A multivitamin is exactly what it sounds like: a supplement that contains a variety of vitamins. Spencer Kroll, M.D., Ph.D, of Kroll Medical Group in Morganville, New Jersey, describes them as “a nutritional supplement that usually contain lipid-soluble vitamins and water-soluble vitamins.” You can find multivitamins in liquid and oral form, sometimes even as injectables.
There are so many on the market because they can be made in many different formulations, each with varying vitamin combinations. “Some come with higher mineral components,” he says. “Some come with additional concentrations of vitamins, such as vitamin D, which may be more important for women’s prevention of osteoporosis.”
What Do Multivitamins Do?
For those at risk of nutritional deficiencies, multivitamins can help fill nutrient gaps in the diet. Specifically, they can help people reach the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) or Adequate Intakes (AI) of specific vitamins and minerals that they may not be getting from food alone.
While some people choose to take multivitamins to prevent chronic disease, research is mixed on this potential health benefit.
What Ingredients Do Women’s Multivitamins Typically Contain?
These are the most common types of vitamins found in multivitamins:
Multivitamins also usually contain minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, iron, iodine, magnesium, manganese, copper and zinc, Dr. Kroll adds.