What Else Are You Getting With Vitamins Supplements

What Else Are You Getting With Vitamins Supplements

Fillers,​ Binders,​ or​ What Else Am I Getting?

There’s more to​ a​ vitamin supplement than meets the​ eye—and sometimes
more than meets the​ label. Fillers,​ binders,​ lubricants,​ and the​ like do not haveto be listed and often aren’t.

But if​ you’d like to​ know what you’re swallowing,​ the​ following list should help.

Diluents or​ fillers These are inert materials added to​ the​ tablets
to increase their bulk,​ in​ order to​ make them a​ practical size for com-
pression. Dicalcium phosphate,​ which is​ an​ excellent source of​ calcium
and phosphorus,​ is​ used in​ better brands. it​ is​ derived from purified
mineral rocks. it​ is​ a​ white powder. Sorbitol and cellulose (plant fiber)
are used occasionally.

Binders These substances give cohesive qualities to​ the​ powdered
materials; otherwise,​ the​ binders or​ granulators are the​ materials that hold the​ ingredients of​ the​ tablet together. Cellulose and ethyl cellulose are used most often. Cellulose is​ the​ main constituent of​ plant fiber. Occasionally,​ lecithin and sorbitol are used. Another binder that can be used,​ but that you should be aware of—and look out for—is

Acacia (gum arabic)—a vegetable gum that has been declared GRAS (Generally Recognized as​ Safe) by the​ FDA (Food and Drug Administration) but which can cause mild to​ severe asthma attacks and rashes in​ asthmatics,​ pregnant women,​ and anyone prone to​ allergies.

Lubricants Slick substances,​ added to​ a​ tablet to​ keep it​ from sticking to
the machines that punch it​ out. Calcium stearate and silica are commonly
used. Calcium stearate is​ derived from natural vegetable oils. Silica is​ a​ natural white powder. Magnesium stearate can also be used.

Disintegrators Substances such as​ gum arabic,​ algin,​ and alginate are added
to the​ tablet to​ facilitate its breakup or​ disintegration after ingestion.

Colors They make the​ tablet more aesthetic or​ elegant in​ appear-
ance. Colors derived from natural sources,​ like chlorophyll,​ are best.

Flavors and sweeteners Used only in​ chewable tablets,​ the​ sweeteners are
usually fructose (fruit sugar),​ malt dextrins,​ sorbitol,​ or​ maltose.

Coating material These substances are used to​ protect the​ tablet from
moisture. They also mask unpleasant flavor or​ odor and make the​ tablet eas-
ier to​ swallow. Zein is​ one of​ the​ substances. it​ is​ natural,​ derived from corn protein,​ and a​ clear film-coating agent. Brazil wax,​ which is​ a​ natural product derived from palm trees,​ is​ also frequently used.

Drying agents These substances prevent water-absorbing (hydroscopic)
materials from picking up moisture during processing. Silica gel is​ the​ mostcommon drying agent.

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