What is nutrition? If you want a clear way of understanding nutrition, think of it as the food and nourishment that supplies the materials required by cells and organisms to continue living. Nutrition is the essence of life then, it describes how food is used to power and heal the body. In terms of human medicine and science, nutrition studies the processes the body uses as it breaks down food and metabolises it and then how the body reacts to it.
Understanding Nutrition with Supplements and why do people turn to them
According to data collected by the Office of Dietary Supplements at the U.S. National Institutes, in a survey of 12,000 individuals, almost half of the participants said they were taking a multivitamin because they thought it would improve their health. About a third said that they thought it would maintain their health. Interestingly, the majority of the people studied had not received a doctor’s recommendation to take a nutritional supplement.
Unfortunately, the diet of many people today is relying more and more on processed, fatty fast foods than on natural foods like fruits and vegetables. Of course, a healthy diet full of naturally good nutrition is the first choice, but a multivitamin, taken daily, may offer additional nutrients that an inadequate diet cannot.
Typical over-the-counter nutritional supplements and vitamins are not necessarily all they promise to be. The truth is, not all nutrition supplements are created equally. I have to admit the fact that it took me many years and I wasted many hundreds of pounds before I grasped this simple truth.
There are hundreds of companies out there offering nutritional supplement products these days. The reality is that some of them do work to varying degrees, depending on the takers age, gender, diet and a myriad of other things. Some supplements only work because of a “placebo” effect while others can even be harmful for you.
Understanding Nutrition with Pharmaceutical Grade Supplements
Fortunately, I eventually realised that there is a big difference between pharmaceutical grade supplements and the ones that I can buy at the local drugstore, often referred to as food grade supplements. Pharmaceutical grade supplements are manufactured using Good Manufacturing Practices, otherwise known as GMP. Every step of the process is closely monitored using established procedures to assure the highest quality, purest, safest and most reliable end result possible.
Every part of the production is scrutinised, from the raw materials, employee training, all the way to the equipment and facilities. Processing and manufacturing tracking means that each batch can be traced back to the date, time, lot number, and equipment used. In order for a supplement to be considered pharmaceutical grade, it has to be manufactured using GMP and achieve 99% purity or higher – that means it contains nearly no fillers, binders dyes or other foreign substances.
Food grade nutritional supplements
Food grade nutritional supplements, on the other hand, may not be produced using Good Manufacturing Practices and, perhaps even more frightening – the ingredients listed on the label might not be what’s in the bottle. Unfortunately, the FDA does not regulate the use of fillers and binders in food grade nutritional supplements. Things like sodium benzoate, glycol, corn starch, dextrose, lactose and a myriad of chemical dyes are just a few of the additives you won’t even know you’re getting if you take one of these “supplements” because they don’t have to be listed on the label.
In many cases companies use impure ingredients – and the FDA doesn’t require them to list those ingredients. Many of these supplements contain 90% or less of the listed ingredients – the other 10% is made up of fillers, such as, corn starch and lactose, which are known allergens for some people. Understanding nutrition helps to see that the purity of a supplement will determine how well it can be used by the body.
Bio-availability and price of pharmaceutical grade supplements
Pharmaceutical grade supplements are more expensive than other supplements because of the stringent practices that they are manufactured under. If a supplement is cheap or super cheap – it’s probably not pharmaceutical grade and may not be what it’s cracked up to be. When you purchase a supplement manufactured under GMP, you’re getting the highest level of purity possible and it’s backed by testing and approved by the FDA.
Bio Availability is another thing that pharmaceutical supplements do better than regular vitamins and supplements. By pharmacological definition bio availability is:“measurement of the rate and extent to which a drug reaches systematic circulation.”
In nutritional science this concept can be defined as “the proportion of the administered substance capable of being absorbed and available for use or storage”. More pure ingredients leads to higher levels of bio availability, making pharmaceutical supplements superior.
FDA regulations for Dietary Supplements and Pharmaceutical Industry
When it comes to supplements, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for overseeing the practices and product manufacture standards for labelling, dosage, safety, claims and the like. However, there are NO provisions in the law for FDA to approve effectiveness of the given supplements before they reach the customer. In fact, the FDA actually has to prove that a product is unsafe in order to limit its use or to withdraw it from the marketplace.
On the contrary, before being allowed to market a drug product, manufacturers must comply with FDA regulations, to get an approval and provide strong evidence of its safety and efficacy.
Arkworld’s product quality standards are in alignment with FDA drug standards. Audited by the FDA their processes substantially exceed new proposed GMPs for supplements and meet all critical requirements for drug level production.
Pharmaceutical grade supplements are produced under GMP, assuring that they are made with the purest, most potent composition possible. Food grade supplements don’t hold a candle in terms of purity and efficacy. Understanding nutrition means that you take full responsibility for what you put in your body.