Short Supplement Buying Guide
What to look for and Why
Buying online is great in many ways and presents some challenges as well. It can be difficult to know your getting quality for your dollars. With many things you are familiar with its easy. Nike shoes or a game for your gaming console would be a good example.
Buying Supplements online can be a bit of a challenge for a few reasons
- This is going in your body. It’s not a game.
- You’re buying it for a reason and it needs to work. This is before we even begin to talk about quality.
Supplement Manufacturers are not regulated by the FDA
Most supplement manufacturers try to put out a quality product. But the truth is, you could be buying sawdust and no one is looking. That may be a bit over the top, but it could happen. FIVE BUYING TIPS: Know what you are looking at and what to look for. You can stave off most scams and greatly increase your supplement buying effectiveness.
Not all supplements are created equal
I am sure you have heard people say things like Vitamin C is Vitamin C and so on. When in fact Vitamin C can be derived from many different sources. This is true of most vitamins, minerals, and supplements. Next, is it really what they claim? How pure is it? Many many other things as well.
Here are 5 simple MUST HAVE qualifiers.
1. Look for cGMP compliance
- If Nothing Else it is critical that your supplements are Manufactured to comply with cGMP standards.
The FDA has established Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) for dietary supplements to help ensure their identity, purity, strength, and composition. The “c” in cGMP simply stands for “current”. These GMPs are designed to prevent the inclusion of the wrong ingredient, the addition of too much or too little of an ingredient, the possibility of contamination, and the improper packaging and labeling of a product. The FDA periodically inspects facilities that manufacture dietary supplements.
- Third Party Testing: You should never buy supplements that don’t have Certificate of Analysis, which means they are 3rd party lab tested. Only buy supplements that are manufactured in the United States, and avoid supplements that contain additives. This is part of the cGMP process and very important to ensure what is on the label is in the bottle and nothing else.
2. FDA Registered
- This is different than FDA Approved. As pointed out above the FDA does not regulate the supplement industry.
- Medical Devices. Owners or operators of places of business (also called establishments or facilities) that are involved in the production and distribution of medical devices intended for use in the United States (U.S.) are required to register annually with the FDA. This process is known as establishment registration. Food and Drug Administration
3. Manufactured in the USA
- If it is not manufactured in the USA none of the other things listed here could apply and be monitored appropriately to ensure you are getting the best quality for your money.
4. Stay Natural
- Only buy supplements that have no fillers, binders or added ingredients. Ensure that each capsule is made with vegetable cellulose for faster absorption and effectiveness.
5. 90 Day Money Back Guarantee
- Any supplement outfit worth their salt will offer a money back guarantee. The industry norm for a squared away company is 90 days. This is a case of more is not really better. We have seen 365-day guarantees out there and the fine print shows they are more of a gimmick than a true offering. But 90 days is long enough to evaluate a product to see if you are getting the benefit for it whereas 30 even 60 days may not be enough. In many cases, it took a long time to get to the point where you need natural supplements. Reversing this will not happen overnight.
Wrapping it all up
- The above items will make your supplements cost a little bit more but not much. So don’t buy the cheapest thing you can find. You don’t have to overpay for your supplements by any means. There is a sweet spot and its worth the few extra nickles.
I hope this helps
Co-Founder, Nature Advanced