When choosing a supplement, how do you determine which one to buy?


  • The package design?
  • The manufacturer?
  • The ingredients?
  • The label claims?
  • Where it’s made?

How do you know for sure you are getting the best supplement for your body and your health?


Two Basic Types of Nutritional Supplements


  • Brand A (whole food supplement)

Whey (milk) protein powder, flax meal powder, rice protein powder, calcium citrate, magnesium citrate, buckwheat (leaf), Brussels sprouts (whole plant), kale (whole plant), choline bitartrate, inositol, barley (grass), alfalfa (whole plant) juice powder, soybean lecithin powder, grape (seed) extract (includes Masquelier’s® OPC- 85; 98% total phenolic compounds; 65% proanthocyanidins), carrot (root) powder, and red wine extract (95% total phenols).


  • Brand B (man made components)


Calcium Carbonate, Magnesium Oxide, Potassium Chloride, Cellulose, Ascorbic Acid, dl-alpha Tocopherol Acetate, Acacia, Croscarmellose Sodium, Zinc Oxide, Dicalcium Phosphate, Stearic Acid, Dextrin, Titanium Dioxide, Niacinamide, Silicon Dioxide, Hypromellose, Gelatin, Soy Extract, Magnesium Stearate, Calcium Silicate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Manganese Sulfate, Polyethylene Glycol, Corn Starch, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Mannitol,Cupric Oxide, Resin, Lecithin, Riboflavin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Acetate, Chromium Chloride, Folic Acid, Dextrose, Beta Carotene, FD&C Red #40 Lake, FD&C Blue #2 Lake, Sodium Selenate, Biotin, Phytonadione, Cyanocobalamin, Ergocalciferol.


In Brand A, vitamins and nutrients are derived mainly from recognizable food sources. In Brand B, the vitamins and nutrients are man made components that are not generally recognized as food sources.


How to Properly Read a Label


It can be very confusing to determine the true value of a supplement. Understanding the label will help you know if you are taking a quality supplement.


Where do the nutrients come from?


Look at the ingredients listed on the food label. Do you recognize any of them? Just like any other food label, the nutrients are listed in a particular order and some manufacturers put the source next to the nutrient. In a quality, wholesome product, you will recognize and be able to pronounce most of the ingredients on the label.


What is the importance of whole food ingredients? Only whole food ingredients can provide you with all the nutrients contained within the food. For example, in brand B, the sixth ingredient is dl-alpha tocopherol acetate. This is not a food ingredient. It is a man made component of the vitamin E complex. If you were to take a supplement with just dl-alpha tocopherol, you would be missing at least five other important nutrients as well as hundreds of other nutrients that occur within the whole vitamin E complex. These nutrients are only available by consuming natural, whole food forms of vitamin E, such as wheat germ oil, green leafy vegetables, nuts, and sunflower seeds.


Why More isn’t Always Better


When choosing supplements, quality is far more important than quantity. A small amount of a whole food vitamin is more beneficial to the human body than a large dose of its man made counterpart. Supplements comprised solely of single man made vitamins supply only a fraction of the whole vitamin complex, creating shortages of many important nutrients. Taking more of a man made vitamin will not make up the difference.


It is often recommended that whole food supplements be taken throughout the day to provide their health benefits. When it comes to these supplements, balance is best.


Going Beyond the Label


Just like any recipe, the quality of the ingredients you use affects the quality of the final product. Therefore, it’s important to answer all these questions when evaluating a supplement and its effectiveness.


Where do the ingredients come from?


Manufacturers who grow many of their ingredients have the unique ability to control the quality of the . Some manufacturers own certified organic farms to further enhance the quality of their ingredients.


When are ingredients processed?


When you buy a tomato, you inspect it for quality. You wouldn’t knowingly buy one that was mushy and bruised. This same principle holds true for when ingredients are prime for harvest. Different foods reach their peak nutrient value during different times within the growing season. Pea vine, for example, is at its peak during the flowering stage.


Once harvested, food begins to lose its value. It is perishable like the tomato. If there is a delay of hours, days, or months from when an ingredient is harvested to when it’s processed, many of its very delicate phytonutrients are lost.


Are the ingredient’s vital factors retained?


Each ingredient has its own set of rules in relation to how to best package its vital components. The manufacturing process needs to retain the vital nutrients within the ingredients. Too much heat will destroy enzymes and phytonutrients. The manufacturer should use a low-temperature, high-vacuum process to make sure that the ingredient’s nutrients are preserved.


† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.


These recommendations are for the reduction of stress only. They are not intended as treatment or prescription for any disease, or as a substitute for regular medical care.


by Standard Process


Whole food supplements are made by concentrating foods. When concentrated correctly, the foods supply a multitude of nutrients. These nutrients work synergistically, meaning they work together, to provide you with optimal nutrition for good health.


A word of advice: Not all whole food supplements are the same. Many whole food supplements available in today’s marketplace range in quality. Companies are riding the wave of supplement popularity rather than focusing on commitment and quality.


As a nation, we eat poor-quality foods that have been stripped of nutrients. We do not consume enough fresh fruits and vegetables. Many of us get our whole grains from instant rice, refined wheat breads, pastas, and cereal. We eat a tremendous amount of prepackaged, pre-made meals. One-quarter of Americans eat at fast food restaurants each day. Americans are overfed and undernourished.


We eat plenty, but we are still starving


The foods we eat are not providing our bodies with the nutrition they need to survive and be healthy. We are starving our bodies and we are sick. We suffer from diabetes, heart attacks, obesity, and the list goes on and on.


Most of us consider cereal, which has been refined for shelf life, to be a healthy choice. But if we look more closely at the label, we can see that it contains hydrogenated oils, sugar, and vitamin isolates.


There is Good News


Given proper nutrition, the human body has an amazing ability of keeping itself healthy. If properly fed and given the right nutrients, the human body is designed to repair itself. To do so, we need to eat a healthier diet, exercise, and take high-quality supplements made from whole foods. Whole food supplements supply our bodies with the nutrients we are not getting from our diet—all the vitamins, minerals, trace minerals, and phytonutrients that foods possess—in the way that nature intended, in a whole food form.


† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.


These recommendations are for the reduction of stress only. They are not intended as treatment or prescription for any disease, or as a substitute for regular medical care.