Once upon a time I shopped at the local vitamin store. It was spring semester during my junior or senior year of college and I felt like I should do something for my health. A cleanse or vitamins or something. And because I wanted to get my vitamins from a reputable place I went to a store that specialized in vitamin supplements. I figured this was probably better than going to the vitamin aisle of the grocery store.
The salesperson asked me questions about what I was looking for and sold me on some sort of cleansing system that involved prepackaged vitamins and powder to mix in my water. It was one of their best-selling products and kind of pricey. But I got a membership, so that saved me 10% or so and I walked out of the store feeling proud of myself for taking such proactive care of my health. Very adult of me.
And for a month or so I took those supplements regularly.
Did I experience a drastic change in health?
No, not really.
Did the salesperson follow up with me to make sure the product was working?
Did I repurchase? I think I bought another bottle of supplements again several months later when I was looking for a quick weight loss fix (which also didn’t work).
As time went on and I learned more about health and wellness I realized that I don’t want to shop at big name-brand vitamin stores. Namely, because:
- They don’t really care about my health. The person that sold me that cleansing system was looking for a sale. He had no vested interest in whether the product truly worked for me.
- Their products didn’t me feel better. Now I know that sometimes it can take several months to experience a health change from taking supplements. But I’ve learned that many brands of supplements are not actually absorbed into the body. Simply put – it’s not enough to just put vitamin ingredients into a capsule and sell it as a supplement. If the body cannot absorb and utilize those ingredients (and thus affect how a person feels), then it’s a waste of money. It’s like flushing money down the toilet. Pun intended. 😉
- They may carry adulterated products. Meaning – I could buy a bottle of supplements that contain contaminants they shouldn’t. Or I could buy a supplement that is supposed to contain a specific ingredient, but it actually doesn’t. Recent investigations have shown that big-name vitamin companies carry adulterated products.
As I’ve learned about health and wellness I am so.much.more picky about what I put in my body. Because frankly, I’d rather take nothing than take a product that my body can’t absorb or a product that doesn’t even contain what it’s supposed to. Furthermore, I want to vote with my dollar. I want to support companies that go above and beyond to provide safe, effective products and stellar customer support.
And as far as I’m concerned, big name-brand vitamin stores don’t fit that bill.