Supplementation is not that easy. Figuring out where people are most likely to be deficient and making a pill for each of these suspect deficiencies – like a one-a-day pill. Determining the best supplement would then be a simple job of reading the label.
However, that is not the way supplementation works. Actually, there are major differences in the vitamins available in the market, summarized as follows:
- All Natural: No vitamins you buy are totally natural because the extraction process is prohibitively expensive.
- Co-Natural: They are derived from animal and vegetable sources through solvent extraction, crystallization or hydrolysis. However these vitamins have not undergone any chemical conversion or alteration during extraction. Although they contain small amounts of chemical residues, preservatives and additives, they are still a far superior choice compared to synthetic vitamins.
- Synthetics: Synthetic vitamins are first derived from chemical or natural sources before they go through a “conversion” process that renders them a pure chemical build up. Synthetics are about 50% as effective as natural vitamins and can suppress the body’s ability to absorb the vitamin’s natural portion.
Many so-call all-natural vitamins contain synthetics to “increase potency,” or for the purposes of standardizing the amount in a batch or capsule. Some vitamins also have synthetic salt to increase stability. Such synthetics are easily identifiable by the terms succinate, nitrate, hydrochloride, gluconate, chloride, bitartrate, ascorbic and acetate.