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Problems With Gummy Vitamins -- bottle of gummy vitamins

Answer:

Tests by ConsumerLab.com have found that some gummy supplements — particularly gummy multivitamins — do not contain their listed amounts of vitamins or minerals, or they contain impurities. We continue to find more problems with candy-like vitamins such as gummies than with traditional forms, such as tablets and caplets.

Manufacturing challenges associated with candy-like products likely explain the higher incidence of problems. Gummies are notoriously difficult to manufacture because it is hard to measure in the correct amounts of vitamins and minerals (some are simply sprayed on a candy base) and the ingredients in a gummy are more likely to degrade, so manufacturers often put in more than the listed amount — resulting in products with too much of a vitamin, such as folic acid, when first produced and decreasing amounts over the course of their shelf-lives. Some companies seem to do a better job making gummy vitamins than others.

You can see which gummies we have reviewed lately — and which passed or failed our tests — in our reports on multivitamins, vitamin C, vitamin D, and calcium, and B vitamins.

Along with the vitamins and minerals mentioned above, fiber can also be included in gummy supplements due to its natural gel-formation capability, but there are some considerations to keep in mind. First, fiber gummies typically provide soluble fiber as inulin or polydextrose, both of which act as prebiotics, feeding the bacteria in your gut but possibly causing some gas and bloating. Second, although, like other fibers, inulin and polydextrose may help improve bowel function, blood sugar control and appetite control, they might not help lower cholesterol levels (Cunningham, J Am Dietetic Assoc 2010; Raninen, Nutr Rev 2011). Fibers that can help lower cholesterol, but are generally not in fiber gummies, include psyllium (in Metamucil 4-in-1 Fiber) and beta-glucans (contained in oats). Finally, gummies with fiber may not be as dry and/or chewy as regular gummies: A study found that gummies prepared with even just a modest amount of inulin were stickier, sweeter, springier, and softer than the gummies made with starch (Delgado, CyTA J Food 2018). Fiber gummies tend to contain about 2 grams or less of dietary fiber per gummy – for example Phillips' Fiber Good Gummies and Nature Made Fiber Gummies contain 2 grams of fiber per gummy and Metamucil Fiber Gummies contains about 1.7 grams – with suggested daily servings of two to three gummies for adults.

A benefit of gummies is that they may be more palatable than a pill. Also, being chewable, there is not the risk that the product won't properly break apart, as there is with a tablet. 

A risk with any candy-like supplement, particularly for children, is that too many will be consumed, potentially resulting in toxicity. It's therefore best to give young children vitamins as needed and not leave them out.

Also, keep in mind that not all vitamins, minerals, and other ingredients are easily incorporated into gummies or are not included due to poor taste (such as iron, which would cause a metallic taste), so, if you are interested in a gummy supplement, check that it lists the ingredients you want. You can check the ingredients in gummy supplements in "Ingredients" table in each of our reports listed above.

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