There's a good chance you choose practitioner-brand supplements with the assumption they are of the highest quality possible, regardless of the label. While your healthcare practitioner will recommend products that are trusted by professionals, there are additional steps you can take to ensure that the product is best suited for your lifestyle needs by paying attention to clean labeling.
Products with non-GMO and gluten free status are ideal for consumers with particular preferences or allergen sensitivities. Clear label indicators make it easier to know whether a product has been clinically tested and certified to meet industry standards for quality, purity, and safety you can count on. With this in mind, what makes one supplement cleaner than the other, and how does clean labeling help you determine what is in store with your supplements?
Clean and Cleaner Labeling
How do you know what is really in your probiotic or fish oil supplement?
Ideally, the practitioner-brand manufacturer tests each product and follows rigorous standards to validate quality and purity claims, as well as gluten free or non-GMO status.
For example, a fish oil supplement should be tested for pesticides, heavy metals, dioxins, furans, and PCBs all of which are concerns because some fish are prone to higher concentrations of these pollutants and toxins. Testing the fish oil via a reputable independent lab such as Eurofins and conveying results on the label is an indication of clean labeling.
Another test, known as ELISA, is used to detect protein, such as gluten. To be truly gluten free, ingredients must test no greater than 20 parts per million for gluten. A supplement manufacturer may take this even further and ensure their products are tested in amounts greater than 10 parts per million. When extra steps are taken to ensure accurate testing, it helps to uphold clean labeling standards.
Confirmation of Non-GMO Status
It is one thing to claim that a supplement is free of genetically modified organisms, and another when the manufacturer requires all vendors that supply ingredients to confirm the same. For ingredients that are often known to be genetically modified, such as soy or corn, the vendor should separately process and store these ingredients. Ideally, the manufacturer should require third-party certification that confirms non-GMO status of ingredients used in the products.
Good Manufacturing Practices
Purity, safety, and quality in a practitioner-brand supplement should be identified and upheld by certifications that the manufacturer follows good manufacturing practices. Certification by organizations such as the Natural Products Association or the Therapeutic Goods Administration should be conveyed on the label and are excellent indicators that the supplement manufacturer is serious about the product.
Clean Labeling Lives Up to Its Promise
Clean labeling is the standard for ensuring that the practitioner-brand supplement you purchase contains only what you expect it to. And while not every brand goes above and beyond with regard to extensive testing of product ingredients, you now have the knowledge necessary to make the best product selection possible.