What to Consider When Buying Supplements

Woman in pharmacy, shopping for supplements
Written by Risa Schulman
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6 minutes

The supplement aisle can be overwhelming, to say the least! There are multiple things to consider when reading a supplement label, but with the right knowledge, you can shop confidently. Let’s dive into some of the key factors to consider when choosing vitamins and other supplements.

Know Your Health Goals

When considering supplements, start by defining your health goals – whether it's increased energy, supporting your immune system, sharper focus, or promoting your heart health. Take into account your lifestyle, dietary habits, and any specific health concerns you might have. However, always talk to your doctor or qualified healthcare provider about your health concerns.

If you're prioritizing heart health, think about supplements that support cardiovascular wellness, like omega-3 fatty acids and Ubiquinol. Understanding your objectives and tailoring your choices accordingly can help you make the most of your supplement journey.

Shopping for Ubiquinol? Don’t forget to download our Ubiquinol Buyer’s Guide!

Quality is Key

When it comes to supplements, ensuring you're investing in quality products is essential. Seek out well-established brands that have a reputation for reliability and excellence, like Kaneka.

Pro-Tip: Be sure to look for the Kaneka Quality Seal when shopping for Ubiquinol!

A quick online search can often reveal customer reviews and ratings, though these should be read discerningly, as not all reviews posted on the internet can be trusted as genuine.  Instead, look for reviews from scientific experts.  Additionally, keep an eye out for certifications such as USP or NSF – these certifications indicate that the supplement has undergone rigorous testing and adheres to high standards. Opting for supplements with these credentials provides you with greater confidence in their quality and safety.

The USA's Approach to Assuring Supplement Quality

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) takes supplement quality and safety seriously. The FDA has strict regulations in place requiring that supplements are produced to quality specifications that ensure the product meets label claims. So, when you choose supplements manufactured in the USA, and buy from established, reputable companies, this means they have likely undergone rigorous testing and meet quality standards, although they may contain both domestic and imported ingredients.

In the USA, dietary supplement manufacturers are required to follow Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). Think of GMP regulations as the gold standard for supplement manufacturing, helping to ensure that supplements are made with utmost care, following strict guidelines for cleanliness, quality control, and record-keeping.

Also, because many vitamins, minerals and herbal ingredients are imported, it’s important to keep in mind that some supplements that are manufactured in the USA won’t say on the label “Made in USA.” And, if a supplement is manufactured outside the USA, it should be labeled with a statement identifying the foreign country of origin.

Understanding Supplement Ingredient Labels

Navigating supplement labels doesn't have to be complicated if you know what to look for. Here’s how you can make informed choices without getting lost in the details:

  1. Prioritize straightforward labels that provide clear information about the contents.
  2. Seek out key details about the ingredients listed in the Supplement Facts panel and their amounts.
  3. Be mindful of the form in which these ingredients are presented – certain forms might be more easily absorbed by your body. Note that this may require more investigation on your part – beyond just reading the supplement label.
  4. Look for any additional ingredients in the supplement, such as flavors, preservatives, or other additives, which are listed just below the Supplements Facts panel as “Other ingredients”. 
  5. For those with allergies, it's crucial to review labels for potential allergens to ensure your safety and well-being.

Look for Branded Ingredients

Another key factor to look for when reading a supplement label is whether the product has proprietary, branded ingredients, such as Kaneka Ubiquinol®. Because, when it comes to supplements you put into your body, quality matters. When you purchase a Ubiquinol supplement with The Kaneka Quality Seal, this means the supplement is made with high-quality Kaneka Ubiquinol®, produced at our GMP compliant facility.

Read Now: 12 Tips for Buying the Best Dietary Supplements

Avoid Unrealistic Supplement Claims

It's important to approach choosing supplements with a balanced perspective. While supplements can certainly contribute to your well-being, they're not miraculous shortcuts to instant results. Be cautious of products that make grand promises of rapid transformations. Instead, investigate information on the supplement company’s website so you can identify supplements that are grounded in science and supported by legitimate research and clinical studies. Look for products that provide realistic insights into their benefits and outcomes. By staying informed and managing your expectations, you'll be better equipped to choose supplements that align with your long-term health goals.

Transparency: The Key To Making Informed Health Decisions

Making well-informed decisions about the supplements you choose to incorporate into your health regimen is made easier when companies are fully transparent with respect to the ingredients in their products. In the USA, regulations enforced by the FDA require manufacturers to provide accurate labeling which includes listing all ingredients in the product. This means you should have access to crucial information about the supplement's composition, dosage, and allergens. These requirements are designed to help protect you as a consumer, so you can make informed choices based on accurate and reliable information – choices that are aligned with your dietary needs and preferences. Be sure to reach out to the manufacturer or distributor if you have questions about the origin of ingredients or composition of the supplement.

Selecting Supplements That Sync to Your Daily Life

Choosing the right supplements involves more than just picking the right products – it's about finding options that seamlessly integrate into your daily life. Opt for supplements that align with your routine and habits, ensuring you'll easily remember to take them. Keep in mind that supplements aren't quick fixes; they require a bit of patience. While instant results may not be the norm, consistent and regular use can yield long-term health benefits, depending on the supplement. Think of buying supplements as an investment in your long term health journey. By choosing supplements that complement your healthy lifestyle and adopting a positive mindset, you're setting the stage for lasting positive changes.

Your Health is Worth It: Opt for Quality Supplements

With this guide in hand, we hope you're now better equipped to navigate the world of supplement shopping with confidence and clarity. Remember, supplements are your allies in supporting your health, but they work best when teamed up with a well-rounded health-focused lifestyle. Make sure to pair them with nutritious eating habits and regular physical activity for optimal results. And, as always, consult with your healthcare provider about your supplement choices and questions, especially if you are unsure of what’s best for you and your health.

As you venture into supplement shopping, embrace the journey with enthusiasm. Your well-being is under your care, and by making informed choices, you're taking an active step towards a healthier and happier you. Happy supplement shopping and here's to your continued well-being!

Checklist Download Now: Buying the Right Ubiquinol Supplement

Written by:

Risa Schulman


Risa Schulman, Ph.D. took her lifelong love of science, people and the fulfillment of potential to create a multifaceted career in R&D, business, health and wellness, and empowering individuals. 

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