Recently (at Costco), I spotted a different multivitamin: Nature Made's "Multi for Him" and thought it was probably a clone of the Bayer product: not so. A closer examination showed significant differences between the products. Should I switch?
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. I'm just trying to make sense of this stuff.
I was mildly surprised to see that there's disagreement between what the Feds (US Department of Agriculture) and the supplement manufacturers place on their label. The most recent USDA info I found is dated 2002 and I suspect those are current recommendations. I further suspect that this stuff is examined by Real Experts, but I couldn't find it anywhere on The Internets. So, I made my own chart (the numbers are for men age 31-50 and don't apply to anyone else).
|Vitamin A||5000 IU||900 µg||50 (60% beta carotene)||70 (14% beta carotene)|
|Vitamin C||60 mg||90 mg||300||150|
|Vitamin D||400 IU||5 µg||250||100|
|Vitamin E||30 IU||15 mg||167||150|
|Vitamin K||80 µg||120 µg||100||25|
|Thiamin(B1)||1.5 µg||1.2 mg||100||80|
|Riboflavin(B2)||1.7 mg||1.3 mg||100||100|
|Niacin||20 mg||16 mg||100||80|
|Vitamin B6||2 mg||1.7 mg||200||150|
|Folic Acid||400 µg||400 µg||100||100|
|Vitamin B12||6 µg||2.4 µg||300||300|
|Biotin||300 µg||30 µg||10||10|
|Pantothenic Acid||10 mg||5 mg||100||50|
|Calcium||1000 mg||1000 mg||16||21|
|Iodine||150 µg||150 µg||100||-|
|Magnesium||400 mg||420 mg||25||30|
|Zinc||15 mg||11 mg||100||100|
|Selenium||70 µg||55 µg||100||150|
|Copper||2 mg||900 µg||100||100|
|Manganese||2 mg||2.3 mg||200||100|
|Chronium||120 µg||35 µg||100||100|
|Molybdenum||75 µg||45 µg||100||-|
|Potassium||4.7 g||4.7 g||-||3|
|Lycopene (no RDA)||650 µg||600 mcg (no DV)|
So what did I learn after making this analysis (remember, I Ain't No Doctor)?
- The USDA (2002) and the supplement manufacturers don't always agree on RDA [Recommended Dietary Allowances];
- The Nature Made product is better in 10 categories;
- The Bayer product is better in 5 categories;
- Not all categories should be weighted equally (Vitamin C is more important than Molybdenum?)