When it comes to maintaining good health, many of us are ready to fork over the money for the sake of our well-being and longevity. Stores are consistently lined with vitamins and supplements boasting of enhanced overall health, immunity, energy, and strength.
But are these supplements truly helping us achieve that health and vitality we desire?
In reality, not every bottle of supplements is made equal. While there are many reputable supplements, there are also those we should be wary of buying.
There is a lot of misleading information found on the packaging of supplements that over promise and under-deliver. Some labels are riddled with plain lies that can be very dangerous.
So what are these lies and how do we spot them? In this article, I will point out a few of the claims found in supplement advertising and also discuss some of the potential dangers in how supplements are formulated. The purpose here isn't to scare you away from buying supplements, but to help you choose the ones that will actually work.
Are the Marketing Ads Really True?
Most people have a specific reason for buying supplements. Some of them just want extra energy throughout the day, others are after healthier hair, skin, and nails. Whatever their goal is, they can usually find something tailored towards their needs on a supplement bottle’s label at the store.
The truth is, many claims found on supplement bottles or their advertisements are there solely to reel people in to buy them. These claims are the result of over-hyped marketing tactics. The tactics that promise more than what the supplement is designed to deliver.
Now, I have nothing against marketing campaigns until they begin to feed people pseudo-science and overexaggerated claims just to gain a sale. As a result, many people fall prey to the overblown marketing and assume that the vitamins they purchase are just as good as their prescribed medicines.
Let’s take a look at one of the loudest and most notorious marketing ploys of the supplement industry.
Fact or Fib: "Clinically Proven"
It seems that the industry’s favorite way to attract buyers to their products is by slapping the “clinically proven” label on everything.
We see this label everywhere.
Itis the label that gives consumers that calm assurance that the supplement will surely work for them.
Say you want to lose weight. So off you go in search for a product that will help support your goal. You come across a supplement that is “clinically proven to support weight loss”. Sometimes supplement companies will even go a step further by stating that the product will increase weight loss.
But can you trust this piece of marketing? Is it truly a clinically proven supplement or does that label simply symbolize a study with very strict parameters that are hard to replicate in real life?
Oftentimes, the latter option is the harsh reality behind that label.
Of course, not every supplement company spits out bogus claims like this just to get into your pocket. Personally, I take the time to research the claims that are pushed through marketing and advertisements.
The Truth About Effectiveness
The purpose of a supplement is to add value to your nutrition that will ultimately enhance your health. The only way that the supplement will be effective is if you’re getting enough of the key ingredients to produce the desired effect.
But what if the dosage isn’t enough to make a difference?
What really bugs me about the unregulated supplement industry is that supplements can be sold at ANY concentration as long as the daily recommended value is indicated on the label, according to the American Journal of Public Health.
This means that supplement companies have a lot of freedom in the way their products are formulated, giving them a hall pass to skip out on providing adequate doses of key ingredients.
Nowwhy would a supplement company do this? In all honesty, it all boils down to the bottom line. The active ingredients that actually make a difference in a person’s health cost higher than those “filler” ingredients. This is especially prevalent in cheaper supplements.
HowAbout Proprietary Blends - They Make a Difference, Right?
Proprietary blends are another marketing strategy that hype up a supplement to appear like a more premium product.
These blends usually contain a cocktail of special extracts that may make a difference in larger or individual servings. However, the total amount of the proprietary blend is usually so small that each ingredient becomes insignificant in the product.
That being said, why are these proprietary blends even in the supplements? Well, the answer here is rather simple. You see, this proprietary blend is claimed to be like a copyright that helps the company stand out from others.
In order for a proprietary blend to be significant, its total amount must be greater than the typical couple grams we see on labels. Without an adequate amount, this proprietary blend is just fancy language to attract buyers.
Nothing more, nothing less.
Ingredients That Are Plain Junk
The amount of junk ingredients is truly alarming. Remember, supplement companies are subjected to very limited regulation and do not need FDA approval.
In other words, supplement companies have a great sense of freedom to produce whatever they want without fear of repercussions. Because of that, many supplements on the market today are not tested for safety, efficacy, or even quality.
Essentially, the quality of your supplements will depend on the integrity and moral values of the company. Although there are a good number of reputable supplement companies, is it safe to rely on their ethics for our nutritional values?
In most cases, it isn’t. Regulatory practices that normally help to ensure a checks and balances system, is largely absent in the supplement industry. Plus, with the many great supplement companies that do avoid using junk in their ingredients, there is no reason for you to settle for less.
While some ingredients are simple junk, others can also be quite harmful or contaminated. Let’s take a good look at some of the top ingredients that would be considered junk in your supplements:
Is the Food Coloring All that Necessary?
This applies to the colors blue (numbers 1 & 2), green (number 3), red (numbers 3 & 40), and yellow (numbers 5 and 6). These colors create a higher appeal to the supplements you consume.
The lie about food coloring is that it masks the loss of quality of the vitamins when they are too old or have lost their effectiveness. So even if your supplements are outdated, you won’t ever know because the food coloring covers it up.
This is a very slick trick, but it works.
Is it a Vitamin or a Piece of Candy?
The amount of sugar used in many supplements blows me away at times. This is most commonly seen in gummy vitamins, and especially if the vitamins are targeted for children.
A common question I often hear is, “Well if the added sugar helps increase vitamin consumption, isn’t it a good thing?”
Though sugar makes everything taste better, in some instances it actually interferes with the absorption of certain nutrients. This makes the supplement you’re taking totally useless. It also makes the money you spend on that sugary supplement a waste as well.
Bad Cholesterol, Anyone?
Very few of us will be happy to volunteer for increased levels of bad cholesterol and their implications on our health. However, many supplement companies get away with sneaking in junk ingredients that can adversely affect a person’s cholesterol levels.
Now, how are they able to do this?
Supplement companies managed to sneak in hydrogenated oils into supplements that are masked by artificial fats. Usually these fats are used for binding the ingredients together. But must this be done with harmful oils?
Unfortunately, hydrogenated oils are usually cheaper and make production much more affordable. The good news is that there are many supplements on the market that avoid using these artificial fats.
Make sure to look for the “Certified Organic” label which ensures that the product was made with whole, plant ingredients that aren’t genetically modified.
So, What Now?
Now that we know about some of the overblown marketing schemes of supplement companies, how do we proceed? Do we abandon our supplements all together?
Vitamins and supplements are still very valuable. The best way to avoid fillers and junk ingredients that only drive up the cost of your supplements is to make them yourself.
“Wait, what?! How is that possible?”
Don’t worry, I’m not suggesting a crazy shopping trip for special equipment and an odd recipe for you to follow. No, it’s way simpler than that with the CAPSULE-IT Capsule Filler.
The CAPSULE-IT allows you to take full control of how your supplements are made from start to finish. With this handy device, you get to customize the ingredients and their amounts based on your nutritional needs. They get shipped right to your door with a capsule filler that helps you make 100 capsules in minutes.
Say goodbye to all the filler junk, underdosed ingredients, and all the other fluff provided by companies that overprice their products but underdeliver the results.
With the CAPSULE-IT, you get a personalized multi-vitamin that only contains that which is required for your body. The premium, clean ingredients will allow you to achieve your health goals and personally control each ingredient that goes into your capsule. Take control of your nutrition and health by CAPSULE-IT, the smart choice for your health.
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