When we introduced the first version of our personalized vitamin quiz in the early part of 2014, the concept of a digital assessment to determine specific vitamin needs was completely original and groundbreaking. As a first mover in the personalized vitamin space, we had the privilege of introducing scores of customers to the revolutionary idea that personal health and lifestyle data could be constructively used to target vitamin composition and dosing. But, like all great ideas, there would be other companies that would catch on and launch their own version of a quiz. Today, the market has a handful of companies offering an online quiz as an entry point to personalization, but it is also important to recognise that all vitamin quizzes are not created equal.
A well-constructed quiz is important to ensure that you get a comprehensive and evidence-backed result. Quizzes start to differentiate along several dimensions:
- Medically-informed question design: It is important to find a vitamin quiz that is backed by reputable physicians that can interpret the leading scientific studies on vitamins and translate those findings into a high quality assessment tool. Doctors can see the big picture of how a personalized vitamin can fit into your overall medical regimen and will look for elements like vitamin-medication interactions. Well respected doctors will not ask questions about conditions without medical legitimacy such as “adrenal fatigue”. Nor will they recommend unproven or potentially unsafe products such as glandular formulations, CBD or the like.
- Comprehensive scope: It is like the Goldilocks principle – you don’t want a quiz that is too short or too long, but rather just right in length. There are plenty of 3 to 4 question “quizzes” that barely scratch the surface of necessary inputs. These quizzes primarily capture age, gender, and basic demographics to recommend a vitamin that you could probably find yourself on the shelves. There are also quizzes that are overkill – they ask you to list 20 prescription medications, when only about 2 might possibly matter to vitamin recommendations. These quizzes walk a dangerous line by giving the impression that they are substituting for your primary care provider. A meaningful scope will capture the essential inputs around diet, fitness, medical history, health status, and lifestyle with clear language that your vitamin routine should always be discussed with your primary care provider. At Vous Vitamin we pride our selves on a quiz that feels very much like a conversation we, as doctors, would have with our patients in the office. We hit the important details but try to leave out the irrelevant information.
- Aesthetic appeal: It may seem trivial to focus on the aesthetics of a quiz, but it is actually important to ensure that questions are well-understood and there is enough engagement to get the quiz taker from start to finish. The text-only quizzes can be a bit mind numbing and a respondent can easily misread a question and respond the wrong way. A graphically-illustrated quiz helps to underscore the point of the question reducing the possibility of bad data entry. We use devices like different color schemes to mark transitions from one grouping of questions to the next grouping.
- Conversational tone: Bottom line: a quiz shouldn’t feel like a quiz to the end user; it should feel like the conversation they wish they had with their doctor about vitamins if this was feasible in a short medical appointment. The quiz should use colloquial language and explain concepts in a clear manner. There should be branching logic built into the quiz, so you are not answering questions about women’s health if you are a man and vice versa. The answer choices should adapt based on your earlier answers.
- Personalized results: A well-designed quiz will clarify the confusion about why you are being recommended certain products. It will explain what is in your vitamin and why those ingredients are well-suited to your profile. You should be wary of quizzes that recommend large numbers of pills and powders. A large number of products recommended to you should raise suspicion. The quiz results page should feel like you are being connected to the right product, not the most products.
Our vitamin quiz has evolved over the years through a combination of learning from our customers and up-to-date scientific findings from the industry. The maturation process of our quiz has turned it into a better instrument for data collection and analysis. Newcomers into the quiz-backed personalized vitamin space have not had this period of reflection and not surprisingly, there are clear deficiencies in their approach. We hope you will spend the time to compare the various instruments out there and find a quiz that meets your standard for dedicating your time and sharing your information. Thanks for taking the time to let us hear from you!
Romy Block specializes in Endocrinology and Metabolism and is mother to three active adolescent boys. Arielle Levitan is a Doctor of Internal Medicine with a special interest in Preventive Medicine and Women’s Health. She is a mother of three teenagers. As professional women with active family lives, they recognize that people often neglect their own health needs and are uncertain about what vitamins to take. Each person is different in her diet, exercise and health history, and will benefit from different nutrients. After years of advising their patients about the proper vitamins to take, Drs. Block and Levitan created Vous Vitamin® to provide people everywhere with quality vitamins that are suited to their individual needs. They are authors of the award winning The Vitamin Solution: Two Doctors Clear Confusion About Vitamins and Your Health (She Writes Press, 2015). Take your vitamin quiz now to get exactly the right vitamins for your needs.
The statements made in this article have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The products offered by Vous Vitamin® are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Nothing contained herein is intended to be a diagnosis or constitute medical advice. The symptoms described in this Blog may be a result of a serious medical condition which requires medical treatment. You should consult with your doctor if you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned in this Blog and before beginning any vitamin or supplement regimen.