Flintstones vitamins were marketing genius, and changed the children’s vitamin game in the 1960s

Vintage Flintstones vitamins and other old chewable vitamins for kids at Click Americana

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Before gummy vitamins existed, there were several other chewable supplements for kids — but none was more iconic than Flintstones vitamins.

Other concepts come and go, but chewable children’s vitamins in the form of the modern-day stone-age family’s cartoon characters were the OG awesome vitamin.

As a concept, offering something rather candy-like is a delightful way to get kids to take a daily multivitamin.

Initially, children’s chewable vitamin tablets were generic in shape — just round or oval. And while they may not have been fancy, they still beat a daily spoonful of cod liver oil or blackstrap molasses, or whatever other nastiness well-intentioned parents inflicted on their youngsters.

But the game changed forever in the 1960s, when Miles Laboratories collaborated with Hanna-Barbera Productions to brand their children’s vitamins in the form of Flintstones TV show characters.

Flintstones vitamins meme - Popped a Wilma, I'm healthy
Flintstones chewables memorialized in a meme: “Popped a Wilma – I’m healthy” 🤣

After that, many brands jumped on board, from the Smurfs and Bugs Bunny (along with other Saturday morning cartoon favorites), Pac-Man and Space Invaders , Sesame Street — and more! We’ve got the vintage ads below.

If you can believe it, at one point kids could even get their vites in the form of bubble gum. Yum!

But you know what you can still get to this very day? Those old-fashioned Flintstones vitamins — see them here — and now they are also available as gummies. What an age we live in!

YouTube video

One of the first: Vi-Daylin chewable vitamins with entrapped flavor (1962)

New Shape, New Color, New Bottle. New Vi-Daylin Chewable tablets are football-shaped. This shape got a high degree of acceptance in our taste tests and seems to have an intrinsic interest for children.

The orange color ties in with the mild, sweet citrus flavor. And the wide-mouthed new bottle looks handsome on the table.

Won’t you taste-test new Vi-Daylin Chewable multivitamins yourself? We’re certain you’ll be pleasantly surprised at their sweet good taste.

They’re the candy-flavored multivitamins with entrapped flavor… little folks taste the candy flavor, never the vitamins.

MORE: Remember the magic of baby aspirin, and how much kids loved those little orange pills?

Vi-Daylin chewable vitamins (1962)

Vintage Rexall MinuteMan chewable multiple vitamins for children (1964)

Vintage Rexall MinuteMan chewable multiple vitamins for children (1964)

Vi-Daylin chewable vitamins – cherry flavor (1964)

Children preferred them to all leading brands of Chewable Vitamins in Independent Taste Studies*

In recent taste studies, new cherry-flavored Vi-Daylin Chewable was compared with the five leading brands of chewable vitamins… Our dual-coating process provides a key to the superior taste characteristics of this new product. This process civilizes raw vitamin tastes and odors and protects volatile flavoring agents until use. Also, the tablets are sweetened with sugar-free Sucaryl. 

Vi-Daylin chewable vitamins - cherry flavor (1964)

Unicap Chewable vitamins for children (1964)

Upjohn relates the attractive coloring of its Unicap Chewable vitamins by showing how color appeals to children; also uses the color to get maximum package identification as well!

Unicap Chewable vitamins for children (1964)

Fred Flintstone – Kids just eat him up: Flintstones Vitamins (1969)

Fred, Barney, Pebbles, Bamm-Bamm, Dino, the Flintmobile — what a great way to get your kids to take their vitamins! In six fun shapes and bright lively colors,

Flintstones really are good to chew. And just one each day has all the vitamins kids normally need to take — if they don’t eat right. Get the Flintstones, Regular or Plus Iron. They’re all for the best. 

Fred Flintstone - Flintstones Vitamins (1969)

Chocks fruit-flavored vitamins for kids (1970)

Chocks fruit-flavored vitamins for kids (1970)

Monster Vitamins for kids – vintage ad with Vincent Price (1975)

Monster Vitamins for kids - vintage ad with Vincent Price (1975)

Smurf vitamins for kids, from Mead Johnson (1985)

The fun vitamins you can take seriously: New Smurf chewable vitamins

Now there’s a children’s chewable vitamin that both you and your child will love. Smurf chewable look just like Papa Smurf, Smurfette, and other popular Smurf characters, and are just as much fun, so your child will look forward to taking vitamins every day…

As an extra bonus, each bottle comes with a loveable Smurf head for your child to collect.

Smurf chewable vitamins from Mead Johnson (1985)

Waka waka! Retro Pac Man vitamins (1983)

“Good-bye, Fred — Hello, PAC-MAN”

BETTER, NO SUGAR. Because new PAC-MAN has absolutely no sugar. And studies show that too much sugar can be harmful to young children. Flintstones” has over 70% sugar.

BETTER: NOTHING ARTIFICIAL. Because new PAC-MAN has no artificial flavors or colors. Flintstones does.

BETTER: COMPLETE NUTRITION. New PAC-MAN comes in two formulas…for kids under 4 and kids 4 and over Each has 100% of the U.S. Recommended Daily Allowance of the 10 essential vitamins and iron. Flintstones doesn’t.

ALSO SEE: After arcade video games like Pac Man & Space Invaders hit the scene in the ’80s, weekends were never the same again

Retro Pac Man vitamins 1983

Centrum childrens’ chewable vitamins (1985)

Centrum childrens' chewable vitamins (1985)

Space Invaders chewable vitamins for kids (1981)

P.Leiner introduces a unique new concept in children’s chewable vitamins: Space Invaders vitamins are here!

Children have always been enchanted by outer space, and never more so than now. That’s why we’ve created Space Invaders — an entirely new line of chewable vitamins that brings the excitement of space to the popular children’s chewable category.

Each tablet is molded into one of our four space Invaders space figures. They taste great. They’re fun to take. And they appeal to children of all ages.

Varieties shown: Chewable vitamin C, Chewable Multiple Vitamins & Chewable Multiple Vitamin with Iron

Space Invaders chewable vitamins for kids (1981)

Poly-Vi-Sol chewable vitamins for kids – Purple pills (1983)

Your child can’t tell you which vitamin is best. But your doctor can.

When your child was a baby, your doctor probably recommended Poly-Vi-Sol. or Poly-Vi-Flory drops. Now that your child is older, ask again…your doctor will probably recommend Poly-Vi-Sol Chewables (or Poly-Vi-Flor Chewables if fluoride supplementation is recommended).

Doctors recommend Poly-Vi-Sol because they trust the pharmaceutical quality that goes into every Vi-Sol vitamin. Doctors know that the makers of Poly-Vi-Sol are leaders in pediatric nutrition. That’s why Poly-Vi-Sol is the children’s vitamin doctors recommend most.

Poly-Vi-Sol chewable vitamins for kids - Purple pills (1983)

Kids outgrow things… it’s time for Flintstones Chewables (clear bottle from 1985)

Flintstones chewable vitamins - Clear bottle (1985)

ALSO SEE: How the Flintstones TV show got its start, plus see the intro & theme song lyrics… Yabba dabba doo!

Sesame Street Years vitamins for kids (1992)

Now… vitamins designed for the Growing years, the Sesame Street Years

Varieties shown: Extra C (with Big Bird), Complete (with Elmo), and Plus Iron (with Cookie Monster) — P.S. They’re available now as gummies!

Sesame Street Years vitamins for kids (1992)

YouTube video

MORE: Swinging Sesame Street debuted in 1969 – Here’s a look back!

Animal Parade chewable multi-vitamin for kids (1994)

Kids can’t keep their paws off Animal Parade – everyone’s flavorite chewable multivitamin and mineral!

Whatever you do, Mom, don’t tell the kids about all the wholesome, 100% vegetarian nutrients in Animal Parade. The delicious new chewable multi-vitamin and mineral from Nature’s Plus.

Do they really need to know about the spinach, broccoli, carrots and other whole-food concentrates? The protein-rich Spirulina? Or the guaranteed burst of energy stored in every Source of Life’ supplement? And the less said about the 16 vitamins and 8 minerals, the better. All that natural goodness can be our little secret.

Just allow your little ones to fall in love with our adorable lions, tigers, elephants and hippos. And let them think they’re munching on a cherry-delicious new candy. Because, in this case, what they don’t know can really help them.

Animal Parade chewable multi-vitamin for kids (1994)

90s Bugs Bunny sugar-free vitamins for kids (1999)

Just what your own little character needs. Fun, sugar-free shapes packed with all the vitamins and minerals kids need.

90s Bugs Bunny sugar free vitamins for kids (1999)

Vitaball vitamin gumballs for kids (2002)

You may never have to remind your kids to take their vitamins again. With new Vitaball, there’s no begging, no pleading, no fuss. The first 5 minutes or so your Kids chew Vitaball, they get 100% RDA of 11 essential vitamins Kids need every day. And it comes in all their favorite gumball colors and flavors.

At last there’s a multi-vitamin kids won’t outgrow. You’ll love Vitaball as a kid, a teen and beyond. Get Vitaball for the whole family.

Vitaball vitamin gumballs for kids (2002)

Unchewable “Gravestones” Wacky Packages, a play on Flintstones Vitamins (2004)

Flintstones Vitamins even made it to that cultural pinnacle: they were parodied on a Wacky Packages sticker!

Vintage Gravestones Wacky Packages sticker - Flintstones Vitamins parody

NOW SEE THIS: Cool 80s cereal: Pac-Man, Strawberry Shortcake & so many more you probably forgot!

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Comments on this story

One Response

  1. The Flintstones was the first TV show I remember watching (other than Mister Rodgers), so I was thrilled when Flintstones vitamins came out. The original version tasted great, but then they added an iron supplement, which made them very bitter. The iron version of the tablet was colorful on one side and brown on the other.

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