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You’ve got a lot of options when it comes to supplements. Shopping for the best ones for you can be pretty overwhelming. There are different brands, different formulations, etc. Supplements also come in different forms, like capsules or liquids. Because we’ve talked about capsule supplements extensively before, we’re going to be focusing on the best liquid multivitamins and vitamins today.
So what exactly are liquid supplements? Well, the name is pretty self-explanatory. “Liquid vitamins are exactly as they sound, a vitamin in a liquid form, as opposed to a chewable or capsule form,” explains Erica Zellner, MS, CNS, senior health coach at Parsley Health. “Oftentimes, these vitamins are a mixture of the supplemental ingredients, water or oil, flavorings, and preservatives.”
Liquid vitamins can be found in different forms, says Serena Poon, CN, CHC, CHN, chef, nutritionist, Reiki master, and founder of the Culinary Alchemy program. She breaks them down for us below.
Tinctures: “These are herbs or vitamins that have been extracted using alcohol or glycerin,” she explains. “You can find tinctures that will support an array of health functions such as immune support, hormone balance, and relaxation. Because tinctures are often prepared with an alcohol base, it is important to be cautious when selecting tinctures for children.”
Oils: Vitamin D supplements for children and omega-3s are commonly delivered in oils. Poon recommends looking for vitamins that are diluted with organic olive oil or coconut oil.
Syrups: Poon says therapeutic herbs can be delivered in syrup form, like elderberry syrup. Sugar will be an added ingredient in syrups, so look for products with natural sugars like honey.
Liposomals: “This is an innovative technology that surrounds a vitamin with a layer of lipids in order to increase its bioavailability,” Poon says. “Researchers have found liposomes to be a very effective vitamin delivery method, and more and more brands are beginning to offer liquid supplements in this format.”
Beverages: Waters and fortified milks and shakes can also contain vitamins. “This is the format where you want to be careful about reading your labels,” she says. “It is very common to find added sugars, artificial colors, and preservatives in vitamin-enhanced drinks.”
When deciding whether to take liquid supplements, it helps to consult your healthcare provider first, like you would with regular supplements. “Just like our diets, one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to supplementation,” says Charlotte Shron, MS, RD, a registered dietitian at Culina Health. “There is no perfect or standard way of incorporating vitamins into treatment plans. It is an individualized practice that depends on attention to detail, compliance, and consistency for best results. You must take your medical history, current health, and overall lifestyle into consideration in determining which vitamins to take and how.”