MVI- medical slang for multivitamins.
What do you think about multivitamins: yes, no, maybe so?
WARNING: This post may be a bit long and broken up because I want to focus on two parts:
1) Who should take multivitamins and why &
2) What to be weary of when choosing a product
Tens of millions of U.S. adults take multivitamins. In fact, I read somewhere that around 47% of the US population take multi’s. But why? Of course we know that vitamins are quote “life sustaining amines (minerals)” for our bodies and without the essentials like Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin A or biotin we would have scurvy, rickets, night blindness or hair loss, respectively- but why take a supplement? My answer: I have no idea.
You see, I am a foodie. I believe in food, not pills. We can easily get all the vitamins and minerals we need from eating good food. Sure some may be harder to get then others (i.e. vitamin D only comes from fortified dairy or the sun, while b vitamins are in almost any fruit or vegetable, grain, or enriched product), BUT it is completely possible to avoid deficiencies by consuming edible things. If you can, save your money and skip the supplement aisle and go straight to the produce aisle.
Now there is a caveat, some population groups do need to supplement. Woman who are/ have any chance of being pregnant benefit from taking a multivitamin. This is a time of life where the demand for nutrients is (obviously) increased and a supplement can ensure the extra requirements are met. Especially to make sure you get the right amount of folate to avoid spina bifida, cleft palate, or other congenial defects. Same goes for old folks. Elderly experience a lot of physiological changes as the years wear on, and one consequence is decreased digestion and absorption capabilities. So even if you are 90 years old and eating your fruits and veggies like a boss, you might still need to supplement- especially Vitamin D and calcium or vitamin b12 or folic acid which are better absorbed in their synthetic form. Also any sort of conditions that prevent you from getting enough vitals orally. Such as illness, a diagnosed deficiency, metabolic disorders, etc. Or if you are straight up picky and refuse to eat fruits and vegetables, then you better take a multivitamin for your safety net.
If you are currently taking a multivitamin, and based of the previous paragraph, you feel you don’t actually need it, I’m not forcing you to quit. If you want that comfort each day knowing your gums won’t start bleeding and rot out or you will have super vitamin B energy, I wont take that form you. But be wary…
If you are getting more than enough water-soluble vitamins (the b’s, and vitamin C) you will just pee it out. A lot of times your blood will saturate with a vitamin at a certain dose and anything beyond that just goes to waste. For example: most vitamin C tablets or chewables come in 500 -1,000 mg doses, but your blood levels saturate at 250 mg and excretes the rest. So if you actually want to get your 500 mg in, cut the pill in half and take it twice a day. But this makes a good point here: are you actually absorbing or getting what you think you are out of a multivitamin? Or are you literally wasting your money? And what about vitamins and minerals that compete for the same absorption sites- are you going to absorb the calcium or the iron when you take your multi? Because it’s most likely going to be one or the other.
This will lead us into what kind of product to look for. So I will cut here. Please stay tuned. Happy Saturday.