What's in Your Vitamin?
Greetings everyone! It’s been quite some time since I’ve sat down and written something for you all. Life has been hectic lately but it’s finally slowed down to where I can begin contributing again. So we’re going to jump right into it. Something that has been weighing on our minds recently is the ‘empty’ vitamin craze sweeping across holistic households. You’ll see why I refer to them as ‘empty’ in a little bit. All you need to do is walk through any major grocery chain to see a large selection of vitamins and supplements. At a first glance, it seems like a great idea. We all need Vitamin A, C, potassium, calcium, magnesium and other things so why not just pick them up on the go?
Last year, GNC, Wal-Mart, Walgreens, and Target all came under fire for selling fake vitamins. A study of 24 supplements showed that all but 5 contained unrecognizable DNA from a plant other than what was being advertised. Most contained fillers like soybean oil, which has been shown to be linked to cancer. You certainly get what you pay for with these products. A good deal isn’t always what you want to look for and different products certainly shouldn’t be the same price. Different plants give off different yields of the product, so if you find a vitamin company selling most of their products at a consistent base price, it most likely means a very small amount of the actual vitamin is what it’s claiming to be and the rest is probably cheap filler ingredients. While the FDA not regulating the manufacturing of vitamins and supplements can be a good thing, it also means that anyone can throw together a mixture of ingredients, put a label on it, and sell it.
So how do you choose the right vitamins for your family? Research. Take the time to put research into what you’re putting into your body. It’s that simple yet many people fall into the trap of automatically assuming these things are safe. If you check whether the beef you buy is grass-fed or the chicken you buy is cage-free, why wouldn’t you check out the vitamins you buy as well to see what the company is putting into their product and how it’s being manufactured? If you can’t take the time to research if the things you give to your family are safe then either A) you shouldn’t be responsible for your family’s health) or B) you aren’t responsible enough to purchase vitamins yet. That may seem harsh but you can do more harm than good with some of these empty supplements.
Always call the manufacturer if you have any questions. It may be unconventional but you should go right to the source of the product. If they can’t answer every question for you, they don’t deserve your money and chances are the product is less than 100% pure. Find out where they are located, how they make the product, and if you can visit their facilities. Move on immediately to a more reputable source if they can’t at least answer all of those questions. There are also multiple resources you can have access to with a very simple search on the internet. Companies make a business off of evaluating these manufacturers and doing the hard research for you to let you know if that company is honest or not with their claims. However, I would always encourage you to do your own research first before you let anyone else persuade you.