Gummy vitamins can do more harm than good

December 6, 2017  11:59

Chewing gummy vitamins do not provide the body with the proper nutrients, according to new research.

Though they may be sweet and tasty, tests found that they either have too many or not enough of the essential nutrients and minerals that are marketed on the label. 

Tests conducted by ConsumerLab.com compared 50 different multivitamins and found that 80 percent of the gummies did not meet the standards of dietary supplements.

And while many people turn to gummies as an alternative to swallowing pills to get their daily dose, nutritionists warn that the sugary coating may be doing more harm than good.

According to the US Food and Drug Administration, our bodies need 13 vitamins from our diet, fortified foods or dietary supplements that multivitamins are meant to supply.

But gummy vitamins may be replacing their nutrients with unhealthy ingredients that make them tasty.

ConsumerLab.com purchased 50 popular multivitamin products, including five brands of gummy vitamins, in the United States and Canada and tested them for several key nutrients.

Twelve of the multivitamins contained 24 percent fewer nutrients than what was listed on the labels and as high as 157 percent more than listed.

Most gummy vitamins are not approved by the FDA, meaning they are not tested in the way that other medications are to coincide with their packaging label. 

The tests found that Centrum MultiGummies for Adults is missing 10 of vitamins and NatureMade Multi Adult Gummies and Vitafusion Multivites lack nine of them.

Smarty Pants Adult Complete didn't have vitamins B-1, B-3, and K, as well as the minerals iron, magnesium, copper, selenium and chromium, which are commonly found in multivitamins.

New York nutritionist Nikki Ostrower and owner of NAO Wellness told Daily Mail Online that she never recommends gummy vitamins to her clients. 

'A lot of gummy vitamins have artificial fillers in them like food coloring, some have high fructose corn syrup and lots of preservatives,' she said.  

Four of the five gummies contained too much vitamin A, which can be due to the difficulties of making them and the manufacturers spraying too much of the nutrients on.

Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, which means the body stores it in the liver and other organs and will not be digested as easily as other water soluble vitamins.  

Ostrower said that too much of these fat soluble vitamins can cause dizziness, nausea, headaches, joint-pain and heart disease.  

But she adds that one of the biggest issues with them is exactly what makes the treats popular - the taste.

The fact that gummy vitamins are akin to candy causes people, mostly kids, to overeat them, which could result in a dangerous overdose of vitamins. 

'People think it's good for kids , but if there's all these unhealthy preservatives, the body is absorbing that and not the nutrients anyway. 

The high levels of sugar and other additives found in the gummies can also contribute to early tooth decay and cavities in children.

Ostrower suggests sticking ordinary tablets that are 100 percent whole food that don't include sweeteners, colors, flavors or preservatives.

'I recommend to read the label and be an eye-savvy consumer because if you don't understand what's on the label it's probably manufactured in a plant and not good for us,' she said.  

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