Luckily, most of my clients believe that they should take multivitamins to maintain good health. In fact, I recall taking a multivitamin when I was in elementary school. Of course, those were Flintstones vitamins and probably weren’t the best quality. However, it’s now ingrained in me to take multivitamins daily to help improve my overall well-being.
I believe that everyone should take multivitamins. Many people report an improvement in their symptoms just be taking a multivitamin supplement.
What are multivitamins?
Multivitamins are supplements that contain low dosages of several different vitamins. Some contain minerals too. You may even find amino acids or fatty acids in these supplements. Essentially, a multivitamin, to me, is one that contains a low dose of all 13 essential vitamins required for human health.
So many people take multivitamins that they’ve quickly become the most popular supplement in the world! If you go to the drugstore, you’ll find a huge selection of multivitamins by almost every brand. With so many choices, it can be tough to choose the right one.
Don’t worry, though; I’ll help you figure out the best multivitamins to take. But first, do you even need to take multivitamins?
Why Everyone Should Take Multivitamins
There are a lot of people out there who shun multivitamins because they think we get all the vitamins, minerals and other nutrients we need from the foods we eat. Unfortunately, for many, many reasons, these people are very wrong.
Well, first of all, no one eats the perfect diet all the time. Not even me. In fact, most North Americans eat predominantly processed, refined foods that strip the body of nutrients. These people should take multivitamins more than anyone else.
Now, I know you eat much healthier than the average North American. However, you probably don’t get all the nutrients you need from food either. This isn’t your fault. Our soils have become so depleted of nutrients that some vegetables contain up to 80% less vitamins than they did 60 years ago! Animal products, despite their nutrient content, contain nutrient-stripping toxins and chemicals too.
Stress uses up some vitamins and minerals so fast that we quickly become deficient in them. Poor digestion and unhealthy gut bacteria prevent the absorption of nutrients from food. And, an overly toxic liver will need more vitamins and minerals than you can typically eat in a day.
So, are you convinced yet that you should take multivitamins?
Proven Facts About Multivitamins
People who take multivitamins could have an advantage in the health department, too.
Many scientists have studied the effects of vitamins and minerals on the human body. One drawback to these types of studies is that the body doesn’t really use any single vitamin or mineral on its own; the body requires catalysts and co-enzymes and other vitamins or minerals to utilize them. This is why it’s important to get most of your vitamins and minerals from real food.
However, multivitamins have proven to be beneficial in many studies.
Mood disorders improve when multivitamins are taken. Many common mood and mental disorders can be caused by a nutrient deficiency.
Memory and cognitive function improve in people who regularly take multivitamins.
People with cataracts or macular degeneration show a slight improvement in their condition.
Some studies show that multivitamins may help prevent heart disease in a small way.
Men have a slightly reduced risk of cancer when they take multivitamins.
Choose the Best Multivitamin
Technically, any supplement with at least 3 different vitamins and/or minerals listed is considered a multivitamin.
But, the purpose of a multivitamin is to help your body out by giving it a bit of every vitamin and mineral it needs. So, when choosing a multivitamin, read the label and look for one with all 13 essential vitamins.
Look for multivitamins without a lot of fillers, too. Avoid supplements with ingredients like artificial colors, canola oil, carrageenan, soy lecithin, titanium dioxide and xanthan gum. These ingredients are known endocrine disruptors and can impair your gut health.
You can get multivitamins in tablet, capsule or powder form, too. People with digestive disturbances might benefit from a powdered multivitamin as this will be better absorbed.
Some brands that I like are Genuine Health, Genestra, Metagenics, MegaFood, New Chapter, Nu Life, NOW, New Roots, and Progressive Nutritionals. Look for licensed brands in Canada. These brands will be available in health foods stores.
I believe everyone should take multivitamins to keep their bodies healthy and strong. Follow the instructions on the manufacturer’s label to get the most benefit from a multivitamin.
Multivitamins won’t fix a problem. However, they can help ensure we are giving our bodies all the nutrients they need. Vitamins can help keep your immune system strong and avoid common diseases throughout the year.
Multivitamins are safe when you follow the directions. Avoid taking a single vitamin or mineral as a supplement if possible. Most vitamins and minerals need the presence of others to be most effective. And, some vitamins or minerals work in tandem with others so check with your health coach before taking any new vitamins or minerals.