What is the NRV?

The Nutrient Reference Value (NRV) is a value used in food labelling that is related to the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) which meet the needs of 97-98% of healthy individuals to prevent nutrient deficiencies. These values are considered to be the minimum amounts necessary to achieve and maintain optimum nutritional status which will assist in the reduction of disease, specifically degenerative diseases of lifestyle16.

Nutrient Reference Values (NRV)UnitIndividuals 4 years and older
Vitamin Aµg RE900
Vitamin DIU600
Vitamin EIU22,35
 mg α TE15
Ascorbic acidmg100
Folic acidµg400
Pantothenic acidmg5
Nicotinic acidmg16
Riboflavin (B2)mg1,3
Thiamin (B1)mg1,2
Pyridoxine (B6)mg1,7
Cyanocobalamin (B12)µg2,4
Vitamin Kµg120

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Further references for News24 article Is it really worth taking multivitamins? :

  1. National Institutes of Health State-of-the-Science Panel. National Institutes of Health State-of-the-Science Conference Statement: Multivitamin/mineral supplements and chronic disease prevention. Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Jan;85(1):257S-264S
  2. Sesso HD, Christen WG, Bubes V, Smith JP, MacFadyen J, Schvartz M, et al. Multivitamins in the prevention of cardiovascular disease in men: The Physicians’ Health Study II randomized controlled trial. JAMA 2012;308:1751-60
  3. Gaziano JM, Sesso HD, Christen WG, Bubes V, Smith JP, MacFadyen J et al. multivitamins in the prevention of cancer in men: The Physicians’ Health Study II randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2012; 308(18): 1871–1880.
  4. International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Associations. Multiple micronutrient supplementation: Improving the quality of nutrition for mothers in low- and middle- income countries. 2023.
  5. Gomes F, Agustina R, Black RE, Christian P, Dewey KG, Kraemer K et al. Multiple micronutrient supplements versus iron-folic acid supplements and maternal anemia outcomes: an iron dose analysis. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2022 Jun;1512(1):114-125.
  6. Baker LD, Manson JE, Rapp SR, Sesso HD, Gaussoin SA, Shumaker SA, Espeland MA. Effects of cocoa extract and a multivitamin on cognitive function: A randomized clinical trial. Alzheimers Dement. 2023 Apr;19(4):1308-1319.
  7. Yeung LK, Alschuler DM, Wall M, Luttman-Gibson H, Copeland T, Hale C et al. Multivitamin supplementation improves memory in older adults: A randomized clinical trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2023 Jul;118(1):273-282.
  8. Blumberg JB, Cena H, Barr SI, Biesalski HK, Dagach RU, Delany B et al. The use of multivitamin/multimineral supplements: A modified Delphi consensus panel report. Clin Ther. 2018; 40(4):640-657.
  9. Vorster HH, Badham JB, Venter CS. An introduction to the revised food-based dietary guidelines for South Africa. S Afr J Clin Nutr 2013;26(3):S1-S164.
  10. Madlala SS, Hill J, Kunneke E, Kenge AP, Peer N, Faber M. Dietary diversity and its association with nutritional status, cardiometabolic risk factors and food choices of adults at risk for type 2 diabetes mellitus in Cape Town, South Africa. Nutrients. 2022 Aug; 14(15): 3191.
  11. Montgomery DR, Bikle A, Archuleta R, Brown P, Jordan J. Soil health and nutrient density: preliminary comparison of regenerative and conventional farming. 2022 Jan 27;10:e12848. doi: 10.7717/peerj.12848
  12. O’Connor EA, Evans CV, Ivlev I, Rushkin MC, Thomas RG, Martin A, Lin JS. Vitamin and mineral supplements for the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer Updated evidence report and systematic review for the US Preventive Services Task Force. JAMA. 2022;327(23):2334-2347.
  13. Marais ML. Malnutrition in older persons: Underestimated, underdiagnosed and undertreated. S Afr J Clin Nutr.2017;30(2):4–6.
  14. Ward E. Addressing nutritional gaps with multivitamin and mineral supplements.
    Nutr J. 2014 Jul 15;13:72.
  15. Ames BN. Low micronutrient intake may accelerate the degenerative diseases of aging through allocation of scarce micronutrients by triage. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006 Nov 21;103(47):17589-94.
  16. Department of Health. 2010. R.146. Regulations relating to the labelling and advertising of foodstuffs. Foodstuffs, cosmetics and disinfectants act, 1972 (Act 54 of 1972).