I take a multivitamin every morning and have been doing so for several years.
Q. Dear Terry, “I take a multivitamin every morning and have been doing so for several years. I just turned 50 years old last week, and I’m wondering if I should switch my multivitamin to one that is a 50+ formula?” — Sean F., The Villages, FL
A. Dear Sean, Multivitamin and mineral supplements are crucial in bridging the gap between the amount of nutrients provided by food intake and that which may be lacking.
However, choosing the right daily multivitamin and mineral formula can be a real challenge. I personally feel that multivitamin and mineral formulas have become too over-specialized. Or at least that is how they are marketed. The reality is that most people, regardless of gender and age, need the same nutrients – including bioavailable B-vitamins, and chelated minerals.
I recommend choosing a multivitamin that features B6, B12, and folic acid in their active forms – P-5-P, methylcobalamin, and L-methylfolate, respectively. These forms don’t require conversion by the liver, so they can go to work immediately to increase energy levels, support a positive mood, and optimize metabolism.
Believe it or not, mineral deficiencies are more common than vitamin deficiencies. So you may also want to look for a multivitamin that features chelated trace minerals. A “chelate” is a bond between a mineral and a molecule that helps the body absorb the mineral during digestion. Amino acids are excellent molecules to help shepherd minerals through the intestinal wall. Because they are so small, they can be transported directly into the cells of the body, where they can get to work right away.
Other important nutrients in a multivitamin and mineral formula include vitamin D3 and the full family of vitamin E as d-alpha mixed tocopherols.
Lastly, to help prevent stomach upset, I recommend taking a multivitamin and mineral formula that contains ginger to help soothe and settle the stomach. Ginger can be very effective at reducing the smell and aftertaste common to many multiples.
The very best premium daily multivitamin and mineral formulas are taken more than once a day. Keep in mind that one tablet or capsule could not possibly fit the optimal amounts of vitamins, minerals, and herbs needed to provide significant nutritional support. In addition, many nutrients are only active in the body for a short period of time and need to be replenished every 6 to 8 hours. Multiple daily doses ensure that your body is receiving optimal nutrient levels throughout the day.
Terry . . . Naturally