How Do You Choose the Right Nutritional Supplement?
Firstly you should only ever take a supplement at the recommendation of a health care professional. Some supplements can have drug interactions or adverse effects if used irresponsibly so always act on professional advice.
Choosing a Brand
With such a wide range of brands to choose from it can sometimes feel like you are spoilt for choice, but not all manufacturers are the same. Brands that manufacture their own products are often the best; they care about and can control the quality of their products.
Look for a brand that manufactures according to current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) or that has any other accreditation such as ISO:9001.
Look for a brand that manufactures to a high standard in a clean room facility. If you are a health care professional yourself and use supplements in practice you might even like to request a visit to the manufacturing facility. Any brand that manufactures a quality product will be pleased to show you around.
Capsules vs Tablets
Nutritional food supplements can come in a range of forms; most commonly capsules, tablets, oils and liquid solutions. A liquid product can be a great way to get a child or elderly person to take a supplement, as liquid vitamin or mineral supplements are often tasteless and can be added to a glass of juice. When using liquid supplements always be very careful when using a dropper or pipette as it can be easy to lose track of the number of drops applied. This can lead to over or under dosing.
Capsules are often considered to be better than tablets for several reasons but mainly because tablets are held together with “binders”. These are glue-like ingredients that make the tablet stick together and hold its shape. Very sensitive individuals may not tolerate these additives well and many people think they detract from the quality of the product.
Capsules are often made from several materials but the main ones include fish gelatin, bovine gelatin and plant cellulose. Most people prefer a plant cellulose capsule.