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Natural Vs Synthetic Vitamins - what you need to know

by Jennifer Hopper |

If you’re interested in bettering your health, then chances are you’re interested in whether vitamin supplements should play a role in your diet. After all, taking a vitamin pill is the easy way to tick off any essential nutrients you think you may be missing and a shortcut to improved health outcomes, right? Well that all depends on just what’s in that vitamin pill and how it got there.

Because just as there is a world of difference between a cardboard box with wheels painted on it and an actual car, there is a universe of difference between what you get from a synthetically derived vitamin and what you get from a naturally derived one.

Just what is a synthetically derived vitamin?

The journey to produce a synthetic vitamin is far from appetising. In fact, some of the sources of synthetic vitamins have almost nothing to do with food - which should be the first indication they don’t belong in your body in the first place. Take vitamin D3, for example. The synthetic version normally begins with the yummy sounding 7-dehydrocholesterol, most commonly sourced from wool oil. This is turned into cholecalciferol, or vitamin D3, when exposed to ultraviolet light. Other synthetic vitamins can be derived from petrochemicals, tar and acetone (that’s nail polish remover).

The most damning argument against the use of synthetic vitamins though is their efficacy. While synthetic vitamins may be chemically identical to their natural counterparts, they are not necessarily of an identical chemical structure, meaning your body does not recognise or absorb them as readily.


What is a naturally derived vitamin?

A naturally derived vitamin’s journey is a lot more straightforward. In the case of vitamin D, for example, the naturally sourced version is simply obtained from picking mushrooms! And the same goes for pretty much all naturally derived vitamins. Plants are harvested and then freeze-dried to keep them as close to their fresh and natural form as possible and to preserve their nutritional content.

And given that the body readily recognises the chemical structure of the naturally sourced vitamin, it is all the better absorbed by your body.


The conclusion?

If you’re going to take a vitamin or supplement to improve your health, make sure that you seek out one that contains naturally derived vitamins from whole food sources.

Activated Nutrients prides itself on containing nothing but certified organic vitamins and minerals sourced from whole foods because we know they are simply better for you and your body. 


Activated Nutrients Multivitamin+


Photo by Michele Blackwell on Unsplash