Medical Grade Vitamins

Medical Grade Vitamins

Pay for What You Get

When you pay for vitamin supplements you should get vitamins not charcoal, sawdust or other fillers. There is a huge difference between medical grade vitamin supplements and run of the mill store grade vitamin supplements. How do we separate the wheat from the chaff? In this blog I would like to explore with you the differences. Also, my recommendation is that medical grade vitamin supplements also be whole food supplements.

One thing to remember is there is a difference between your body’s ability to absorb vitamin supplements depending on what they contain. Sometimes companies add chemicals to help the body absorb the vitamin supplements. This does not mean that we should trade content for absorbability. So, let’s take a look at the first question: how can we be sure that a vitamin supplement is what it says?

What Does the Term, Food Grade Vitamins, Mean?

Let’s examine what the terms mean. There are basically three major types of grades pertaining to what is in a product. Vitamins and supplements, which are suitable for animals, the lowest on this scale, are called feed grade. These are not typically in the marketplace, but obviously we get them indirectly when we consume the animals that are fed these supplements. We won't even talk about that one! I will save that for another blog.

Store grade as the name suggests are the vitamin supplements sold in stores. To be categorized as store grade, vitamin supplements have to include 20% of what they say they contain. Not really that much. Typically, these vitamin supplements are mixed in big batches and although the batch may contain all of the ingredients, the individual capsules may not. The reality is you have no idea when you take a capsule what is actually in the capsule. So, you really don't know what percentage of the vitamin supplement you are taking.

This issue of not getting enough vitamins in the capsule is compounded if the vitamin supplements are not absorbed in your system. After all, you don’t want to spend your money just to flush an entire capsule that does not get absorbed. We have all read the articles saying that many of the capsules that are not absorbed are simply flushed in the same form that they are taken.

They are so poorly absorbed, in fact, that the brand name can still be read on the tablet.


This is caused by the lack of bioavailability found in food-grade vitamins. Bioavailability is a measure of absorption. It is defined as the fraction of the administered vitamin dose that reaches your systemic circulation, i.e., the amount that actually reaches your blood stream. Vitamins administered intravenously have a 100% bioavailability. Vitamins that begin with only 20% of the amount you expect are substantially lower as the body does not absorb 100% of what is in the capsule.

So … What Are Medical Grade Vitamin Supplements?

Medical vitamin supplements must meet the United States Pharmacopeia  (USP) standards. The USP provides assurance to consumers that the vitamin supplement will contain in excess of 99% of the ingredients stated. In addition to this, the bioavailability is much higher in medical grade vitamin supplements than that of store grade vitamins.

And ...  What About Whole Food Vitamin Supplements?

Whole food vitamin supplements are made from concentrated whole foods. Most of these contain enzymes, coenzymes, phytonutrients, chelated amino acids, and antioxidants typically found in foods. Chelated minerals are organically attached to the amino acid.

These supplements do not include additives such as fillers, coatings or lubricants. Because they are not over-processed in a manufacturing plant, they can be combined with pure nutrients in a process that leaves most of the nutrients in place.

The Skinny

Choose medical grade vitamin supplements made with whole food ingredients.