True or false? “We don’t need to take multivitamins because we can get everything we need from food.”
False actually! This statement would be true if every day we ate a wide variety of local, seasonal, organic fruits and vegetables grown in nutrient rich soils and pure water, that hadn’t been picked too early, gas ripened, irradiated, shipped, placed in cold storage, left to sit on the supermarket shelf, and then cooked to within an inch of life. Unfortunately, a large proportion of the population relies on processed, nutrient-lacking, convenience foods for their staple diet and only 8% of children and less than 30% of adults meet the 5-a-day fruit and veg recommendations.1
Not only is the typical Western diet lacking in goodness, there’s a 21st century increase in nutritional needs too, due to factors such as pollution, stress, poor sleep, alcohol, sugar and chronic disease. It’s not surprising that many people in the UK are lacking the essential micronutrients they need for optimal health.
Your ‘daily health insurance’
Here at Nutri Advanced, we think of a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement as a kind of health insurance, except it’s a lot less expensive! Every single day we have a basic requirement for a complete range of essential vitamins and minerals. In addition to supporting daily health, emerging scientific evidence suggests that adequate daily micronutrient intake, often at levels above the recommended daily allowance (RDA), may also reduce chronic disease risk and promote long term optimal health. It seems fair to say that a daily multivitamin is an important part of the foundation of good health.2-6 In essence, a daily multivitamin is intended to complement rather than replace a healthy diet.
What leads to poor nutrient intake?
✓ Not eating enough good quality fruit and vegetables
✓ Vital nutrients in foods are lost due to common farming practice.
✓ Processing methods can strip the vitamin and mineral content of foods.
✓ Cooking techniques such as over-boiling can further increase the nutrient losses.
✓ Storage of out of season fruits and vegetables in controlled environments for long periods can lead to nutrient losses.
Leading experts recommend a daily multivitamin
Multivitamin supplements are not intended to replace healthy eating recommendations; rather leading experts recommend they are used as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle. A high-quality daily multivitamin and mineral supplement should complement healthy eating advice to ensure optimal daily nutrient intakes.
Not all multivitamins are the same
When choosing a multivitamin it is important to ensure that you are making the best possible choice in terms of quality and efficacy. Look for supplements that contain adequate levels of commonly low nutrients such as B vitamins (including folate), vitamins C,D,E,K, and minerals like zinc, iodine and selenium.
Tailored formulations for specific nutritional needs
In addition to the standard multivitamin and mineral formulations, you can find specialised formulas for men, women, children and pregnancy tailored to their unique nutritional needs.
Nutrients may be needed in higher quantities due to:
✓ Exposure to pollution
✓ Poor sleep
✓ Alcohol intake
✓ Chronic disease
✓ Increasing age
1. The National Diet and Nutrition Survey Results from Years 5-6 (combined) of the Rolling Programme (2012/13-2013/14) A Survey carried out on behalf of Public Health England and Food Standards Agency.
2. Rautiainen S, Rist PM et al. Multivitamin use and the risk of cardiovascular disease in men. J Nutr 2016 Jun; 146(6): 1235-40. doi: 10.3945/jn. 115.227884. Epub 2016 Apr 27.
3. Kennedy DO, Stevenson EJ et al. Multivitamins and minerals modulate whole-body energy metabolism and cerebral blood-flow during cognitive task performance: a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2016 Feb 11; 13: 11.doi: 10.1186/ s12986-016-0071-4. eCollection 2016
4. Issa OM, Roberts R et al. Effect of high-dose oral multivitamins and minerals in participants not treated with statins in the randomised trial to assess chelation therapy (TACT). Am Heart J. 2018 Jan; 195: 70-77. Doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2017.09.002. Epub 2017 Sep 8.
5. Dong JY, Iso H et al. Multivitamin use and risk of stroke mortality: the Japan collaborative cohort study. Stroke 2015 May; 46(5):1167-72. Doi: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.114.008270. Epub 2015 Mar 31.
6. Ames BN (2001) DNA damage from micronutrient deficiencies is likely to be a major cause of cancer. Mutat Res 475: 7–20