Saturday, April 6, 2013

Vitamin Analysis

According to Stacey J. Robinson, MD, an actual expert doctor with actual medical facts to back up her claims, there are three major factors to look at when you are evaluating supplements:

1. What forms of vitamins they contain;

2. Whether they contain potentially harmful, unnecessary ingredients; and
3. Whether the manufacturing process is monitored and the product is tested for quality

I have decided to have a look at a small number of the ingredients in the YOR Essential Vitamin (please note that the serving sizes listed on this product are 6 tablets, which is the recommended dosage per day. Six tablets per day!).

The very first example Dr. Robinson uses is Vitamin B-12. She states that "for vitamins to be effective, it is essential that the vitamin is in a form that is recognized and utilized by the body." She lists 4 forms of Vitamin B-12:
  • Cyanocobalamin: a synthetic form of B12 that DOES NOT occur in nature. In order for your body to use it, you have to cleave off the cyanide and convert it to methylcobalamin or adenosylcobalamin.
  • Methylcobalamin: the main form of B12 used by the human body and most commonly found in food.
  • Adenosylcobalamin: also found in the human body primarily in the liver.
  • Hydroxycobalamin: a natural form produced by bacteria."
She then states that the best form of Vitamin B-12 is:

"methylcobalamin, since it is utilized by the body and is the form in the foods that we eat. Almost all over-the-counter vitamin manufacturers use cyanocobalamin, the synthetic form, because it is cheap and has a longer shelf life. If your multivitamin lists “B12″ on the label and doesn’t specify the form, it is cyanocobalamin. Most physicians when giving B12 shots use cyanocobalamin, again because it is very inexpensive, costing pennies per dose."

Let's see what form of Vitamin B-12 YOR Essential Vitamin contains:


Dr Vivian V. Vetrano explains that "Cyanocobalamin is in every vitamin B12 supplement known because it is stable and less costly to manufacture. But it is not usable in the body. If the body has sufficient energy it may be able to offload the cyanide and benefit from the useful component. Mainly, what people experience after taking cyanocobalamin supplements is stimulation. The toxic effect of the cyanide triggers a rush of energy as the body works hard to excrete the poison, and this fools people into believing that the supplement has “worked” to heal them. Meanwhile, if their blood tests show an increase in B12, it mainly reflects the amount of the CYANOCOBALAMIN in the blood stream. The usable forms are carried into the cells and can’t be discovered by testing the blood as is the current practice. Blood tests are often inaccurate and, as previously stated, in the case of cyanocobalamin supplementation and B12 injections, about 90% of it has been eliminated from the body in 24 hours."

That sounds like some quality product right there. Moving on.

In 2000, the National Academy of Sciences established the following Recommended Dietary Allowances for vitamin C:
  • 1-3 years: 15 milligrams
  • 4-8 years: 25 milligrams
  • Males 9-13 years: 45 milligrams
  • Males 14-18 years: 75 milligrams
  • Males 19 years and older: 90 milligrams
  • Females 9-13 years: 45 milligrams
  • Females 14-18 years: 65 milligrams
  • Females 19 years and older: 75 milligrams
  • Pregnant females 18 years: 80 milligrams
  • Pregnant females 19 years and older: 85 milligrams
  • Lactating females 18 years: 115 milligrams
  • Lactating females 19 years and older: 120 milligrams
YOR Essential Vitamin contains 1000mg of Vitamin C (as ascorbic acid - which is a synthetic form of Vitamin C, prepared industrially from glucose), and there have been a number of studies on the ill-effects of taking large amounts of both synthetic and natural Vitamin C.

"Synthetic thiamin is usually marketed as thiamin hydrochloride or thiamin mononitrate" and is a "coal tar derivative" (most synthetic vitamins are petroleum derivatives). No thiamin hydrochloride or thiamin mononitrate is naturally found in any food." (see here). Surprise surprise, YOR Essential Vitamin contains Thiamin (vitamin B1) (as thiamin HCl). "Eating high dose synthetic B vitamins is like trying to make a computer when you only have 90% of the pieces with many of those pieces being larger than normal size; eating natural B vitamins is like trying to make a computer with 100% of the parts with all the parts the correct size. Which of the ‘computers’ would work better? Obviously the one with 100% of the right parts!"

I could go on and on here and I'm not even a health expert! I have probably missed so many important faults. The point of this post is to encourage people to open their eyes to products with such powerful claims. Dr. Robinson asks that consumers compare supplements with pharmaceutical-grade vitamins such as Xymogen Active Nutrients, and you can easily see the difference in quality. 

I don't doubt some of the ingredients in YOR Essential Vitamin are beneficial/natural, however it seems to me a pretty sub-par product for such a high price (which is $57.78 RRP, and $43.88 wholesale - prices have been recently taken down from the YOR Health website and you are only able to view by logging in).


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