000 IU of D3, the most absorbable form of vitamin D, is third-party verified by USP, and is budget-friendly. It’s also easy to swallow, is gluten-free, and free of any artificial colors. It does contain a small amount (90 milligrams) of calcium, which some people may choose to avoid. However, risks that come along with calcium supplements are seen at much higher supplement levels.

Price at time of publication: $11 ($0.09 per serving)

Key Specs
Tablet | Type: Vitamin D3, Calcium | Dose: 2,000 IU vitamin D, 90 mg calcium | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 125

Best Multivitamin

Ritual Essential for Women 50+

Ritual Essential for Women 50+


  • Third-party tested

  • Gluten-free and allergen-friendly

  • Essential nutrients to support bone health

  • May not contain enough of certain nutrients for some people

If you’re looking for an easy way to supplement multiple vitamins and minerals, a multivitamin may be the way to go. We like Ritual’s Multivitamin 50+ because it contains key nutrients to support bone density including vitamin D, vitamin K, magnesium, and boron without too many unnecessary extras. This is an especially good choice for postmenopausal women concerned about bone density.

It contains 2,000 IU of vitamin D3, which is in line with current research for those over the age of 50, and 100 mcg of vitamin K to support vitamin D and calcium absorption. While it’s very possible to get adequate magnesium through the diet, studies suggest up to 50 percent of people in the US don’t consume enough and older adults are less likely to consume adequate amounts.

Ritual’s Multivitamin 50+ contains 60mg (just under 20 percent of the Recommended Dietary Allowance for women), which may be plenty for some but not enough for others. The amount of boron (0.7mg) in this supplement may also be slightly low. Although there is no established RDA for boron, research suggests that 1 to 3 milligrams may be helpful in supporting bone health. Boron is in a variety of foods and drinks including many fruits and vegetables, so it’s possible to get enough through diet, and this supplement may just provide a slight boost.

Rituals Multivitamin 50+ is third-party tested and their ingredients are all traceable so you know where they come from. It’s also Non-GMO project verified, gluten-free, and allergen friendly, and Ritual is a certified B corp.

Price at time of publication: $39 ($1.30 per serving)

Key Specs
Capsule | Type: Multivitamin | Dose: Varies | Third-Party Certified: No | Servings Per Container: 30 

Best Magnesium

Pure Encapsulations Magnesium (Glycinate)

  • Third-party tested

  • Certified gluten-free and allergen-friendly

  • Well tolerated form

  • Dose may be too low for some

Magnesium plays an essential role in bone health, and many people don’t consume adequate amounts from food. Research has shown that post menopausal women, and in particular those with osteoporosis, are more likely to be deficient in magnesium than younger people. Some of the best sources of magnesium include nuts, seeds, spinach, and some beans.

If you don’t get enough through your diet, a supplement may be helpful. Pure Encapsulations Magnesium Glycinate is our top choice because it provides 120 mg of magnesium—29% of the Daily Value—in a well tolerated form. Note some may need more than one capsule a day for the best dose. A healthcare professional can give individual guidance if you should take more than one serving.

We also like this magnesium is free of common allergens, certified gluten-free, and vegan making it suitable for a variety of dietary needs. Pure Encapsulations is known for their high quality supplements and for their transparency. They test all products for purity and potency.

Price at time of publication: $25 ($0.28 per serving)

Key Specs
Capsule | Type: Magnesium Glycinate | Dose: 120 mg | Third-Party Certified: No | Servings Per Container: 90

Best Vitamin D

Theralogix Thera-D 2,000

Theralogix Thera-D 2,000


  • NSF Contents Certified

  • Vegetarian, certified gluten-free

  • Small and easy to swallow

  • Contains some calcium which may interfere with some medications

Theralogix Thera-D  is our top vitamin D recommendation for bone health because of its simple ingredients, easy to swallow capsule, and third-party certified by NSF. It’s available in 2,000, 4,000, and 6,000 IU of vitamin D3. The right dose for you will depend on your individual vitamin D status, and it’s best to have your blood levels checked before starting a supplement. The Endocrine Society notes that most adults over the age of 50 can benefit from 2,000 IU as a maintenance dose, but some people may need more for short-term repletion.

The small tablet is gluten-free, vegetarian, and dye-free. It does contain a very small amount of calcium, which is at the low level safe for most people but can interact with certain medications. Always check with your healthcare provider to ensure it is a good choice for you.

Price at time of publication: $28 ($0.16 per serving)

Form: Tablet | Type: Vitamin D, calcium | Dose: 2,000 IU, 4,000 IU, or 6,000IU vitamin D, 50mg calcium | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 180

Best Isoflavones

NOW Soy Isoflavone

NOW Soy Isoflavone


  • Strong ingredient testing

  • Gluten-free and allergy friendly

  • Vegan

  • Data on safety and effect on bone health is limited

Soy foods are often recommended for postmenopausal women because of the phytoestrogens (known as soy isoflavones), which may provide some estrogen-like effect in the body as estrogen levels decrease. Because estrogen plays an important role in bone density, researchers have looked at the connection between eating soy foods, bone density, and osteoporosis. 

Several studies have shown that diets high in soy isoflavones are linked to better bone health. Some emerging research suggests that soy isoflavones, including supplements, may slow bone density loss after menopause. However, the data is still limited on whether supplements really help, which populations can benefit most, a recommended dose, and safety of long term use. So, it’s best to try to get most of your soy isoflavones through food such as edamame and tofu.

However, if you don’t like soy-rich foods, a supplement may be worth considering for some people. If you are looking for an isoflavone supplement, we recommend Now Foods Soy Isoflavone because it contains Genistein and Daidzein—two of the isoflavones that have been linked specifically to their role in bone health. Now Foods is also a reputable brand known for their transparency and thorough in-house testing for purity and potency. Each 60 milligram capsule is vegan, gluten-free, and free from the top allergens. 

Price at time of publication: $38 ($0.32 per serving)

Form: Capsule | Type: Soy isoflavones | Dose: 60mg | Third-Party Certified: No | Servings Per Container: 120

Best Zinc

Thorne Research Zinc Picolinate 15mg

Thorne Research Zinc Picolinate 15mg


  • NSF Certified for Sport

  • Zinc is only ingredient

  • Gluten-free

  • Data on supplement for bone health is not as strong

  • The best dose for you can vary

Zinc plays an essential role in bone growth and regeneration, and not getting enough zinc in your diet can affect this process. Zinc deficiency is not common, though vegans and some vegetarians are at risk for deficiency if they don’t eat a variety of nuts, seeds, and beans. Animal studies suggest that zinc supplements may promote bone growth, but this hasn’t been established in humans.

If you’re not getting enough zinc in your diet, a zinc supplement may help support your bone health, although more research is needed. If a healthcare professional recommends a zinc supplement, we suggest Thorne Zinc Picolinate. It’s NSF Certified for Sport, a rigorous third party certification that tests for purity, potency, and any banned substances by sport. Zinc is the only ingredient, which is not the case for many zinc supplements, so you’re only getting what you need. It’s also gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free.

One capsule provides 15 mg, which is higher than the RDA for both women (8mg) and men (11mg), but it’s still well below the tolerable upper intake level of 40mg, and is considered a safe dose for most people. The suggested serving size is one to two capsules per day taken with food. A healthcare professional can give further guidance if one or two capsules are best for your needs.

Price at time of publication: $12 ($0.20 per capsule serving)

Form: Capsule | Type: Zinc picolinate | Dose: 15-30mg | Third-Party Certified: Yes | Servings Per Container: 60

Best vitamin K

NOW MK-7 + K1 and MK-4

NOW MK-7 + K1 and MK-4


  • Contains K1 and K2

  • Vegan and gluten-free

  • Tested for purity and potency

  • Contains alfalfa powder

Vitamin K plays an essential role in bone metabolism along with calcium and vitamin D, and some studies have linked higher vitamin K intakes with higher bone density. Inadequate vitamin K consumption can also contribute to osteoporosis. While vitamin K deficiency is not common, people with malabsorptive disorders or who have had bariatric surgery may need a supplement to meet their needs.

We recommend Now Foods MK-7 plus K1 and MK-4 because it contains both K1 and K2, both of which may be important for bone health. Now Foods is also known for its rigorous in-house testing for purity and potency, so you can trust that what’s on the label is what’s in the supplement. It’s also gluten-free, vegan, dairy-free, soy-free, and egg-free.

It does contain some alfalfa powder, which may interact with certain medications. Also, It is important to note that vitamin K can interact with blood thinners such as Coumadin, so if you take this medication, be sure to talk with your healthcare provider before starting a supplement. 

Price at time of publication: $22 ($0.18 per serving)

Form: Capsule | Type: Vitamin K | Dose: 120 mcg K1, 360 mcg MK-4, 90mcg MK-7 | Third-Party Certified: No | Servings Per Container: 120

Best Boron

Pure Encapsulations Boron Glycinate

Pure Encapsulations Boron Glycinate


  • Third-party tested

  • Certified gluten-free and vegan

  • No artificial flavors or colors

  • More research needed

Boron is a mineral that plays an important role in bone growth and maintenance. Emerging research suggests that supplements may support bone health, especially for people that don’t eat a variety of fruits and vegetables or are at risk for osteoporosis. More research is needed for the best dose for bone health and if it’s best combined with other nutrients or taken on its own. However, the current research indicates that a dose of 1 to 3 mg per day may be helpful.

Pure Encapsulations Boron Glycinate provides 2mg of boron per capsule. It’s certified gluten-free, vegan, free from the top 8 allergens, and is Non-GMO. Pure Encapsulations tests all products for purity and potency, which means that it doesn’t contain any harmful contaminants and what’s on the label is what’s in the capsule.

Price at time of publication: $13 ($0.22 per serving)

Form: Capsule | Type: Boron | Dose: 2mg | Third-Party Certified: No | Servings Per Container: 60

Supplements for Bone Health We Excluded From Our List

Calcium is an essential mineral well known for its role in bone health, and for years healthcare providers recommended calcium supplements to most postmenopausal women, or anyone who didn’t regularly eat a lot of dairy foods. However, research over the last two decades has shed light on the fact that calcium supplements don’t come without risk, and the risks may outweigh the benefits. In fact, there are quite a few studies now that suggest no benefit to supplementation and clear risks of excess calcium from supplements.

“The Auckland Calcium Study looked at the effects of calcium supplements on bone density and cardiovascular health in postmenopausal women. The study found that calcium supplementation did not significantly improve bone density but did increase risk of cardiovascular events,” notes Dr. Gold. In addition, a recent meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials showed that calcium supplements increased risk of cardiovascular events by 15% in postmenopausal women.

It’s also important to note that, “because calcium exists in quite a wide variety of foods, it’s rare for someone to be unable to get calcium from their diet,” says Dr. Gold. Even vegans or those that are lactose intolerant and avoid dairy foods can get adequate calcium by eating foods like almonds, chia seeds, edamame, tofu, fortified soy or almond milk, and dark leafy greens.

For these reasons, we do not recommend calcium supplements for most people. However, it’s always best to weigh the risks and benefits of your individual situation with your healthcare provider. 

Is a Supplement for Bone Health Beneficial? 

You can get the nutrients you need to support bone health from your diet, and the skin can synthesize vitamin D when and if exposed to sunlight for adequate periods of time. However, there are some people who may benefit from supplements, including: 

  • People who eat a limited diet. If you follow a limited diet either due to medical reasons or dietary preferences, supplements can help you get the nutrients you need to support bone health. 
  • Post-menopausal women. “Estrogen is the strongest signal the female body uses for bone growth, which is why postmenopausal women have a risk of developing osteoporosis,” says Dr. Gold. In addition, nutrient intake and absorption can decrease with age. Adequate nutrition along with resistance training can support bone health as you age, and supplements may play a role in helping you meet your needs.
  • People with osteopenia or osteoporosis. It’s recommended that people with osteoporosis take vitamin D daily to support bone density and reduce risk of fractures. Other supplements may be needed as well as medications depending on severity.
  • Older adults. Older adults are at higher risk for vitamin D deficiency because the ability of skin to synthesize vitamin D declines as you age.
  • People with malabsorptive disorders. If you have digestive disorders like Crohn’s or colitis or have had bariatric surgery you may need to take supplements to help you meet your daily needs of nutrients that support bone health.
  • People with a known nutrient deficiency. If you have a known deficiency of any of the essential nutrients for bone health, supplements can be helpful to meet your needs.

Who May Not Benefit From Supplements for Bone Health

  • People who get enough nutrients through food. If you consume adequate amounts of bone supporting nutrients including vitamin D, zinc, magnesium, boron, and vitamin K through diet (and sunshine for vitamin D), there will not be any additional benefit to taking supplements.
  • People taking certain medications. Supplements may interact with some medications. Always speak with your healthcare provider to determine if supplements are recommended for you. 

How We Select Supplements 

Our team works hard to be transparent about why we recommend certain supplements; you can read more about our dietary supplement methodology here

We support supplements that are evidence-based and rooted in science. We value certain product attributes that we find to be associated with the highest quality products. We prioritize products that are third-party tested and certified by one of three independent, third-party certifiers: USP, NSF, or 

It's important to note that the FDA does not review dietary supplements for safety and effectiveness before they go to market. Our team of experts has created a detailed, science-backed methodology to choose the supplements we recommend.

Experts we interviewed for the best supplements for bone health include:

What to Look For in Supplements for Bone Health

Third-Party Testing

Supplements that are third-party tested are sent to a lab where they are tested to ensure they contain what they say they contain and are not contaminated with specific high-risk, common contaminants. However, it’s important to note:

  • Third-party testing does not test to see if a product is effective or safe for everyone, and it does not ensure the supplement will not interact with other supplements or medications.
  • Not all third-party testing is created equal. It is not uncommon for supplement companies to pay labs for certificates after conducting minimal to no testing. 
  • The third-party certifications we can trust are, NSF, and USP. However, these certifications are difficult to obtain and/or expensive for manufacturers, so many companies choose not to get their products tested by one of these three organizations. 
  • Sometimes products tested by these three companies are more expensive to try to offset the cost they pay for certification.
  • Just because a supplement is not tested by one of these three companies, it does not mean it’s a bad product. We recommend doing some research on the reputability of the manufacturer and calling up the manufacturer and their testing lab to determine their protocols and decide if you feel comfortable consuming the supplement.


Most nutrients are available in different forms in supplements. In some cases such as vitamin D, there is one form that is recommended (D3) whereas other nutrients such as zinc and magnesium, the form that’s right for you, may be dependent on your individual health and goals. 

We’ve noted in each of the supplement reviews when there is a form that is recommended for bone health. However, we recommend you ask your healthcare provider about the best form of each supplement for you. All our recommended supplements are in a tablet or capsule form, but if you need a powder or chewable supplement, these nutrients can be found in these forms as well.

Ingredients & Potential Interactions

It is essential to carefully read the ingredient list and nutrition facts panel of a supplement to know which ingredients and how much of each ingredient is included, relative to the recommended daily value of that ingredient. Please bring the supplement label to a healthcare provider to review the different ingredients contained in the supplement and any potential interactions between these ingredients and other supplements and medications you are taking.

Supplements for Bone Health Dosage

Each supplement discussed in this article has a different RDA. Please review those amounts discussed within each of the individual supplement recommendations. Of note, there is no established dose recommendation for boron or soy isoflavones.

How Much is Too Much?

It’s important to ensure that you aren’t taking more of any individual nutrient than the tolerable upper limit established by the National Institute of Health Office of Dietary Supplements.  Some nutrients, such as fat-soluble vitamins D and K can be stored in fat tissue and can be dangerous when consumed in excess through supplementation. 

Zinc and magnesium can also be dangerous when consumed in excess. Always consider all supplements you are taking and check with your healthcare provider to make sure you’re not exceeding the safe amount.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the fastest way to increase bone density?

    According to Dr. Gold, for optimal bone density you need adequate hormones to signal bones to grow, weight bearing exercise, and adequate nutrients from your diet or supplements. This includes calcium, which she notes is best to get from your diet, vitamin D, magnesium, zinc, and vitamin K. Kelsey Kunik, RDN at Graciously Nourished also notes that eating a healthy diet that includes enough protein is important, too. 

    “The fastest way to increase bone density is to maximize all of those factors,” says Dr. Gold. She also emphasizes the importance of taking any medications your doctor has prescribed for hormone deficiencies such as medication to treat thyroid disease.

  • Can you rebuild bone if you have osteoporosis?

    “If you have osteoporosis, there are prescription medications available that stimulate your bones to grow, in lieu of estrogen. They’re more specific to targeting the bone and don’t target other parts of your body as much. These medications can be prescribed by primary care providers, gynecologists, and endocrinology specialists,” says Dr. Gold. She emphasizes that if you have osteoporosis, it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider about whether or not a medication is right for you because your body may not be making the hormones to signal bone growth.

    It’s also important to engage in strength or resistance training and get enough calcium and vitamin D. These work together with the medications to build the bone, and one cannot work without the other, explains Dr. Gold.

  • What is the best supplement for osteoporosis?

    There is no one best supplement for osteoporosis as it is highly dependent on your individual situation. However, vitamin D deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency when it comes to bone health and it’s difficult to get enough from food. The Endocrine Society and the Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommend vitamin D supplementation for most older adults to prevent and treat osteoporosis.

  • What foods increase bone density?

    Eating a well balanced diet that contains a variety of foods will help you meet your needs for bone density. You’ll want to pay particular attention to calcium-rich foods. Calcium is found in a variety of foods including cow’s milk, cheese, yogurt, tofu, chia seeds, almonds, sardines, canned salmon with bones, and fortified juices and plant milks.

    Other foods to emphasize include beans, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables, which can contribute zinc, magnesium, and boron to your diet—all of which play an important role in bone health.

Why Trust Verywell Fit

Sarah Anzlovar, MS, RDN, LDN, is a registered dietitian with a master's degree in nutrition communication from the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. She owns a private practice in the suburbs of Boston, where she helps her clients ditch diets and learn to eat foods that help them feel their best and achieve optimal health. Sarah is also a freelance writer, where she lends her expertise in translating research on a wide variety of nutrition topics into relatable and approachable recommendations for consumers.

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