It's easy to get answers about health and nutrition! Just send your question by email to [email protected] and Dr. Harlan will respond to selected questions of general interest. Answers will be posted in the Ask Dr. Gourmet newsletter (sign up now!) and archived in the Ask Dr. Gourmet section of the website.

Please note that the Ask Dr. Gourmet feature is restricted to questions regarding food and nutrition. Due to the many questions we receive, not all questions may be answered. For more specific questions about your individual health, please contact your doctor. About Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy


Ask Dr. Gourmet

Is Vitamin Water Zero good for you?

Is the product Vitamin Water Zero a hoax or does it have some redeeming value?

Dr. Gourmet Says...

My opinion is that this is a scam. There's no reason to take multivitamins except in some very specific cases and there's no health benefit proven from drinking vitamins.

Here's the statement released in mid-June 2010 as part of the new dietary guidelines for Americans:

"For the general, healthy population, there is no evidence to support a recommendation for the use of multivitamin/mineral supplements in the primary prevention of chronic disease. Limited evidence suggests that supplements containing combinations of certain nutrients are beneficial in reversing chronic disease when used by special populations; in contrast, certain nutrient supplements appear to be harmful in other subgroups."

Almost all of the evidence that I have read so far says that taking a multivitamin is not beneficial for the majority of Americans and some very important research says that it might be harmful. There's no reason to drink Vitamin Water brand and the only thing that you are enriching is the owners of the company (and your urine). As one of my colleagues has said, "those people who take vitamins aren't any healthier, but they have very expensive pee."

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP
Dr. Gourmet