We use four scientific criteria to compare multivitamin brands. We developed each criterion based on peer-reviewed evidence available in the latest published medical literature.
The four comparison criteria are as follows:
Your body needs 13 types of vitamins and at least as many different types of minerals in order to function properly. This criterion has to do with how closely the dosage of vitamins and minerals in each product follow the Optimal Daily Intake index. Optimal composition means you receive the nutrients in the most effective combinations and dosage amounts.
Composition is 30% of the final score.
Bioavailable nutrients are easily and efficiently absorbed by the body. Does the product contain vitamins and minerals in their most absorbable forms, such as organic acid complexes, mixed carotenoids, or amino acid chelates?
Bioavailability is 25% of the final score.
When it comes to supplements, we put safety first. When determining the Safety scores, we look for two things: harmful additives and potential risk of overdose. We prefer a less potent, but safer product, rather than a product packed in nutrients that are well in excess of the Optimal Daily Intake.
Safety is 25% of the final score.
Does the potency of the ingredients found in the product meet or exceed the potency levels outlined in the Optimal Daily Intake index? Store brand supplements often contain low-quality forms of nutrients, which are not as potent as higher-quality nutrients.
Potency is 20% of the final score.
From these four criteria, we calculate an Effectiveness Score. A score near 10 represents a supplement with the characteristics for optimal nutrition.
Conversely, a score near 0 represents a product possessing few, if any, of the characteristics for optimal nutrition.
The Optimal Daily Intake (ODI) represents the ideal quantities of vitamins and minerals individuals need to take each day according to the latest research in the area of nutritional supplementation.
|Please note that these ODI values are higher than the current recommended daily allowance (RDA) or dietary reference intakes (DRI) as published by the U.S. Food and Nutrition Board.|
The RDA and DRI values are too low and not optimal for many nutrients.
The ODI includes the 26 essential ingredients, listed in the table below with their recommended daily dosage:
|1||Vitamin A (Beta carotene)||5000 IU|
|2||Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)||5 mg|
|3||Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)||5 mg|
|4||Vitamin B3 (Niacin)||22 mg|
|5||Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)||15 mg|
|6||Vitamin B6||5 mg|
|7||Vitamin B7 (Biotin)||350 mcg|
|8||Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid)||400 mcg|
|9||Vitamin B12||12 mcg|
|10||Vitamin C||200 mg|
|11||Vitamin D3||2000 IU|
|12||Vitamin E||60 IU|
|13||Vitamin K2 (Menaquinone)||150 mcg|