Like many holistic practitioners today, I spend a great deal of time investigating any type of nutritional supplement I take myself, recommend to clients, or talk about at my speaking engagements all over the world.
First, let me lay the foundation. Vitamins come from food…imagine that, actual real food. Most supplements on the market, although labeled as a “vitamin,” contain synthetics, binders and stimulants. Unless you truly have a knowledge base about these lab made ingredients, the “typical Joe” wouldn’t second guess. I must receive 10 new brands or types of these supplements every week from companies wanting an endorsement or to be highlighted at one of my events. Let me be clear, there are only a selected few supplement companies that use actual dehydrated or condensed fruits, vegetables, and roots, like WellPath products.
The great majority of these other companies use interesting ingredients to make “vitamins”. Let’s dig a little deeper into what most Vitamin A synthetics are; Vitamin A Palmitate, Retinyl Acetate or Vitamin A Acetate are very commonly used ingredients. So what’s the problem? Well, these ingredients are initially made from Petroleum Esters, Methanol and Benzene. What about Beta Carotene? Unless listed as coming from a whole food source, this is made from Benzene extracted from acetylene gas. B Vitamins are among the most popular so let’s look at B1 and B12. B1 is synthetically made from a source of Thiamine Mononitrate, Thiamine Hydrochloride or Thiamin Chlorid which originally are derived from coal tar derivatives, Hydrochloric Acid & Acetonitrole with Ammonia. B12 is synthetically made from Cobalamin or Cyanocobalami which originally comes from Cobalamins reacted with Cyanide.
Now I could list a multitude of others, but I think you get the idea. You must be asking yourself, “But wait, how can this be legal or allowed for sale in the US?” In small amounts many things are not lethal or dangerous, so they pose no legal threat. I use the example of arsenic. You can take a very small amount of it on any given day and be fine, but if you take that same small amount day after day it builds up in the body eventually causing death. You can also take a more common approach of the diet products sold in the US that contain aspartame. This damaging chemical is used in thousands of products that you can purchase in your local grocery store and most people never think twice about buying a diet beverage or snack.
You might ask yourself why a company would create such thing. To put it bluntly, profits. Many large supplement producers that distribute under several different brands are very concerned with the profit margin made vs their cost of production. Couple that with the knowledge that most of these synthetic sources are byproducts (leftover waste) from other industrial processes that sell for pennies on the dollar, and you have a perfect profit situation. I know that may seem harsh, but now you can see why I’m so committed to educating people on synthetic supplements!
Although there are exceptions (very few like fish oil) to this rule, a supplement in either a powder or powder within a capsule form likely doesn’t have any binders or synthetics. It’s so rare you find a company that uses actual food and cares more about the person taking it than the maximum profits that can be achieved.
We all know getting the proper amount of nutrients every day can be challenging, and we all have that friend or family member that simply will not eat certain foods even though they are beneficial. Supplements can be a life-nourishing and convenient tool for many, but remember, the supplement is only as good as its whole food or synthetic ingredients. Being able to pronounce what’s in a product you are putting into your body is not only common sense, but knowledge that gives you power. If you don’t know what an ingredient is, neither will your body. Remember, food is an ingredient-it doesn’t have ingredients.
About Danielle Girdano
Danielle is one of only 12 worldwide professionals that sit on the prestigious Personal Training Advisory Board for The Cooper Institute based in Dallas TX. In addition, she is President of D’fine Sculpting & Nutrition and the host of D’fine Your Health with Danielle Giordano: Strength Through Knowledge Radio Show. In 2013 she was named to the “Top 40 Executives Under 40” years old by the Dallas Business Journal and was nominated for the “2013 Chicago Innovation Awards” because of her mathematical based fitness programs. She has recently been named to the Advisory Board for St. Jude Research Medical Hospital, the Sunday of Hope Project, sits on the Board of Directors for the Alzheimer’s CURE Foundation and is the Wellness Chair for the Small Business Advocacy Council in Chicago IL.
Danielle is a Certified Master Personal Trainer, who specializes in Childhood Obesity, Exercise for Persons with Diabetes, Postural Assessment & Corrective Exercises for Postural Abnormalities, Weight Loss, Strength and Endurance, Senior Fitness, Pregnancy & Postnatal Exercise, and Exercise Motivation & Psychology.