5 Surprising Benefits of Multivitamins, According to Science

5 Surprising Benefits of Multivitamins, According to Science - Trace Minerals

By Chris D. Meletis, N.D.

There’s no doubt that people today are overfed but undernourished. According to the Centers for Disease Control, only 1 in 10 adults are eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables.1 

Fruits and vegetables are loaded with important nutrients, so not eating a nutritious diet can leave you deficient in vitamins and minerals. Taking a good multivitamin is the easiest way to make up for dietary deficiencies.

Let’s take a look at what the science says about multivitamin benefits.

Multivitamins May Protect Telomeres

A really interesting finding published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that taking a multivitamin may increase telomere length.2 Telomeres are the caps at the end of chromosomes, similar to those at the end of your shoelaces that stop them from unraveling.  Telomeres become shorter and shorter as your cells divide, which can affect how healthy you are as you age, as well as how long you live.   

In the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study, researchers looked at 586 women ages 35 to 74 years. The study authors assessed whether the women were taking multivitamins and also measured their dietary nutrient intake through a 146-item food-frequency questionnaire, along with their telomere length.

After the researchers adjusted for age and other confounders, taking a multivitamin was linked to longer telomeres. Compared to women who did not take a multivitamin, the relative telomere length in women who used a multivitamin daily was on average 5.1% longer. Eating more vitamin C and E from foods was also associated with longer telomeres.

According to the researchers, “This study provides the first epidemiologic evidence that multivitamin use is associated with longer telomere length among women.” The study authors believe that multivitamins may affect telomere length by reducing oxidative stress and inflammation.

A Possible Option for Cardio Support

Although there’s some inconsistent evidence regarding whether taking a multivitamin can have cardiovascular benefits, enough studies show they can support heart health that their use in this area is intriguing.

For example, in a 2016 study in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers investigated whether multivitamin use is associated with better cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention in 18,530 men who were healthy at the study’s start.3 During follow-up of over 12 years, men who had been taking multivitamins for 20 or more years at baseline had a lower risk of cardiovascular events. Men taking multivitamins at the start of the study were also less likely to need to have stents placed.

Some—but not all—research has also found an association between taking multivitamins and promoting heart health in women.4 Another study, a randomized controlled trial, showed that a multivitamin formula had no effect on total cardiovascular disease but led to a significant 39% decline in fatal heart attacks.5

Recovery from Surgery

Research suggests that taking a multivitamin may help promote recovery after orthopedic surgery.6 Certain nutrients in multivitamins such as vitamins B12, C, D, and E support a healthy inflammatory response and improve mobility. Always talk to your doctor about taking a multivitamin after surgery.

Keeping the Brain Sharp

Benefits of multivitamins may also include keeping the brain healthy. In one study, daily multivitamin-multimineral supplements for three years improved global cognition, episodic memory, and executive function in older adults.7 Multivitamin and multimineral supplements may also stop mental fatigue in tasks that demand a lot of brainpower.8

Other research suggests multivitamin and multimineral supplements support cognitive function and boost mood in older adults.9 In women aged 50 or older, multivitamin use was also linked to feeling more calm and less stressed.10

Making Up for Medication-Induced Deficiencies 

Certain pharmaceutical medications lead to nutrient deficiencies and taking a multivitamin or multimineral supplement may compensate. For example, metformin, an insulin-sensitizing drug, is often used in type 2 diabetes. However, long-term use of metformin can cause reductions in vitamin B12 levels.

In one study of 2,510 people aged 50 years and over, the participants with diabetes who were taking metformin and a multivitamin had mean serum vitamin B12 levels that were 50% higher than those who were not taking a multivitamin.11 In the people taking metformin, using a multivitamin was linked to a lower prevalence of low and borderline vitamin B12 levels.

Trace Minerals offers several multis that are great choices as a multivitamin for women or a multivitamin for men. One option for people who don’t like to swallow pills is Liquid Multi Vitamin-Mineral, which includes 90 nutrients in a delicious natural orange-mango liquid supplement. Another good choice is Complete Foods Multi, a convenient tableted multivitamin containing 80 living foods, ionic sea minerals, vitamins, and minerals. Trace Minerals Research’s special process combines these nutrients with a sea mineral blend that activates the foods and nutrients so they assimilate and digest properly. 


  1. Seung Hee Lee LVM. Adults Meeting Fruit and Vegetable Intake Recommendations — United States, 2019. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 2022;71(1):1-9.
  2. Xu Q, Parks CG, DeRoo LA, Cawthon RM, Sandler DP, Chen H. Multivitamin use and telomere length in women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009;89(6):1857-1863.
  3. Rautiainen S, Rist PM, Glynn RJ, Buring JE, Gaziano JM, Sesso HD. Multivitamin Use and the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease in Men. J Nutr. 2016;146(6):1235-1240.
  4. Rautiainen S, Akesson A, Levitan EB, Morgenstern R, Mittleman MA, Wolk A. Multivitamin use and the risk of myocardial infarction: a population-based cohort of Swedish women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010;92(5):1251-1256.
  5. Sesso HD, Christen WG, Bubes V, et al. Multivitamins in the prevention of cardiovascular disease in men: the Physicians' Health Study II randomized controlled trial. Jama. 2012;308(17):1751-1760.
  6. Rask DMG, Puntel MR, Patzkowski JC, Patzkowski MS. Multivitamin Use in Enhanced Recovery After Surgery Protocols: A Cost Analysis. Mil Med. 2021;186(9-10):e1024-e1028.
  7. Baker LD, Manson JE, Rapp SR, et al. Effects of cocoa extract and a multivitamin on cognitive function: A randomized clinical trial. Alzheimers Dement. 2022.
  8. Dodd FL, Kennedy DO, Stevenson EJ, et al. Acute and chronic effects of multivitamin/mineral supplementation on objective and subjective energy measures. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2020;17:16.
  9. Lee HK, Kim SY, Sok SR. Effects of Multivitamin Supplements on Cognitive Function, Serum Homocysteine Level, and Depression of Korean Older Adults With Mild Cognitive Impairment in Care Facilities. J Nurs Scholarsh. 2016;48(3):223-231.
  10. Macpherson H, Rowsell R, Cox KH, Scholey A, Pipingas A. Acute mood but not cognitive improvements following administration of a single multivitamin and mineral supplement in healthy women aged 50 and above: a randomised controlled trial. Age (Dordr). 2015;37(3):9782.
  11. Kancherla V, Garn JV, Zakai NA, et al. Multivitamin Use and Serum Vitamin B12 Concentrations in Older-Adult Metformin Users in REGARDS, 2003-2007. PLoS One. 2016;11(8):e0160802.

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