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Straight talk about synthetics in Nutrilite supplements

The scientific efforts that go into developing a Nutrilite™ product are quite diverse. But the goal is always the same: to develop a product that is based on the best of nature (plant-based concentrates) and the best of science (synthetic, or man-made, ingredients).

“That fact sometimes prompts questions from Amway Business Owners and others who visit Nutrilite – and it should,” said Bob Tully, supervisor of Guest Services and Tours at the Nutrilite Center for Optimal Health in California. “The better consumers and business owners understand what goes into Nutrilite™ supplements, the more confident they can be about using and selling them.”

Here also are answers to frequently asked questions about the use of synthetics in Nutrilite™ dietary supplements. The following Amway experts include Tully; Audra Davies, Amway vice president of health, beauty and home product development; Keith Randolph, technology strategist at the Nutrilite Health Institute; and Amit Chandra, manager of Chromatography Sciences for Analytical Sciences.

Q: Aren’t Nutrilite™ supplements organic?

Bob Tully: Nutrilite™ supplements combine the “Best of Nature” and the “Best of Science” to produce the safest, most effective line of vitamins and dietary supplements in the world. Audra Davies explains how the term “organic” applies to Nutrilite™ supplements.

Q: I thought Nutrilite™ supplements were all-natural. Why aren’t they?

Keith Randolph: Nutrilite uses natural and naturally-sourced ingredients when possible to deliver the “Best of Nature”. This includes adding no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives to our products.  However, we also formulate to provide the “Best of Science” which includes delivering nutrients at levels demonstrated by science to offer health benefits.

Audra Davies explains more in this video.

Q: Why does Nutrilite use synthetics in some of its supplements?

David Groh: Nutrilite will always use or find natural or organically grown alternatives over synthetic sources when feasible to produce the safest and most effective line of vitamins and dietary supplements in the world.

However, on occasion some Nutrilite™ supplements may contain ingredients from both natural and synthetic sources. At times we may use a synthetic source in addition to our plant-based sources to:

  •       help achieve higher potencies to meet the RDI (Recommended Dietary Intake);
  •       meet potency levels that are effective while maintaining acceptable tablet size, so they are
    easier to swallow; and
  •       maintain potency for the shelf life of the products.

Without the way we use synthetics, we would have to make too many compromises on quality: potency, tablet size, ease of swallowing or palatability.

Q: Aren’t there natural ingredients Nutrilite could use instead?

Bob Tully: Nutrilite™ scientists are working constantly to include more and more plant concentrates in the supplements we make. But where the science stands today, to achieve the highest quality, highest potency, best ease in swallowing and other benefits, we use combinations of plant concentrates and synthetic ingredients. Anyone who purchases a Nutrilite™ product can be confident that every ingredient has been rigorously tested and documented to meet our exacting standards for integrity, quality and efficacy.

Q: What are synthetics? Where do they come from?

Amit Chandra: Synthetics are simply man-made copies of naturally occurring vitamins and minerals. By themselves, they are limited, for they contain only a specific isolated vitamin (ascorbic acid, for example). When Nutrilite finds it necessary to use a synthetic vitamin, it is combined with the exclusive Nutrilite™ plant concentrates. In these cases we formulate a product combining both synthetic and natural plant-based concentrates and vitamins that also delivers important phytonutrients, the heart of the Nutrilite™ brand.

The source of the synthetic differs depending on the ingredient, but every synthetic ingredient used in Nutrilite™ products is sourced with the same care and attention from Research & Development and Quality Control as the plant-based ingredients.

Q: Are natural ingredients more bioavailable than synthetics?

Amit Chandra: Bioavailable refers to the amount of an ingredient that is available to the body to absorb. In Nutrilite™ supplements, the nutrients are just as available to the body in combination as the plant-based ingredients are alone. The synthetics we use don’t detract from bioavailability or the synergy between the plant concentrates.

Q: Wouldn’t it be better to get nutrients from natural sources?

Keith Randolph: Nutrilite™ scientists maintain that the best way to consume adequate nutrients is through a balanced diet and eating a variety of foods every day. However, studies show many of us don’t get the required nutrients to maintain optimal health through our daily diets. For these people, supplementing with Nutrilite™ products can be a helpful choice.

Nutrilite will always use or find natural or organically grown alternatives over synthetic sources when feasible without compromising quality, safety and effectiveness. The synthetic ingredients used in Nutrilite™ supplements, just like the natural concentrates, have been extensively evaluated and demonstrated to be safe and effective.

Further, the ingredients listed on a Nutrilite™ label are the exact ingredients contained in the supplement.

Q: What does “nature identical” mean?

Amit Chandra: In simple terms, a “nature identical” ingredient is synthetically produced to match what would be naturally produced, and therefore is safe and effective in the same way as a natural product.