Are whole-food or other novel delivery systems more effective at providing nutrients than a well-made tablet?

To find out, scientists tested USANA Essentials against 4 competitors to determine what you get when you take the recommended dosage of each product (see study at the link below)

“Some supplement companies make considerable claims about the bioavailability of their supplements, claiming that they are more efficiently absorbed. A few companies go even further and state that their “novel delivery systems” allow their products to be more bioavailable despite having low concentrations of select nutrients. Other companies suggest that the nutrients they use in their products are “natural” or “food-derived” and, therefore, are more bioavailable than conventional formulations. The purpose of this study was to assess whether blood levels of select key nutrients could reach similar levels after supplementation with 5 diverse dietary supplements.”

What this study shows –

Just because a product claims to have a novel delivery system, it provides little actual benefit if the dosages are not enough to significantly improve nutrient status in the body

It illustrates the benefit of taking supplements spread out 2-3 times per day to maintain better overall nutrient status (this is not applicable to all nutrients)

Well-made tablets are an effective delivery system, and in most cases can provide a higher level of nutrients that are actually delivered to the body than “whole-food” or other similar products that often cost more and provide less to begin with. This is also supported by the fact that although each of the 4 competitors provided the same dosage of riboflavin (B2), the daily tablet product resulted in greater absorption than equal amounts provided by the gel, juice-based, and plant-matrixed product.
Aside from essential vitamins and minerals, our product provides measurable levels of antioxidants to the body, and at higher levels than the tested products.

Other considerations –

No supplement replaces the benefit of a healthy diet

This study is not about bioavailability rate (ie. % absorbed), but is literally about the absolute amount absorbed. In other words, this is what you actually get from taking the recommended dosage of each product.

There are obviously exceptions and products that are better suited to liquid, gelcaps, powders, etc, depending on their content and intended use.

Our product was tested against the four most popular and representative products of each type, and results would vary depending on dosage and nutrient content in other products not tested.…/…/CR_Essentials_vs_4_Competitors.pdf