Synthetic nutrients are dietary supplements that are artificially manufactured in a laboratory or industrial process. Natural nutrients, on the other hand, are those found in whole foods. Natural vitamins come with several enzymes, minerals, lipids, proteins, and other nutrients to help the body digest and utilize them. Synthetic vitamins, however, are forms isolated from those they mimic.
Natural vitamin supplements are produced after obtaining vitamins and minerals directly from plants. The primary distinction between synthetic and natural vitamins lies in their production process. While natural vitamins can be sterilized in the laboratory, they are not produced or processed in the laboratory. Therefore, natural vitamin supplements allow you to be closer to nature without consuming the real sources of vitamins.
The prefix “dl” indicates that the supplement is synthetic, while “d” typically denotes natural supplements. Additionally, older adults are more likely to have deficiencies in nutrients such as B12 and vitamin D, which can have a significant impact on health. Synthetic dl-alpha-tocopherol is created with refined oils, trimethylhydroquinone, and isophytol. As a result, these supplements may contain only about 10% of natural vitamins when consumed. Moreover, when taken in supplement form on an empty stomach, some nutrients are much more bioavailable than when consumed as part of a mixed meal from natural food sources.
To address this issue, manufacturers create cheap vitamins in laboratories, fortify foods and beverages with them and convert them into multivitamins. So, if you want a multivitamin, look for one that uses whole food sources such as basil, guava, and other herbs, fruits and vegetables. Studies have shown that people who eat fortified foods or who take dietary supplements are more likely to exceed the tolerable maximum intake level (UL) for nutrients such as zinc, folic acid and vitamin A. While some synthetic nutrients have been associated with adverse health effects, many people need dietary supplements and fortified foods.