Multivitamin: background, effect, application & studies

Multivitamin: Hintergründe, Wirkung, Anwendung & Studien

How healthy and vital we feel depends to a large extent on what food we eat. Multivitamin products contain many different vitamins and minerals that are supposed to provide us with all the important nutrients. At first glance, this sounds very tempting. So taking these products regularly makes sense, right?

In our multivitamin guide, we answer all the important questions you should consider when supplementing with multivitamins. At the end of this article, you should be able to choose the right supplement for you to supplement your diet in a meaningful way.

the essentials in brief

  • The human body needs an adequate supply of vitamins and minerals in order to be able to perform its vital functions optimally.
  • Multivitamin products are considered dietary supplements, but they can by no means replace a healthy and balanced one. Instead, they can serve as a support when you are deficient in certain nutrients or find yourself in a special life situation.
  • Multivitamins come in various forms such as tablets, capsules, effervescent tablets or as juices. However, they do not protect against life-threatening diseases such as cancer or cardiovascular diseases and are not miracle cures.

Multivitamin purchase and evaluation criteria

If you're looking to supplement with multivitamins, there are a few things to consider before you buy:

  • ingredients
  • dosage form
  • dosage
  • durability
  • Transparency of ingredients

In the following paragraphs we explain what is meant by the individual purchase criteria and what you should pay attention to in each case.


The ingredients are decisive for the quality of a multivitamin product.

Above all, vitamin B should be present in products in sufficient form, as this is essential for many processes in the human body.

Various minerals such as magnesium, calcium, iodine, selenium, zinc, copper, manganese and molybdenum should not be missing. Other minerals such as sodium, phosphorus or fluorine, on the other hand, are not absolutely necessary, since we already absorb enough of them through food.

dosage form

The mode of action of a vitamin product differs according to its ingredients and its form of administration. Products in liquid form such as juices or dissolved tablets are absorbed more quickly by the body than tablets or capsules. These dissolve in the body and are broken down over a longer period of time. The following dosage forms are available:

  • tablets
  • capsules
  • effervescent tablets
  • Juices (liquid or syrup)

In any case, you should note that an effect is only noticeable if you take it over a longer period of time. Since the products have to be taken continuously, you should consider in advance which form is most comfortable for you.


A correct dosage of vitamins is important in order to be able to compensate for deficiency decisions on the one hand and to avoid overdosing on the other.

High-quality multivitamin products have an appropriate dose and are neither under nor overdosed. You should therefore find out beforehand what daily intake is recommended for individual vitamins and minerals.

An overdose is usually not harmful, but not recommended in the long term.


Because multivitamins are dietary supplements, they only have a limited shelf life. However, most products have a long enough sell-by date for you not to worry. Nevertheless, depending on the product, you should consider this before buying and keep an eye on it when taking it.

After the expiry date, vitamins lose their quality. You should therefore always store the products in a cool place and in their original packaging.

Transparency of ingredients

Before you buy, you should take a closer look at the packaging and pay attention to the information about the ingredients.

Complete and clear information about the vitamins and minerals contained is important in order to be able to select the right product for your needs or your deficiency symptoms.

Therefore, distance yourself from manufacturers who do not or only insufficiently declare their ingredients.

Guide: Questions to consider before buying multivitamin products

In order to inform you in detail about the effectiveness of multivitamins and to present you with the latest scientific findings, we will answer all the important questions about the use and effectiveness of multivitamins in the following guide.

What are multivitamins?

Multivitamins are a complex of different vitamins that the human body needs to control its functions. In order for people to remain healthy and vital, different nutrients are required for an optimal supply.


Vitamins contribute to a healthy lifestyle as they control many functions in the body.
(Image source: Pixabay / marijana1)

In addition to a balanced diet, the required vitamins can also be supplied to the body. As a dietary supplement, the preparations can contain various vitamin complexes and minerals.

Choosing a product tailored to your needs can replace taking multiple supplements and make you live healthier overall.

What functions do vitamins have in the body?

Vitamins assume vital functions in the human body. Man could not live without them. Most of them cannot be produced by humans themselves, so they have to be ingested through food. Vitamins are involved in many different areas of metabolism.

Vitamins regulate the use of ingested carbohydrates, proteins and minerals by converting these nutrients in the body. In this way they provide the body with the energy it needs to supply the organs and thus to live.

In addition, vitamins strengthen our immune system and therefore contribute to a healthier life. They help build blood cells, cells and bones and are therefore very important, especially for children. Other functions of vitamins and minerals are the development of the central nervous system, the maintenance of vision and the maintenance of muscle strength.

Especially in older people, a continuous intake of additional vitamin D can have a life-prolonging effect, since a vitamin D deficiency can occur from a certain age (4).

Multivitamin products are viewed as a supplement to dietary intake and can particularly help when there is a deficiency. In addition, they help to improve the supply of minerals and trace elements.

Who is taking multivitamins suitable for?

Most nutrients and minerals can already be ingested in sufficient quantities with a healthy and varied diet. For some groups of people and in some life situations, however, taking multivitamins makes sense.

  • Vitamin deficiencies: Multivitamin products are particularly suitable for those who are naturally deficient in certain nutrients and cannot compensate for them through their diet.
  • Competitive athletes: As a competitive athlete, you have a particularly high need for nutrients and vitamins. This need is difficult to meet through diet, so multivitamin products can do the job.
  • Pregnancy: Pregnant women have an increased need for vitamins and minerals and can therefore resort to multivitamins for support.
  • Vegan diet: With a purely plant-based diet, a lack of various vitamins and minerals quickly occurs.

On the other hand, multivitamin products offer no added value for people without nutrient deficiencies who eat a balanced and rich diet. They can neither reduce the chance of developing cancer nor increase lifespan (1, 2, 3).

Before taking any multivitamin products, you should seek medical advice and evaluation. This will help you choose the right product for your needs.

How much do multivitamin products cost?

The cost of multivitamin products differed significantly depending on quality and ingredients. High-quality multivitamin products cost more than simple preparations from the drugstore.

The cheapest products start at less than 10 cents per daily dose. However, you have to decide individually whether these preparations can meet your needs. Depending on the reason why you use multivitamins, you should take a close look at its composition and ingredients.

Higher quality products often contain many minerals and trace elements that are not found in cheaper products. As with many other products, multivitamins become cheaper when purchased in bulk.

What types of multivitamins are there?

There are many different types of multivitamins. You can find them as capsules, tablets, effervescent tablets or as juices. Depending on your preference, each type of product has different advantages and disadvantages.


Multivitamins are available in different flavors as effervescent tablets.
(Image source: Pixabay / Steve Buisinne).

Multivitamins in capsules

In capsule form, the multivitamins are easy to take without much effort. In contrast to tablets, they contain no lactose and are therefore also suitable for lactose intolerant people.

Multivitamins in tablets

As tablets, the multivitamins have similar advantages and disadvantages as capsules. They usually have a longer shelf life, but contain a layer of additives such as lactose.

Effervescent multivitamins

The effervescent tablets are dissolved in water and are therefore easy to drink as an effervescent. Flavor enhancers are often added to improve the aroma.

Multivitamins as juices

Multivitamins in the form of juices can be fed directly to the body and can be dosed very individually. Juices are particularly good for children because they are tastier than tablets or capsules.

Alternatively, there are also thicker juices than syrup.

How should multivitamins be dosed?

All products contain a recommended daily dose that the consumer should adhere to. If you suffer from a vitamin deficiency, be sure to talk to your doctor. He will explain to you which dose you need and which preparation is suitable for you.

The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) recommends maximum amounts for food supplements. Many multivitamin tablets exceed these micronutrients because there are no established maximum levels for vitamins and minerals (5).

It is considered unlikely that there is a risk of harmful effects on the body (6). In individual cases, however, an overdose can lead to intolerance, stomach upset or itching.

What alternatives are there to multivitamins?

As the name suggests, multivitamin products should complement your diet as dietary supplements. They are therefore in no way a substitute for a healthy and balanced diet. Make sure you eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, as they contain a lot of vitamins and minerals. In the following we will show you which foods you can take in which vitamins.

What are the possible side effects of multivitamin supplements?

An overdose of vitamins is usually not particularly harmful, but it is not recommended. There may be some unpleasant side effects. These range from gastrointestinal complaints to slight skin irritation and itching.

What is a vitamin deficiency?

A vitamin deficiency arises when the body is not supplied with enough vitamins over a longer period of time and a corresponding deficit arises. The body needs vitamins to remain efficient and resilient.

Despite a wide range of healthy and nutritious foods, it is not always easy to eat a balanced diet. Stress or laziness make us quickly turn to fast food or other low-nutritional foods. Children and young people, pregnant women and extreme athletes in particular have a special need for vitamins and minerals.

What are the symptoms of a vitamin deficiency?

A vitamin deficiency shows up in a number of symptoms. These include, among others:

  • Vitamin A : dry, scaly skin, blurred vision
  • Vitamin B12: Tiredness, exhaustion, poor performance
  • Vitamin C: susceptibility to infection, joint pain, bleeding gums
  • Vitamin D : nervousness, weak muscles
  • Vitamin E: Poor concentration, tiredness

These can be possible symptoms of a vitamin deficiency. If you have any of these health problems, be sure to consult a doctor. He will do a blood test with you and be able to determine a deficiency.


  1. Vitamin, Mineral, and Multivitamin Supplements for the Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease and Cancer Source :
  2. Effect of taking antioxidants (vitamin A, beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E and selenium) on longevity compared to placebo or no intake Source :
  3. Do vitamin E supplements affect the likelihood of dying prematurely? Source :
  4. Effect of vitamin D intake on longevity compared to placebo or no intake Source :
  5. Maximum levels for vitamins and minerals in food supplements Source :
  6. Are there maximum levels for nutrients in dietary supplements? Source :
Back to blog
Vorheriger Beitrag

Nächster Beitrag

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.