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If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.  This blog will walk you through the key steps to take before purchasing a supplement.

If you’re worried you are not getting enough vitamins and minerals in through your regular diet, adding supplements such as a multivitamin may be a good idea. However, with the abundance of supplements available today, it’s important to take a few steps in order to choose the best one for your health.

1. Do some research.  Are all of your friends recommending a certain vitamin?  Don’t just take their word for it.  Sites such as clinicaltrials.gov and nccih.nih.gov have performed extensive research on tons of supplements and have released their data to the public.  You can search for the supplement in question and see if it has been proven to be as good as it sounds.
2. Judge the book by its cover just this once…. Supplements should be transparent about their ingredients and where they are sourced.  Look for key terms like “non-GMO” and “no artificial colors and sweeteners.”  If a supplement company is proud of its product, it won’t hesitate to discuss its superiority to other supplements on its label.
3. Look for the active form.  Traditional forms of vitamin B can actually be difficult for the body to absorb. Ensure that the supplement you are purchasing has active forms of its nutrients.  For example, methylcobalamin is a more efficiently absorbed form of vitamin B.
4. Question yourself.  Why are you choosing to take a supplement?  Have you gotten your levels checked?  Is the supplement you want to take actually necessary?
5. Check certifications and know what they mean.  Here are a few common supplement certifications:

USDA Organic: The product has been produced according to the rules of the USDA Organic Program and all ingredients present in the product do not contain GMOs.

Non-GMO Project Verified: All ingredients are free of GMOs and have been tested by the Non-GMO Project Product Verification Program.

Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO): These products contain no more than 10 ppm of gluten.

Certified B Corporation: These companies meet standards determined by B Lab, a nonprofit organization, and meet high standards of social environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.  This is a very prestigious certification.

NSF: An NSF certification is a mark of quality, which states that the label claims have been verified and testing on the product has been done to ensure a clean product.

Supplements can be helpful in ensuring that you are getting all of your vitamins and minerals in. However, supplements should not take the place of a well-balanced, nutritious diet.

 

For more information about how to choose supplements, visit: https://www.betternutrition.com/supplements/how-to-choose-supplements

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