Are Chewable Vitamins Good For You?
  /   Dr. John Snow

Are Chewable Vitamins Good For You?

There are so many options when it comes to multivitamins. Multivitamins traditionally came in tablet form, but a quick look at the store shelves will show you a world of possibilities that will leave you debating which form of vitamin is right for you. 

There are gummies, powders, drops, and chewables all next to each other on the shelves. Each kind poses unique advantages and disadvantages. 

Although they all serve the same purpose of delivering vitamins to your body, they each do so in a different way. Some forms may work better for people of varying age groups or lifestyles or people with certain medical conditions. 

Chewable vitamins are an alternative to tablets that will work well for most people without sacrificing the quality or efficacy of the vitamins they contain. In addition, they provide a solution for youngsters (or seniors) who may have some trouble with vitamins in other forms. 

The Benefits of Chewable Vitamins

There are plenty of reasons why someone may find that chewable vitamins work better for them than other forms of vitamins. While tablets are generally billed as the tried and true form, there are many benefits unique to chewable vitamins that tablets simply cannot provide. 

Benefits for Those Who Cannot Swallow Pills

Some people have a difficult time swallowing pills, and many multivitamin tablets are on the larger side. Toddlers and small children who need vitamins and nutrients to support their growth will have a difficult time obtaining them through tablets if they’re unable to reliably swallow them, not to mention the choking hazard posed. 

Chewable vitamins bypass these obstacles. A chewable vitamin is substantially smaller in size than a bite of food and easy for even the youngest child to take. If your toddler or child is at the age where they understand to chew well before swallowing, chewable vitamins should be a breeze.

Just be sure to read the ingredients on chewable vitamins before you provide them to children. Choose a formula designed by pediatricians, and be wary of additives, artificial colors, artificial flavors, and sugar. 

For example, Hiya’s children's multivitamin is naturally sweetened with monk fruit. The flavor and colors are natural and derived from real fruits. 

Benefits for Optimal Absorption

When you swallow a vitamin tablet, your body needs to break it down before the vitamins and minerals it contains can be fully utilized by the body. 

Chewable vitamins drastically simplify this process. When you chew the vitamin, the process of chewing and the introduction of enzymes naturally present in your saliva help to expedite the process of making the vitamin usable by your body. 

When your vitamins are easy for your body to use, you’re able to effectively absorb more of their contents. This reduces the potential for wastage or difficulty processing the vitamins from the supplement.

Benefits for Sensitive Tummies

Tablets take a lot of effort for your stomach to break down. That’s why the instructions usually state to take them with food. 

Chewable vitamins are gentler on your stomach. While you should still take fat-soluble vitamins (like A, D, E, and K) with food, a small snack like yogurt, apples, and peanut butter or hummus and seed crackers will suffice. 

Benefits for Specific Diets

People who live with food allergies or intolerances, those who follow vegan or vegetarian diets, or lifestyles that require them to omit certain food groups may need to turn elsewhere to meet their recommended daily needs for certain vitamins and minerals. 

Although the benefits from any form of multivitamin would apply here, chewables absorb better and are easier to use than a preferred form for this purpose.

What About Gummy Vitamins?

All gummy vitamins are chewable vitamins, but not all chewable vitamins are gummy vitamins. Chewable tablets have the edge over gummies in several important ways. 

Gummy vitamins often contain unnecessary fillers and ingredients that don’t contribute to your health. Chewable vitamins generally contain simpler ingredients and are easy to formulate in a clean and vegan way. 

Gummy vitamins are also often loaded with sugar, making them no better for your oral health than chewing a piece of candy. 

They’re also inconsistent in their formulation. Some gummies may contain more or less of certain vitamins and minerals listed on the label due to the nature of the process. Chewable tablets are made without sugar and are more consistent in their manufacturing process. 

Should I Be Taking a Chewable Vitamin?

While you should do what you can to make sure your child is eating a diverse range of foods to try and meet their nutritional needs, a multivitamin is  helpful to fill in nutritional gaps, especially for kids who are choosy about what they eat, who who live with food allergies, dietary restrictions, or plant-based lifestyles. 

When certain food groups are off the table, it can be difficult to meet your recommended daily value of certain vitamins and minerals. For example, someone who is lactose intolerant, someone who has a food allergy, or someone who lives a vegan lifestyle may not naturally encounter a substantial amount of calcium outside of leafy greens. 

Someone who does not eat meat won’t encounter a substantial amount of necessary vitamin B12. Although it exists in small amounts in fortified foods, nutritional yeast, seaweed, and algae, these foods aren’t usually an everyday part of the average person’s diet. Even if they were, it would be necessary to consume an abnormally large portion of these foods to meet your B12 needs. 

Chewable multivitamins are also useful for people with absorption issues. Anyone who has had stomach or intestinal surgery may have absorption issues. They’re a common and usually permanent side effect of things like bariatric surgery to promote weight loss. People with stomach issues may also have limited capacity to absorb vitamins and minerals, and chewable vitamins may help mitigate these difficulties. 

If you aren’t sure, speak with a doctor and a certified nutritionist about your child’s needs. It’s always wise to speak with a health care provider before adding any vitamins or supplements to your child’s routine, particularly if they live with any health conditions or are taking any medications. 

Chewable Vitamins for Toddlers and Children

One of the most significant advantages of chewable vitamins is the benefits they can provide for youngsters. Children have tiny bellies and tend to be picky eaters. They usually want to fill up on things that aren’t the most healthy for them, discarding the veggies in favor of sweeter foods or things that are more fun to dip in. If your child is a notoriously picky eater, speak with your pediatrician about introducing a children’s chewable multivitamin to your child’s diet. 

It’s important to choose a chewable vitamin that is specifically formulated for children. While children require the same vitamins and nutrients, they require them in different amounts. A toddler or child’s body is much smaller, and a lower dose of a particular vitamin may take them further. 

Some children may have different nutritional needs than others. A child that is passionate about eating chicken but won’t give carrots a second thought is likely getting plenty of protein but no vitamin A. Children on plant-based diets or children with absorption issues may require special considerations for multivitamins and supplements. Speak to your pediatrician about your child’s needs.

It’s important to store chewable vitamins away from children. If they’re sweet and they taste good, your younger child may not be able to make the mental distinction between chewable vitamins and candy. Give your child a vitamin each morning, rather than allowing chewable vitamins to be a self-serve item. 

The Takeaway

In many cases, chewable vitamins are more advantageous than other forms of vitamins. They’re consistent from tablet to tablet, easy to ingest, simple for your body to use, and gentle on the stomach. They’re an excellent choice for people of all ages, from toddlers to seniors. If you want your vitamin to work more intuitively with your digestive system, choose a chewable. 

Hiya’s children's chewable multivitamins are formulated by pediatricians who understand the gaps in the diet of modern children and what they need to continue to grow and develop in a healthy way. Our chewable vitamins don’t contain any unnecessary or artificial ingredients. We made our multivitamins without sugar or junk. Our multivitamin utilizes vitamins and nutrients in their most beneficial forms. We’re the perfect solution for your picky-eating youngster. 

Sources:

Teaching Your Child How to Swallow Pills (for Parents) | Kids Health.org 

Fat-Soluble Vitamins - Diet and Health | NCBI

Nutritional Food Allergy in Children | NCBI

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