We all know that it’s possible to get most, if not all, our nutritional requirements from foods, especially vegetables and fruits. Still, with today’s busy lifestyle and the pressures of modern living, it’s easy for our health to take a back seat. And you can easily go for days, if not weeks, without meeting your daily vitamin and mineral requirements.
Unfortunately, we don’t get the recommended 2 cups of fruit and 3 cups of vegetables daily. In that case, we miss out on essential nutrients that help protect our bodies against cancer, heart disease, strokes, and other health conditions.
But the stats show that upwards of 76% of us adults in the US don’t eat enough fruit and, even worse, 87% of us aren’t getting in enough veggies either. In fact, only one in ten adults in America get enough fruit and vegetables.
So, where does that leave us?
Multivitamin supplements. They’re a daily commitment to our health to ensure that we give our bodies the important vitamins and minerals it needs to perform optimally. So, when life happens (which it always does), we’re better prepared to make up for the shortfalls so that our body always has what it needs.
Women’s Multivitamin Buying Guide
|Best Overall||Optimum Nutrition Opti-Women|
|Best Price||Vitafusion Women’s Gummy Vitamins|
|Best Organic||Garden of Life Multivitamin for Women|
|Best 40+||New Chapter Women’s Multivitamin|
|Best Skin & Hair||NATURELO One Daily Multivitamin for Women|
|Best Single Serving||One A Day Women’s Multivitamin|
|Best Greens Blend||Nature’s Way Alive!|
|Best Potency||Rainbow Light® Women’s One Multivitamin|
|Best Immune Support||Vimerson Health Women’s Daily Multivitamin|
What are multivitamin supplements?
Made up of a combination of different vitamins and minerals, the content of different brands of multivitamins can vary widely. Sometimes called multi-minerals or multivitamins, multivitamin supplements are available in various forms, including gummies, powders, liquids, tablets, and capsules. Most multivitamins are designed to be taken once or twice daily, but be sure to read and follow the dosage instructions on the label.
And, as always, make sure to consult a healthcare professional before taking any new supplements.
What are the benefits of taking a multivitamin supplement if you are female?
The benefits of taking a multivitamin have been well-documented, and the advantages of taking a daily multivitamin have many advantages, including:
- Heart health, a recent study linked taking a multivitamin long-term (at least three years), was linked to a 35% decrease in the risk of dying from heart disease in women. Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, K1, CoQ10, and magnesium all have a role to play in promoting heart health.
- Cancer risk, the evidence for multivitamin use as a preventative measure for cancer is in women is mixed, although two studies (here and here) show a decreased risk of colon cancer.
- Brain function, studies show that taking a multivitamin regularly can improve mood (and memory in older adults).
- Eye health, a multivitamin can reduce the risk of developing cataracts, and may slow (but not prevent) age-related blindness. Vitamins A, B3, C, E, and selenium, along with others, support eye health.
- Bone health, calcium and Vitamin D are both essential for bone health, so if your diet is lacking in either, you can benefit from a multivitamin.
- Energy, B vitamins, in particular, are linked to energy and improved neurological function, helping to decrease stress and anxiety.
- Relaxation, magnesium aids the body in relaxation.
- Immune boost, zinc, and vitamin C are linked to improved immune function along with vitamins D and E.
- Replenish water-soluble vitamins, vitamins B, and C that are taken in excess simply travel through the body and are not stored, which means that they need to be replenished on a daily basis.
- Hair and skin health, Vitamins B3, C, and biotin helps with fuller hair while Vitamins A, C, E, and CoQ10 are good for healthy skin.
- Healthy aging, as we age, our bodies may need additional nutrients, but we become less effective at absorbing nutrients which can be supplemented by a multivitamin.
How do I choose the best multi-vitamin for women?
The best type of multivitamin is going to depend on what vitamins and minerals your body lacks. In general, if you are struggling to sleep, are experiencing stress or a loss of energy, or other, more specific symptoms, a multivitamin should be incorporated into your daily routine. This will help address any internal nutritional deficiencies and help you start on the road to better health.
But there are so many different options to choose from, so it can help to have some guidelines to follow. When making your decision, keep in mind the importance of USP verification, the specific vitamins that you need as a woman, choosing a formulation that matches your age and sex, as well as a few other factors that will impact your choice.
1. USP Verification
USP verification was set up by the S. Pharmacopeial Convention, which is an independent, non-profit organization. It determines whether dietary supplements are pure and whether the ingredients contained in the supplement match what has been listed on the label.
You can look up your multivitamin online to check that it has been USP verified.
2. Essential Vitamins and Nutrients that Women Need
Many vitamins are vital for supporting female health, including:
- Calcium, particularly for older women, to lower your risk of developing osteoporosis.
- Vitamin D, your body converts sunlight into vitamin D, but it’s ability to do so decreases with age, which means that your body can’t use its store of calcium.
- Iron, if you are still menstruating. If you are post-menopause, you should rather look for a supplement without iron.
- Folic acid, if you are pregnant or trying to become pregnant, folic acid (a B vitamin) can lower the rate of birth defects.
- Thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin
- Iodine, borate, and molybdenum
- Beta-carotene, antioxidants help protect your body against cell damage.
- Vitamin B6 and B12, as you grow older, these vitamins become very important for red-blood-cell formation and development.
- Omega-3 fatty acids, these acids have anti-inflammatory properties, as well as supporting heart health.
At the very least, the multivitamin that you choose should contain calcium and vitamins B12 and D to help fill any gaps that your diet doesn’t cover adequately. In addition, the amount of iron in the supplement should reflect your life stage (no iron for older, post-menopause women) and higher levels for women who are still menstruating. However, with an iron deficiency, the recommendations will vary.
3. A Formulation for Your Needs
The multivitamin you choose should have the right balance of nutrients for your age and gender, as needs vary depending on your sex and life stage. For example, younger, premenopausal women need more iron, while older women need more vitamin B6, D, and calcium.
Then check that the multivitamin contains 100% or close to 100% of the daily value of the most essential ingredients. This isn’t possible for calcium (which would make the pill too large to swallow at 100%), and exceeding 100% isn’t ideal for vitamins that build up in the body as they can become toxic (such as vitamins A, D, E, and K).
4. Other Important Things to Look for When Choosing a Multivitamin
When choosing a multivitamin should contain a good mix of the vitamins and minerals that your body needs, and it should also be:
- Made by a reputable brand with a long track record
- Backed by nutritional research
- Bioavailable (easily absorbed by the body)
- Made without fillers, artificial colors, sweeteners, or additives
Best Overall: Optimum Nutrition Opti-Women
This multivitamin has been developed for women to support overall health and an active lifestyle. Comprising of 23 vitamins and minerals, Opti-Women’s advanced formula assists the body by providing key nutrients, including folic acid, calcium, and iron. In addition, there are 40 different active ingredients, including citrus bioflavonoids and soy isoflavones, and 17 specialty ingredients.
Opti-Women multivitamin is available in two sizes (60 and 120 capsule bottles) and uses Vegetarian Society Approved Vcaps.
Best Price: Vitafusion Women’s Gummy Vitamins
This incredibly popular, competitively priced multivitamin is a complete multivitamin that supports the specific health needs of women. It’s packed with antioxidant vitamins C and E, and contains five high-potency B vitamins. Vitafusion gummies also offer high bioavailability for maximum absorption, muscle, energy metabolism, and immune support.
Their delicious gummy sweet formulation is a fun alternative to hard-to-swallow pills, and they contain no artificial sweeteners, gluten, dairy, high-fructose corn syrup, or synthetic dyes. They’re also the recipients of the 2018 ChefsBest Excellence Award.
Best Organic: Garden of Life Multivitamin for Women
Garden of Life offers a multivitamin made from nutritious, raw whole foods with live probiotics and enzymes as well as antioxidants to promote health and vitality. The women-specific formulation includes calcium, magnesium, zinc, folate, vitamins A, C, D3, E, and C-Complex. This is a comprehensive multivitamin for female health, supporting heart, skin, bone, digestion, reproductive, and breast health.
Garden of Life prides itself on offering the best quality multivitamins made from clean, organic, and non-GMO whole food ingredients that are vegetarian, gluten-free, and dairy-free.
This multivitamin is designed to target the needs of women over the age of 40, made with organic, non-GMO ingredients. The multivitamin can be taken at any time of the day (even on an empty stomach), and the fermentation processes ensure high bioavailability. Created to address imbalances in your daily life, New Chapter can help with managing stress, energy levels, hormones, and well as offering support for your immune system and bone health.
New Chapter is a top-selling fermented multivitamin brand made with certified organic, non-GMO vegetables and herbs. It is vegetarian, kosher, and gluten-free and contains no synthetic fillers. In addition, it delivers potent superfoods, including ginger, turmeric, and fenugreek.
Naturelo’s One Daily multivitamin contains vitamins A, B-complex, C, D3, E, and K2, as well as minerals iron, calcium, magnesium, zinc, and selenium. The multivitamin also contains a range of antioxidants because the product is derived from organic fruit and vegetable extracts. Designed to support immunity, energy, and wellness, as well as promoting bone health, this high-quality USA-made multivitamin is consistently one of the top-rated, best-selling female multis.
Naturelo strives to provide natural vitamin and mineral sources that aren’t made in a lab and chooses to use organically-grown fruits and vegetables to derive potent, high-quality supplements. This is why the multivitamin includes B12 from Methylcobalamin, B6 from P-5-P, Vitamin C from organic acerola cherries, Vitamin E from organic rice bran, calcium from algae, and iodine from organic kelp.
For total peace of mind, Naturelo’s vitamins are GMO, Soy, and gluten-free. In addition, they contain no preservatives, colorants, flavoring, or gelatin. They are suitable for vegetarians and include raw B-complex vitamins cultured in probiotics for maximum bioavailability.
One a day’s multivitamin for women is a complete multi that was designed specifically to support female-specific concerns such as bone health along with immune, skin, and heart health, and to improve energy levels.
One a Day is a trusted multivitamin producer who has been making specially formulated multivitamins to support each stage of life for over 75 years. The supplement contains vitamins A, B6, D, E, and K, as well as Riboflavin, Thiamin, and Niacin, and it’s free from gluten, wheat, dairy, artificial sweeteners, and artificial flavors.
Nature’s Way Alive! is a premium formulation of Orchard FruitsTM, Garden VeggiesTM, Daily GreensTM, and nutrients for adults with no iron added. It contains a wide, diverse range of essential phytonutrients, antioxidants, greens, and the active form of (methylcobalamin) and folate (L-Methylfolate).
This multivitamin supports bone health, eye health, heart health, immunity, and daily energy levels. Nature’s Way has been helping individuals across the US live their best possible lives with a range of specially formulated natural health supplements for over 50 years. They believe in the healing power of nature and continue to offer products that focus on authenticity, transparency, integrity, and efficacy.
Rainbow Light is a women-focused multivitamin that offers a potent source of zinc as well as a suite of science-backed vitamins and minerals to energize, nourish and fuel female health and wellness. Rainbow light uses the most potent fruit and vegetable ingredients with digestive enzymes to aid in breaking down food.
This popular, top-selling multivitamin contains vitamin C, D, and calcium for bone health, zinc for immune support, potent B vitamins for energy production, and choline for nerve cell protection.
If you’re struggling with energy and motivation, Vimerson Health’s multivitamin for women has the solution. Specially formulated to make you feel healthier and more energized, the multivitamin promotes heart health and blood circulation, strengthens the immune and digestive system, supports bone and breast health, and improves mental acuity.
Designed with women in mind, the multivitamin is tailored to meet your everyday nutritional needs and uses only the safest, most gentle ingredients. Made from natural plants and botanicals, the ingredients include folic acid, vitamin A, C, D, E, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B12 along with calcium, magnesium, zinc, selenium, copper manganese, chromium, and molybdenum. In addition, it is yeast, soy, GMO, gluten, and dairy-free.
Multivitamin Supplements for Women FAQs
There are thirteen vitamins and upwards of sixteen minerals that are essential for health and wellness as they aid enzyme reactions or function as structural elements or signaling molecules. They’re also necessary for reproduction, growth, regulation, and maintenance.
Essential micronutrients include:
Vitamins B6 and B12
Vitamin A (including beta carotene)
Vitamin D2 or D3
A multivitamin can offer access to many of the most essential vitamins and minerals in one place, but the forms and amounts will vary from brand to brand. In addition, some multivitamins contain other important health-giving ingredients, such as amino acids and fatty acids.
Unfortunately, multivitamins are classified as a dietary supplements and, as such, are not regulated by the FDA. Therefore, in many cases, it may contain nutrient levels that are high or lower than what is written on the label. For this reason, it is important to purchase your multivitamin from a reputable, well-established vitamin brand, preferably one that derives the nutrients from plants and other real sources rather than those that are created synthetically in laboratories.
Yes, almost all multivitamins contain the necessary building blocks for improving your energy levels, but only if your lack of energy is caused by a nutritional deficiency. For example, an underlying thyroid condition or any other undiagnosed health issue won’t necessarily be corrected by a multivitamin.
In many cases, especially if you are a vegetarian or vegan, you may be low in vitamin B12, which is an essential building block for the energy factories in your body. A multivitamin will usually include the recommended daily dose of B12, which should be enough to correct a deficiency.
Another source of low energy may be depleted iron levels in the blood. Many multivitamins include certain forms of iron, which can replenish irons levels in the body. But it’s best to get advice from your doctor to ensure that the source of iron can be readily absorbed by the body.
A healthy, nutritious, balanced diet is first prize, but this isn’t always an option, and that’s where multivitamins can help. By supplementing your diet with vitamins and minerals, you can help to restore your body’s equilibrium and prevent or slow the onset of diseases such as heart attacks, cancer, blindness, and more.
It also offers peace of mind as the stress of not eating enough fruits and vegetables every day can have a negative impact on your mental health. Knowing that your body is getting the nutrients that it needs on a daily basis can, therefore, be physiologically as well as physically important.
Multivitamins aren’t essential for everyone, but there are benefits, particularly for older women who require additional calcium and Vitamin D. Vegans and vegetarians who follow a plant-based diet need to supplement with Vitamin B12 (found in animal foods). They may also need zinc, iron, Vitamin D, omega 3, and calcium, which are found in most multivitamins.
For most types of multivitamins, the time of day is not important. But if you have a sensitive stomach, or if it is indicated on the label of the multivitamin, taking it with food can minimize stomach discomfort. Another thing to keep in mind when choosing the time of day is that calcium and iron bind together in the digestive process, so to optimize the absorption of a calcium supplement (if you take calcium separately), you should do so at a different time to the multivitamin.
Opti-Women by Optimum Nutrition gets our vote for the best overall multivitamin for women with its formulation that includes 23 vitamins and essential minerals. It has thousands of five-star reviews, and the brand has a long track record of providing high-quality vitamins and supplements. In our opinion, this makes it a multivitamin that ticks all the boxes.
Vitafusion Gummies for Women is our choice for best price. It’s a slightly different take on the standard multivitamin capsule as it comes in the form of a gummy. But thousands of women across the country agree that it is a highly effective multivitamin, and it’s affordable too.
In addition to the Opti-Women and Vitafusion multi-vitamins, we’ve reviewed many other top options, and they all come highly recommended. Each multivitamin has been developed by a reputable brand with many years in the health and wellness industry and has hundreds of excellent reviews. So, depending on what you’re looking for in a multivitamin, you’ll be able to explore some of the most effective options on the market in one place.
Whether it’s higher levels of iron, a focus on bone health, a multivitamin for post-menopausal women, or a balanced combination of all the most important vitamins and minerals, you’ll find the perfect choice on our list.