Why do Supplements need fillers?

Jun 01, 2022Abhinav Thapa

In this day and age our bodies need all the support they can get to stay strong against environmental damage, daily stress, an epidemic that never seems to end, the list goes on. It’s always better to prevent than cure, therefore all the attention is now on supplements, some of which might be just as effective as prescription meds minus the side effects. But if you really take care of your health, then you are most likely doing your research before buying any supplements.

 The market offers a great variety of pills and capsules for just about every health concern you can think of, but here comes the question:

What about the quality? It’s very clear that some companies put more research into their products and use better ingredients than the others, so how do you choose the best one?

Another issue that arises over and over again: Why do supplements have fillers in them? Does this mean they are less potent and I’m just paying for some oils added to my supplement for no reason? Let us explain…

First of all, not everything that you think might be a filler is actually one. Many of those “unfamiliar” ingredients are actually “excipients”, which are important for the functional and often structural properties of the products. They make the supplement easier to take and help your body get the maximum out of the active ingredient, enhancing the absorption.

There are other reasons why the use of such ingredients is standard in the supplements industry:

  • To improve the physical quality of the product and make it more affordable to the customer: So-called anti-caking agents are non-toxic ingredients that are added to improve the structural integrity of the product and make it easier to pack the active ingredients into the form they’re meant to be consumed. This also increases the efficiency of the manufacturing process which subsequently will reduce the cost of the end product to the customer. It’s important to know that even though the FDA doesn’t approve any supplements, they confirm the safe use of anti-caking agents such as magnesium stearate, silicon dioxide, cellulose, and stearic acid.
  • To hold the shape of the tablet, preventing it from falling apart, and holding ingredients together in liquid forms. The use of cellulose-type binders is necessary for the tablet-form supplements. While the use of gums such as cellulose gum, guar gum, xanthan gum is important for holding the liquid ingredients together and to thicken liquids.
  • To make certain minerals and vitamins possible to ingest. Some of the ingredients in the supplements can be only used in small amounts and therefore they have to be mixed with carriers, such as rice flour or cellulose, to fill the tablet or capsule.
  • To prevent liquid forms of supplements from going stale. Most of the liquid forms of the supplements use water as a base ingredient, however over time it may become a favorable environment for bacterial and microbial growth. The same will happen when you open the product at home and the product gets exposed to various microorganisms. To prevent that from happening, we may add an acidifier ( citric acid) and potassium sorbate into those products that can not be heat processed or kept from molding in any other way due to the heat-sensitive content.

As you can see, the use of these ingredients is an absolute necessity in the manufacturing process.

However, it’s important to choose the excipients wisely. Nature’s Craft ONLY uses those ingredients when they can contribute to the formula of the product. Whenever possible we reduce or completely eliminate excipients from our products and our teams are in a constant process of research, making sure that you ALWAYS receive the best quality and the highest potency possible. We also make sure that you are aware of what goes into the product you take, so the full list of ingredients is placed on the bottle, we do not hide anything. For our formulas we only use food grade or pharmaceutical grade, and non-GMO excipients, in most of the cases our products are also vegan-friendly.

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