Liquid Vitamins or Vitamin Pills...Can Your Body Tell the Difference?
Does it really matter what form of vitamin supplements you chose... liquid vitamins or solid tablets and pills? Vitamin supplements are traditionally offered as tablets or pills. Over the past several years liquid supplements have gained rapid popularity. Lets take a look at some of the features offered by liquid technology...
Benefits of Liquid Vitamins
1) Experience the Full Spectrum of Essential Nutrients
Liquid delivery systems are a scientifically sound way to deliver over 100 essential and beneficial nutrients in 1 or 2 convenient liquid doses.
2) Enjoy Benefits of Immediate Absorption
Liquid vitamins and minerals are available for immediate absorption... do not have to be dissolved first like pills and tablets.
3) Optimal Nutrient Quantities and Ratios
Liquid vitamins and minerals easily optimize the ratio or proportion of one nutrient to another - maximizing synergistic nutrient combinations.
One or two inclusive liquid formulas are more economical to purchase than the same number of individual nutrients in different bottles
5) Easy to Ingest
Liquids are easier to ingest than difficult to swallow bulky pills and tablets
6) Enhanced Absorption
Liquid delivery systems may have greater absorption than pills and tablets - this is detailed information we will save for last.
Lets take a closer look at some of these topics...
The 21st Century Nutrition Explosion
Today nutritional science is revolutionizing human health care. Major life-threatening diseases like cardiovascular disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes have strong links to poor nutritional status. We now know disease prevention and optimal health depends upon large varieties of nutrients working synergistically together in your body.
For example, the remarkable anti-carcinogenic roles of "phytonutrients" (plant nutrients) like lycopene, billberry, leucocyanidins, bioflavonoids and other powerful antioxidants have recently been discovered. And who would have thought "exotic" trace minerals like vanadium, germanium, lithium, nickel, rubidium, boron and yes even arsenic, once considered non-essential, would now appear to have definite biochemical roles in your body?
As our knowledge of human health and nutrition expands, the number of essential nutrients grows larger. Today, well over 100 vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, cofactors and essential fatty acids are vital for optimal health.
How does this relate to nutritional supplements you ask?
The Challenge Facing Multi-Vitamin Tablets and Pills
The challenge facing multi-vitamin tablets and pills is formidable. Successfully compacting a diverse array of well over 100+ nutrients into pills and tablets that properly disintegrate and dissolve in your stomach is no small task... sophisticated formulation technology is required.
For example, excipients like "binders", "fillers" and "disintegrators" must be used to help tablets achieve these criteria. Pills and tablets containing large numbers of nutrients can become large and bulky - making them difficult to ingest and comfortably swallow.
Liquid Vitamins...Dissolved, Bioavailable and Ready for Immediate Absorption
In sharp contrast, liquid vitamins and minerals easily deliver all these nutrients in 1 or 2 convenient liquid doses. Liquids are easy to swallow compared to tablets and since the nutrients are already dissolved, absorption can be immediate. Dissolution is completely unnecessary. And it actually costs much less to purchase 1 or 2 inclusive liquid formulas than to buy several bottles of different products
Liquid Vitamins Maximize Beneficial Nutrient Combinations
Liquid vitamins and mineral delivery systems also offer excellent opportunity to accurately adjust the ratios of nutrients to each other... closely matching their natural presence in your digestive tract. This allows beneficial nutrient combinations to work synergistically together.
For example, vitamin C greatly assists in the intestinal absorption of iron... these two nutrients are "synergistic." And in liquid delivery systems, since both of these nutrients are already dissolved, they are immediately "bioavailable" and can work simultaneously together in absorption, just as nature intended. The end result?
"Enjoy your maximum synergistic benefits with liquid vitamins"
In contrast, the absorption of various nutrients in pills may be dependent upon the rate the tablet dissolves. And if nutrients that naturally work together in the absorption process dissolve at different rates within pills, their beneficial synergistic effects may be blunted. In that case you may never realize your maximum nutritional benefits.
Are Your Vitamin Tablets Dissolving Properly?
Normally when we consume a food or vitamin tablet containing 100 micrograms of the vitamin folate, we may naturally assume we are actually digesting and absorbing 100 micrograms of folate into our bodies. But is that really true?
As it turns out, simple ingestion of a vitamin or mineral is no guarantee you will actually digest and absorb the nutrient into your body. The actual absorption or "bioavailability" of a nutrient depends on several factors. And whether you ingest your supplements as pills or liquid vitamins may play an important role. Here is why...
The food or pills you ingest must be broken down (disintegration) into small fragments and then dissolved into liquid by stomach hydrochloric acid and numerous enzymes before intestinal absorption can occur.
" Any nutrients in food or pills remaining in the solid or undissolved state simply cannot be absorbed by the intestine and utilized by your body. Undissolved nutrients are not bioavailable"
Solid supplements like pills and tablets are designed to dissolve in your stomach and high quality ones do. Today, however, the increasing complexity of many of newer formulations is making that goal more difficult to achieve.
For example, solid vitamin-mineral preparations may contain inert or inactive excipients such as:
1) Fillers - Fill-up Space in a Capsule
2) Binders - Help Keep Tablets Intact
3) Disintegrators - Encourage Tablet to Dissolve After Swallowing
4) Color and Flavorings - Improve Taste and Aesthetic Appeal
Even the manufacturing process may contaminate supplements with lubricants like magnesium sterate, talc or hydrogenated oils. These chemicals are designed to keep mixtures from sticking to machines, but often they may get into mixtures.
These additives may have a negative impact on disintegration and dissolution of vitamin tablets and pills. Supplements that don't dissolve cannot be absorbed by your body. If you have ever wondered whether your nutritional healthcare was second rate, its possible the problem may be due to the quality of your supplements
The United States Pharmacopaceia (USP) has established manufacturing standards to assure these and other criteria are met:
If the USP seal of approval does not appear on dietary supplements you purchase you can evaluate disintegration and dissolution of tablets or pills with a simple experiment. Test questionable pills by immersing in a half a glass of vinegar to simulate the acidity of your stomach. According to USP dissolution requirements:
Calcium pills - should dissolve within 30 min
Magnesium pills within 45 minutes
Vitamin E supplements within 45 minutes
Multi-Vitamin pills within 60 minutes
These criteria assume your digestive system is functioning normally. If you are older or your digestive system is compromised, your stomach may not secrete as much hydrochloric acid as before. In thats true, these USP dissolution criteria may not meaningful to you.
The Liquid Vitamins Advantage
In sharp contrast to pills and capsules, the nutrients provided by liquid vitamins and minerals are already dissolved and therefore immediately available for absorption. Solubility of liquid delivery systems are achieved with citric and ascorbic acid (vitamin C), carbohydrates (glucose, lactose), amino acids(arginine, lysine), vegetable gums and emulsifying agents. As a result, disintegration and dissolution criteria are absolutely unnecessary
This means liquid delivery systems actually have two opportunities for absorption... first in the stomach and then the small intestine. Solid supplement systems (pills and tablets) must first undergo disintegration and dissolution in the stomach before intestinal absorption can begin... in other words you only have one chance for absorption in the small intestine
The immediate bioavailabilty of liquid delivery technology generates a couple of important benefits...
1) Liquid Delivery Avoids the Digestive Burden Pills and Tablets may Place on Your Stomach - Especially true if you are older... as we age digestion is just not as efficient and stomach hydrochloric acid may not be secreted in sufficient quantities to efficiently dissolve tablets and pills.
2)Increased Bioavailabilty of Liquid Vitamins Improves Absorptive Efficiency of Your Body - Liquid nutrients can be absorbed immediately and are more quickly delivered to target tissues - ensuring rapid benefits
The Absorption Question...Pathways of Absorption and the Liquid Vitamins Difference
Absorption of nutrients through the intestine into your bloodstream can take place through a number of different paths...
1) Passive Diffusion
2) Facilitated Absorption
3) Active Transport .
It is valuable to understand a little about these absorption mechanisms because they affect how liquid vitamins and solid supplements are handled by your body. Here is how they do it...
Streamline Nutrient Delivery With Liquid Vitamins
The simplest pathway of nutrient absorption involves the passive movement or transfer of dissolved nutrients from within the intestine, through the cell wall and into the intestinal mucosal cell. This is called passive diffusion. Energy is not required for this absorptive mechanism. However there is one caveat...
Passive diffusion operates most efficiently when the body fluids on each side of the cell membrane are the same concentration (isotonic). This may pose a problem with tablets or pills...
Tablets or pills are generally the most concentrated form of supplementation and dissolution within the stomach initially yields a very concentrated solution... much more concentrated than normal body fluids. Consequently, as this solution passes from the stomach into the intestine, large quantities of water are secreted until it is diluted to the approximate concentration of body fluids.
This influx of water successfully dilutes intestinal concentration and favors passive diffusion, however, significant water influx also increases intestinal content and pressure. As a result, "peristalsis" the wavelike muscular contractions that push intestinal contents along the digestive tract may be activated. Occasionally, the process can cause gastric discomfort, diarrhea and diminution of absorption.
In sharp contrast, liquid vitamins are generally formulated at or near the concentration of body fluids and are therefore ready for immediate absorption without large infusions of water. Absorption is immediate and maximized. Chance for gastric discomfort is minimal.
Facilitated absorption involves tiny "carrier proteins" embedded within the cell wall of the intestine. Carrier proteins "facilitate" absorption by actually binding with nutrients within your intestinal lumen and transporting them into the intestinal cell for eventual release into your bloodstream.
Facilitated transport occurs primarily by diffusion... the driving force is a the concentration gradient from an area of relatively high nutrient density (your intestinal lumen) to an area of lower nutrient density (through the intestinal cell wall into the intestinal cell).
As with passive diffusion we have another caveat... The quantity of nutrients transported by facilitated diffusion is limited by the "loading capacity" of the carrier proteins - once all the binding sites on the carrier proteins become occupied by nutrients, additional nutrients within the intestine are unable to bind and translocate into the cell. This is the "saturation" point
This is why supplements providing nutrients at relatively low nutrient concentration may be absorbed to a very high degree - they don't overwhelm the loading capacity of the carrier proteins. And this is where liquid vitamins and minerals fit the bill to a tee.
Liquid vitamins are formulated at or near the concentration of body fluids and by virtue of being liquid, are not as concentrated as pills and tablets. Loading capacity is less likely to be exceeded. Multivitamin tablets and pills release concentrated liquids upon dissolution and risk overwhelming the carrier proteins, diminishing absorptive efficiency.
Vitamins and minerals are naturally found in foods at low concentration. And the absorption of nutrients at low concentration within the intestinal lumen, across the cell membrane and into an area of high concentration, the mucosal cell, requires energy. This highly specialized absorption system is called active transport.
Active transport is a highly adaptable "homeostatic" system designed to precisely supply your bodies need for nutrients under various nutritional conditions. If, for example, nutrients are deficient in your diet, absorption efficiency increases dramatically. Absorption efficiency may approach 100% and virtually all the nutrient is absorbed.
However, just like facilitated absorption, under conditions of nutrient excess, the loading capacity of the carrier proteins may be overwhelmed and a large percentage of the nutrients simply pass through your body without being absorbed.
This has significant ramifications for vitamin and mineral supplements. Vitamins and minerals delivered at high concentration (think tablets and pills) may not be as efficiently absorbed as liquid vitamins and minerals that are very dilute by the time they reach the intestine.
These are a few of the unique benefits liquid vitamins offer to your body. Lets review some of the highlights...
Experience the Full Spectrum of Nutrients
Liquid vitamins are an economical and scientifically sound way to deliver over 100+ nutrients in convenient liquid delivery systems that don't require disintegration and dissolution like tablets and pills.
Immediate Absorption and Benefit
Liquid vitamins are already dissolved, bioavailable and ready for immediate absorption. Nutrient delivery is streamlined to your body.
Optimized Nutrient Quantities and Ratios
Beneficial levels and ratios of synergistic nutrient combinations are accurately formulated with liquid systems, ensuring you experience maximum nutritional benefit.
One or Two Inclusive Liquid Formulas are More Economical to Purchase Than the Same Number of Individual Nutrients in Different Bottles
Easy to Ingest
Liquids are Easier to Ingest Than Difficult to Swallow Bulky Pills and Tablets
Finally, liquid vitamins may maximize the absorptive process by delivering nutrients at significantly lower concentration than pills and tablets. This reduces the potential for overloading the carrying capacity of carrier proteins and possibility of gastric discomfort in certain cases.
Liquid vitamins present several unique benefits over traditional vitamin tablets and pills. If you are ready for a higher level of health, consider the liquid vitamin advantage today!