The decision as to what supplements to buy can be a tough one, even for the experienced. There are multitudes of them and different brands, all promising to do all sorts of good things for you. So, how do you go about finding the best supplements?
One short but well-written article offers tips about how to choose the best supplement brand. But beyond brand, you should also know how to find the best supplements for you. Here are tips offered about finding the best supplement brand:
1. Test for contamination: Manufacturers should test both raw and finished materials for contaminants such as bacteria, mold, heavy metals, pesticides or wrong plant species.
2. Verify label ingredients: Research has shown that some products may contain more or less of an ingredient than reported on the label. For example, some red yeast rice products were found to have less than the reported amount, making them less effective at lowering cholesterol. Other nutritional products have been found to have higher levels of nutrients than reported on the label, resulting in cases of vitamin and mineral toxicity. Better-quality companies test the final product to make sure it contains the amounts reported.
3. Use no fillers: Fillers may contain allergens and/or decrease absorption of supplements. Good manufacturers minimize use of fillers or use hypoallergenic fillers.
4. Reveal expiration dates or manufacturing dates: Check dates as products can lose potency or go bad with age. For example, fish oils can go rancid and should not be consumed past their expiration date.
5. Utilize sustainable agriculture and harvesting practices: Good companies use local sustainable agriculture and harvesting practices and avoid using threatened or endangered plants.
6. Include the highest quality nutrients: Higher-end supplement companies choose more absorbable and effective forms of vitamins and minerals.
Most of the above appears to come down to something we’ve always stated here; your choice of supplements should not be dictated by cost considerations alone. Making the best health supplements requires quality ingredients and stringent quality controls. That cheap multivitamin might look like a bargain, but it’s probably made from potentially harmful petrochemicals.