Taking your daily Multi-vitamin is a great health intervention that is low cost and prevents minor imbalances from becoming larger ones. The best multi vits tend to be capsules and contain powdered nutrients that are best taken after food as they work best when emulsified with the fats, proteins and carbs in your meals. On an empty stomach they can cause queasiness. The reason why capsules with powdered ingredients are better than solid pills is that absorption is higher. Your intestines are not only long, but also look like a shag rug inside. The method to this madness stems from the need to increase the surface area for absorption. For example, if your intestine was just a smooth tube, it would have a very small surface area. If that were the case, we would absorb very little of what we ingested, and in fact, this is what happens to those with poor absorption. The microvilli (that make up the shag rug-like texture) in your intestine flatten out during these conditions. This makes the surface area smaller and decreases absorption.
As far as Vits go, fine powders have a larger surface area compared to solid pills. Liquids have a surface area that approaches infinity (which means they are the best as far as absorption goes). One of the other reasons why you should take your multi-vitamin stems from the imbalances that a diet too high in carbohydrate induces. High glycemic carbs wreak havoc on your insulin and cortisol levels. When these are too high, the co-factors needed for digestion (vitamins) become depleted and that can become a big problem in the long run with diseases like diabetes and its precursor metabolic syndrome as a result.
Stay tuned for the next blog post next week where we’ll talk about how insulin and cortisol impair your efforts at remaining slim.
Be Well & Be Zen