Bioavailability is the rate and extent to which a substance enters the blood circulation and its usability by the body to achieve a measurable, desired response.
Bioavailability may be impaired by using poor quality binders which are used to hold the pill together until it is ingested. If the body can’t break down the binder, it does you absolutely no good to take that product.
The ingested material also needs to be absorbed through the intestinal lining to reach the blood stream. The interaction of two substances (herb/drug, drug/drug, herb/herb, etc.) may impair the intestinal absorption. For example, a preparation of an antacid combined with calcium will make the absorption of calcium nearly impossible. In fact, nearly all vitamins, minerals and herbs absorb better in an acidic environment. Certain forms of minerals also absorb better than others simply because of their chemical structure. For example, a higher percentage of calcium citrate will be absorbed compared to calcium carbonate.
Once into the blood, you want to make sure the absorbed nutrient can be broken down if needed and used by the body in a safe manner. Cyanocobalmine for an example can be absorbed but once in the body it needs to be broken down. Unfortunately, when cyanocobalmine is broken down a cyanide molecule will be produced, which is toxic and needs to be detoxified and excreted.
Therefore, you want to be sure you are taking a quality product with the guidance of a knowledgeable nutritional counselor who can ensure you are taking a safe, effective product and your digestive tract is functioning at optimum levels. If not, you are simply throwing money down the drain or worse; you may actually harm your health.
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