Multivitamins play a key role in health and wellbeing for people with vitamin and mineral deficiencies

17 December 2013

Return to Media Release Index

17 December 2013 - Australian consumers can continue to have confidence in the wealth of evidence that exists on the role of multivitamins in providing overall health and wellness benefits and filling dietary gaps in combination with healthy lifestyle choices, the Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI) said today.

ASMI's comments are in response to recent studies and an editorial, published today in the Annals of Internal Medicine, which challenges the role of multivitamins in the prevention of cardiovascular disease, cancer as well as cognitive function.1

According to ASMI Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Director, Steve Scarff:
"Vitamins and supplements are not a panacea for preventing chronic disease, however, they do have a legitimate place in the wider health system and remain important for many people.

"Ideally, most Australian adults would be getting their essential nutrients from a healthy diet, but the reality is that many people are not meeting the recommended daily nutrient requirements. For those people with vitamin and mineral deficiencies, multivitamins can play a key role in general health and wellbeing."

A study on the state of Australia's health, from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, highlights that the typical consumer diet falls short on essential nutrients, with only 5.6 per cent of the adult population having an adequate intake of fruit and vegetables.2
Consumers are encouraged to talk to a qualified healthcare professional who can provide advice on nutritional needs. As with all medications, it is important that consumers follow the label instructions and consult with their healthcare practitioner if they have any concerns.

About ASMI: The Australian Self-Medication Industry (ASMI) is the peak industry body for the Australian self care industry representing consumer healthcare products including over-the-counter medicines and complementary medicines. ASMI's mission is to promote better health through responsible self-care. This means ensuring that safe and effective self-care products are readily available to all Australians at a reasonable cost. ASMI works to encourage responsible use by consumers and an increasing role for cost-effective self-medication products as part of the broad national health strategy.

1. Editorial. Enough is Enough: Stop Wasting Money on Vitamin and Mineral Supplements. Annals of Internal Medicine. Published online 17 December 2013.
2. Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australian Health Survey, October 2012.

For more information or to arrange a media interview, please contact:
Michelle Sollitt-Davis
PR Manager, Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI)
M:0422 084 951 E: