There is so much confusion out there about which supplements to take to improve and maintain health that I’ve decided to write a series of posts on how to read and understand nutrition labels. Today, in part one, I’ll be discussing the advantages of pharmaceutical grade supplements, and what the difference is between them and the others, especially for those that suffer with digestive health issues. In today’s economy, it is more important than ever to make sure you are getting what you pay for, and unfortunately, that isn’t always the case when you are purchasing a cheaper brand of supplement or vitamin.
What are Pharmaceutical Grade Supplements?
Supplements that say pharmaceutical grade on the nutrition label are 98% pure. This means, for example, if you are trying to improve your digestive health by taking a supplement that contains 50 mg of Magnesium Malate in it, you will get at least 49 mg of the product in its pure form. Not only that, the product will contain virtually no added starches or fillers, which only serve to disrupt your digestion even more. On the other hand, a vitamin that doesn’t say pharmaceutical grade supplement on the label can have a variance of 30%-33%, which means it can claim to have no added starches and fillers but in actuality contain up to 33%. Moreover, this large variance also pertains to the amount of the vitamin or mineral you are taking to supposedly improve your health. So that great deal you thought you got on your vitamins turns out to be a total waste of your money, and even worse, it can actually be doing your body more harm than good.
Cheaper, lower grade supplements have a low absorption rate and tax your liver, kidney and endocrine system because they now have to use more energy to filter out the added fillers they contain. On top of that, if you are a person that suffers from poor digestive health, you may find yourself getting bloated and gassy because the cheaper brands, unbeknownst to you, contain products that your body can’t break down. Because these lower grade minerals and vitamins have less of the actual product you thought you were purchasing, they can sell them much cheaper. That’s why you see so many health stores advertising special deals like $6.00 for 60 pills. But these so-called deals are just a big waste of money because you are getting no health benefit from these supplements at all. Pharmaceutical grade supplements may look more expensive at first glance, but when you realize that you are actually getting exactly what the label says, you understand that it is really a much better deal.
Another option is supplements that say GMP on the nutrition label. GMP stands for Good Manufacturing Practices, and these minerals and vitamins have a variance of 10%. So they aren’t as good as pharmaceutical grade supplements, but they are much better for your health than the cheaper, lower grade brands. Another example of how misleading nutrition labels can be is Whey Protein Powder. You may buy a protein powder that claims to be 100% whey; but if it doesn’t say pharmaceutical grade or GMP on the label it only means that the whey that is in the container is 100%, not that the container is 100% whey. So, for example, if you bought a two pound container of protein powder that says 100% whey but isn’t pharmaceutical grade, you could actually have 70% of whey in the container while the rest of the 30% is nothing more than fillers, which among other things, can be very disruptive to your digestive health.
I know how frustrating it is to try your best to take care of your health, only to find out you are being mislead or confused into thinking something is better for you than it really is. At New Performance Nutrition, we make and sell only pharmaceutical grade supplements, so you can be sure you are getting exactly what you need. Unfortunately, not every nutrition center or health food store can promise you that. So, if you don’t purchase your supplements through us, make sure you read the nutrition label and find ones that specifically say pharmaceutical grade or GMP on them. Your body and your wallet will thank you for it.
Make sure to check back next week, when I post part two of this series. Until then, if you have any questions or suggestions on what to add to this series, please add them to our comment section. And if you want to learn more about pharmaceutical grade supplements, please visit us at www.newpfc.com