- 1. Best Overall: Salus Epresat Adult Multi-Vitamin
Epresat Liquid Multivitamin supplies ten essential vitamins, along with calcium and Vitamin D and is the best choice for those who have difficulty breaking down or absorbing solid vitamins. Liquid vitamins can offer faster absorption since they do not need to be broken down and are immediately available to the body. This can also help to reduce digestive discomfort. As these essential nutrients are already dissolved, they are absorbed more quickly by the digestive system compared to tablets. Epresat contains a blend of fruit juice concentrates and selected herbs for a pleasant fruity taste. Epresat contains no alcohol, preservatives, artificial colorants, or artificial ingredients. It is lactose-free and suitable for vegetarians.
- 2. Best for Women: Naka Nutri Multi for Women
Naka 's Nutri Multi for women is an advanced liquid multi-vitamin formula that allows for an increased absorption rate by the body, delivering nutrients more efficiently to help promote your better health. It also features 1000 IU of Vitamin D, which studies suggest could help prevent breast, colon, and ovarian cancers. Take just two 15 ml tablespoons a day and discover how this superior liquid supplement can benefit you!
- 3. Best for Men: Naka Nutri Multi for Men
This superior multivitamin liquid was created for the unique nutritional needs of men and provides essential vitamins, minerals and more. Naka’s Nutri Multi for Men also features the power of lycopene for prostate protection, stinging nettle to help reduce the symptoms of BPH, and siberian ginseng to enhance sexual performance.
- 4. Best for Children: Salus Kindervital Children's Multivitamin
Salus Kindervital is a quality all-in-one multivitamin that has been formulated with a special focus on bone and immune health - two of the most vital health issues for children and teens.
Optimized bone support - Kindervital is more than just a kid's multivitamin with added calcium. Other essential co-factors have been included to enhance the absorption of the calcium, ensuring it gets delivered to the bone and once there, making sure the calcium is laid down properly.
The most crucial vitamin in childhood is vitamin D because it's needed for proper absorption and use of calcium and phosphorus. Due to the increase of pollution and limited sun exposure, vitamin D deficiency is on the rise resulting in bone malformation.
Kindervital uses only highly soluble forms of calcium in liquid, which means they are easily absorbed and put to good use, eliminating the need to take excessive amounts that compete with the absorption of nutrients. It is also iron-free, as iron competes directly with calcium for absorption. Vitamin A, Vitamin C and naturally occurring carotenes have been added for their importance in developing and maintaining strong bones and teeth.
What to Look for in a Liquid Multivitamin
1. Third-Party Testing
When looking for any supplement it's important to ensure it is a high-quality product so you can reap the most benefits from your vitamins!
Unfortunately, often times the ingredient list doesn't match the claims labeled on the product.
In Canada, there are tighter regulations on supplements than in the US.
All natural health products (NHPs) sold in Canada are subject to The Canadian Natural Health Products Regulations before they can be sold. In order to legally sell dietary supplements in Canada, one must obtain a product license. To obtain a product license, evidence of proper safety and efficacy must be provided and specific manufacturing practices must be met.
In the U.S. things are a little different, the FDA does not require dietary supplements to be proven safe nor their claims to be proven accurate before they make it onto store shelves. This means that manufacturers can ultimately list ingredients and make claims that are not necessarily true.
So how can you avoid being bought by false marketing? This is where third-party testing can help to decipher whether your supplement is of high quality or not by certifying dietary supplements purity, safety, and quality.
Third-party testing means that the supplement was tested by an external company that is not associated with the production or sale of the product. How do you know if a product is third-party tested? It will have a certification logo imprinted on the bottle, and if not, it's probably not certified. Third-party testing isn't technically necessary for a product to be good however it does help to reassure the consumer and provide certainty around its safety and effectiveness as a trusted source.
Companies that provide third-party testing may include ConsumerLab.com, NSF International, and U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP).
2. Nutrient Formulation
Optimally you want your supplement to offer a bioavailable and active form of the nutrient in order to receive as many benefits as possible from the product. But it's not only about efficacy, it's also about safety. Certain forms of nutrients can also be safer and more therapeutic than others.
For example, folic acid is the synthetic version of folate which can actually cause problems if unmetabolized in the body. As many people have the MTHFR gene mutation this means that they cannot efficiently convert and process folic acid which can then build up and cause problems in the body (1). Methylfolate is the active form of folic acid and is thus better assimilated however cyanocobalamin is most often used as it is less expensive.
Vitamin D3 has been shown to be more effective than its counterpart, vitamin D2.
Methylcobalamin is the active form of vitamin B12 and has been shown to be more efficiently absorbed than the synthetic version, cyanocobalamin (2).
When looking for a supplement be sure to pay attention to the forms of the nutrients listed as it will make a difference in the bioactivity level of the vitamin.
3. Medical Reasons
There are many health conditions that can increase the need for nutrients such as diabetes, gastrointestinal issues, alcoholism, liver disease, autoimmune disease, and cancer. Many more people these days experience digestive dysfunction and as a result, need more absorbable forms of nutrients and higher doses in certain cases. Your nutritional needs will also change over time with age as well.
In these scenarios, a multivitamin can help to cover your nutritional bases but often times additional supplements will be needed to meet your specific requirements and recommended intake. As always consult with your health care provider to make sure you are meeting all of your needs.
4. Storage and Shelf Life
Vitamins don't necessarily expire but they do lose potency over time. This is why it is recommended to consume them before the date indicated on the bottle. The typical shelf life of vitamins is 2 years though this can vary. If your supplement has exceeded its expiration date it is recommended to dispose of it.
The shelf life of a vitamin can be impacted by storage conditions. It is recommended to store your vitamins in their original containers in a cool and dry place to ensure they provide all of the benefits for as long as possible. Avoiding heat and humidity is an important factor to remember when choosing a spot for your supplements. A study found degradation of vitamin C occurred when it was exposed to humidity levels of 80 or higher (3).
Most often liquid supplements will require refrigeration and storage instructions will be indicated on the bottle. Certain supplements will actually last longer when refrigerated such as fish oil, flaxseed oil, probiotics, and vitamin E.
Multivitamins are often taken to reduce the risk of nutrient deficiencies or make up for a nutrient gap in the diet. These supplements typically contain lower levels of vitamins and minerals however it's important to pay attention to the dosing listed on the bottle and assess how much you are getting daily from all of your supplements to ensure you are not exceeding your daily nutrient intake. You will also want to verify any potential interactions between the ingredients of your multivitamin and the medications you are taking as they can potentially interact with one another.
Another factor to consider is the overall cost of the supplement and how long it will last you. Often times the supplement that seems to be more expensive might actually be saving you money over time because it lasts longer.
Other factors that may influence cost include certifications and added ingredients such as herbs. It's up to the consumer to factor in these elements and determine what is most important to them. Always do your research before buying. Fortunately, we have trained staff that can help you choose the best vitamin for your needs at our Vitasave stores!
7. Children vs. Adult Dosage
Dosing requirements will differ according to age groups and this is important to consider when choosing a supplement. Many supplement companies have made it easier on consumers by formulating multivitamins for different demographics including children, adults, and older populations.
Children will most often require smaller dosages than adults and should not exceed their daily requirements to avoid potential toxicity. In addition, adults and specific demographics such as older adults and pregnant women will likely need higher doses of specific nutrients.
Prenatals are specifically formulated as multivitamins for pregnant women or those looking to conceive. This is because nutrient requirements change during this time to accommodate and support proper growth of the fetus. Though a healthy diet is a foundation to good nutritional status, many doctors will recommend starting a prenatal as soon as you start planning for a baby to reduce the risk of common deficiencies and improve the chance of conception and a healthy pregnancy. Certain nutrients, in particular, will be needed in greater amounts during pregnancy and may include iron and folic acid (look for methyl-folate as discussed prior). Other important nutrients to consider include vitamin D, choline, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, magnesium selenium, iodine, and zinc. If you do not consume wild fish on a regular basis then omega 3 fatty acids would also be recommended to support a baby's healthy brain development. Be careful if you are supplementing nutrients separately so as not to exceed your daily requirements and avoid toxicity levels. If in doubt refer to your health care provider.