With Supplements, Do You Get What You Pay For?
Have you purchased a bargain brand of supplements from GNC, Target, Walgreens or Wal-Mart lately? If so you may want to throw them out immediately, according to a recent investigation by the New York State attorney general’s office.
As you may have heard, each of the four retail giants recently received cease-and-desist letters demanding that they pull a number of their bargain-brand dietary supplements from the shelves due to “Contamination, substitution and falsely labeling herbal products.”
The State attorney general’s investigation found that in many cases pills advertised to contain medicinal herbs were actually just made using cheap fillers like powdered rice, asparagus and houseplants. Worse, some — such as Wal-Mart’s ginkgo biloba, a Chinese plant promoted as a memory enhancer — contained nothing more than powdered radish, common houseplants and wheat, despite a claim that the product was free of wheat and gluten!
When I first read this news, I was disappointed and embarrassed for my industry. But then I paused. I remembered all the times I was asked why the supplements we sell at Stop Aging Now are a little pricier when “you can buy the same thing at Wal-Mart or Target for less.” Well, I think this investigation proves that you can’t.
As CEO of Stop Aging Now, I can say with confidence that the supplements we produce rank among the finest in the world. I know of no other company more devoted to quality control that we are. That being said, I understand that not all of our readers take Stop Aging Now supplements, for a variety of reasons. There are many other good brands out there. But there are also a lot of bad ones.
Here is a quick “buyer’s guide” that will help you make good decisions when you purchase supplements, regardless of the brand you choose. To see the full list of products pulled from the shelves, click here and scroll to pages 4, 8, 12 and 16.
1. Watch out for the “where it’s made” trick.
Often, you will see a phrase along the lines of “Made for ABC Supplement Company, Orlando, FL, USA” on the label. This is meant to give you the impression that the product is made in the U.S., but really, all they are telling you is that the company is based in the U.S., not where the product is manufactured. Look for “Made in the USA” on the label. I wouldn’t buy a supplement that doesn’t bear this statement. All Stop Aging Now products are made in the USA.
2. Look for a product that is made to USP or Pharmaceutical Grade Standards.
Since the FDA does not regulate dietary supplements, it is important to use a product made to U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP) standards at a minimum, to ensure that it is of premium quality in terms of purity, potency and disintegration. One step above USP is Pharmaceutical Grade, which indicates that the supplement is made in an FDA inspected facility that meets the same standards that apply to facilities that manufacture pharmaceutical drugs. All Stop Aging Now products are made to either USP or Pharmaceutical Grade Standards.
3. Can you call the company and talk to someone who is knowledgeable about dietary supplements?
All companies should support the products you sell. When you want to ask a question, your call shouldn’t be directed overseas or to somebody who doesn’t know anything about supplements! Make sure that the company who makes the supplements you take invests in people who understand nutrition and supplements and can offer you valuable guidance.
4. Is the product’s purity verified by a third party lab?
As with our government, the supplement industry needs checks and balances. This is the role that third party lab testing plays in ensuring that a supplement is free of potentially harmful contaminants and contains exactly what is stated on the label. This is especially important for products like fish oil, which can contain PCBs and other harmful toxins. All Stop Aging Now products are tested by a third party lab to ensure that they are of the utmost purity and safety.
5. Is the product backed by at least a 90-day guarantee?
Some supplements take up to 90 days to reach peak effectiveness within the body. Any return policy that does not allow at least 90 days for you to try to product is inadequate. Stop Aging Now proudly offers a 365-day return policy. We believe that it’s only fair to provide our customers with a 12-month period to try our products risk-free. If you determine that a supplement you purchased doesn’t work for you, you should be able to get your money back without a hassle.
What’s the most important factor to you when buying supplements? I would love to hear what you think, so be sure to leave a comment below and join the conversation.
And if you’re interested in finding a supplement that meets these five criteria for quality, check out a few of the most popular products we sell at Stop Aging Now.
Joshua Corn – Editor-in-Chief
Josh is a health freedom advocate and veteran of the natural health industry. He has been actively involved in the natural health movement for over 15 years, and has been dedicated to the promotion of health, vitality, longevity and natural living throughout his career. Josh has successfully overcome several personal health challenges through natural means, and believes that sharing information can empower people to take control of their health so they can solve their own problems and live life to its fullest potential. Josh is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Live in the Now. Additionally he serves as CEO of Stop Aging Now, a company that has been formulating premium dietary supplements since 1995. Josh is currently working on his first book about natural health, and is gearing up to launch the Live in the Now radio show. In addition to his work in the natural health field, Josh is an avid outdoorsman, animal lover and enjoys “living in the now” with his wife and two sons.