Are Multivitamins Worthwhile?

Every year South Africans spend millions on Multivitamins as a daily supplement to good health. Technically a Multivitamin is a supplement that contains more than one vitamin, but in common practice, a multivitamin is a supplement that contains many vitamins and essential minerals. Often these are taken as an “Insurance” against deficiency but are they actually beneficial?

The question isn’t are these vitamins and minerals important. After all, without these nutrients, none of us would be alive. The question is rather are these pills the best way to incorporate them into our daily nutritional plan?

There is so much more to the food we eat than just vitamins and minerals and by far the best form of insurance is a healthy and nutritious diet.

So instead of that “Everything but the Kitchen Sink” multi with 1000% RDA of this and 500% RDA of that and a sprinkling of other ingredients thrown in, can we suggest a few ideas that could offer greater benefits?

Improve your diet.

Start by committing to remove at least one or two unhealthy foods or habits from your daily diet, Then, add in one or two foods that are healthy, or at least healthier.

Figure out what nutrients you are still low on

Now that you’ve leveled up your diet, you can start to work out where holes might still exist.

Fill in any gaps with targeted single-nutrient supplements

Most diets that are rich in unprocessed or less-processed foods will also be rich in nutrients. For remaining nutrient deficiencies, or for specific health goals look for targeted supplements that offer the best dosage and form. Targeted supplementation will save you both time and money, but more importantly, may be better for your long-term health.

(Adapted for an article that appeared in