Men’s multivitamins help you ensure you have the right critical vitamins and minerals for proper health. Men have different nutritional needs than women, largely because of the unique nutritional demands necessary to sustain high levels of testosterone and growth hormone.
More men are investing money in multivitamins billed as a sort of “health insurance” fix for poor dietary habits and to cut the risk of developing chronic disease. (1) Of course there is no substitute for a good diet and regular exercise, but taking a daily multivitamin for men can help you stay healthy and even look younger, too.
Our research team ranked and reviewed the best men’s multivitamins on the market, plus reported on the latest science on the benefits men can get from a good multivitamin.
1. Ritual For Men 50+
Ritual for men 50+ is engineered for the man who doesn’t “mess around”. Not only does it contain all the vitamins and minerals that you would expect from a high-quality multivitamin, but it ensures that it gives men that extra strength and “energy”.
Each 2-capsule serving provides 10 unique, clinically-dosed micronutrients that support your bones, muscles, and organs. Ritual also includes delayed-release technology to ensure that you absorb more of what you need to, without feeling nauseous.
It’s also one of the cleanest formulas on the market today. Ritual for men 50+ is free from GMO, soy, gluten, caffeine, allergens and synthetic additives.
All in all, BodyNutrition’s #1 pick of 2020.
2. Performance Lab Whole-Food Men’s Multi
Performance Lab Whole-Food Multi for Men provides the recommended daily intake of more than 18 essential vitamins and minerals, with B-vitamins particularly high. It provides 833% of the daily value (DV) of vitamin B12, for instance, along with 533% B1; 235% of B2, plus 200% of vitamins B5 and B6.
B vitamins are particularly useful for men with stressful jobs, thanks to their ability to help the body’s stress mechanisms.
It also provides 150% DV for zinc, 250% vitamin D and 4mg of boron (there is no daily value established for boron), meaning it also targets testosterone production, the immune system and provides support for strong muscles and bones.
In total, there are 28 vitamins and minerals in Performance Lab Whole-Food Multi for Men.
3. Dr. Tobias Multivitamin & Mineral Plus Enzymes
The multivitamin offered by Dr. Tobias is one of the higher-end multivitamins. Its label touts the fact that many of its ingredients are derived from plant sources and that the supplement is “fortified with wholefoods.”
In terms of ingredients, Dr. Tobias Multivitamin & Mineral is definitely in the power-player category. Many of the letter vitamins (A, C, D, E, and the B-complex vitamins) are provided at high concentrations. Vitamin B6, for example, is listed at 2500% of your recommended daily value, and vitamin B1 (thiamin) is listed at 3333%.
In addition to the basic essentials, Dr. Tobias provides a blend of 42 fruit and vegetable extracts. This includes many of the “superfoods” you see touted on health websites and magazines—blueberries, spirulina, chlorophyllin, black currant, green tea, and more.
This means each tablet should have a powerful anti-oxidant effect in your body, which is good for overall health and longevity. There’s even a concentration of probiotic bacteria for gut health and digestion.
Though the specifics of many of these herbal extracts and plant concentrates might be questionable, the compound effect is likely to be better than a standard, run-of-the-mill “normal” multivitamin.
It shows a commitment to understanding what really goes on inside the body, instead of just trying to hit 100% of all recommended daily intakes and moving on. Dr. Tobias Multivitamin & Mineral Plus is one of the best choices if your main goal is to improve overall health.
3. Vimerson Health Men’s Multivitamin
A lesser-known brand, Vimerson Health nevertheless delivers a great men’s multivitamin. It has all the basics that men need, plus a custom blend of herbal extracts like saw palmetto and lycopene for male wellness. On top of this, it adds in the antioxidant power of green tea extract and other powerful sources of free radical scavengers. All of these advantages mean it ends up quite high in the rankings.
4. Optimum Nutrition Opti-Men
Optimum Nutrition is a brand that’s known for its fitness and muscle-building supplements, so its multivitamin offerings are definitely geared towards the fit-minded consumer.
The concentration of minerals and especially vitamins is tremendously high. Several of the B-vitamins are provided at 1600-5000% of recommended daily intake levels, and almost every single metal mineral (copper, chromium, manganese, chromium, etc.) are provided at 100% of your daily intake.
The difference between the men’s and women’s versions is also substantial. The women’s version has two to four times less of many of the vitamins, especially B-vitamins. The women’s version also contains iron, while the men’s version does not.
As with many other multivitamins, Optimum Nutrition also provides gender specific herbal extract and amino acid blends. Again, there are major differences between the men’s and women’s version.
The men’s version has more supplements that are thought to act on testosterone and growth hormone, while the women’s version has more antioxidants and energy boosters—but even this is a generalization. You’ll have to check out the label yourself to learn the specifics.
Optimum Nutrition scores below average on label accuracy. A number of the vitamin and mineral concentrations as measured by independent analytical lab testing are at odds with what’s on the label.
5. Animal Pak by Universal Nutrition
The bright yellow tub and the bold-face letters say it all—this is a multivitamin geared towards weight lifters, body builders, and other fitness enthusiasts.
Each “pak” is actually a plastic baggie containing several different tablets to take. As you might expect from an extreme vitamin supplement, some of the daily intake numbers are massively high: 9000% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin B6, and over 5000% of your recommended daily intake of thiamin, for example.
In addition to the expected vitamins and minerals, Animal Pak also contains a complete package of amino acids, including all essential branched-chain amino acids.
The label even gives you a warning: “This is a potent bodybuilding supplement.” If that’s what you need, this is a great choice.
6. Rainbow Light Men’s One
As one of the top sellers on Amazon.com, Rainbow Light Men’s One is a market juggernaut.
Rainbow Light’s philosophy is to deliver many of its mineral ingredients as easily-digestible salts or amino acid chelates, which means that the bioavailability of the vitamins and minerals it supplies should be very good—i.e. your body will be able to absorb a high proportion of the amount you consume.
In terms of purity, Rainbow Light does reasonably well but not fantastic. In an independent assay of six ingredients, two of them were substantially off from their label-claimed amount.
7. MuscleTech Platinum Multivitamin
Just by hearing the name, you know who the target audience of this multivitamin is—power athletes, weight lifters, and other fitness enthusiast.
The focus in MuscleTech Platinum Multivitamin is delivering high doses of many different trace elements in addition to the basics that you need.
For a muscle-focused multivitamin, the range of ingredients you get is great, and moreover, many of them are delivered in a highly bioavailable amino acid chelate form.
8. Kirkland Signature Daily Multi
Kirkland Signature has all the basics, but doesn’t have much in the way of extras, aside from the antioxidant supplements lycopene and lutein. There are a few other trace minerals provided that don’t have recommended daily intakes, like boron, tin, vanadium, and nickel. These aside, there are no real perks to Kirkland Signature.
On the bright side, the ingredient list is free from any suspicious or potentially unsafe food additives, which is a plus against many of the other supplements in the “simple and efficient” multivitamin category.
9. Centrum Adults
Centrum is a “just the basics” multivitamin; it provides your standard letter-vitamins and metal minerals, and not much else. Each tablet contains right around 100% of almost every ingredient, aside from a few outliers like biotin, vitamin K2, and phosphorus.
Centrum contains no herbal extracts, amino acids, or other supplements with systemic effects—it’s just the raw building blocks that your body needs to function.
Centrum also comes in a “Centrum Silver” variant intended for older adults. The differences are almost trivial—aside from a few minor tweaks, the only real difference is the absence of iron in the Silver variant of Centrum and the presence of a small amount of extra antioxidants.
10. Solimo Men’s One Daily
Amazon’s in-house brand Solimo makes a fairly slimmed-down, minimalist multivitamin. You’ll get about your recommended daily intake for the standard vitamins and minerals, and the supplement design is pretty clean.
However, it doesn’t really offer much in the way of extra perks or premium supplement ingredients, which lands it lower in the rankings.
Best men’s multivitamins overall: Performance Lab Whole-Food Men’s Multi
Performance Lab uses all-natural sources to deliver all of the essential vitamins and minerals that men need—even rare trace elements like manganese, copper, and molybdenum. With all of these nutrients in a super-pure capsule, it easily takes the top spot overall.
Best multivitamins for men over 50: Dr. Tobias Multivitamin & Mineral Plus Enzymes
Men over 50 need to worry more about getting nutrients that sustain high levels of testosterone into old age. This includes critical minerals like zinc and magnesium, both of which are associated with higher testosterone. Dr. Tobias is ideal because it provides all of these minerals, plus high-powered antioxidants from superfoods.
Best multivitamins for male athletes: Optimum Nutrition Opti-Men
Optimum Nutrition tunes this men’s multivitamin for sport performance, with ingredients like saw palmetto, alpha lipoic acid, and eight different amino acids. It’s perfect for enhanced workout performance and boosting recovery.
Best men’s multivitamin without iron: Rainbow Light Men’s One
If you already get enough iron from your diet (or from other supplements), it can be tricky to get a solid men’s multivitamin that doesn’t provide iron. Rainbow Light Men’s One is the ideal choice because it has a wide range of all the essential vitamins and minerals in a simple, cleanly-designed supplement, but without iron.
Best multivitamins for men’s sexual health: Optimum Nutrition Opti-Men
Optimizing your sexual health means ensuring your body has the right nutrients it needs to produce androgens (like testosterone) and blood flow simulators, like nitric oxide. Optimum Nutrition has both of these locked down, with zinc, magnesium, saw palmetto, L-arginine, and alpha-lipoic acid.
Best men’s multivitamin with vitamin D: Performance Lab Whole-Food Men’s Multi
Dishing out 1000 IUs of vitamin D, Performance Lab tops other men’s multivitamins that only provide a few hundred IUs of vitamin D per day. It’s ideal for men looking to ensure their vitamin D levels are high enough to sustain proper hormonal function.
Who should buy a multivitamin for men?
Men who are busy, don’t have time to get a high-quality meal in three times per day, and men who are getting older all may benefit from a multivitamin specifically formulated for men’s nutritional needs.
Why these groups? If you have plenty of time to cook high-quality meals every day, it’s easily possible to get all of your nutritional needs from foods.
However, there are a lot of men who travel for work or have to put in long hours, and for them, it can be extremely tough to cover all of their nutritional bases.
Trace minerals, like copper or zinc, are quite easy to skimp on, as are some of the less-common vitamins such as vitamin K and some of the B-complex vitamins. Taking a multivitamin for men can be a good stopgap to ensure you don’t develop any latent deficiencies in important nutrients in your diet.
How we ranked
When formulating our rankings of multivitamins for men, we compiled a list of all of the multivitamins on the market that were specifically formulated for men.
We weren’t interested in generic formulations that aren’t tailored for the specific nutritional needs of men, so they didn’t make the list.
After compiling the range of options on the market for multivitamins for men, we took a look at the contents. We dropped anything that didn’t meet baseline requirements for the basic ingredients, like vitamins B, C, and E.
After taking care of the basics, we then started to look at the most important ingredients for men. First on our list was zinc, a critical mineral for maintaining high levels of testosterone.
Magnesium, too, has been demonstrated to be essential for boosting testosterone levels in older men, so we also checked for high levels of magnesium.
The method of delivery for key nutrients mattered, too. Supplements that delivered their ingredients in a soluble form, (e.g. zinc gluconate) scored much higher than supplements that did not (e.g. using zinc oxide instead).
That’s because soluble forms of ingredients, particularly minerals like zinc or magnesium, are more bioavailable and are less likely to disrupt your stomach acid. The top-performing supplements took advantage of amino acid chelates for optimal bioavailability.
Beyond just mineral contents, we favored products that boosted antioxidant levels by including sources of greens like spirulina or antioxidant-rich fruit extracts like blackcurrant or lycopene.
These antioxidants might help protect you from heart disease, one of the most common chronic health problems among men.
Several products, such as Rainbow Light One for Men, included small amounts of herbal extracts for male sexual health, such as saw palmetto.
These caught our eye because these extras could be useful for improving sexual wellness in older men, who are often plagued by erectile dysfunction or loss of libido. Since there were so many great options with these kind of extras, supplements that only offered vitamins and minerals, but no additional benefits or attention to detail, were dropped from the rankings.
Finally, we penalized products that used artificial coloring agents or a lot of binders, in keeping with our overall philosophy of purity and simplicity.
Men’s multivitamins come in many forms. You can find multivitamins (also called multis, multi-minerals, multiples and other names) in many forms, including liquids, powders, tablets, capsules, and chewables.
They’re designed to be taken once or twice daily; dosage instructions on the label detail the amount of vitamins and minerals provided by the recommended dose.
If you’re considering adding a multivitamin to your nutritional plan, or if you already take one, read on to learn how to make an informed choice when it comes to this type of supplement.
Micronutrients are Essential to Good Health. Vitamins and minerals play an important role in many biological processes; some act as a catalyst for enzymatic reactions while others may be needed to send signals on structural or biological levels. Some even function as hormones in the body.
Thirteen different vitamins and at least sixteen minerals are essential to health and proper physical function, including growth, reproduction and routine maintenance.
Dietary supplements like multivitamins aren’t regulated, and manufacturing processes vary by company; this means products may not always contain what labels say they do. (2) Many companies have been found to make fraudulent claims about what’s in their products. There may be more, less, or none of the nutrients listed.
Also keep in mind that nutrients can either be derived from natural food sources, or created synthetically in laboratories.
Multivitamins might be linked to reducing risk for chronic disease. Marketing campaigns are likely the biggest reason men may believe taking a multivitamin can reduce their risk of developing heart disease and cancer.
More men die of heart disease worldwide than from any other cause. (3)
Reports from a decade-long study following the health of 14,000 male doctors during middle age indicated those who took multivitamins suffered the same rates of stroke, heart attack and fatalities as those who didn’t. (8)
An analysis of five separate randomized trials with a total of nearly 50,000 participants found that men who took multivitamins were 31% less likely to be diagnosed with cancer, but no difference was found in rates of cancer for women. (12) Long-term rates of developing colon cancer may be the exception.
The Nurses’ Health Study indicated men who take multivitamins develop this type of cancer at lower rates. (13) In another study with both male and female participants, similar results were reported. (14)
In the Physician’s Health Study mentioned above, male doctors with no history of cancer reduced their risk of developing any type of cancer, but there was no difference in cancer mortality rates during the course of the study. (15)
Multivitamins for men have other benefits as well. Taking multivitamins appears to have positive effects on two health issues related to aging.
Macular degeneration is the most common cause of preventable blindness in the world. (16)
Including a supplement containing minerals and antioxidant vitamins has been shown to slow down the progression of macular degeneration. (17) However, there’s no indication that taking a supplement can act as a preventive measure to decrease the incidence of this disease.
Multivitamins may help reduce the chances of developing cataracts, which is another common disease of the eyes. (18)
More is not always better with vitamins and minerals. Taking high doses of certain vitamins and minerals can be beneficial in some cases and harmful in others.
There are two kinds of vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K can build up over time, and since they’re stored in the body, levels can become toxic. Water-soluble vitamins like B and C are flushed from the body when they’re present in excess.
Of the fat-soluble vitamins, E and K are not toxic in high levels, but vitamins A and D may have detrimental effects when you take too much.
Taking enough Vitamin D to create toxicity is unlikely, but has been reported. (26) This is where it’s important to trust the manufacturer, since mislabeling of ingredients has been an issue in the case of high levels of vitamin D in multivitamins. (27)
Smokers should not take a supplement rich in vitamin A, since it can increase the risk of developing lung cancer. (28)
If you’re getting enough iron in your diet, taking a multivitamin containing generous amounts of this mineral can create toxicity. (29)
Adding a vitamin supplement on top of a diet rich in nutrient dense foods could also be risky.
Men who take multivitamins could be at a lower risk for Alzheimer’s disease, but not all research agrees. The role of nutrition in the development of cognitive decline, including from Alzheimer’s disease, continues to be an area of active scientific research.
This work was spurred in part from early research showing that men who take a combined multivitamin that supplies several antioxidants might be at a lower risk for Alzheimer’s disease.
One study conducted among residents in a county in Utah and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Neurology studied over 4,000 people over a period of several year and was able to demonstrate that, both among people with current Alzheimer’s disease and those who would eventually go on to develop Alzheimer’s disease, usage of multivitamins was far lower than in those who were and stayed healthy with respect to cognitive decline (30).
However, later research that attempted to put these findings into action didn’t have the same level of success. One randomized controlled trial specifically on men that was published in the Archives of Internal Medicine in 2014 (31).
In the study, almost 6,000 men over age 65 were randomized to receive either a placebo or a multivitamin for a period of 12 years, during which the researchers tracked the cognitive function of the men. However, after the results were analyzed, there were no differences in cognitive function between the two groups.
Another clinical trial examined the benefits of multivitamins among men and women over age 65 in a similar fashion, and also found no overall effect (32).
However, this study did find that people over age 75, and people who were at high risk for nutritional deficiencies (based on a dietary assessment at the study’s outset), did experience some benefit from the multivitamin. These results may indicate that multivitamins only work if you have a poor diet, or in men who are over age 75.
Multivitamins probably do not reduce your overall risk of mortality. Many different studies have been done on using multivitamins to for specific health conditions, as well as for increasing lifespan generally.
While the evidence is back and forth with regards to specific conditions, like cognitive decline, the evidence is pretty decidedly against using multivitamins alone as a way to increase lifespan.
That was the conclusion of a meta-analysis study published in 2013 that pooled the results of 21 different articles. When analyzed as a group, the results showed that there was no benefit to a multivitamin when it came to prevention of death from all causes, from cardiovascular causes, or from cancer.
Thus, if multivitamins do exert a benefit, it may be more for quality of life rather than increasing your lifespan, per se.
Multivitamins have been widely studied, and are considered quite safe—neither of the large randomized trials discussed earlier reported any side effects as a result of the multivitamin treatment.
There are some concerns about large doses of antioxidants, however: large doses of vitamin E, which were originally thought to help prevent cancer, has actually been found to increase the risk of prostate cancer in men (33).
Among men who smoke, high doses of supplemental beta-carotene has been found to increase the risk of lung cancer, so men who smoke should avoid large doses of any multivitamin for men that has large amounts of vitamin A.
Beyond these long-term risks associated with very high doses of antioxidants, multivitamins are quite safe and well-tolerated.
With a multivitamin, you don’t get much choice when it comes to the dose of individual ingredients, aside from choosing a high quality brand that provides a good balance of vitamins, minerals, and other ingredients.
As noted above, you want to watch out for excessive doses of antioxidants, particularly vitamins E and A, as these have been associated with negative health consequences when taken over a long period of time.
As long as your multivitamin provides a large proportion of the recommended daily intake for the most important ingredients, you’ll be fine with the recommended serving size from the manufacturer.
Q: What is the best multivitamin for men over 50?
A: As men get older, it’s increasingly important to maintain high levels of testosterone to maintain physical, mental, and sexual health.
To this end, older men want something that’s got sufficient amounts of zinc and magnesium, but also not too much of the antioxidants that might increase your risk for certain cancers–namely, vitamin A and vitamin E.
We particularly like Dr Tobias Adult Multivitamin, as it has a wide range of trace minerals, but not an excessive amount of vitamin A or vitamin E, so it’s safe for older men, even if they smoke.
Q: What kind of multivitamin should men who undereat take?
A: Men who are under eating (for example, as part of a weight loss program) are at a risk for mild to moderate nutritional deficiencies, particularly if they are aggressively cutting out certain foods.
A multivitamin for men that provides adequate level of all the basic vitamins and minerals, such as Dr. Tobias Multivitamin or Optimum Nutrition Opti-Men, is a great option for men who are trying to cut weight.
These well-rounded supplements keep up your levels of soluble nutrients and trace minerals, which can run low when you are chronically undereating to drop weight.
Q: What’s a good multivitamin for men who work out?
A: Men who work out want something targeted for performance. From our list of the best multivitamins for men, the ones that stand out for men looking to get fit are Optimum Nutrition Opti-Men and Animal Pak by Universal Nutrition.
That’s because they are packed with additional performance-enhancing compounds like carnitine, saw palmetto, and pine bark extract.
Q: What multivitamins are safe for heart patients?
A: When you’ve got a specific medical condition like heart disease, you might need a more targeted nutritional intervention than you’ll get with just a multivitamin.
While some brands offer formulations that include ingredients like fish oil, you’re probably better off sticking with a basic multivitamin for men that doesn’t go overboard on anything, like Rainbow Light Men’s One, then supplementing with dedicated supplements that target your specific nutritional needs.
Of course, as with any supplementation strategy for chronic disease, you should work with your cardiologist to develop a nutritional plan that works for you.
Q: What should a men’s multivitamin have in it?
A: When looking at the ingredients in a multivitamin for men, you of course want to make sure all the basics are covered. Like other men’s multivitamin rankings show, that means things like vitamin A, C, and D, as well as important minerals like calcium.
But, for men’s multivitamins in particular, you’ll want to make sure that it contains adequate levels of zinc and magnesium, too, as these trace minerals play an important role in maintaining high testosterone levels as men get older.
On top of that, you may want to opt for a multivitamin for men that has saw palmetto or other herbal extracts specifically engineered for male sexual health.
Q: Why should you take a men’s multivitamin?
A: Taking a multivitamin is a good way to cover your bases if the quality of your diet isn’t what it should be. Of course, there’s no way for a man to completely make up for a poor quality diet with a multivitamin, but on days when you are very busy, or travelling, a multivitamin for men is a good stopgap to make sure you don’t slide into nutritional deficiency.
A multivitamin for men might help stave off a decline in quality of life for older men, though the evidence for specific conditions like preventing Alzheimer’s disease is controversial.
Multivitamins for men can help patch up a low-quality diet, which is especially useful for men who are very busy or who travel a lot and don’t have much time to eat multiple high-quality meals every day.
Specific minerals like zinc and magnesium can help contribute to higher levels of testosterone and better sexual function.
While not all of the research agrees, men who are 75 or older, or who have particularly low-quality diets, may be able to prevent cognitive decline with a multivitamin supplement.
For BodyNutrition‘s #1 multivitamin for men recommendation, click here.