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Monday, April 6, 2009

Do You Know Where Your Vitamins are Made?


My friend Sarah Glinka brought up a good point recently: Where do you buy American-made vitamins?

Many Americans have no clue where the nutritional supplements they put into their bodies and those of their children are manufactured. And most people would be shocked to find out that most of these products are made in unregulated facilities in Asia.

While most supplements are "distributed" by American companies, many times the identity of the manufacturer is conspicuously left off the packaging. With the lead and melamine-laced products that have come out of China within the last year, the last thing you want to do is put something "foreign" into your system.

In researching American vitamin companies, I discovered three companies that manufacture supplements right here in the U.S.A. While they do get some of their ingredients from other countries (which is unavoidable), all three companies adhere to the FDA Good Manufacturing Process.

One drawback is that these companies' products must be bought online, by phone or catalog, but the good news: they each have informative websites, and offer special shipping rates and reasonable prices.

Here's the rundown:

Puritan's Pride
This company, headquartered in Long Island, NY, began manufacturing nutritional supplements more than 40 years ago. I'm not sure everything they sell, like personal care products, is American-made so be sure to ask if it's not clear. (Overall, I have been pleased with the vitamin supplements I have purchased from them.)

Earthturns
On their website the company states that they ONLY sell products that are Made In America. Their Dee Cee Labs vitamins are made in a "FDA approved facility in Tennessee." Otherwise, they don't say exactly where the products are made.

Hillestad Pharmaceuticals USA
Hillestad® Pharmaceuticals, located in the Northwoods of northern Wisconsin, has been manufacturing food supplements since 1959. They even offer tours of their manufacturing facility.

iHerb.com
While this site doesn't carry all American-made products, they do offer great deals on products you will find at your local health food store. First-time customers can also get $5 off their first order when they use the code: RIT 744

Here's to your good health! Shop wisely.

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