Updated: Jun 9, 2021
Depending on where your head space is, that heading, ‘Size Does Matter’, will lead you to different assumptions about the subject matter, you’re about to read.
Original post: March 17, 2011
Size matters in many ways including nutrition – the size or more accurately the molecular weight or form of the nutraceuticals you may be using. When it comes to nutrigenomic pharmacology and bioavailability of nutrition molecular size and form play huge roles.
Nutritional formulations in the marketplace promise the world to gain your attention. Sometimes these claims are actually based on valid research but the molecular form, size or dose used in the study is way too often misrepresented in the formulas you find on the shelf. Inevitably, the almighty dollar will be the final factor that leads to this formula misalignment.
And the manufacturer is not solely to blame for the formula scrimping. The consumer frequently plays a huge role by failing to make informed decisions and creating demands for the cheapest product. In doing so consumer demands set the pace for manufacturers to use research supported ingredients but at lower doses or different forms than researched to get you to buy them.
So if size from the gym work you’re enduring does matter, whether it’s to reduce size or gain muscle, do your homework, read labels thoroughly and check the dosing to make certain it’s functional. Review the ingredient list to confirm that the ingredient quantities are efficacious; and make certain the molecular form used is biologically appropriate.
‘Wait a minute’, you’re thinking, ‘how am I supposed to know this technical information?”
Most consumers just don’t have the technical knowledge to differentiate one product from the other. However, you can still ask questions of your retailer to determine whether you’re dealing with someone ‘in the know’ or not and gain some comfort from that. And you can also do some research of your own. In fact, most manufacturers of products have technical personnel available to answer questions that health care professionals and consumers have. Use this resource to ask a few different brand manufacturers the same questions and compare notes.
Things to ask. Keep in mind a manufacturer will want to send you ACCURATE information to maintain credibility and legality.
Do you have research to support the claims that the formula or ingredient (s) is based on? Can you send me links or something I can read to better understand the formula? Tell me about the formula rationale and what it is based on? Recent research or traditional medicine?
Maltodextrin is a common addition to powdered supplements like protein. In some cases it is used to enhance the carbohydrate content of the beverage mix; it is also used as a flavour and texture enhancement. Sometimes it has a functional purpose such as in post workout beverages. But it is a cheap addition often used as filler while the intention for its addition is often hidden behind these previously mentioned reasons. How much is in the formula and why has this high glycemic index carbohydrate been added?
Protein powders come in different forms, sources and types. Is it denatured? Is it hydrolyzed? Is it heat treated or cold processed?
Fatty acid supplements are processed through a variety of methods. What process is used and are chemic al or organic solvents used in the isolation and purification of these supplements? Is heat used? Do you have certificates of analysis to confirm that they are PCB, BPA, and heavy metal free?
So many questions can be asked of multiple companies making products that compete against each other. Ask them about competitive brands and what makes theirs different or preferred?