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Are Your Supplements Sustainable?

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For anybody on the pursuit of optimum health, the deal with particular person wellness typically evolves to a broader dialog about our interconnectedness with our surroundings. This applies to every little thing from our circadian rhythm to the supply of our meat and produce to how our dietary supplements are sourced.

In the case of dietary dietary supplements, the origin and manufacturing of a specific product can drastically change not solely the way it capabilities within the physique, however on a bigger scale, it’s broader impression on the atmosphere.

More individuals are realizing the metabolic benefit that may consequence from utilizing supplementation to assist their health. Amongst the preferred and useful choices, when sourced and produced optimally, are omega-3 fish oil and protein powder. (Read in regards to the health advantages of fish oil right here and the significance of optimizing protein consumption right here.) As the excessive demand for fish oil, whey protein, and collagen protein continues to extend, a big-picture query naturally does as properly: Are my dietary supplements sustainable?

Fish Oil

As the health advantages of fish oil have turn into extra widespread data, the market has turn into extra saturated with product choices. While having buying choices is an efficient factor, it may possibly additionally result in confusion to the shopper — particularly when all of the choices are usually not created equally.

Over-fishing and huge, non-specific, repetitive catches in worldwide waters can pose a big ecosystem and sustainability drawback, and it’s vital to know if the product you’re taking is a contributor to this challenge.

Additionally, the journey of your product from fish to complement has a dramatic affect on the top consequence and its metabolic impression.

Here are some issues to think about:

Type of fish

When in comparison with bigger or extra predatory species of fish, smaller fish have much less of a mercury threat within the ultimate product. And with the proper practices, they will have much less of an impression on the atmosphere too.

At Life Time, our fish oil is equipped by Golden Omega, and it comes from anchovy sourced from carefully regulated fishing practices off the coast of Chile. Anchovy has one of many highest sources of omega-3 in comparison with different fish choices, so it’s a mindfully chosen, extra environment friendly choice. They have a lifespan of 12 to 16 months and reproduce quickly and regenerate rapidly.

This is a stark distinction to fish oil sourced from species equivalent to salmon, tuna, and cod.

Fishing practices

The fishery utilized by Golden Omega is carefully managed by unbiased analysis teams that measure the biomass and decide an appropriate quota of complete catch for every fishing season. It’s measured by authorities when it’s off-loaded from the boat. In addition to complete quantity caught, one other vital issue assessed and controlled is the age of the fish within the catch.

When there’s a “juvenile” catch — that means extra younger fish — meaning there’s replica occurring within the fish inhabitants. When the juvenile catch is above a predetermined proportion, all fishing is instantly halted. Reproduction and regeneration ought to to not be interrupted. In Golden Omega’s case, it’s common for the fishery used to halt manufacturing in the course of the season for that reason to guard the integrity of the ecosystem.


The advertising and marketing of most so-called “Norwegian fish oil” — identifiable with imagery of cold-water fish caught recent and processed for his or her omega-3 oils — will be deceptive. Many fish oil merchandise marketed this fashion are usually not truly sourced off the coast of Norway in any respect: they’re caught within the South Pacific, then the crude fish oil is transported to Scandinavia in massive drums, the place varied firms purchase the oil from brokers.

This is much from the case in Life Time’s product providing. Our rigorously chosen provider is uniquely positioned subsequent to the most important fishery on this planet for anchovy, which sidesteps the necessity to transport the oil massive distances for processing. As a consequence, they’ve naturally minimized their carbon footprint.

Just a few samples of oil are shipped to Norway for the only real objective of conducting unbiased laboratory testing by a separate firm to make sure that the samples are 100 p.c anchovy — and never sourced from fish that would doubtlessly have a extra detrimental impression on the atmosphere.

As a bonus, the manufacturing web site makes use of 100 p.c renewable vitality sources. The drums that transport the crude oil are purposefully bought in components to be assembled onsite. This permits each truckload of drum components to yields what would have been six truckloads of accomplished drums.

Whey and Collagen Protein

Cattle farming and sourcing is a crucial subject in relation to sustainability and environmental health. It’s good to image cows roaming with their fellow herd on inexperienced pastures, fortunately chomping on grass within the sunshine. Sadly, in relation to lots of beef and cow-sourced protein in the marketplace, this picture is much from actuality.

When purchasing for whey and collagen protein powders, listed here are a number of factors to think about:

Avoid artificial pesticides and hormones

Protein powders at Life Time are proudly produced by rigorously chosen producers positioned in Northern California.

Our whey protein is sourced from pasture-raised, grass-fed cattle from New Zealand. Our collagen peptides is sourced from pasture-raised, grass-fed cows in Argentina, Columbia, and Brazil. Both are intentional alternate options to the feedlot cattle typically used for lots of the merchandise sourced within the United States.

Feedlot cattle are sometimes injected with hormones to drive sooner progress and are given feed that’s closely sprayed with pesticides. The cows in New Zealand and South America which might be utilized in manufacturing of Life Time’s whey and collagen graze on grass that is freed from artificial pesticides, and they’re by no means injected with progress hormones.

Happy cows

For anybody with a sustainability concern, the health of the cow — and whether or not or not it was handled humanely — is a prime precedence.

Woefully, lots of protein powder in the marketplace is sourced from cows which might be raised in concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). These operations can pose each an environmental and animal welfare concern. The cows are penned carefully collectively, unable to roam, and are fed feed as an alternative of grazing on grass like they’d of their pure atmosphere.

At Life Time, our whey protein is sourced from milk from completely satisfied cows. These cows are usually not from feedlots or CAFOs. They’re a part of a herd and roam on pasture, feeding on grass — the best way nature meant.

In New Zealand, the place the whey is sourced from, the cows naturally give start at a better charge than the traditional grain-fed, penned cows within the U.S. Their product can also be greater in useful IgG immune compounds, with some laboratory assessments confirming a rise of as much as 25 p.c — making the ultimate product extra useful for our health, with extra environment friendly manufacturing.

Supply chain

For many firms which have their protein powder manufacturing solely within the U.S., the availability chain will be surprisingly lengthy and disjointed. Each stage of processing is continuously sub-contracted to completely different firms throughout state strains. This leads to extra transportation and longer processing occasions.

In distinction, the whey and collagen choices by way of Life Time have a purposeful brief provide chain for manufacturing, which is tight and managed.

Additionally, for all of Life Time’s choices, we solely use high quality producers with cautious ingredient choice and rigorous testing requirements. (Read extra about complement regulation right here: Are Dietary Supplements Unregulated?)

Ultimately, it’s vital to know the place your dietary supplements got here from — and what course of they went by way of to finish up as a ultimate product in your palms. The journey from start to complete can and does have a big impression on not simply your personal health, however the health of our planet as properly.

It’s additionally price noting that this dedication to accountable sourcing isn’t precisely new at Life Time — we’ve had these provide chain and manufacturing relationships in place for a number of years. In a means, it’s one in every of our greatest saved secrets and techniques that we’re proud to share with you. We make merchandise we belief for ourselves and really feel fortunate to supply them to you too.

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