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Vitamins: OTC vs. "premium"?



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  • Vitamins: OTC vs. "premium"?

    Hey....I know Mark sells supplements this isn't directed at him or MDA. I'm talking about general vitamins--like Vitamin A, Omega 3, etc. Pills and stuff.

    I'm curious, I was just in CVS, and I noticed most vitamins are "no preservatives, no coloring, no artificial flavors" etc. Basically they're natural. Is that true or a lie? Are they legally allowed to lie?

    I ask as I don't know what the difference is between a "premium" vitamin and a regular vitamin. I've been buying vitamins from Amway/Nutrilite, because I was convinced by the videos and media I saw of which they make their entire vitamins in house and that their ingredients are all organic, etc. They are about 2-3 times in price what you'd find over the counter though:

    Nutrilite | Amway

    I just went in to CVS to pick up some Vitamin D3....are you flushing your money down the toilet by buying vitamins over the counter? For what it's worth I'm not heavily into supplementation since I made the switch to a primal lifestyle, but I do take D3 as I understand it's hard to get that naturally. But I only take 2000 IU a day. When I'm sick (like today that's why I went to CVS) I do superdose though and it helps.

    Does whether one should buy premium depend on the type of supplement, like Omega 3 vs. a regular multi-vitamin, etc?

  • #2
    There is this website Consumer Lab that test supplements (paid subscription required).

    According to their tests, most of the tested supplements "pass", meaning they contain the active ingredients claimed on the label. It seems they test supplements from various manufacturers. They tested some supplements from CVS too, not Vitamin D3 though, but they did CVS Fish Oil, which they marked as "pass", meaning it contains claimed ingredients.

    Very often premium brands are trying to distinguish themselves from store brands by making slightly different formulas, which they claim are more "bio available" or that ingredients in them work synergistically.