Last update: June 11, 2024

7 minute read

The Essential Multivitamin Guide

Learn how multivitamins and their health benefits can help boost your health and overall well-being.

Stephanie Wright

By Stephanie Wright, RN, BSN

Edited by Dr. Dimitar Marinov, MD, MBA, PhD

Learn more about our editorial standards

For the best health and wellness, you need to consume a lot of nutrient-dense foods daily. Healthy people need a variety of vitamins and minerals to keep their bodies working well. However, life can be overwhelming.

Every age group, from older adults to teenagers, can easily struggle to get their daily value of nutrient composition within a daily balanced diet. A multivitamin supplement will give your body that extra nutrient boost and keep you functioning at your best!

    What is a multivitamin?

    A multivitamin is packed with a range of essential vitamins and minerals at dosage levels close to the recommended daily allowance (RDA) needed to prevent nutrient deficiencies and support overall health. Some of the nutrients to look for when buying a multivitamin include:

    • Vitamin D3
    • Vitamin D3
    • Vitamin C
    • Vitamin E
    • B-Complex vitamins
    • Vitamin K2
    • Folic acid
    • Calcium
    • Magnesium
    • Potassium
    • Selenium
    • Zinc

    They may also contain antioxidants, essential fatty acids, omega-3s, herbal extracts, and even digestive enzymes. Multivitamins live up to their name by offering many different supplemental vitamins to fill your nutritional needs.

    When a healthy diet is impractical or too difficult to maintain at times, you can take advantage of dietary supplements like multivitamins to help keep you in good health. Don't make excuses for missing out on essential nutrients. Start boosting your health with top-quality products that meet your nutritional needs.

    How a multivitamin works

    Your body needs many different vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and antioxidants to function optimally. As a healthy adult, it's essential to make sure you get these various vitamins to help with disease prevention and keep your mind sharp.

    Multivitamins fill in the nutritional gaps in your diet. Many of the ingredients in multivitamin supplements are essential, water-soluble nutrients that are not made or stored in the body and must be replenished daily.

    These nutrients are important cofactors in many chemical reactions that control how your body works. They regulate cell growth and maintenance, blood clotting, brain function, energy production, immune health, and more.

    While you can get many of these nutrients from real food and healthier diets, you'll definitely get the recommended amount when you get that daily dose with your multivitamin and dietary supplements.

    As great as nutritional supplements are, it's important to note that a multivitamin is not a replacement for a healthy diet. Make sure you're still getting most of your nutrient needs from food sources.

    VitaRx Tip

    Find out your daily nutrient needs by talking to a dietitian or your healthcare provider. With their help, you can choose the right multivitamin for a healthier lifestyle.

    Who should take a multivitamin supplement?

    Most adults can benefit from a multivitamin supplement. People of all ages can struggle to get all the necessary vitamins due to nutritional gaps or health issues that affect your ability to meet dietary recommendations.

    Certain people have a greater risk of chronic nutrient deficiencies. This includes older adults, vegans and vegetarians, athletes, people with chronic diseases, those who have undergone bariatric surgery, and people with digestion issues. If you meet the criteria for any of these reasons, you might consider looking into dietary supplements as a way to boost your nutrient intake and improve your immune system.

    Risks and symptoms of a multivitamin deficiency

    There are different factors that can increase the nutrient demands of your body and potentially increase the risk of deficiencies:

    • Stress
    • Excessive sun exposure
    • Intense exercise
    • Pregnancy
    • Smoking
    • Infections
    • Poor diet
    • Chronic illness

    When you have a nutritional or vitamin deficiency, it can disrupt your body's proper functioning. Recognizing these signs is crucial to reduce the risk of chronic diseases and long-term cognitive issues.

    Health benefits of a multivitamin

    There are many benefits to taking a multivitamin; there isn't enough time to list them all! When you start taking supplements to address your nutritional gaps, you might boost your mood, support heart health, and reduce the risk of chronic illnesses. Here are just some of the health benefits you might enjoy:

    1. Promotes energy and well-being

    Essential nutrients like B-complex vitamins, iron, folate, and magnesium play vital roles in forming healthy red blood cells, which carry oxygen to each cell and reduce fatigue. These nutrients also help the mitochondria to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP) molecules from the food you eat.

    Ensuring your body produces ATP efficiently helps you have more energy and feel better overall. A promising clinical trial review on healthy adults showed improvement in mood and anxiety among those using a multivitamin supplement.

    VitaRx Tip

    There are many reasons to take these dietary supplements, and energy production is a perfect example of the positive effect of multivitamins.

    2. Supports brain health

    Various lifestyle changes, like taking daily multivitamin capsules, and maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regimen, help to enhance your cognitive health as you age.

    A research team at Columbia University studied thousands of adults over the age of 60. Those taking a multivitamin supplement showed higher scores in memory and cognitive testing than those taking a placebo.

    3. Enhances eye health

    As you grow older, maintaining good eye health becomes a big concern. Your eyes need a constant supply of nutrients—like vitamins A, C, E, zinc, selenium, and lutein—to protect them from free radical damage and maintain healthy vision.

    A recent review study on nutrients found evidence that taking vitamin and mineral supplements is associated with a reduced risk of age-related cataracts, a common cause of vision loss. People who take supplements can benefit from the protective effect of multivitamins and experience positive outcomes for their eyes.

    Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

    Final thoughts

    In the quest for better health, multivitamins are a valuable tool. They offer loads of health benefits to keep you feeling your best. So, as you focus on feeling your best, remember that we're here to support you all the way. Your health is worth every effort.



    Stephanie Wright avatar

    Stephanie brings over 13 years of diverse nursing experience to the table, having honed her expertise in critical care, mental health, and utilization management. Her journey as a registered nurse across these various healthcare sectors underscores her adaptability and deep commitment to patient care.

    Fact checker

    Dr. Dimitar Marinov avatar

    Dr. Marinov has years of experience in scientific research and preventive and clinical medicine. His publications in peer-reviewed journals are on nutritional status, physical activity, and musculoskeletal disorders among adolescents.

    At VitaRx, we're not just passionate about our work — we take immense pride in it. Our dedicated team of writers diligently follows strict editorial standards, ensuring that every piece of content we publish is accurate, current, and highly valuable. We don't just strive for quality; we aim for excellence.

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