A daily multivitamin is a great way to supplement your diet and ensure you are getting all the vitamins and minerals you need.
And, if you are pregnant, over 50, lead a physically active lifestyle or are on a restrictive diet, they can give an extra boost when it comes to safeguarding your health.
But how do multivitamins work? Here’s our guide to getting the most out of them. But first, what exactly are multivitamins…
What are Multivitamins?
Multivitamins contain a wide range of the vitamins and minerals needed for good health. There are 13 essential vitamins as well as around 15 minerals your body requires to function at its best and they can all be obtained through a varied and balanced diet.
Insufficient levels of a particular vitamin or mineral can lead to deficiency and contribute to or increase the risk of developing certain health issues. So, adding a good multivitamin to your daily routine can help to safeguard your health, particularly if your diet is insufficient or your lifestyle requires extra nutritional support.
What Forms Do Multivitamins Come In?
Multivitamins come in a choice of forms, from tablets and capsules to easy-to-swallow liquid and water-dissolvable tablets. You can even get delicious chewy gummies which are a great way for children to take their daily vit.
How Often Should Multivitamins Be Taken?
Multivitamins are generally taken daily, normally alongside a main meal or with liquid. For total convenience, you can also opt for a one—a-day multivitamin.
When taking a multivitamin, it is important to always read and follow the specific directions on the packaging.
How Do Multivitamins Get Absorbed Into the Body?
Whether you take a multivitamin in tablet or liquid form, the vitamins it contains will be absorbed into your body in one of two ways depending on whether they are fat or water soluble:
These forms of vitamin are stored in the body’s liver and fatty tissue where they can be used over days, or even months. Types of fat-soluble vitamins include vitamins A, D, E and K.
Water-soluble vitamins are dissolved in water so the body can easily absorb them. This means water-soluble vitamins are faster acting than fat-soluble but cannot be stored by the body but will be eliminated through your urine. Vitamin C and all the B vitamins are water-soluble.
Both water and fat-soluble vitamins are found in the food you eat, as well as in multivitamins.
Reasons You May Need a Multivitamin
A multivitamin shouldn’t be a replacement for a healthy balanced diet, which should be able to provide you with all the essential vitamins and minerals you need. However, there are numerous reasons why you may choose to add in a multivitamin, including:
- You are pregnant, or are looking to conceive
- You are on a restricted diet or need to cut down on a particular food group, such as gluten or dairy
- You lead a very active lifestyle or regularly engage in vigorous exercise
- You are over the age of 50, or have a child under the age of five
- A busy lifestyle which may mean you cannot always eat as healthily as you would like
A multivitamin can also be used to generally supplement your diet, support your body, and help to safeguard your daily nutrient intake and, ultimately, your health.