This question knawed at me for years. How do I know if a supplement brand is trustworthy? What guarantee do I have that what is written on the bottle is actually what’s in the bottle? I have a quote here which I took directly from the FDA’s website – “FDA is not authorized to review dietary supplement products for safety and effectiveness before they are marketed.” Well, that’s a little concerning. So who is monitoring supplements for quality and safety? I’ll answer that question with another quote, this time from the National Institute of Health’s website – “…the dietary supplement manufacturer is responsible for ensuring that a dietary supplement is safe before it is marketed.” So the people making money off the product are the ones ensuring it’s safety? 😑 Seems like a conflict of interest but ok.
Luckily there are some third party organizations that test supplements for quality, safety and truth in labeling. One example is the non-profit United States Pharmacopeia (USP). Maybe you’ve seen the “USP verified” label on certain supplements. It looks like this. This label tells the consumer that the product has been tested and has met the demanding criteria of the USP. You can find a full list of USP verified products here.
Another organization you’ll want to check out is called Labdoor. Labdoor not only tests products but ranks them too, comparing different brands! I love browsing around this website, there is so much free information. Supplements are even grouped by type so let’s say you wanted to find the best probiotic for children. You simply click on “rankings” at the top, scroll down and select “probiotics for children” and you’re brought right to the list. Choose a product and you can see why it received the score that it did. Seriously explore this site, definitely one of my favorites!
I also have to mention how much I love my online supplement dispensary, Fullscript. With Fullscript, you can find professional grade supplements not available in stores or over the counter. They are typically more potent, contain nutrient forms that are better absorbed by the body and the supplements are available in capsule, powder or liquid form (which is fantastic for kids!). In general, tablets aren’t great and I don’t recommend them for a number of reasons (more on that later). Professional grade supplements do cost more but with Fullscript I’m able to offer discounts to my clients. Shipping is fast, they’re at my doorstep in 2 days, and ordering is super easy. Here’s a testimonial from my sister; “Fullscript is a joy to use. The site is incredibly user-friendly, it saves all of my information and I can order what I need in 2 minutes.”
Lastly, I’d like to share some supplement brands that I love, that I use myself and that I personally recommend. All of these brands can be found on Fullscript.
- Seeking Health
- Douglas Labs
- Vital Nutrients
- Integrative Therapeutics
- Klaire Labs
- Nordic Naturals
- Designs for Health
- Ortho Molecular