You Should Be Looking For This In Your Multivitamin

Although there is a heightened focus on health and wellness these days, we are still falling short on making diet-related changes in the United States. In fact, 60% of adults have one or more diet-related chronic diseases, according to the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. And while experts say we should rely on nutrient-dense foods and drinks to meet our daily nutritional needs, a multivitamin can be an added bonus to fill in any gaps you are missing. But out of the hundreds of options on the shelves today, how do you know which is the best? There are a few guidelines to follow when picking out your multivitamin.

The first item that is important to look for in your multivitamin is the seal of the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) on the label. The USP is an independent, nonprofit organization that checks if dietary supplements actually contain the ingredients they list (via UT Southwestern).

How to choose your multivitamin based on your health

You should also try to choose a multivitamin that contains the full daily amount of its ingredients, if possible (via UT Southwestern). The exception to this rule of thumb is for calcium, vitamin D, and magnesium, which typically require additional supplements (via National Academy of Sports Medicine). Consuming foods that are high in these nutrients is also a necessity, even with a multivitamin or additional supplements. 

Another consideration in your multivitamin search is your age, gender, and other specific health needs you may have. You have probably seen multivitamins geared toward women or children — this is because younger women and older adults have different nutritional needs, according to UT Southwestern. Gummy vitamins have also grown in popularity, especially for those who have a hard time swallowing a pill. While more research is needed to fully analyze the efficacy of gummy vitamins, you should be mindful of the additional sugars, calories, and issues with consistency. As always, it is best to seek advice from your medical team if you have questions about choosing a multivitamin and how to best gain any additional vitamins and minerals you may be lacking.