What are "practitioner-only-products"?
“Practitioner-only" brands should only be available through qualified health care practitioners. The premise behind the "practitioner-only" is producing higher quality, more potent products. Such products are manufactured to maximise impact and effectiveness, and therefore should only be accessed under the supervision of a qualified health professional.
Nutritionists for example, are specialised in nutrients. We understand how the ingredients will affect you. Taking advice from a health professional on what products to take ensures safety risks are minimised and care is individualised.
Practitioner products are generally of a higher quality, and more potent. There are a number of elements that contribute towards product quality and effectiveness. The source ingredients, The bioavailability of the ingredients and the excipients used in the manufacturing process all play an integral role.
Along with the importance of co-factors and ingredients being at a therapeutic dose, mineral absorption and bioavailability may be enhanced by the form the mineral comes in. Chelated minerals are minerals bound to a chelating agent which is designed to enhance their absorption in your body. An amino acid chelated mineral is a mineral (like calcium) that has been molecularly attached to an amino acid. Common amino acids used to make mineral chelates include aspartic acid, lysine and glycine. In general, animal studies indicate that chelated minerals are absorbed more effectively.
Bioavailability is influenced by many factors from both our bodies and from the supplement itself. Bioavailability refers to how efficiently your body can use a nutrient. The commonly accepted definition of bioavailability is the proportion of the nutrient that is digested, absorbed and metabolised through normal pathways.
It has also long been recognised that gut microbes contribute to the biosynthesis and bioavailability of vitamins and nutrients. Maintaining a healthy gut environment is vital for optimal nutrient synthesis and absorption as the gut microbiota synthesises certain vitamins and nutrients.
Bioavailability is also influenced by other factors including diet, nutrient concentration, nutritional status, health, and life-stage.
The role of the excipient should not be underestimated, particularly when it comes to generic pharmaceuticals. A number of pharmaceutical excipients are known to have side effects or contraindications. For example, excipients may make up to 90% of a product formulation and may be synthetic or sourced from plants or animals.
Depending on the medication/supplement type, excipients may be nil too low. Powders and capsules generally require fewer excipients than tablets due to binding and coating ingredients required for a tablet.
Each excipient serves a specific purpose for the proper performance of the supplement dose and form, i.e. capsule, tablet, powder or liquid.
Effectiveness and accessibility
As the products are generally more potent, this lends itself to supervised use under the instruction of a qualified health professional. As such, practitioner only products are not as accessible to the general public. Indeed practitioner only products are designed specifically for dispensing by a healthcare professional in accordance with the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989.
Product quality can vary significantly across different brands due to many factors including active ingredients, manufacturing methods, encapsulation, dosage, molecular weight, excipients used, conditions a plant is cultivated in and supporting evidence.
Please think twice before self diagnosis and prescription, seeing a specialised health practitioner will provide you with the right tools to serve your current health concerns and goals as well life long education that is individualised and safe for you.