Vitamins are an essential part of our diet, and there are 13 essential vitamins that our bodies need for normal functioning, growth, and development. A multivitamin complex can help fill nutritional gaps in our diets, but it cannot replace a healthy and balanced diet. Multivitamins can be beneficial when nutritional needs are not met by diet alone, but it is important to look for one that contains the recommended daily amounts and has the United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) seal of approval on the label. In some cases, individual vitamin supplementation may be necessary due to prolonged malnutrition or malabsorption caused by digestive system malfunctioning.
It is also important to be aware of the potential long-term effects and adverse effects of vitamins contained in supplements, such as herbs and botanicals. The recommended dietary allowances (RDA) of vitamins reflect the amount of each vitamin that most people should consume each day. Eating a balanced diet with a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, fortified dairy products, legumes, lentils, and whole grains is the best way to get all the vitamins you need every day. Taking multivitamins at the recommended dietary level is preferable to taking single-nutrient supplements or high-dose multivitamins. Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, pyridoxal or pyridoxamine, helps with protein metabolism, the formation of red blood cells and behaves like an antioxidant molecule. Vitamin C is suggested as a cure for the common cold, and vitamin E is widely promoted as a beneficial antioxidant to help prevent heart disease.
Riboflavin, or vitamin B2, helps release energy from food and is also important for the growth, development, and function of the body's cells. Research shows that most of the vitamins you get from the foods you eat are better than those in pills. Vitamin and mineral supplements can interfere with prescription medications and medical treatments. Knowledge about the optimal intake of vitamins and minerals to prevent chronic diseases is not immovable. It is important to remember that a multivitamin complex cannot in any way replace a healthy and balanced diet.
The main purpose of a multivitamin is to fill nutritional gaps and only provides a sample of the wide range of nutrients and healthy chemicals found naturally in foods.