Cracking the Multivitamin Code

At Garden of Life, we believe in real-food health! As a supplement company, that means all our formulas start with the power of whole foods. Taking our Vitamin Code Multivitamin daily helps establish a foundation for real food nutrition.

A multivitamin could be a necessary addition to your health routine for a number of reasons. In our modern world, this could be dietary challenges, nutritional shortcomings of commercial farming, environmental stressors, stress-packed lifestyles, and working preventatively for the future. All the necessary and supportive nutrients we require can be hard to get through diet alone.

Eating an organic, whole-food diet can be a challenge and a privilege. We try our best to fill up on nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables, but sometimes life gets in the way. By taking a well-formulated multivitamin, we can ensure we have basic coverage of all essential vitamins and minerals.

Diet aside, food nowadays is not as nutrient-dense as it once was. Due to the depletion of the soil by commercial farming techniques, we can become deficient in many nutrients even while eating an abundance and variety of whole food. Crops are turned over so quickly that the soil does not have time to replenish properly and chemical pesticides kill off nutrients. The soil we grow in is vital to the health of our food, and by extension, our own health.

There are also microorganisms that naturally exist in soil. They support plant growth, and when we consume them, help populate our gut with good bacteria that aid in digestion and absorption of nutrients. These microorganisms can be killed off by the above mentioned techniques. It is not just vitamins and minerals that have decreased, but antioxidants, enzymes and flora also!

Our lifestyles today increase our nutritional needs. Stress depletes the body of vital nutrients, and coping in our modern world requires additional resources. There are environmental stressors and toxins that we need to account for. Day-to-day we come in contact with pollution and many chemical exposures. This includes prescribed pharmaceuticals which while doing their job, also deplete certain nutrients. With increased exposure, our need for nutrients, and antioxidants in particular, increases. We are living under more pressure than our ancestors and our bodies need to be supported for it.

Taking a multivitamin helps to correct nutrient deficiencies, even while subclinical, so that we can work preventatively. Health problems can crop up overtime. By getting into the habit of supplementing with a multivitamin, we can work to prevent them.

There are a lot of different brands and formulations on the market! But, multivitamins can be broken down into three main categories; USP isolates, fermented or cultured, and whole food concentrates.

USP isolates, or United States Pharmacopeia, is where it all began. These are multivitamins that are made synthetically in a lab. The advantage of this is that they can be thoroughly tested to ensure potency, purity and quality, and formulated to meet the highest standards. USP was created prior to the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and was the standard for multivitamins for many years.

Like anything though, advancements are made to account for shortcomings. USP isolates lack cofactors. Without them, vitamins and minerals are not absorbed or used in the body as well. For example, vitamin C generally absorbs quite well, but is best taken with certain other antioxidants. We therefore would need to take more of the USP isolate for it to have the same impact as it does in nature.

So how do we get a formula closer to how nature intended? Next came fermented and cultured vitamins. In the 1980s, these processes were introduced to ensure products were based more on their natural forms. People were moving away from synthetic supplements, but it was still difficult to master an extraction process that generated a concentrated AND standardized amount. Fermentation helped bring it a step closer to nature. USP isolates were fed to microorganisms, or yeast. The yeast then broke the isolates down into a more bioavailable form. This metabolism also created the necessary cofactors. Thanks yeast!

Standardized whole food concentrates were then developed in the early 2000s. Our Organics line is an example of a whole food concentrate, free of synthetically produced nutrients, using a warm water extraction technique and then distilled in tablet form. It contains only Certified USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified organic fruits, vegetables and herbs. Our whole food concentrates are free of binders and fillers, and a great option for anyone who prefers a multivitamin tablet.

Vitamin Code takes it a step further than fermentation by culturing! Vitamin Code’s cultivation process takes two types of yeast in order to diversify the cofactors produced. Vitamin “code” also recognizes that microorganisms must be bound to specific amino acid chains (peptides) to culture. In the dual cultivation process, each yeast is paired with its peptide, and then fed each naturally extracted vitamin or mineral one-by-one. This generates a standardized amount of each nutrient with their individual cofactors to increase overall bioavailability and absorption.

Vitamin Code Multivitamin produces a wider spectrum of cofactors from naturally extracted vitamins and minerals, bringing us closer to the natural form in a concentrated formula. Vitamin Code is key for anyone struggling with absorption issues. It doesn’t contain any binders or fillers. It is a raw formula that comes in capsule form, meaning it can easily be mixed with water to be taken. Vitamin Code comes in women’s and men’s formulas, a one-a-day formula, and individual formulas for ages 50+ and prenatal purposes.