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If you’re a vegan, you’ve most probably been subjected to the interrogation of meat-eaters.
“Where do you get your protein from?”
“How do you get enough vitamins and minerals?”
“Vegan food doesn’t have enough nutrients!”
A balanced vegan diet paired with vegan multivitamins is the not so secret trick to a healthy vegan lifestyle.
Yes, to the shock-horror of those who eat meat, you can get all the important vitamins and minerals you need from a plant-based diet alone, and any you struggle with can be easily supplemented with multivitamins.
So without further ado, let’s jump into our list of the best vegan multivitamins!
Our Top Vegan Multivitamins (2020 Updated)
OUR #1 RATED
OUR #2 RATED
OUR #3 RATED
Rainbow Light Just Once
OUR #4 RATED
OUR #5 RATED
Garden of Life
1. Performance Lab Whole-Food Multi (Editor's Choice)
The Performance Lab is another favorite of mine, simply because I trust them to deliver diligently researched, no-nonsense, effective product.
I have been using a few different supplements from their sports range since being recommended by a colleague at the gym, and I've been consistently impressed with the results.
I decided to switch to their multi-vitamin quite honestly just for the ease of ordering it in bulk alongside my other supplements but the vitamin itself has completely converted me. It works.
One thing I like about this product is that it's formulated for both men and women. You can achieve your recommended daily intake for all the vital nutrients while basically eat whatever the heck you like (within reason) throughout the rest of the day.
Easy to swallow, perfectly balanced, and produced by a company I completely trust and recommend. I find it a little pricey, though.
2. Healthycell’s Vegan Essentials
Healthycell’s Vegan Essentials have a distinctive microgel form. This is to improve the absorption of precious micronutrients for better health.
It's packed with your daily recommended dose of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B12, and D, as well as an essential fatty acid omega 3.
For those of you concerned with skin, nails, and hair health, biotin and vitamin E are added for an extra benefit. And of course, everything is certified vegan.
Some of my female clients like this brand because of the good effects on their hair and skin.
3. Rainbow Light Just Once
Rainbow Light Just Once is a very strong contender right out the gate, and it has the delightful benefit of sounding like the multivitamin that a unicorn might take.
This very convenient one-per-day multivitamin is a food-based vegan supplement, which gives you all the key vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals that you could ever need for good nutrition.
The manufacturer has even gone as far as to make it allergen-free!
Rainbow Light’s allergen-free formula allows vegans with special dietary requirements to remain healthy, containing no gluten, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts.
This vitamin is also brilliant for making you feel more energetic and relaxed thanks to its high-potency B-complex formula. What more can you ask for?
4. Deva Vegan Vitamins
Deva Vegan Vitamins are specially formulated with the animal-free diet in mind, keeping the animals out of harm’s way and the vegans healthy!
Deva Vegan Multivitamins provide you with balanced levels of vitamins thanks to their special formula of herbs, vegetable powders, and important green whole foods.
These supplements provide you with high levels of B12 and iron – 2 of the hardest things to acquire in a plant-based diet and nutrition.
These vegan vitamins are approved by the Vegan Society, so you can be assured that they’re doing it right by being high quality and cruelty-free.
5. Garden of Life
Garden of Life is a well known plant-based multivitamin designed specifically for women.
If you’re a female vegan reading this, you’ll be happy to know that Garden of Life supplements are formulated with whole foods containing important nutrients and minerals for women’s development.
Thanks to this multivitamin’s combination of vegan D3 and B vitamins, your skin, hair, and nails will appear stronger and healthier. This one I didn’t try myself but have it on high recommendation from colleagues and clients.
The vitamin’s 500% DV of B12 also helps to boost your energy levels while living a cruelty-free lifestyle.
6. Nature's Dynamics
Want to revisit your childhood?
Nature’s Dynamics have created the world’s first vegan multivitamin gummy for adults!
If you’re not much of a swallower, these chewy organic vegan multivitamins are the solution for you.
Using apple-derived pectin instead of gelatin, these easily-digestible supplements make it convenient for you to wolf down the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that you need.
These are the most effective plant-based multivitamins for people who struggle to take normal supplements.
7. VegLife Vegan One Multi
This one-per-day supplement is one of the best vegan multivitamins in the “once a day” category – ideal for forgetful vegans with busy lives!
Who has time to be taking a bunch of different tablets every day anyway?
These One Multis are fast-acting and easy to swallow.
They help support normal and healthy energy production, supplying you with all the nutrients you need.
Considering the price and what you get, it's a great bang for your buck if you're on a budget.
8. Battle Ready Fuel Multivitamin
This product features 12 vitamins and 13 minerals, including veggie favorites such as vitamin B12, biotin, magnesium, iron, and zinc.
The manufacturers claim that this product will improve your energy, strength, and mood, most of which I found to be true.
It's made to contain 12 vitamins and 13 minerals, so taking one pill a morning right after my breakfast, I can easily met the RDA amounts for all the important stuff and could eat what I liked the rest of the day.
I didn’t notice myself turn into Popeye at the gym, but I was certainly chirpier and more energetic throughout the day.
What Are Vegans Deficient In?
Vegans are deficient in multiple nutrients that come from animal-derived foods. This includes vitamin B12, vitamin D, iron, calcium, omega-3 fatty acids, and zinc. These help the body by promoting healthier blood oxygen supply, strong bones, and better heart function.
For example, unless taking supplements, vitamin B12 can only be found in meats and animal-derived products – there is no reliable plant-based source of vitamin B12.
Vegan meals may contain a good amount of iron, calcium, zinc, and other nutrients, but they will be significantly lower compared to omnivores and lacto-ovo vegetarians.
7 Ingredients to Look For in Vegan Multivitamins
Fancy words like “fortified” and “organic” might sound healthy, but what do you actually need to look for in a plant-based multivitamin?
Vitamin B12 is often sought out by veggies and vegans alike. It is difficult to find in plant-based ingredients, giving it a Holy Grail status in the world of animal-free supplements.
B12 is a precious nutrient that helps to keep your blood cells and nerves in tiptop shape.
It also helps to produce DNA and prevent scarily-named conditions like “Megaloblastic Anemia” which can make you feel weak and sleepy.
The best non-animal multivitamins are arguably those that have been fortified with B12 which has been produced in a lab.
People vary in their ability to absorb B12, so it’s usually recommended that you have more than the recommended daily amount.
The poorer your absorption, the more you’ll need.
2. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is essential as part of a healthy lifestyle, although most sources of Vitamin D3 are non-vegan, so watch out for this.
Vitamin D is naturally obtained through exposure to direct sunlight. However, if you live somewhere like Alaska or Minnesota, this isn’t exactly ideal.
Most people’s vitamin D comes from fortified supplements or milk (both soy and cow’s). Mushrooms are also rich sources of Vitamin D3. So, if you drink enough milk or eat a ton or organic mushrooms on a regular, which is fortified with vitamin D, then you may not need to take it in supplement form.
Vitamin D is essential for the absorption of calcium. This makes it important for your bone health, keeping your bones strong and robust.
3. Omega-3 (DHA and EPA) fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are supposed to be converted to DHA and EPA by your body. EPA and DHA stand for Eicosapentaenoic Acid and Docosahexaenoic Acid, respectively (1).
You can see why they went for the abbreviations.
Sadly, your body doesn’t always convert the fatty acids to DHA and EPA in large enough quantities, so it’s best to intake supplements of DHA and EPA fatty acids directly if possible.
Omega-3 fatty acids normally come from fish sources which you’ll want to avoid, but vegan-friendly versions are derived from algae.
This makes them more expensive to manufacture, sadly jacking up the prices of any vegan multivitamins containing fatty acids.
Calcium is famously fortified into cow’s milk, and this tradition has carried over into non-cow’s milk too.
Calcium is rarely found in the best multivitamin formulas. This is because you would need to fill a capsule with calcium to meet the recommended daily value, leaving no room for anything else.
What’s the point if you’re already getting it in milk? Leave room for the other nutrients!
If you’re worried about calcium deficiencies and you’re not a fan of soy milk or other vegan alternatives, you may want to try some plant-based calcium pills available on the market for relatively cheap.
Around 99 percent of the calcium in our bodies is found in our bones and teeth, making it essential for a healthy body. The remaining 1 percent is just lazy.
5. Iron Content
If you’re eating a balanced diet, you might want to look for multivitamin supplements that have low or no iron content, now you’re probably thinking “hang on, isn’t iron good for me?” but stay with us here!
You see, there are 2 different forms of iron:
Animal-derived heme iron is much easier to come by for carnivores, yet some people living a meat-free lifestyle may already be getting their daily iron supply, especially if they’re consuming things like chickpeas and spinach (2).
Consuming too much of the stuff can lead to stomach problems and nasty side effects, so it’s worth assessing your eating habits and deciding whether you need additional supplements or not. Avoid taking in too much of this mineral!
Whether you decide that you need extra vegan iron supplements or not, it’s definitely an essential part of your diet. It helps your blood to carry oxygen around your body, and is especially crucial for menstruating women.
According to Azmina Govindji, an award-winning dietician, nutritionist, and broadcaster:
“Lots of blood loss during periods can mean your iron levels are compromised. Women absorb iron more efficiently than men for this reason, but if you’re not eating enough iron-rich foods (for example if you’re on a vegan diet), you may benefit from a supplement.”
Zinc is great for creating new cells and enzymes in your body, helping you to process the protein, fat, and carbs in your food.
People also credit its ability to heal wounds and produce radiant skin, hair, and nails (3).
Sadly, while zinc can be found in sunflower or chia seeds, the easiest way to obtain zinc is through animal products and wheat products. This makes it difficult for vegans and gluten-free people to get enough of it in their diets.
The best vegan multivitamins are often fortified with zinc, though you should first check how much you consume in your daily diet before splashing out on overly-fancy vitamins.
Taking too much zinc can actually lead to anemia and bone problems, so it’s best to monitor your zinc intake and make sure you’re not getting too much of it in your diet. You can have too much of a good thing!
Read more zinc on the vegan diet here.
7. Gelatin coating
Ah, gelatin – the enemy of candy-loving veggies everywhere. You might be aware that certain candies and desserts contain this pesky animal-derived substance that comes from the bones of animals; yummy..
A lot of regular multivitamins and pills will come in a squishy gelatin coating which is easy to swallow for the user.
Don’t worry, though. There are plenty of easy-to-swallow plant-based alternatives on the market, as well as soluble powders and even chewable gummy supplements if you fancy giving your teeth a workout.
Should Vegans take multivitamins?
Vegans should take multivitamins as a simple way to make up for any nutrients they cannot easily obtain from diet alone. For example, vegans are often deficient in vitamin B12, calcium, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids which are harder to obtain from a plant-based diet. Multivitamins can make up the shortfall in a vegan's nutrional needs in one easy to swallow capsule.
Are vitamin tablets vegan?
Some vitamin tablets are vegan – it depends on the material which has been used for their exterior coating. Vegans and vegetarians should avoid gelatin-coated tablets, as gelatin is derived from animal bone marrow. It’s important to read the ingredients list carefully as they’ll usually list the capsule and what it’s made from separately.
Is a multivitamin enough for a vegan?
A multivitamin is not enough alone – vegans also need to consume a healthy and balanced diet full of whole food, fresh fruit, vegetables, and protein sources. A multivitamin should act as a supplement, meaning that it helps you to “top up” your healthy diet and get the vitamins you need.
Can children take vegan multivitamins?Yes, children may take vegan multivitamins. Most pediatricians will say that kids do not need vitamins when they eat well and are exposed to a variety of organic and natural food. However, raising a vegan child can be a little different. Because of the possible deficiency in nutrients from animal-derived food, it is just reasonable to take a multivitamin. Consult your pediatrician before giving any multivitamin to your child.
Can you be vegan without supplements?
You can be vegan without supplements, so long as you make sure that you’re getting enough calcium and vitamin B12 in your diet. However, this is much easier said than done when eating 100% plant-based foods, and supplements make it easier for vegans to remain healthy without obsessing over the nutritional content of their meals.
Our #1 Recommended Vegan Multivitamin Is...
After taking everything into consideration, the Performance Lab Whole-Food Multi stands out over its competition.
It's a great value for money and provides more than enough vitamins and minerals to get you to your RDA. Unless you’re training for The Hunger Games, these multivitamins are more than enough.
Despite what some may feel is laboratory-like branding, after my girlfriend saw I was taking these, she decided to steal some for herself and has now, after my complaining, bought herself her own supply.
It’s also somewhat refreshing to come across a really good vegan supplement which doesn’t scream “HEY, LOOK AT ME I’M VEGAN” and assault you with a collage of carrots and leaves.
This product is far more subtle and doesn’t just feel like a cash grab for the green dollar. It’s a product that does its job well enough to rely on the results to speak for themselves. This is a good multivitamin which just happens to be vegan.
Our #1 Vegan Multivitamin
Enjoyed this article? Make sure to check out our guide on the Best Vegan Bodybuilding Supplements recommended by us.
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