Facts, Info, History, Data, Studies + more

Q+A below with Podcast Host Brad King

What are health supplements generally and why do people use them?

Health supplements are supposed to be combinations or singular (Vitamin A, E, C, etc.) nutrients that are required for the normal and preferably optimal functioning of our biochemistry. In a sense, they are the components of our machinery that allow us to function the way we are designed to. 

How are organic natural whole food derived supplements different and better?

Well first off as the name implies, organic or in this case certified organic (to make sure it really follows organic practices), signifies that there are no pesticides used in the growing of the whole foods. This is significant, as pesticides are designed to poison and kill insects, and are therefore not exactly body friendly to us either. Most supplements are manufactured using starting ingredients like GMO corn, petroleum, coal tar, and other nasty chemicals and are manipulated to resemble nutrients that are found in food. The problem is, these nutrients are synthetic and isolated and are missing essential cofactors that are found in real foods. Real food derived nutrients on the other hand are identical to what is found in food and they are – or should be – complexed and synergised with nutrient cofactors that allow them to do the job they are designed to do at the cellular level.   

What is the short history of supplement use with mankind over the years?

Well before the 21st century, scientists only knew about three essential nutrients in our foods: 1) protein, 2) carbs and 3) fat.  This was also around the time that modern food-processing was developing, which caused a depletion in the nutrients that had not been discovered yet (not until 1912). For instance, most grains (wheat, rice, oats, cornmeal, barley, etc.) are packed with B vitamins, however once these grains are milled or polished, B vitamins are all but destroyed. Another example is cow’s milk, which is also high in natural vitamin C. When milk is pasteurized, vitamin C and other nutrients are destroyed and the list goes on.

So as nutrient deficiency diseases like scurvy, rickets and beriberi were on the rise, researchers had to find quick ways to allay these deficiencies, so they started to create vitamin formulas. The first vitamin supplements were derived from foods, but as demand increased so did the innovation of using industrial chemicals to make so-called nutrients. By the beginning of World War II, scientists had learned how to synthesise vitamins to keep up with the demand and synthetic, isolated vitamins were born. Of course, the rest is history.

Why is it important for people to supplement for optimal health?

Well first off, it is well known that the overall quantity of nutrients in our foods has diminished excessively since the early 1950’s. There’s no need to delve into why – aside from overfarming – but suffice it to say, nutrients in conventional produce are no longer what they once were. Aside from this, research from UCLA (Dr. Brice Aimes) suggests that if we are modestly deficient in even one of the 30 essential nutrients, the human body has no choice but to direct whatever nutrients are left towards immediate biological needs (survival) and away from the regulation and repair of our genetic material (DNA) and various proteins that increase overall health. In other words, even moderate nutrient deficiencies can cause DNA damage and risk of disease. In my strong opinion, it’s much better to be safe than sorry.

What are emerging trends for supplement delivery and uptake?

Supplement delivery and uptake trends are constantly evolving as we learn more and more about how the human body accepts and utilizes nutrients. There are so many factors that can impact nutrient absorption. For example, nutrient size, nutrient form, age, health profile, compromised digestion, etc. 

The highest quality nutrients will always come from real foods and perform as real food nutrients do. Foods have all the built in essentials for allowing the nutrients to be absorbed and delivered properly. There is a life-force in real food that is just not present in synthetic and isolated nutrients and yes, it does affect the overall deliverability and performance of these nutrients.

Transparency is important in branding, why even more so in supplements?

As mentioned earlier, most supplements are derived from starting materials no person in their right mind would ingest if they actually knew. Aside from this a great deal of ingredients in your favorite vitamin formula are processed and often grown in China. The problem with this is, China has very different standards than we do in Canada and the USA. At Snap Brands, we do not use any ingredient that is grown or processed in China, or any other country we cannot fully follow the chain of events on. We believe in complete transparency; from the farm all the way to your home. This is the brand experience we live by.

What are all of the fruits and vegetables in our proprietary blend?

Samuraw Organic Complete (owned by Snap Brands) is derived from the following 25 certified organic superfoods: Apple, Acai Berry, Acerola Berry, Alfalfa Grass, Beet, Blueberry, Broccoli, Carrot, Chlorella, Cranberry, Green Cabbage, Kale, Kelp, Maitake, Moringa, Parsley, Pumpkin, Raspberry, Red Reishi, Spinach, Sunflower Seeds, Strawberry, Sweet Potato, Shitake, and Tomato.

What are all of the vitamins, minerals, micronutrients that are in our proprietary blend?

Samuraw Organic Complete (owned by Snap Brands) contains 21 vitamins and minerals including their natural micronutrient cofactors in their most natural and bioavailable food-state (derived exclusively from the above whole, fresh, organic, non-GMO fruits and vegetables without any artificial or synthetic nutrients).

When are the best times to take supplements and why is spreading throughout the day important?

Every supplement is unique and therefore requires different criteria for optimal absorption. This is critical, as we are only as healthy as the nutrients we are able to absorb and utilize efficiently. Fat soluble nutrient like vitamin D, A, carotenoids, E and K are best taken with food, as they require a fat source for absorption and other nutrients are fine to take on an empty stomach as long as they  come from real foods – as in the case of Samuraw Organic Complete (owned by Snap Brands). Since many supplements (vitamin C and B vitamins are good examples) are water soluble, they can easily be consumed a couple of times each day to ensure optimal saturation levels.    

What are the most popular and mainstream supplement product verticals? 

  • Plant-based nutrition: people are always looking for healthier and cleaner alternatives (such as organic medicinal mushrooms).
  • Skin Health: People are scared of signs of aging, so they clamour for anything that delays the inevitable (think collagen).
  • Brain Function: People understand their faculties are their most precious resource.
  • Stress Reduction: People are stressed out of their minds and looking for natural ways to deal with the negative impacts of stress. 
  • Taste: People are picky and want whatever they consume to be as great-tasting as possible (think sweet gummy bears).
  • Convenience: People wish for the most efficient delivery method possible.

How is Snap brands on the cutting edge of health supplement thinking? 

My role in Snap Brands is utilizing my 25 years of experience in award-winning product formulations to help create, partner and acquire the most innovative nutraceuticals the world has to offer. Snap has an extremely efficient system in place for making sure 1) there is a valid need for the supplements we are bringing to market, 2)  the supplements actually work and 3) the supplements fit into one of our three unique categories: Plant-based nutrition, Bio-aging and functional mushroom technologies.  


citations used for research