Healthy eating is the best way to get nutrients, but multivitamins may help.
Some physicians recommend a daily multivitamin for children and adults. 
Should you be taking a multivitamin? Read more to find out.
What Are Multivitamins?
A multivitamin is a supplement containing essential vitamins and minerals.
Specially-formulated multivitamins contain additional nutrients for a specific demographic.
There are 41 essential nutrients. 
Most multivitamins contain essential nutrients.
Types of Multivitamins
The types of multivitamins include:
- Natural 
Essential Vitamins and Minerals
There are essential vitamins and minerals found in multivitamins.
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 1,136 milligrams of calcium per day. Foods high in calcium include:
- Nonfat or low-fat yogurts and cheeses
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 4,044 milligrams of potassium per day. Foods high in potassium include:
- Potatoes (white and sweet)
- Beans (kidney, lima, soy and white)
- Nonfat or low-fat yogurt
- Fish (particularly yellowfin tuna and halibut)
- Tomato-based products
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 380 milligrams of magnesium per day. Foods high in magnesium include:
- Brazil nuts
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 900 micrograms daily (3,000 IU). Foods high in vitamin A include:
- Sweet potatoes
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 75 milligrams of vitamin C per day. Foods high in vitamin C include:
- Raw red sweet pepper
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 600 IU of vitamin D daily. Foods high in vitamin D include:
- Canned tuna
The average adult (eating 2,000 calories per day) should consume 1,500 IU of vitamin E per day. Foods high in vitamin E include:
- Sunflower seeds
Carefully tracking your vitamin and mineral intake may limit side effects.
Meal Planning and Multivitamins
There are meal and snack ideas containing essential vitamins, similar to multivitamins.
- Nonfat or low-fat yogurt with almonds
- Pumpkin muffin with glass of nonfat or low-fat milk
- Raw red sweet peppers and carrots dipped in tuna salad
- Baked potato or sweet potato
- Grilled salmon and cooked spinach
- Grilled halibut with steamed carrots
- Protein shake made with nonfat yogurt with guava
- Brazil nuts and fruit
Multivitamins Side Effects
Side effects of taking a multivitamin are usually mild and may include:
- Unpleasant taste
The side effects of taking a multivitamin are small and can be reduced by taking them with food, if possible. 
Some of the top multivitamins include:
Best Multivitamin For Women
The best multivitamin for women may include biotin for hair and nail health. Prenatal multivitamins for women often include extra folic acid, iron, calcium and iodine.
Multivitamin For Kids
A multivitamin for kids is likely to be free of artificial colors, sweeteners and fillers and contain easy-to-digest forms of essential vitamins and minerals.
Kids’ vitamins sometimes include Vitamins A, E, Zinc and additional Vitamin D to support their immune system.
Many kids’ vitamins are chewable. A multivitamin powder or liquid multivitamin can also be ideal for supplementing a child’s diet.
Best Multivitamin For Men
The best multivitamin for men often includes a nutrient to lower cancer and heart disease, such as lycopene; found in tomatoes.
Best Multivitamin For Athletes
Finding a multivitamin that fits your specific needs may improve health and body function.
Bottom Line on Multivitamins
Multivitamins are a great way to fill the void left from vitamin and mineral deficiencies from food. The cost is reasonable and almost everyone can use a multivitamin. Although considered safe, it’s always best to contact your physician before using any dietary supplement, including a multivitamin.
Summer Banks, Director of Content at Dietspotlight, has researched over 5000 weight-loss programs, pills, shakes and diet plans. Previously, she managed 15 supplement brands, worked with doctors specializing in weight loss and completed coursework in nutrition at Stanford University. full bio.