Lifespan Nutrition

Bill Sardi Health Blog

  • Multiple Vita-Mins, Multiple Questions

    The Multi Vita-Min supplement is a daily part of at least 70% of American’s quest for good health. In the last three decades, as the variety and scope of Dietary Supplements has exploded, the Multi Vita-Min remains an anchor supplement.

    This is not to imply that this iconic daily supplement has remained static. We now can choose between One-Per-Day, Two-Per-Day, Three-Per-Day, up to Six- Per-Day, Men’s, Men’s over 40, Men’s over 55, Women’s, Women’s over 40, Women’s over 55, Infant, Toddler’s, Children’s, Teen’s, Food-Based, Food Grown, Powders, Liquids, Isotonic, Liposomal, Tablets, Capsules, Softgels, Chewables, Gummies, … and the list goes on.

    In my 5 decades of working with, and answering the wide range of queries from thousands of Dietary Supplement Consumers, I have been asked quite a few questions concerning Multi Vita-Mins. Perhaps the perspective of a long-time Natural Foods Industry veteran will help you make sense of all this.

    1. Why are the pills so big?
    2. What’s better: tablets, capsules, or softgels?
    3. What about powders or liquids?
    4. Are chewables and gummies comparable to other forms?
    5. Is One-Per-Day enough?
    6. What is Food-Based VS. Food-Form and are they superior?
    7. Why are so many nutrients so much higher than the RDV (Reference Daily Value)?
    8. Are the nutrients that do not have an RDV really necessary?
    9. Do the forms of nutrients used make a difference?
    10. What about the “fillers”?

    Why are the pills so big?

    Multi Vita-Min pills are large for a reason: small pill = small potency, large pill = large potency. While many medications are 25 mg. or less and can be easily delivered in a small format. Fitting 20, 30, 40, or more nutrients in any sort of significant potency requires a larger format.

    What’s better: tablets, capsules, or softgels?

    This ends up being an individual choice as each delivery system has pros and cons.

    Softgels : most people find softgels easy to swallow. They protect the contents from air and light. They allow using liquid forms of nutrients without the need for sweeteners and most stabilizers. Most softgels are of animal origin and not suitable for vegetarians and vegans. There are vegan softgels, but these softgels can only be used with certain ingredients.

    Capsules : these are preferred by most consumers because they are generally easier to swallow and can be opened to allow the contents to be added to drinks or certain foods. Typically, they can be made with less fillers that most tablets. Compared to tablets, they hold less potency (example: a typical tablet requires two capsules to equal the formula). There are almost always vegetarian/vegan capsule options.

    Tablets : the least popular of supplement formats, especially Multi Vita Mins due to their size. Unless manufactured by a competent company, tablets may not break down in those with compromised digestion. Again, manufactured by a competent company, tablets have far less fillers than in the past.

    What about powders or liquids?

    Powders and liquids offer an alternative to pills altogether. However, there are many more limitations on what form of nutrients will remain stable in these formats. Most of the time stabilizers and sweeteners are needed. These are usually the least cost-effective choices.

    Is One-Per-Day enough?

    A simple answer: No. You can look at a one-per-day as one bite of a sandwich. A few nutrients can be covered reasonably well in one pill, but for most items, it’s just a good start. One pill is certainly better than none, but our need for supplementation exceeds just one pill.

    What is Food-Based VS. Food-Form and are they superior?

    The early Natural Food Multi Vita-Mins were simply natural forms of A- Zinc. They were a combination of pure isolates. A major innovation came when companies started adding whole-food ingredients to give a broader nutritional matrix to improve absorbability and efficacy. This became the standard for many years.

    In an attempt to make supplements as close to food as possible, some companies began feeding these isolates into different culturing or fermented mediums to produce nutrients that are complexed as they exist in whole foods.

    While I appreciate the underlying philosophy behind food-grown nutrients, I prefer a more food-based formula. Food-Grown Multi Vita Mins are small potencies at a significantly higher cost. We already have perfectly natural, low-potency sources of nutrients: food. I prefer my supplements to focus on functional amounts.

    Why are so many nutrients so much higher than the RDV?

    I have seen little evidence that the “medical establishment” respects the significance of optimal nutrition. Most credentialed nutritional experts do not consider the RDV to be a credible standard. Regardless of the scientific arguments on both sides, the RDV are a very low bar.

    Are the nutrients that do not have an RDV really necessary?

    Mother Nature offers a wide array of nutrients that go well beyond just vitamins and minerals. Many of these unique molecules are often missing in food due to farming and processing practices. As in the answer above, we have no reason to expect the medical industry to give these valuable molecules much attention. A diet that includes a wide variety of foods is recommended. A Multi Vita-Min should include a wide variety of nutrients as well.

    Do the Forms of the Nutrients Used Make a Difference?

    The simple answer is a resounding YES and it appears that many vitamin companies take advantage of consumers’ lack of knowledge in this area. Would you build a house out of cardboard or wood? Would you build a bridge out of steel or sandstone? Rather than go into a lengthy description of the many different forms; let me suggest that you purchase your Multi Vita- Min from a company with known expertise.

    What About the Fillers?

    This is a subject fraught with misinformation. To use a broad brush, your “Drug Store” and “Mass Market” vitamins use many questionable additives to their products. On the other hand, your “Health Food” vitamins use natural and necessary additives that often add to the efficacy of the product. Since companies are required to list ALL ingredients, you can always avoid any ingredient that you wish.

    Bill Sardi formulated the Molecular Multi. As a friend and colleague, I can assure you that you would be hard-pressed to find a more knowledgeable formulator. The nutrients offered and the levels utilized are well-thought out and scientifically based. You can receive the benefits of the Molecular Multi with just 1 capsule, twice daily. Some folks will do better taking 2 capsules, twice daily. At full retail and 4 capsules daily this would cost you only $1.88 daily. If you take advantage of the “Buy 3, Get 2 Free” special, it brings the daily price down to only $1.13! It’s hard to believe that you can get such a high-end Multi Vita-Min for such an affordable price.

    If you already take the Molecular Multi, you can be confident that you have made a wise choice. If you have not experienced the Molecular Multi, just follow this link: