Vitamin & Mineral blend bioavailability

2000 calories a day of Huel provides at least 100% of the NRV for the vitamin and mineral blend. For most of them, it’s at 100%. Despite most people not living off just Huel anyway, but those who do won’t actually be getting 100% of the NRVs due to < 100% absorption and bioavailability. I know a lot of people will say ‘take a multivitamin as well’, but if Huel is nutritionally complete, this should mean that you could effectively replace all of your meals with Huel and achieve the NRV for everything your body needs. Our bodies don’t work at 100% efficiency, so there’s going to be a deficit of those ingredients set at 100%. Why aren’t these minerals and vitamins amounts scaled a little bit to account for this?

Unless I’m very much mistaken, the RDAs are set as the level of intake required to meet the nutrient needs of 97.5% of the population, not the level of absorption to meet those needs.

So whilst a higher bioavailability or intake of various nutrients may be beneficial for optimal health (and is something I aim to target in my recipes), aiming for 100% - even with an imperfect bioavailability - is enough to prevent deficiencies for most people.

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Thanks for clearing this up for me, makes good sense!

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I thought there have been numerous studies done that vitamin and mineral supplements dont even work properly ?

Most of this can be put down to the fact they aren’t taken with meals or any fibre supplements, and in the case of vitamin E, studies are only done on one of the eight forms of the vitamin. Multivitamins typically have very poor forms of the micronutrients. If you take specific individual vitamins or, say, a B vitamin complex, it’s a lot better and more effective.

Icy’s response is correct,

Just to further that, though, the studies performed over the decades to come up with NRVs are based on intake levels that account for various bioavailibility levels, so the level stated has already accounted for that … to a degree. However, in ‘extreme’ cases of micronutrients that are very susceptible to inhibition, eg iron from calcium and phytates, we’ve compensated for by making sure the amount in Huel is high and, in the case of iron, we have a large amount of vitamin C which promotes iron absorption.

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