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Do We Need Multivitamins Daily

                                            Do We Need Multivitamins Daily 


There is a huge  global market of Nutritional supplements , Vitamins and multivitamins . As per  2023 report global vitamin supplement market size was around 49 Billion USDollars  ( around 410000 crore  INR ) . Indian supplement market in 2023 was nearly 12 Billion US Dollars and projected to grow to nearly 29 Billion USD( 242400 Crore  INR ) by 2032  . Main consumers of supplements are in the middle , upper middle and high income group people. But do we really need them so much ? Answer may be Yes or No also scientists say , which is discussed later in this article  . 

What is a Multivitamin Supplement - some vitamins and minerals are essential for proper functioning of our body. Multivitamin supplements contain a combination of different vitamins and minerals and may be some other ingredients too.Often it  might not be possible to know  how much of these supplements are there in the brand . Usually the label describes % of daily recommended dose of vitamins and they claim so many benefits like - bone health , energy  boosters, improved immunity , Omega 3 etc.

Things to Know about supplement Multivitamins  - Supplements come in various forms - pills, powder , syrup or shots ( injections )  and herbals . There are supplements for individual vitamins ( like Vit C, D ,K ,B etc)  also . To avoid taking many pills one Multivitamin pill can do the work .

Do we need Multivitamin supplements - Actually a healthy diet and regular exercise can give all the supplements we need . But it is easier said than done . Many people can’t afford a healthy  diet . Many don’t have facilities for outdoor exercise or some may swallow supplements to save time . 
But do we need them regularly - for a person who has no vitamin / mineral deficiency  , the short answer is usually NO and may be YES also in some cases . However in some cases  people may need them e.g. in pregnancy , loss of immunity or loss of vitamins due to some medications or  chronic illness . Your requirement is based on age, health condition  , sex , diet ( vegetarian or non vegetarian or vegan ) , malabsorption and vitamin deficiency. 

If Deficiency of one or more  particular  vitamins is diagnosed after tests , then those particular vitamins may be advised by the doctor. 

The efficacy of these supplements as claimed by the producers ( e.g. enhances energy level, boosts immunity , increased immunity , better metabolism etc) is scientifically unproven . 

Are the Supplements worth - For any average healthy adult such supplements are useless or have very limited benefits. But still many who have heavy wallets take it for peace of mind to satisfy  themselves that they  are healthy with these vitamins. Many doctors say the main thing you get with supplements is expensive urine -  Your money goes to drains via urine . But usually other than waste of money, reputed supplements ( formulated properly ) don’t harm you , though in some cases side effects might appear.  

 Nutrients are needed for our body but there is a limit to absorb them and the extra will have to be removed by kidneys. 

Do  Multivitamin supplements have side effects -  Supplements taken at will may be harmful and cause side effects like mentioned under  - ( to name a few examples only )

Excess of Iron may upset stomach 

Biotin which is used for hair, skin and nails may cause Acne 

Some supplements may interact with your essential medications - 

Vitamin K can reduce effects of blood thinners 

Some herbal supplements Comfrey and Kava might damage liver 

Beta carotene and Vitamin A might increase risk of lung cancers especially if you smoke 

Many Over the counter Pain medications ( Ibuprofen, advil , mortin etc. )can cause water retention in the body  . So they may affect the kidneys and raise blood pressure .

Cold medications and decongestants may cause blood flow harder 

Some Birth control pills and hormones may raise blood pressure 

Some biological therapies like antibody may raise blood pressure 

Only Good formulated supplements ( of particular vitamin in which you are deficient ) in requisite doses from reputed companies should be used - as at present the supplements are not regulated by drug regulator ( CDSCO - central drug control organization  ) but they are addressed by food regulator ( FSSAI - food safety and standard authority of india ) . Multivitamin supplements are neither needed nor safe for all. 

Is there any time for taking Supplements -  You can take most of the supplements any time in a day . Our body needs about 13 vitamins out of which 9 are water soluble and 4 are fat soluble. Examples of water soluble vitamins - Vit B / B complex , Vit C. Fat soluble vitamins are Vitamin A,, D, E and K - these should be taken with meals having some fat. 

Which Vitamin is better - Many people take multivitamin supplements with the aim to get all the Vitamins and minerals whether needed or not needed. Supplements should be taken based on age, health conditions , sex . Vitamin requirement differs from person to person .There is no thumb rule for it but only vitamins in which you are deficient should be taken in recommended doses for a prescribed period of time on doctor’s advice  . 

Bottom Line - Nothing can beat a healthy diet and proper exercise and supplements can’t be a replacement for a healthy diet  and healthy lifestyle .


N.B. This isn’t a medical advice but just to have some awareness about Multivitamin Supplement