There is a minimum of 13 essential vitamins and 10 essential minerals that generally need to be supplemented to provide your body with adequate amounts to survive and thrive. There are even more when we start considering things like co-factors, antioxidants, amino acids, and trace nutrients. Count up the ingredients on the label - it should have a bare minimum of 23. The whole point of taking a multivitamin is to give your body those essential nutrients, so if it has fewer than 23 ingredients, it's falling short somewhere.
Look for at least 2 capsules per serving.
Consider how many ingredients need to be included in a well-balanced multivitamin, and how much is considered a proper or significant dose; it is impossible to fit all of that in a single capsule or tablet that can be swallowed by most people.
Avoid doubling your dose to make up the difference; taking more of a poorly balanced vitamin can increase the risk of taking too much of some nutrients while completely missing out on others.
Avoid iron in your multivitamin. The most common forms of iron used in multivitamins frequently cause stomach aches and constipation. Iron and other minerals like calcium, zinc, and manganese can interfere with the absorption of each other - so including it in a multivitamin reduces the efficacy of the product.
Iron is an essential mineral, and if a doctor tests your blood and determines you have an iron deficiency, it is best to take it at least 2 hours apart from a multivitamin/multimineral supplement and consume it with an acidic drink like orange juice to get the most out of it.
While there are many aspects to take into consideration, here are few things to consider when looking at forms of vitamins and minerals:
Look for the words "mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols," that indicates it's using a mixture of the 8 natural forms of Vitamin E. Avoid the synthetic form, which can be identified by the little “L” in “d,l-alpha-tocopherol." If the vitamin is using the synthetic dl-alpha-tocopherol instead of the 8 natural forms, that should tell you a lot about how the rest of the multivitamin is formulated.
Look for the precursor to Vitamin A found naturally in plants that your body readily converts to the active form when it's needed, such as beta-carotene and/or mixed carotenoids. Avoid Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin A Palmitate, preformed Vitamin A, Retinyl Acetate, or Retinyl Palmitate, especially in doses over 100% DV.
Other Forms to Look For:
Look for other vitamin and mineral forms to look for that can indicate a higher quality product such as Methylated B12 (methylcobalamin instead of cyanocobalamin), Methylated Folate (5-MTHF or Methyl Folate instead of Folic Acid), and Amino Acid Chelates (also abbreviated "AA chelate") for example "Manganese Amino Acid Chelate
Nutrients play vital roles in our health, and unfortunately, our bodies can become depleted by medications, stress, illness, exercise, or poor nutrition.
Look for dietary nutrientsand plant extracts, such as coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), carnitine, alpha lipoic acid, lutein, biotin, amino acids, and more.
Avoid herbs that your healthcare providers aren’t familiar with especially in multivitamins where there are potentially dozens of other ingredients that all need to "play nice together."
Even though they are essential minerals, you may notice we do not include calcium or magnesium in the Pinnaclife MultiVitamin. We instead recommend supplementing calcium and magnesium separately by adding our D3+Magnesium product as a mineral boost in addition to the multivitamin. There are a couple of good reasons for doing it this way:
Your doctor may tell you to take more or less calcium and magnesium based on your situation. Keeping these minerals separate from your multivitamin allows you to adjust your dose without worrying about changing your dose of the multivitamin.
Calcium and magnesium take up a lot of room inside of a capsule, so it’s impossible to put a significant amount in a multivitamin and still provide the other necessary nutrients without increasing the serving size to 4 or more capsules. All of our supplements have a suggested serving size of 2 capsules to make it easy to remember and avoid dosing errors.
Many people use calcium supplements for their bone health, but it needs to be appropriately balanced with magnesium and Vitamin D3. We recommend adults take 2 capsules each of multivitamin and D3+Magnesium.