10 Tips On How to Choose High Quality Vitamins and Supplements

how to choose supplements

Ever feel overwhelmed by the countless vitamins and supplements available on the market? I sure have, and that’s why this simple question was born in my mind…

How do I choose high-quality supplements?

What criteria should I keep in mind? What should I look for, and what should I avoid?

In this post, I’ll explain the “confusing” world of vitamins and supplements and I’ll give you 10 tips on how to spo the good ones from the bad ones.

How to Choose High Quality Vitamins and Supplements

Here’s a quick table for those of you in a hurry..

Third-Party Lab TestingVerifies supplement quality, ingredient amounts, and absence of contaminants.★★★★★
No FillersEnsures higher nutrient concentration without dilution from unnecessary additives.★★★★☆
No Proprietary FormulasProvides transparency about exact ingredient amounts for safety and efficacy evaluation.★★★★☆
BioavailabilityEnsures the supplement’s nutrients are effectively absorbed and utilized by the body.★★★★★
Natural SourcesEnhances nutrient bioavailability, reduces processing, and promotes sustainability.★★★★☆
Transparent Manufacturing LocationIndicates quality control standards and regulatory oversight in the country of origin.★★★★☆
Appropriate DosageEnsures optimal benefits without risking toxicity or inefficacy due to incorrect dosing.★★★★★
Ethical and Transparent CompanyDemonstrates commitment to quality, safety, and integrity through openly stated values.★★★★☆
Reputable BrandSignifies investment in manufacturing practices, safety protocols, and customer support.★★★★★

1. Prefer herbal supplements with Standardized Extracts

Standardized extracts are important because they offer quality control. Herbs can change in their potency due to factors like where they were grown or when they were harvested.

Standardized extracts solve this problem. They ensure that regardless of these variations, the final product will always deliver the same health benefits.

Additionally, standardized extracts are often used in clinical studies. This is because their defined composition allows for accurate comparisons and reliable results.

So, when you pick a supplement with standardized extracts, you’re choosing a product that’s likely to deliver consistent health benefits.

Choosing herbal supplements with standardized extracts ensures that you get a consistent dose of the active ingredients in every batch.

2. Prefer supplements that are 3rd party lab tested

Given the supplement industry’s relatively lax regulation, third-party testing is a crucial factor when choosing quality herbal supplements. Here’s why:

  • The process independently verifies the supplement’s quality, providing an unbiased check. These labs confirm if the ingredient amounts stated on the label are accurate. This ensures you’re getting what you pay for.
  • Harmful contaminants like heavy metals and microbes are also checked during this testing. This protects you from potential health risks associated with these contaminants.
  • Third-party lab testing ensures that the product doesn’t contain undisclosed ingredients or fillers. These can reduce the supplement’s effectiveness and potentially compromise its safety.
  • Choosing third-party lab tested supplements means you’re choosing transparency and manufacturer accountability. This shows the manufacturer’s commitment to quality and that they’ve no hidden aspects about their product’s composition or manufacturing process.

Selecting supplements that have undergone third-party lab testing is a smart move. It helps guarantee that you’re investing in a high-quality, safe product that delivers what it promises.

Laboratory Analysis of the synthesis of the AEON 3.0
Laboratory Analysis of the synthesis of the anti-aging supplement AEON 3.0 by PerpetuaLife

3. Prefer supplements with No fillers

Choosing supplements without fillers gives you a higher concentration of the essential nutrients your body needs.

Fillers are often added to increase volume or aid in manufacturing, but they can reduce the strength of the important ingredients you’re after.

By opting for filler-free supplements, you’re making sure every bit of what you’re consuming directly benefits your health.

According to Daily Nutra – an ethical herbal supplements company – some common fillers include:

LactoseCommon allergen from grain-fed cows treated with medications.
Magnesium SilicateAdditive similar in composition to asbestos, not food-grade.
Titanium DioxideToxic colorant with no nutritional value, can cause damage.
Dicalcium PhosphateCheap form of calcium with poor absorption.
Sodium BenzoateCan form carcinogenic benzene when mixed with vitamin C.
Sodium AscorbateLikely derived from GMO corn exposed to pesticides.
Ascorbyl PalmitateLikely derived from GMO corn exposed to pesticides.
CornstarchGMO ingredient to be avoided.
Potassium SorbateCan lead to migraines and allergic reactions.
Magnesium Stearate/Stearic AcidAnimal-derived, no nutritional benefit, used for cost-cutting.
GelatinAnimal protein, often from low-quality, GMO-fed animals.
SulfitesKnown to cause severe asthma reactions and migraines.
Citric AcidChemically-made version of vitamin C, derived from GMO corn.
CarrageenanCan cause gastrointestinal distress.
Hydrogenated OilsContain trans fats, increase bad cholesterol, no longer GRAS.
Soybean OilOften from GMO soy exposed to pesticides, allergenic.
Artificial ColorsLinked to allergies, cancers, derived from toxic coal tar.

Keep in mind that fillers like microcrystalline cellulose, magnesium stearate, and maltodextrin aren’t necessarily harmful, but they do take up space that could be filled with more beneficial nutrients.

This not only weakens the supplement’s effectiveness, but can also be a risk for people with certain allergies or intolerances. For instance, lactose is a filler that can cause digestive problems in lactose-intolerant individuals.

Furthermore, supplements without fillers are absorbed better and have a higher bioavailability. Your body can absorb and use the nutrients more easily without any unnecessary additives getting in the way.

A simpler ingredients list allows for a purer, stronger nutritional boost. So, next time you’re supplement shopping, choose options without fillers for a more concentrated, more effective nutritional support.

4. Avoid supplements with proprietary formulas

It’s essential to steer clear of supplements that use proprietary blends. Why? Because these blends don’t tell you the exact amounts of each ingredient.

This lack of detail can make it hard to figure out if the supplement is safe and effective. It’s also difficult to check if the main ingredients are there in the right amounts or just in tiny amounts that won’t do you any good.

For example, a company might say that my proprietary immune system formula contains Vitamin C, Vitamin D and Zinc. All together 300 mg. When in reality the supplement might contain 10 mg Vitamin C, 10 mg Vitamin D and 280 mg Zinc – because (again, this is an example), Zinc might be cheaper to source. But, because they do have Vitamin C and Vitamin D – law can’t touch them.

Without knowing the exact dosages, it’s hard to judge the quality of a supplement. .

5. Always check Bioavailability

The importance of bioavailability in your choice of supplements can’t be overstated. It’s the key to figuring out how much of the supplement’s active ingredient your body can really make use of.

Basically, bioavailability is the percentage of a supplement that’s effectively absorbed and put to work by your body.

If a supplement has low bioavailability, you may not be receiving the full nutrient benefits you believe you are, and even top-quality supplements can prove ineffective.

When choosing supplements, keep an eye out for those that use special technologies or additives to enhance bioavailability.

For example, if..

..these are signs of a product that’s been formulated for better absorption.

By choosing supplements that use advanced bioavailability technologies, you have a better shot at reaping the benefits you’re paying for and avoid throwing money away on products that don’t deliver.

6. Prefer Supplements with nutrients from natural sources rather than synthetic

Opt for supplements containing nutrients from natural sources rather than synthetic ones. The benefits of this choice are many.

For one studies have shown that, natural sources boost nutrient bioavailability. This means your body can absorb and use these nutrients more efficiently.

Unlike synthetic supplements, natural ones come packed with a range of other beneficial compounds. These include co-factors and enzymes that enhance nutrient absorption and use.

Furthermore, natural supplements undergo less processing. This reduces the risk of contamination from solvents and heavy metals. It also makes the manufacturing process more sustainable.

To ensure you’re choosing natural supplements, pay attention to the label.

By law, it must state the nutrient source, including the plant’s common and scientific names. It should also specify which part of the plant was used.

Nutritional Label from Daily Nutra’s Herbal T Men’s formula. As you can see the label includes the plant’s common and scientific name as well the amount of

7. Check where the supplements is actually made

Investigate the origin of your supplements – this can tell you a lot about their quality and safety. It’s important to know where they’re made because different countries have different standards.

Avoid unclear statements like ‘Made in EU’ or ‘Manufactured for…’. They don’t tell you much about where the ingredients are from or where the quality checks happen. These can be signs of a less rigorous quality checks.

A great example of this is a recent post I’ve read on Reddit by a guy who purchased a collagen supplement from Amazon.

After reading the vague label that said “made in EU” and “manufactured for [name of company]” he decided to investigate the shady company behind it. He uncovered a web of dubious business entities operating from empty apartments and gas stations.

Remember, supplements made in countries with fewer regulations might be more likely to have contaminants like heavy metals. I generally recommend choosing supplements that clearly state where they’re made. They should also give detailed information about where they source ingredients and how they test for quality.

8. Check the dosage

You should always check the supplement’s dosage carefully. Here’s why it matters:

The Recommended Dietary Intakes (RDIs) are just the minimum to avoid deficiency. They’re not the optimal dosage for specific health goals or preventive benefits.

For example, the RDI of Vitamin C is currently 60 mg. A supplement can write that it covers 100% of your RDI. Most people will immediately thing “great” and purchase.

But, 60 mg is NOT the optimal dosage to actually have Vitamin C do it’s magic in you..

For reference, this research article says that the current recommended daily allowance for vitamin C should be increased to 200 mg from fruits and vegetables, with safe doses below 1000 mg.

This is not something new. This article published in the The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition back in 1999 supported that a new recommended dietary allowance for vitamin C should be 120 mg/d for optimal reduction of chronic disease risk in nonsmoking men and women.

Make sure to check the dosage for each ingredient the supplement claims to have. Consider factors like bioavialbility to understand if the quantity will be beneficial for you or not.

9. Prefer companies that communicate their ethics and values

I came to the conclusion that choosing supplement companies that openly share their ethics and values is a smart thing to do.

Companies that do this are committed to being transparent and accountable. They make their ethical standards known, which is like a promise to you that they’ll maintain high quality and safety in their products.

Moreover, these companies want to protect their reputation. So, they stick to their values and avoid shortcuts that could risk the quality of their products.

Their openness invites external checks – many times from competition in an effort to discredit them. This “forces” them to keep their standards up.

Companies that clearly and openly state their ethics and values are a magnet for scrutiny from competition and consumer bodies. This is like forcing them to keep their values and quality in check, to avoid and PR disasters.

10. Prefer Reputable Brands

Choosing quality supplements involves picking products from reputable brands. Look for companies with a strong business presence, like having a physical office and strong customer service (remember the example of that Redditor I mentioned earlier?).

This isn’t just about convenience—it’s about reliability. These companies invest heavily in their manufacturing practices to meet strict quality standards. They also follow laws and industry standards closely.

Also, check reviews, check their websites, check their ethics, values, products etc.

Recommended Supplement Brands

If you are wondering which companies abide by the 10 tips I’ve mentioned above, here’s a list of some of my favorite supplement companies.

  • Daily Nutra – Daily Nutra is one of my favorite herbal supplement companies.They use only natural ingredients in their products, and standardize extracts, with no fillers or anything. They are open about where they get their ingredients and how they make their products.
  • Bioptimizers – BiOptimizers is another all-time one favorite supplement companies because they make high-quality products that really work. Their supplements, like MassZymes and Magnesium Breakthrough, are among the best the industry has to offer. Their supplements are innovative and based on scientific evidence.
  • Xtend-Life – Xtend-Life is a New Zealand-based company offering high-quality, natural supplements, skincare products, and superfoods designed to combat aging effects. With over 20 years of experience, rigorous testing, and a 365-day money-back guarantee, they are renowned for their exceptional quality, purity, and customer service.
  • Purality Health – Purality Health offers premium quality liquid supplements with Advanced Micelle Liposomal delivery, ensuring optimal absorption and bioavailability. Their products are made in the USA in a cGMP compliant facility, using pure ingredients without fillers or additives. Purality Health’s supplements are GMO-free, gluten, wheat, and dairy-free, providing the highest quality available
  • Nootropics Depot – Nootropics Depot is a reputable Nootropics supplement company highly regarded for its scientifically-backed, third-party tested products made with natural ingredients. With detailed product descriptions and heavy focus on quality, Nootropics Depot is highly recommended for high-quality nootropic supplements.
  • Perpetua.Life – Perpetua.Life offers Nicotinamide DUO™, a unique NAD+ precursor blend proven to elevate NAD+ levels higher than Riboside alone, vital for energy metabolism, DNA repair, and gene expression. Additionally, the company provides health beneficial supplements like Fisetin, Quercetin, Resveratrol, and EGCG, all third-party lab tested for purity, reflecting their commitment to transparency and customer service.

Choosing a trustworthy brand means you’re more likely to reap the benefits you’re after without the concern of harmful additives or ineffective doses. These brands have built their reputation on consumer trust and scientific verification, making them a sound choice for anyone wanting to enhance their diet with supplements.


When you’re selecting vitamins and supplements, it’s important to go for options with standardized extracts and those that have passed third-party lab tests. Avoid products with fillers or proprietary blends, and always consider bioavailability and the right dosage for your needs.

Opt for companies that are transparent about their ethics and source from reputable brands. Brands like Daily Nutra, Bioptimizers, and Xtend-Life not only offer quality but also prioritize eco-friendly practices, ensuring you make a safe and informed choice.


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