Multivitamins (aka multivitamins) are drunk all over the world. Their popularity has grown especially strongly over the past two decades. They are released without a prescription and are not regulated on a par with medicines. But are multivitamins really needed for health?
What are multivitamins?
This is the name of biologically active additives in which all or several vitamins and minerals necessary for health are “packed” at once.
Since there is no single standard of what a multivitamin complex should be, the composition of the products varies from one brand to another On the packaging you can find the names “multimineral”, “supervitamin”, etc.
You probably would have seen vitamin B17 on the pharmacy shelves or other vitamin named products right? These are avaialable in the form of capsules, tablets, liquids, powders, and even gelatin bears.
What is contained in multivitamins?
As a rule, manufacturers declare the content of 13 vitamins most necessary for an organism and at least 16 mineral substances. Some of them are involved in the production of enzymes, others function as signaling molecules or structural elements of tissues (e.g., calcium). Amino acids or fatty acids (Omega-3 and 6) are also found in mineral complexes .
The main problem of such multivitamin complexes is that they are not regulated in any way, and therefore may not contain all the declared substances in the composition at all, or their quantity will be much lower than stated on the label. The industry of dietary supplements and vitamin complexes is generally famous for fraud, so you need to carefully choose the manufacturer.
By the way, everything that is contained in multivitamins is obtained from organic raw materials. For example, PP vitamins are extracted from citrus peel, omega-3 fatty acids from cod liver, carotene from carrot peels, etc.
The benefits of multivitamins
Undoubtedly, multivitamin complexes are needed for severe or moderate hypovitaminosis. Up to 2/3 of the population, especially those living in the northern regions, are somehow faced with this phenomenon.
The reason is simple: an unbalanced diet. Even if a person eats fruits and vegetables all year round, he is unlikely to be able to get the daily rate. The benefits of multivitamins are undeniable here. Although scientists agree that it is better to get everything you need from natural food . Well, or at least strive for it.
The harm of multivitamins
The intake of any vitamins is the very example when it no longer means better. In other words, you need to carefully calculate the dosage and not take them uncontrollably, but only as directed by the doctor.
The appropriate dose should be calculated from solubility. According to this parameter, all vitamins are divided into two groups:
- Water soluble: Due to the continuous moisture exchange, the body is able to remove excess of such vitamins without much harm. Large doses will not be harmful, but simply ineffective.
- Fat soluble: The body does not have a quick way to get rid of them, because for proper absorption they bind to fatty acids, minerals and enzymes. Surpluses tend to accumulate and have a toxic effect.
Fat-soluble vitamins include A, D, E, and K. Vitamins E and K are relatively safe on this list, but vitamins A and D can really be poisoned.
Multivitamins are not the key to optimal health, but they definitely help to improve well-being in certain aspects. If you are deficient in one or another micronutrient, first get tested and consult a doctor. Multivitamins contain much more substances than you need.
Therefore, focus on replenishing the one you are missing. In addition, you should not take multivitamins to fix food imbalances. A balanced diet of fresh, whole foods will give a much greater therapeutic effect in the long term than any pharmacy drugs.