With the market’s array of health products, supplements, and available exercise regimes, it is easier to be healthy in today’s world than ever before. Having so many options for one’s health, however, can make it very difficult to understand what is the best way of staying healthy and keeping slim for any individual. Doctors across the world have touted the benefits of dietary supplements, but which is right for you? To better orient yourself in the sea of available supplements, it is important to understand the differences between those that are chemically composed versus those that are all-natural.
Chemical supplements are those made with specific percentages of vitamins and minerals that are known to be good for our health in some quantities,chemically processed and combined into a convenient pill or powder for easy consumption. The proportion of vitamins and minerals varies greatly in every supplement, depending on their specified desired effects. The benefit of chemically made supplements is that the amounts of beneficial elements included can be completely controlled. For example, a lawyer for the Consumer’s Union, Marsha Cohen, notes the possibility of one or two small supplemental pills containing the same amount of Vitamin C as eight or more cantaloupes and the immense implications of this unchecked power to stuff chemical supplements with whatever proportions of vitamins and minerals that the company sees fit regardless of medical recommendations which are currently non-binding). When people are dieting, these percentages are even more important because of the individual’s restricted access to food and resultant lower intake of all vitamins and minerals. In this case, supplements are a must for dieters to maintain a well-rounded routine, but the impact of the different elements in these supplements is even greater and thus of higher importance than under normal circumstances.
Natural supplements are made from fruit and vegetable extracts and thus tend to be composed of a slightly more limited mix of vitamins and minerals, often with lower concentrations as well. As Cohen mentioned, the limitations of these supplements not to be able to contain the same amount of vitamin concentrations as chemical supplements could very well be their greatest benefit in the way that their composition is controlled by what natural extracts can be placed into a small package. All-natural supplements used specifically for dieting usually simply add one or two additional natural compounds to the supplement to speed up metabolism and possibly increase energy. Green coffee bean extract, for instance, has become a popular new natural element to dietary pills that has been shown to significantly help people lose weight when taken in accordance with a balanced diet and regular exercise regime. Unfortunately, as is true with many natural supplements, it is difficult for scientists to understand exactly why elements like green coffee bean extract are so beneficial to weight loss because its various components have not been broken down. This means that, for the time being, the benefits of natural extracts like that from green coffee beans to health and dieting can be lost in chemical supplements because it is unsure which aspect of the natural extract should be reproduced in the chemical copy.
The Bottom Line
Which type of dietary or weight-loss supplement is correct for you? To correctly answer this question, you must understand what your body is missing and what it needs to reach your goals. Chemically produced supplements may offer a confusing conglomeration of vitamins and minerals in proportions that could actually be harmful, but you are sure to be receiving all of the basic vitamins and minerals you need. Natural supplements cannot pack the same punch as their chemical counterparts, but usually have the correct daily percentages of the vitamins and minerals you need in addition to including some benefits from fruit and vegetable extracts whose beneficial properties have yet to be pinpointed or reproduced in chemically-processed supplements.