Canstar Blue’s multivitamins review has compared VÖOST, Coles, Berocca, Blackmores, Swisse, Nature’s Way, Centrum, Cenovis and Nature’s Own on their perceived effectiveness, taste, ease of consumption, availability, value for money and overall satisfaction.
From relieving cold & flu symptoms and increasing energy, to supporting growing bones and improving skin health, there are plenty of reasons why many of us turn to multivitamins. For example, it isn’t always easy to pack our plates with all the fibres, minerals and protein we need to maintain a healthy and balanced diet. According to our latest survey, an overwhelming 92% of respondents even said they were advised by a healthcare professional to take a vitamin supplement. Nearly half of consumers (49%) also said COVID-19 motivated them to buy more supplements.
To help you decide which are the best multivitamins for you, we asked nearly 1,400 Australian consumers for their feedback on the multivitamins they purchased and consumed in the last 12 months. Brands were rated on effectiveness, taste, ease of consumption, availability, value for money and overall satisfaction. Those that received the minimum survey sample size (30 responses) are featured in our latest report.
This year, VÖOST was awarded the title of best-rated multivitamins, with five-star reviews for all categories, including overall satisfaction.
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Here are the best multivitamins in Australia, as rated by consumers in Canstar Blue’s latest survey:
VÖOST claimed the top spot in Canstar Blue’s multivitamins ratings, after clearing the board with five stars across all categories. Most brands ended on four stars for overall customer satisfaction, except Nature’s Own which got three stars.
It’s worth mentioning that Coles’ brand of vitamin supplements also impressed Aussies when it came to effectiveness, earning five stars in that area. Berocca and Blackmores scored a similar result for availability.
Read on as we reveal more findings from our research and answer some of the key questions you should be asking before going out to buy multivitamins.
So, what’s actually in multivitamins? While it will vary from brand to brand, most multivitamins will – not surprisingly – contain multiple vitamins claimed to help ensure your body is functioning properly. In most cases, multivitamins will include vitamins A, C, D, E, K, B1, B6 and B12, as well as calcium, iodine and zinc. Some multivitamins include doses of lesser-known minerals and vitamins, such as chromium, selenium and lutein, with each brand offering the recommended daily intakes (RDIs) on their websites and packaging.
There’s plenty to consider when it comes to finding the right brand for your supplement needs. So, it’s no wonder why 38% of consumers we surveyed have tried more than one brand of vitamin supplements. We even found that nearly a third (27%) of people we surveyed take more than one type of multivitamin.
Our latest research found a large portion of Australians believe in the power of multivitamins, with two in five (43%) convinced the supplements are good for their health. However, this number continues to drop ─ from 53% in 2020, 79% in 2019 and 85% in 2018. The number of people who said they notice a difference if they don’t regularly take their multivitamins (18%) is also declining, falling from 27% last year and 56% the year prior.
We also asked respondents to our survey about their reasons for taking multivitamins, and found:
Keep in mind that it’s important to consult a doctor or other healthcare professional before radically changing your diet or taking vitamin supplements.
Established in 2013, VÖOST says it aims to provide ‘the widest range of premium effervescent vitamins and minerals which are affordable yet don’t compromise on taste or quality’. VÖOST’s multivitamin effervescent range targets concerns such as energy production, immunity, urinary tract health, dietary deficiency, skin health, cold symptoms, joint health, nerves & muscles, reproductive system health and general wellbeing. These come in a variety of flavours, including blood orange, raspberry and citrus. For active Aussies looking for a boost, the brand also has a sports hydration range and electrolyte hydration range.
One of Australia’s leading supermarkets Coles stocks its own affordable range of multivitamins, such as the Coles Vitamin B + C effervescent tablets. It’s available for $5 in an orange flavour. You can also expect products from brands such as Nature’s Way, Centrum, Swisse, Berocca, and Kynd. Prices usually start from $10 for a bottle of Swisse Ultiboost tablets and reach up to $30 for Kynd supplements, both of which contain 30 tablets each.
Instead of swallowing pills, Berocca gives you your vitamin fix with a drink. Pop a Berocca tablet into a glass of water and it will quickly dissolve to create a flavoured fizzy drink, containing B vitamins, vitamin C, magnesium, calcium and zinc. The original ‘Berocca Performance’ supplement comes in three flavours – orange, berry, raspberry and mango & orange. It also comes in fizzy chewable tablets and traditional film-coated tablets. Berocca Boost tablets claim to add guarana extract for the caffeine equivalent to a cup of coffee.
For a vitamin boost on the go, Berocca has rolled out ‘Twist n Go’ options, which drops the tablet into a bottle of water when you twist the lid. Berocca is also sold in small tubes of 15 in durable packaging for keeping in your bag.
Blackmores claims to have combined traditional herbal medicines with the latest research in nutrition to develop its natural health product range. Founded by naturopath Maurice Blackmore more than 80 years ago, the brand maintains strong ties to naturopathy with a free Naturopathy Advisory Service.
The product range covers many health concerns, such as eye, brain, heart, immune system, digestive, skin and joint health, as well as probiotics, Omega 3s, pregnancy, weight management and superfoods. Its multivitamins range covers men’s, women’s and children’s health. Its products targeted at kids include multivitamins for teenagers, chewable fish oil, immunity supplements, cough syrup, and infant formula. Blackmores even has a large range of pet health products, so every member of the family is covered.
The Swisse produces a broad range of multivitamins, dietary supplements, sports nutrition products, skincare and functional foods. Its multivitamins range brings a particularly large number of women’s products, tailored for those aged 50+ and 60+, teenagers, as well as for those with specific health concerns and needs, including pregnancy, iron deficiency, menopause and many more.
There are also several men’s and children’s multivitamins on offer from Swisse, with the brand additionally offering plenty for those who like to keep active on the sports field. Swisse products are readily available at your local pharmacy or supermarket, with shoppers also able to buy online via the Swisse website.
Nature’s Way claims to cater to the vitamin needs of Australians through a mix of traditional and modern medicine options. It provides a broad spectrum of health supplements, including superfoods, sport and fitness, and weight loss/management products.
Nature’s Way provides plenty of ways to get the whole family to take their vitamins, offering supplements in the form of drops, milk buttons, chewable capsules, powders, yoghurts and chocolate balls. There are additionally herbal and wholefoods mixtures such as capsules and powders claimed to address a broad spectrum of health concerns, including arthritis, bone strength, brain health, immunity, digestion, stress, cardiovascular health and beauty.
Centrum’s multivitamins range is claimed to help fill the nutritional gaps in your diet, with different products catered to suit specific ages as well as health concerns. Several vitamin supplements from the range include the original Centrum Advance, Centrum for Men 50+, Centrum for Women, Centrum Kids Chewable Multivitamins and Centrum Specialist Energy Plus. Centrum is available at both pharmacies and supermarkets around Australia.
Cenovis focuses on family health, offering multivitamins for children, plus a wide selection of supplements to help deal with other concerns. Some issues include digestion, stress, energy and immunity. There are also multivitamins to boost your daily intake of vitamins like Omega 3.
Cenovis provides individual ranges for men, women and children. The products come in different forms, such as chewable tablets, fizzy chews and sprinkles as well as regular tablets and capsules.
Nature’s Own looks at blending traditional natural medicine with modern science to create a variety of supplements targeting issues such as energy and performance, sleep, stress, immunity, joints and mobility and general wellbeing.
Some of the products available are designed to assist with colds, immunity and hay fever, digestion, memory, eye health, cardiovascular health and bone and muscle health and memory. Nature’s Own also offers Omega 3 supplements, men’s health, and women’s health supplements, and a massive range of dietary supplements and herbal products.
Owned by Blackmores Limited, BioCeuticals is a practitioner-only vitamin brand that’s claimed to be Australia’s leading provider of nutritional and therapeutic supplements. It offers what’s described as ‘high-quality integrative medicines’ to health practitioners with the aim of raising the standards of natural-based therapies. The product range includes a variety of multivitamins targeting concerns such as allergy care, cough relief, cognition support, eczema, menstrual pain and kidney health. BioCeuticals also has several options for kids with its line of ArmaForce For Juniors.
Bioglan is a wholly Australian-owned natural health supplement brand that promises to give Aussies ‘the most advanced and effective range of dietary supplements & natural foods in the global market’.
Bioglan offers a variety of multivitamins, as well as vitamins to support early learning & development, performance, eye health, heart health, healthy ageing, and a healthy lifestyle. Its product range also includes a wide selection of Omega 3 supplements, arthritis remedies, Superfoods range, high-potency probiotic products, specialised vitamins and minerals and cold & flu relief.
Elevit claims to be Australia’s No.1 pregnancy multivitamin, with several products targeted at women at all stages of motherhood, including those trying to conceive, those who are pregnant and those who are breastfeeding. Elevit says it offers supplements to help meet the increased nutritional needs of women at all stages, plus those now with children. It also provides a supplement range targeted at male fertility, claiming it helps maintain sperm health for couples planning a pregnancy. Elevit is usually available at pharmacies around Australia, with the Women’s Multi range additionally available in supermarkets.
When it comes to the health and wellbeing industry, there’s always plenty of debate and research as to whether the products can back up their claims. While most vitamin supplements are made to simply increase your intake of vitamins and minerals without having to add a few extra leafy greens to your meals, some studies (such as this one published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology) suggest that vitamin supplements have little effect on preventing more serious issues such as cardiovascular disease or strokes. So, if you’re looking to simply cut down on the sick days, multivitamins may just be a handy option. However, for those looking to avoid more serious conditions, then the advice of your GP might be a more helpful step in the right direction.
If you’re taking some sort of supplements but haven’t received any expert advice, you may not need to. Otherwise, you could be wasting your money. If you do need to take multivitamins and are researching your options, we hope you found this review helpful.
The information in this article is not medical advice, and Canstar Blue is not making a recommendation or giving advice about medications or health-related products. Seek the advice of a doctor or pharmacist to find the right product for you.
Tim McMaster, Accredited Practising Dietitian and Spokesperson for the Dietitians Association of Australia, says:
“We were designed to eat food, and gain our nutrients through what we eat. Consuming a variety of real foods provide fibre, protein, fats, energy and antioxidants. These help keep us fuller for longer and assist with the reduction of chronic disease risk.
“Supplements and multivitamins do have a place, but only for those who can’t get the adequate amount needed through real food. This may arise due to an increase in nutrient requirements (i.e. during sickness or pregnancy), or being unable to consume certain types of foods (i.e. food allergy, intolerance or avoidance of particular foods). It’s best to talk to an Accredited Practising Dietitian who can help you optimise your diet and/or provide advice around supplementation.
“Ask your GP for some tests to see if you are deficient in any nutrients. As there is risk from over-consuming certain vitamins and minerals, some can result in toxicity if consumed in excess.”
This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.
Picture credits: Vitahima/Shutterstock.com, Lallapie/Shutterstock.com, Lightspring/Shuttetstock.com.
Our latest customer satisfaction research saw VÖOST dominate the ratings, after being seen as the best-rated brand in all categories:
Canstar Blue surveyed 3,086 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased and consumed multivitamins in the last 12 months – in this case, 1,397 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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