Dietary supplements: The secrets hidden in the ingredients

Are you taking any vitamins or supplements? Do you actually know what’s in them or how to read the label?  Did you read the ingredients or just look at the pretty colors and call it good?

I want to share the cold hard truth about the billion dollar industry that neglects teaching their customers about their products.

Continue reading to learn how to read a supplement label, how to choose the right one and get a bang for your buck ! Win Win!

The hard truth about the supplement industry

The supplement industry is a HUGE money making one.  More than two-thirds of American adults take dietary supplements each year. The supplement industry contributes $121.6 billion to the U.S. economy, It’s insane!  Here’s 1 of the reasons why this industry does so well.

Most supplement companies put out something with an obscure amount of added ingredients, proprietary blends and other bullsh*t for simply 1 my opinion.  They don’t give a shit about our bodies.  All they care about is how they can make the cheapest product with the biggest profit and how fast they can get it off the shelves.  This is such an unfortunate way of making money.  But it works.  We are not taught how to properly read the labels and assess what is good for us, ingredient wise.  We buy what is cheap, convenient and looks the “prettiest”.

The first thing to look at when you purchase any supplement

Active Ingredients

The nutrition label is typical divided into two sections.  The “Active ingredients” and “Other Ingredients.”  Active ingredients are what actually does the healing or helping.  The muscles of the supplement.  The “other ingredients” are mostly fillers, binders, flavors, additives or dyes that are hidden and can typically hinder the supplement from actually working.  Defeats the purpose, right?

The first thing you should do when looking at a supplement is read the “Active Ingredients.”  If a company does not disclose its full ingredients, give a good chuckle, put it back on the shelf, and say “thank you, but no thank you” for making your decision that much easier.

The active ingredients aren’t the ones you really have to “dissect”. It’s the “Other ingredients” that screw ya up. Let me explain.

The “Other Ingredients”

Generally speaking, the fewer “other ingredients”, the better.  But this normally isn’t the case.  Companies have to list in order the amount the product contains, but the manufacturer doesn’t need to state how much of each ingredient is included. This results in blends that may contain dangerously high amounts of certain ingredients.

I am going to make this simple and use a well known multivitamin for example.







I am going to focus on a few of the ingredients listed on the “other Ingredients”.  This is for a few reasons.

  • I believe that there are a few ingredients that are more dangerous than others. (Not that the other ingredients aren’t important but some are more harmful than others.)
  • The list is too dang long ! There’s more additives in this vitamin then there are “active ingredients.” Not how it should be !

So here we go !!

Titanium Dioxide

Titanium Dioxide is an untested nanoparticle powder.  Gibberish ! In other words it adds whiteness and brightness to products and also helps them resist discoloration. Titanium dioxide also reflects ultraviolet (UV) light, which is why it’s often used as an ingredient in sunscreens.

Most titanium dioxide (close to 70 percent) is also used as a pigment in paints, but it’s also added to cosmetics, toothpastes, pharmaceuticals, paper and food.

Get a load of this ….






The left photo is of Centrum’s ingredients.  The right is Anny’s Nail Polish.  They both have Titanium Dioxide in the ingredient list.  So basically you’re eating nail polish.  Haha, okay not exactly.  But how gross is that !?  That should not be in something that we are ingesting.

Titanium Dioxide is a binder in a great deal of supplements.  It has been linked to a number of problems including DNA damage, chronic fatigue, and fibromyalgia.

Magnesium Stearate

Magnesium Stearate, or Magnesium Salt, is another hazardous ingredient. It’s an additive found in 95 percent of supplements on the market. It adds no nutritional value and affects your body’s ability to absorb the supplement as a whole.  It’s basically just another useless ingredient to add the smorgasbord of a list.  It keeps the supplement from sticking to production machinery.

So they add ingredients to their product so their machinery doesn’t get dirty?! (Rolls eyes)

I read about a study once back in the good ol’ college days taking my nutrition courses.  They had 5 people ingest a multivitamin, specifically Centrum.  After monitoring these people for hours on end, taking multiple xrays, they came to an astonishing conclusion.


WHAT THE NAME OF SAM HILL IS THAT !! (Elf referrance 🙂 )

Magnesium Stearate specifically is one of the reasons for this outcome.  I don’t know about you, but to me, that’s just complete kaka.

Even if this wasn’t bad enough it has also been found to be completely contaminated.  Full of calcium hydroxide and BPA.  Both considered to be a “moderately hazardous” chemicals.  Gross !


Now I’m sure some of you have heard of this ingredient before.  It’s come up in the media for years now as a “no-no”.  Maltodextrin is a carbohydrate used as a filler and sweetener. Mainly found in corn.  You can also find it in energy drinks, some nutrition bars, mass gainers, and meal replacement shakes.

Food labels claim the ingredient as “natural,” but this is marketing magic words. Maltodextrin does come from a natural source, but it’s highly processed. It has an extremely high glycemic index (meaning it spikes your blood sugar)—twice that of table sugar.  It can harm your gut by suppressing the good gut bacteria and allows the bad to run riot.

Artificial colors and dyes

Most supplements will have artificial dyes in their products.  This is simply for them to be pretty colors and attract not only adults, but kids too (Hello Mr. Flinstone Gummies !) Companies know that someone will buy the rainbow colored, scooby doo shaped, sugary sh*t over the plain Jane, white, unflavored pill.  Admit it, we’re all children and want to stomp our feet until we get what we want.

Most popular multivitamins contains dyes such as Red #40 (comes from beetles by the’re welcome) and Yellow #6.

I know, why does this matter, who cares, right?

Both of these dyes are part of the “Southhampton Six” as they call it.  Sounds like a gang from Straight Out of Compton, but no it is not.  They are a group of notorious food dyes.  There has been multiple studies that these dyes and ADHD in children are linked. 

In the UK they have to have a warning label on the supplement indicating that these dyes are on the ingredients list.  Apparently the rest of us need to get with the program.

Now that I’ve gone over just a smidge of the ingredients that are dangerous, lets get into the most obvious of things…

  • What does it mean when the label says FDA facility approved?
  • Supports metabolism and energy?
  • the famous “all natural”?

Let’s get into the nitty gritty.

FDA Facility Approved

Simply put, this doesn’t mean squat.  The FDA (Food Drug Administration) doesn’t approve facilities that make supplements.  So why they even put this on the label is probably just another marketing strategy.

It does, however, provide how manufacturers should keep equipment clean and prevent contamination.  But, as said before, Magnesium Stearate is the solution to this problem.  More and more ingredients are being added to off set another.  The agency of the FDA has no official seal indicating that these rules are even followed.  So, again, pointless and damaging.

Has the light bulb gone off yet ?!

Supports Metabolism and Boosts Energy

Supplement manufactures don’t have to provide any evidence for claims related to a products ability to improve the body’s function.  Only companies that make prescription and over-the-counter drugs can do that.  That’s why labels for the products often use words like “promote”, “support”, or “boost.” metabolism (or such and such).  They can use these words hoping people think that it will solve all their problems.  You never or rarely see a label claiming that it will treat cancer or any diseases.  Don’t be fooled by this sorcery.

All “Natural”

This one is probably one of my favorites.  It’s a good ol’ knee slapper.  Mostly because it’s the most bogus, overused, bullshnat that can ever go on a supplement label, or even food for that matter.  It does not mean it is organic, free from GMO (genetically modified organisms), or has no artificial ingredients.  This does not mean it is also safe to take.  This can literally mean anything the manufacturer wants it to mean.  Which could be that it contains .0001% of a natural ingredient or could mean ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.  Natural does not mean natural anymore.  Or at least in this case.

Side Note!

Proper nutrition is key to lifelong health.  However, you shouldn’t rely on supplements completely to meet all your nutritional needs.  Healthy food is the best way to get your vitamins and minerals.

Supplements are supplemental.  Take them when necessary, but don’t overdo it.  When you do take them, make sure they are good quality.  That goes for multivitamins, fish-oils, even protein powders.  You don’t want to harm your health with toxic ingredients and believe false information.

So what do I do?

Read the ingredients and pay attention to the “other ingredient” section.  Don’t buy something just because it’s pretty or in gummy form.  We are not children as much as we would like to be sometimes.

Do your research.  It may take some time but look into the company and what they stand for.  Where their ingredients source from.  It’s better to look into this and KNOW instead of grabbing whatever is at your local grocery store and it hurting you in the long run.  If you can’t find anything on this company or supplement specifically, run.  And don’t look back.

Good companies that are using ethically sourced ingredients will have information on their products regardless.  They may be a bit more expensive but it beats having to trash your body with toxins.  You’ll eventually find yourself in the doctors office being prescribed something to offset the harm you’ve done over the years.

Follow these tiperoos and consult with your doc before starting any supplement regimens.

  • Don’t buy cheap drug store supplements.  Invest in the extra 5 or 10 bucks for the good shtuff.
  • Buy from companies that are transparent about their ingredients and produce.


  • Magnesium Stearate
  • Titanium Dioxide
  • Maltodextrin

Don’t but Children’s vitamins when the following is added

  • Soy
  • Milk and dairy
  • Corn
  • Wheat gluten
  • Artificial colors or flavorings
  • Sweeteners   * Sweeteners are kind of necessary in a lot of infants and children’s vitamins.  Make sure the sweetener has no high fructose corn syrup.

I am not a doctor.  I am a certified Nutrition Specialist.  So please consult with your Doctor before starting any Nutritional Supplement Regimen.

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Here are just a few of the supplements I use for my own health and fitness goals.

Garden of Life Multivitamin

On sale right now too !! Their Protein Powder is amazing as well.  There is Maltodextrin in this multi but it is that last ingredient on the list.  Everything is 100% organic ! $54.50 – $33.99

Whole Food Multivitamin for Kids

Omega-3 Fish Oil

Great for brain, heart and joint health ! Also on sale ! $29.95 – $9.95

LAST BUT NOT LEAST .. A MEAL REPLACEMENT GREAT FOR ANYONE ! I do not use this myself but I did my research and this is one has the least additives and is great for your health. $39.99 – $26.24

Organic Plant Based Vegan Protein Meal Replacement Shake

I hope this helped you gain some knowledge about supplements, their labels and ingredients.  Next time you hit the store, put the gummies down, pull up your big girl pants and invest in the good stuff!  Your body will thank you for it!


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