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Synthetic vs. Plant Based Vitamins

Posted by Angie Schumacher on

When you go to the grocery store to buy vitamins, you probably don't give a thought to where they come from, how they're made, or what is really in them. 

Over 90% of vitamins and minerals on the market today are synthetic, which basically means they're fake. 

When you buy a bottle of vitamins, you have about a 9 out of 10 chance of consuming ingredients that you normally would cringe at if served on a plate at dinner such as petroleum, coal tar, and rocks.


Synthetic vitamins are typically used in supplements because they are cheaper to produce than extracting the nutrients from real food sources.  For instance, I know someone manages a quarry and their biggest source of revenue comes from companies who make vitamins.  Instead of finding and extracting calcium from seeds, beans, and leafy greens, they take the easy and cheap route and create calcium from rocks. 

When you're consuming store-bought calcium, you are most likely eating limestone. 


The main problem with synthetic vitamins, aside from where they are sourced from, is that they are poorly absorbed.  Some are even less than half as effective as their plant or animal based counterparts which means you would have to take twice as many milligrams of synthetic vitamins to equal the same amount of naturally sourced vitamins.


Let's use calcium as an example.  As stated before, most of your common supplements contain calcium derived from rocks, specifically mined limestone. Calcium is an essential mineral that your body needs to promote healthy bones, muscles, nerves and your heart.


I want you to go grab your calcium supplement, multivitamin, or other supplement you have that contains calcium.  Look at the ingredient list.  Does it tell you where it was sourced from?  Does it have calcium carbonate or calcium citrate listed?  If it doesn't list a source or has one of those two names listed, your calcium was most likely mined out of the ground from limestone or other rocks.


I'd like to note that occasionally calcium carbonate may be derived from oyster or egg shells.  One of the reasons people feed eggshells back to their chickens is when they need to supplement their diet with calcium for egg production. That calcium is actually calcium carbonate. So there are a few natural sources of calcium carbonate, however, the majority of the time, you're eating rocks. 


Now, plant based calcium means it was derived from a plant as the name suggests. Natural, real food. Your body recognizes this form of calcium much better.  If you sat around having limestone a la carte at every meal, your body would probably recognize and absorb that form better… But your body wasn't designed to consume limestone, so do it a favor and feed it plant based calcium.


Plant based Calcium is best found in seeds, seaweed, algae, beans, lentils, almonds, kale, spinach, and other greens. When choosing your vitamin and mineral supplements, always look for naturally sourced vitamins and plant based minerals. 


For a body-friendly vegetarian supplement, try PhytoMatrix - a multivitamin, mineral and phytonutrient supplement. 

PhytoMatrix® is created with naturally sourced, real-food vitamins and minerals that support the heart, immune system, and more to help keep you healthy and alert.*

These nutrient-dense caplets:

  • Provide a natural, food-sourced vitamin/mineral complex for maximum absorption and digestion.*
  • Support heart health.*
  • Offer antioxidant and immune system support.*
  • Support the production of energy with B vitamins.*




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