We get it. You've worked hard for your money and you're a sophisticated, savvy patient. There's no reason why you should be paying top dollar for supplements just so that your practitioner can jack up the price and make a few bucks off of your health! Trust me: it's not about making an extra dollar when your local chiropractor, nutritionist or acupuncturist suggests you purchase your supplements directly from them rather than online. They really do just want what's best for you.
It's a question that actually comes up quite a bit in local health care facilities. Chiropractors, Dietitians, Acupuncturists and other holistic practitioners are constantly questioned about the reasoning behind direct purchasing. Why should patients pay that extra amount and go through the inconvenience of coming into the clinic when websites like Amazon, Ebay and Google have great deals just waiting to be taken advantage of? The answers fall into a few categories:
1. Ease of access to your personal health care provider
Let's get into the more obvious first. When you go into purchase your supplements you get the chance to chat with your health care practitioner. It's a chance to ask the questions that you need answers to and build upon that relationship. It's obviously a better option than reading strangers' reviews. Your practitioner has intimate knowledge about your health condition and what is the most viable and appropriate treatment approach for YOU.
They will be able to tell you the frequency and duration with which you should take your supplements. It may be best for you to start at a higher dose than is suggested in the directions, or they may want you to slowly wean yourself away from them over time, you'll never know if you're self prescribing (at worst) or continuing your treatment approach on your own.
2. Quality of product
It's always best to know where things come from or where they've been, and this is especially important regarding therapeutic approaches to health involving nutritional supplements. They're just that SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITION. This could vary from enzymes to pro-biotics to vitamins and minerals. Even oils can break down in the wrong conditions. It all boils down to two things most people never think of:
Did you know that temperatures in the Amazon.com warehouse, for example can regularly exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit? Just take it straight from Amazon's storage FAQs:
Not a fan of fine print?
The above states, "Temperature-sensitive products must be able to withstand at least a minimum temperature of 50 degrees and at least a maximum temperature of 100 degrees for the duration of the product's shelf life without adversely affecting product quality."
Many online retailers' warehouses don't adhere to the conditions that manufacturers suggest are most ideal to ensure the quality of their products. When you buy your supplements directly from your health care provider, you can ensure that they came directly from the manufacturer. What does that mean? That means that your supplements start in a temperature controlled environment, and stay in one for the duration of their time until they get into your hands.
There's literally articles written about the excessive temperatures of warehouses. So excessive in fact, that workers are unable to bear them. The delicate flora and fauna that are living pro-biotics won't be able to bear those temperatures either and most supplements break down in temperatures exceeding 80 degrees.
The other point is how long have those supplements been sitting in that warehouse? In our clinic, we don't suggest anyone take any supplement that is one year past the manufacturing date. Because online retailers only take into account expiration dates, there's always a chance you could be getting supplements outside of that one year time frame.Of course you can run into the problem of old supplements anywhere, so it's always best to check, but is't it easier to do so with a living, breathing human being that cares about your health rather than a company's compliance center?
We know it's easier and more convenient, but in our opinion, purchasing online just isn't worth the reward. We're happy if you purchase your supplements anywhere, as long as you are holding yourself accountable and taking them, but it would be better for you, us and your health if you came in or called for your your prescriptions. Remember, you want to get what you paid for, and the only way you can do that is to buy directly. We hope the above gave you the answers you need to make an objective and informed decision regarding supplements and your health.