Future Research

Future research should address the role of other vitamins, for example, vitamin D, as well as determine the safety and the efficacy of multivitamin supplements among adults who are advanced in their disease and are receiving antiretroviral therapy, and among children. The protective effects of multivitamins on pregnancy and child outcomes among HIV-infected women may not be generalizable to HIV-negative women, and research among the HIV-negative pregnant and lactating women is needed. Similarly, more studies need to be conducted among men and children with multivitamin supplementation to assess any difference in response with reference to disease progression. The issue of whether single versus multiple RDAs of multivitamins have similar benefits is already being examined in a trial setting. Moreover, the conflicting findings from the various studies reinforce the need for international collaboration to define the baseline nutritional profiles and prevailing burden of infections in each area of the world to help us interpret the results of interventions in a region-relevant manner.

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