In response to my post Looking For A Multivitamin Supplement For Your Toddler, Annie @ phdinparenting pointed out Arthur’s chewable multivitamins with concentrated fruits and veggies. I found the idea of adding fruits and veggies to multivitamins pretty interesting because they provide a natural source for vitamins and minerals. While shopping at my local Whole Foods store, I decided to spend some time in the children’s nutritional supplement section to research these types of multivitamins. Good thing the twins were not with me, so I could concentrate and take some notes instead of running after them through the store!
When I visited Walgreens a couple of weeks back, there were only 2-3 shelves of multivitamins from a handful of brands. But in Whole Foods, I was surprised to see a broad range of chewables, gummies, liquid formulations and powder packs of about 20 different brands of multivitamins and supplements. For some reason, Whole Foods seems to believe that the market for children’s multivitamins is much larger in our area! Not to mention that so much of variety makes it so much more difficult to select the right product at the right price. I will be writing a survey article on different brands in a future post.
In this post, I want to focus on a liquid formula multivitamin that caught my eye, not only because it claimed to be “natural” and based on herbal extracts and fruit juices, but also because of its high price. At $22.79 for an 8.5 oz bottle – which comes to just about $1 per dose – the Floradix® Kinder Love® Children’s Multivitamin Liquid Extract Formula seemed like the Rolls-Royce of multivitamins! After all, it is well known that the claims on nutritional supplements are not evaluated and approved by the FDA. And on a closer look, it did not even contain the full range of vitamins and minerals, and those that it did contain, fell short of the daily recommended values. So what could make it so expensive?
Here is my evaluation. Decide for yourself and leave a comment, especially if you are already using it for your child.
Floradix® Kinder Love® Children’s Multivitamin Liquid Extract Formula
Note that the color coding is same as what I described in my previous post – that is “Red” means the amount is less than 10% of the RDI (second column), “Yellow” means the amount is between 10 – 90%, and “Green” m eans the amount is 90% or more. If you look at the numbers, this one simply does not compare well to Centrum Kids and Flintstones Complete.
Here are some of the claims on Flora Health’s website:
- Enhanced bone support – highly soluble form of calcium, vitamin D, no iron
- Immune system support – vitamins and antioxidants
- Formulated for maximum effectiveness and safety – optimal and balanced, not overloaded
- Easy to digest liquid solution – easy on a child’s “immature” system
- No harmful additives – artificial preservatives, food coloring, organic sources
- Great taste – sweetened with fruit juice and maple syrup
- Natrual food base – carrots, high mineral plants, mild digestive herbs, pH balanced
So far it looks very good indeed! But how much of it is scientifically proven? I could not find any data on Flora Health’s website, although it claims that their products are based on 50 years of scientific research.
I took a detailed look at the other listed ingredients to understand what value they might be providing. Most of them are herbs or extracts that mainly help with digestive problems and provide natural sources of vitamins and minerals (source: Herb and Supplement Encyclopedia on Flora’s website)
- Anise – antioxidant, helps with digestive problems, clears up throat
- Licorice root – sweetner, helps with respiratory problems, coughs, colds, flues and infections
- Milfoil herb – stimulates appetite, helps with GI disorders cramps, diarrhea, flatulence and inflammation.
- Horsetail herb – helps with water retention and constipation (increases urination). Contains silicon to improve structure of bones, cartilege, connective tissue and skin.
- Camomile flowers – helps with indigestion and other GI problems
- Peppermint leaves – reduces indigestion and heartburn
- Water cress – provides natural vitamins (A and C) and minerals, increases flow of bile into intestines
- Wheat germ – provides natural vitamin E
- Coriander seed – helps with digestive complaints and stimulates appetite
- Nettles – increases urination, helps with bone and joint conditions, provides vitamins and minerals
- Rosehip extract – helps with digestion and constipation, provides natural vitamin C
- Yeast extract – B vitamins and minerals
Here is what I like about this product:
- Natural, plant and fruit based
- Liquid based, so likely has better absorption and “bioavailability“
- Easy on the digestive system
Here is what I do not like about this product:
- High price (Centrum Kids and Flintstones Complete is about 10-12 cents per tablet)
- Does not contain iron and zinc, which means you have to use a second supplement
- Amount of vitamins and minerals is low compared to the recommended daily intake
What is your opinion? Have you tried it or are you willing to try it? Please share your comments.