The effects of multivitamin supplementation on mood and general well-being in healthy young adults. A laboratory and at-home mobile phone assessment

Appetite. 2013 Oct:69:123-36. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2013.05.016. Epub 2013 May 30.


Previous research has suggested that multivitamin (MV) supplementation may be associated with beneficial effects for mood and general well-being, although treatment durations have typically been less than 90 days, samples have often been restricted to males only and acute effects have not been adequately differentiated from chronic effects. In the current study a MV supplement containing high levels of B-vitamins was administered daily to 138 healthy young adult participants between the ages of 20 and 50 years over a 16-week period. Chronic mood measures (GHQ-28, POMS, Chalder fatigue, PILL, Bond-Lader and custom visual analogue scales) were administered pre-dose at baseline, 8- and 16-weeks. Changes in Bond-Lader and VAS in response to a multi-tasking framework (MTF) were also assessed at 8- and 16-weeks. For a subset of participants, at-home mobile-phone assessments of mood were assessed on a weekly basis using Bond-Lader and VAS. No significant treatment effects were found for any chronic laboratory mood measures. In response to the MTF, a significant treatment x time interaction was found for STAI-S, with a trend towards a greater increase in stress ratings for male participants in the MV group at 16 weeks. However, this finding may have been attributable to a larger proportion of students in the male MV group. In contrast, at-home mobile-phone assessments, where assessments were conducted post-dose, revealed significantly reduced stress, physical fatigue and anxiety in the MV group in comparison to placebo across a number of time points. Further research using both acute and chronic dosing regimens are required in order to properly differentiate these effects.

Keywords: B Vitamins; Minerals; Mood; Multivitamin; Supplementation; Well-being.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect / drug effects*
  • Anxiety / prevention & control
  • Cell Phone
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Fatigue / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Placebos
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vitamins / administration & dosage*
  • Young Adult


  • Placebos
  • Vitamins