Q: Does drinking wine impact the effectiveness of a multivitamin?—Simone, Lake Oswego, Ore.
A: A multivitamin serves as a dietary supplement with vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that are intended to fill in nutritional gaps. They are usually consumed in tablet or capsule form. According to Dr. Elad Tako, associate professor of food science at Cornell University, drinking one to two glasses of wine per day will not lessen the effectiveness of a multivitamin, but excessive drinking will.
"Moderate consumption of wine—as long as one's blood pressure is under control and medicines are reviewed periodically—shouldn't be a problem with taking any multivitamins," Tako told Wine Spectator via email. But he warns that drinking more than what U.S. dietary guidelines recommend could impact vitamin absorption and liver function.
"Excessive alcohol consumption may lower the absorption and usage of vital nutrients such as thiamin (vitamin B1), vitamin B12, folic acid and zinc," he said. "If supplements are taken, it is important not to exceed recommended doses of these vitamins, as high supplemental doses may lead to liver damage."
Talk to your physician about how wine may interact with any medicines or supplements you take.—Shawn Zylberberg