Have you ever been shopping and read so many marketing buzzwords on the packaging that you just lose the plot completely? What does “natural” really mean anyway? Does “low fat” just mean “high sugar”? It can be a full-time job trying to keep track of everything. Well, at least you can count on one word: organic.
While it might seem like another buzzword meant to make you feel good without actually meaning anything, organic ingredients play a key role in ensuring you receive potent, pure ingredients that can actually perform as the packaging says.
What is “Organic”?
Regulating what can and can’t be called “organic” is the US Department of Agriculture as part of the National Organic Program. According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), “USDA certified organic foods are grown and processed according to federal guidelines addressing, among many factors, soil quality, animal raising practices, pest and weed control, and use of additives. Organic producers rely on natural substances and physical, mechanical, or biologically based farming methods to the fullest extent possible.”
Generally speaking, “organic” means no artificial pesticides or fertilizers and no genetically modified organisms (GMOs). As with most federally regulated terms, there is a lot of fine print depending on the type of product in question, but those are the broad strokes.
The Importance of Using Organic Ingredients in Supplements
Before getting into the details, the logical thinking here is that you would always want top-quality ingredients used in whatever supplement you put into your body, especially if that supplement’s intended use is to provide health support.
Here are some of the primary reasons why organic ingredients are better in supplements:
♦ Free of artificial fillers
♦ No unnecessary chemicals
♦ They come from botanical or naturally-derived ingredients
♦ Higher levels of antioxidants and other nutrients
♦ They must be tested and certified for purity
Top Reasons To Choose Organic Supplements
Organic Supplements Contain More Nutrients
Organic crops have to be grown quite differently than other crops that are sprayed with artificial fertilizers and other chemicals. They can’t rely on synthetic nutrients, so organic farmers have to ensure the soil is healthy and balanced for the plants to flourish. Studies have shown that organic crops contain higher concentrations of nutrients, such as antioxidants, than non-organic ones. To be certified organic, supplements have to be sourced from pure ingredients, which typically come from organic foods grown on these farms.
Organic Supplements Are Free of Unnecessary Chemicals
These days, we are exposed to more everyday toxins than ever. Some supplements dependent on synthetic ingredients have been found to have all kinds of yucky additives such as chemical preservatives, petroleum byproducts, and other unnecessary fillers. Luckily, organic supplements are regulated to be formulated without additional chemicals that might sneak into other products. This is so important because supplements are often concentrated extracts, and if there are chemicals in the mix, those get concentrated too.
Organic Supplements Have Better Nutrient Absorption
Have you ever taken a close look at the ingredient labels on your supplements? Have you ever wondered where all those vitamins and minerals come from? Organic supplements have strict guidelines for the foods and nutrients they are sourced from, but many common supplements use nutrients that are lab-created. Though not all are bad, some supplements made with synthetic nutrients aren’t well absorbed, and some isolated vitamins and minerals can be in forms that are difficult for the body to use. There are exceptions, but generally, whole-food and organically-sourced nutrients are more readily absorbed by the body and may contain synergistic compounds that increase their effectiveness.
Organic Supplements Help Conserve Wildlife
This goes back to how organic crops are grown. Organic farmers work in harmony with nature and promote sustainability and healthy ecosystems. They are in it for the long haul. Organic farmers must pay attention to the ecology around them for their crops to be successful, and most are genuinely concerned with the health of the land and all of the creatures that live on it. By avoiding chemicals and pesticides, they can work with nature rather than against it.
Organic Supplements Help Preserve the Environment
The environmentally friendly farming methods practiced by organic farmers reduce the amounts of toxic chemicals put into the land, air, and water. This reduces the contamination of our environment, which is something we should all be concerned about. Supporting organic farmers and choosing to buy organic food and supplements helps to ensure the future of the people and companies trying to make these important changes and will reduce our carbon footprint in the long run.
How To Find the Right Organic Supplement Brand
Research the Company
Just as many people are starting to get to know their local farmers and where their food comes from, you can start learning about where your supplements come from and who is making them. Get to know the company by looking a little deeper into how they do business. How they treat their employees, what they give back to the community, online reviews, and their customer service practices may all factor into deciding if they are a company you want to support.
Taking a look at the label can tell you a lot. Look for the certified organic seal, and make sure they are listing both the active and inactive ingredients. Transparency is so important when it comes to supplements, and it’s great if they are clearly listing what is not in their products, such as GMO-free, pesticide-free, or free from common allergens. Also, beware of unrealistic claims for “miracle cures” and other misleading information.
Types of Organic Supplements
Herbal extracts can take many forms but are generally a concentrated form of an herb in a capsule or liquid form. The nice thing about taking an extract is that you don’t have to take as much of it as you would just taking the herb itself. Many extracts, commonly known as standardized extracts, give an idea of how much of a particular active component from the herb is in the supplement. This way, you don’t have to guess how much you need because it has been studied and simplified for you. Herbal extracts can be of a single herb or a formula created from a combination of different herbs to support a particular body system or health goal.
Vitamins & Minerals
This is a common kind of supplement that provides added benefits that you aren’t getting from your diet. For example, a multivitamin may give you that extra assurance that you are getting all of the nutrients your body needs to function well. Some supplements may be more specific, such as the Live Conscious® Vegan B12 or MagWell®, which target more precise nutritional needs and support the body in a more specialized way.
Vitamin and mineral supplements come in different forms and can be found in capsules, tablets, liquids, and powders. Some can even be added to smoothies or other recipes; just be sure you are following the recommended dosages, as too much of some vitamins or minerals is not so great for your body. And as always, consult with your healthcare provider before adding any supplement to your routine.
Why Organic Matters to Live Conscious
At Live Conscious, we are dedicated to the health of people and the planet, so of course, sourcing organic ingredients and supporting organic farmers is incredibly important. We give back to the environment in other ways, such as partnering with the Eden Reforestation Project and making it easy to recycle our bottles and packaging. Sourcing organic ingredients for our products, such as the mushrooms in our Beyond GreensTM, the ashwagandha extract in the ZenWellTM, and everything in the Organic Protein (which is available in Vanilla Dream and Cosmic Cacao) is a high priority and will continue to be at the forefront of our company.
Waking Up To Wellness
Not only do organic foods and supplements avoid chemical additives such as pesticides, but they also contain higher levels of certain nutrients. Purity and quality should be the priority of every product marketed to promote better health, but sadly that is not always the case. The organic seal is a standard you can count on, and we at Live Conscious® are dedicated to sourcing organic ingredients whenever possible to support your health and the health of the planet.