Supplements are not all created equally.
People wonder why there is such a range of cost in nutritional and herbal supplements in the market. You could easily find a cost increase of a particular supplement of 200-300% (or more!) when you shop in different markets.
Let’s say you have decided to take a herbal supplement, mineral or vitamin. There must be a reason you chose to take it. Most likely you have symptoms or you are sick. You want the supplement to work. My advice is to use the best quality supplement you can find, not the cheapest.
The supplement market is not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Very few companies test and verify that their products are what they claim to be. There is so much money now in natural alternative treatments that companies are jumping on the bandwagon to make a buck. They may not even be putting anything useful into your pill other than binders and expired herbs. Assuming you are taking supplements for your health, and not to give money to unethical companies, don’t you think you should be using the best possible supplement available?
There are varying grades of supplements. The highest grade is called “pharmaceutical grade” or “doctor grade” supplements. Doctor grade supplements are the highest-grade product with the highest quality ingredients. The next grade of supplement is the “health food store” grade. These are relatively high quality supplements sold to health food stores. They usually less potent to avoid potential toxicity but are still beneficially active. Often, health food store grade is sufficient to resolve health concerns. The lowest grade of supplements is the products you find in “regular” drug stores, big commercial stores, chains and mass production mail-order companies. Granted some of those places have good products, but they are few and far between (the best way to tell is by looking for specific ingredients, and to a lesser extent, cost). The best companies buy the best herbs and nutrients. They use the products that are tested by accredited labs with proper quality assurance and control, grown with strict standards, and do not contain fungus and bacteria. Guess who buys the rest of the herbs and supplements that don’t make the grade? That’s right, bulk producers. Buying the seconds that don’t make the grade.make the supplement less expensive! The lesser grade products are often processed in high flow machines that heat up and degrade the product.
They also use binders to hold the pills together and flowing agents to help the machines go faster (*). These fillers include antifreeze and non-nutritional space fillers. Often people react to the binders and fillers, and not the treatment! I work with predominantly sensitive people. My main concern is that treatments are effective- I don’t want to waste time determining weather a treatment doesn’t work for a person because it consists of inactive waste, or if the person is reacting to useless chemicals that hold the useless materials together.
As an example, a huge one-a-day multivitamin company has just started using “herbs” in their multivitamins for men and women. Those old herb seconds are bulk processed in machines that get hot and destroy the activity of the herb. That’s not to mention that it’s almost impossible to absorb enough nutrients from a one-a-day. Good, high quality multivitamins often require 4-6 capsules/day.
Another example is probiotics. These are the beneficial organisms that live in the intestines. An independent study of 20 supplements sold in various stores showed that 19 of them didn’t have the organism they claimed, and many of them were entirely dead! We carry and promote proven supplements that are stored and shipped under optimal conditions.
Supplements by Steve Clark ND sells the highest quality supplements available. I buy products from the most ethical and discerning vendors. No questions about it. I’m not interested in hearing about new gimmicks. I don’t care if another company can make a product for less. It’s less therapeutic if the materials are anything less than perfect, pure and top notch. I constantly do the research to find the best materials, so you don’t have to!
Please browse around and see what I have to say about specific supplements. Read the ingredients of the products and compare them to what you are taking. Do you really need polyethylene glycol (an antifreeze) in your calcium citrate? Do you really need artificial color and indigestible minerals in your multivitamin? Do you really need organisms that live in soil in the tropics instead of bacteria that is supposed to live in your intestines? Do you really want to have side effects because of the materials that make the machines work better? Don’t you want herbs and nutrients that make your body work better?
You choose. If in doubt, use the lowest grade supplements and then use the best. Decide for yourself how you feel. I’m sure you’ll learn there’s nothing better the best supplements to fix your illnesses, helping you to live a free and happy life.
(*)Here’s a real world example. These are the ingredients of Caltrate 600+D Calcium Supplement with Vitamin D®. Look carefully at what you need.
Calcium Carbonate: At least it’s the first ingredient, but it’s the worst kind of calcium.
Maltodextrin: Carbohydrate from cornstarch. Up to 30% people have a corn allergy
Cellulose: Fiber binder
Mineral Oil: Not even edible! Mineral oil!?! Mineral oil is petroleum based and non-digestible.
Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose: Thickener made with chemicals to make plastic, ink and supplements. Hmmm.
Titanium Dioxide: Sun tan lotion. It’s white. That’s nice. It can’t be digested.Polysorbate 80: An emulsifier (it breaks up the other chemicals)
Gelatin: Need this one to make a capsule.but these are tablets.
Sucrose: Sugar. Table Sugar. The pill is coated, so that’s kind of silly.
Polyethylene Glycol 8000: Antifreeze and thickening agent
Cornstarch: Back to corn allergies.
Magnesium Stearate: Not a useful form of magnesium because it’s difficult to absorb.
Vegetable Oil: Should be more specific. There is a risk of rancid vegetable oil. Some vegetable oils (like cotton seed) aren’t “food crops” and they can have very high pesticide levels.
D&C Yellow #6 Lake: Do you really need a yellow calcium pill? Bones are white
Stearic Acid: Saturated fat! Heart disease ring a bell?
Crospovidone: It’s almost better to leave this one to your imagination. It changes the way calcium dissolves. I thought good quality calcium dissolved in water. Hmmm.
Vitamin D: There we are! Vitamin D helps bone density. That’s good!
Dl-Alpha Tocopherol: Vitamin E: That helps too.
Steve Clark N.D.