If you're looking to boost your immune system and increase your overall health and well-being, you might consider turning to vitamins. But with so many choices, how do you know which vitamins are best for you? If you have vitamin-selection overwhelm, the Baze Starter Kit is a new vitamin personalization service that checks you for your actual nutrient deficiencies, taking the guesswork out of choosing the right vitamin mix for your specific needs. The company recently launched its $99 kit, "a simple and affordable, fully-tailored experience designed to combat nutrient deficiencies," the company announced in a press release.
It's no secret that what's good for one person isn't good for every person, which is why vitamins and supplements should be approached on an individual basis, with your doctor's input. By using a self-sampled blood test with scientific analysis, Baze claims it can identify which vitamins you actually need based on where your body is nutrient deficient. (This also means you can stop taking the vitamins you don't need.) In a press release, Baze said that many people don't see benefits from vitamins because they "do not understand the specific nutrients and dosages their bodies require and turn to the 'one-size-fits-all' approach with multivitamins."
Typically, if you suspect you have a vitamin deficiency, you'd be tested at your doctors office, where this kind of testing is done as part of routine preventative care. Baze cuts out the need to visit the doctor by sending you a testing kit at home. A simple, self-administered blood test is analyzed to identify levels of copper, magnesium, omega-3, selenium, vitamins B-12, D and E, and zinc in your system, and recommend a vitamin regimen based on which nutrients your body actually needs. The price of the starter kit includes a one-month supply of vitamins. If you choose to restock after a month, the packs start at $15 a month, per Baze's website. For $99 every three months after that, you can opt to have your vitamin levels re-checked and tailored to your needs.
While most of us get most of the vitamins we need through our diet, it's possible to be deficient in some nutrients due to diet, or because of other health issues going on. Though Baze does give users an idea of the vitamins they may need, it does not explain the possible cause behind these deficiencies. "Our support service is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical care or treatment," the company writes in its FAQ. "Always consult your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition."
"You should connect with your doctor if you are diagnosed with a vitamin or mineral deficiency," Dr. Edo Paz, a cardiologist who works with K Health, a free primary care app, and clinical director at Heartbeat Health, tells Bustle via email. "Your doctor can help you understand why you are deficient, whether or not you need treatment, and what kind of treatment options exist. These decisions are sometimes complex, and may need more in-depth discussion to better treat your deficiency."
While a 2018 study found that vitamins don't necessarily prevent diseases, if you've personally found the right mix of vitamins for your body, you know they can make you feel better. While the FDA doesn't evaluate or endorse vitamins, that doesn't mean they don't have any value. It's up to you to decide if you and vitamins are destined for each other, and this is a pretty easy way to take the guesswork out of getting started.
Correction: This story has been updated to clarify the nature of the blood test.