Vitamins: Why you should care which ones you take
When it comes to choosing supplements, the cheapest isn’t always the best.
It is often said that less is more, but not when it comes to multivitamins. Premium brands tend to come at a higher cost for good reasons, and with multivitamins they are due to a broader number and quality selection of ingredients. Here are some questions to ask when shopping for multivitamins.
What do they contain?
Carefully reading the labels is a great starting point for navigating the rows and aisles of supplements available in stores. Besides ensuring that formulas contain the essential vitamins and minerals, some well-balanced multivitamins also come with added extras, such as botanical extracts derived from natural herbs.
The quality of ingredients is another important consideration, as lower-cost alternatives are not always made to high quality standards. Another thing to look out for is quantity of ingredients and their NRV (Nutritional Reference Values) to see if the supplement meets your recommended daily requirements. For example, the UK Department of Health recommend that all pregnant and breastfeeding women should take a daily supplement containing 10µg of vitamin D, to ensure the mother’s requirements for vitamin D are met and to build adequate foetal stores for early infancy. People aged 65 years and over and people who are not exposed to much sun should also take a daily supplement containing at least 10 µg of vitamin D. Why not try Swisse High strength Vitamin D3 – our highest dose which contains 25µg of Vitamin D3 in a convenient one-a-day capsule.
Can you trust the brand?
Do your research as well as look out for clinical studies and international certifications so you can be assured that the product you are buying has been scientifically formulated .
With the number of choices on the market, brands promoting their products in the UK must comply with all relevant legislation.
What are your needs?
Beyond taking a multivitamin to fill in a nutritional gap, consider your personal needs, changing dietary requirements and individual lifestyle choices.
There are supplements tailored for men and women, as well as age. For example, multivitamins aimed at women in their childbearing years often contain higher doses of nutrients such as iron* and folic acid**. Those targeting men, on the other hand, don’t often include iron.
If you have dietary restrictions, you can also select multivitamins without added lactose, yeast, or artificial flavours. Above all else, eating a healthy balanced diet provides the best source of nutrients.
The next time that you’re shopping for multivitamins, bear in mind these tips for choosing a premium multivitamin that can support your health and well-being.
*Iron contributes to normal formation of red blood cells and haemoglobin
**Supplemental folic acid intake increases maternal folate status. Low maternal folate status is a risk factor in the development of neural tube defects in the developing foetus