If you've ever taken advantage of advice from one of our helpful naturopaths, herbalists or homeopaths, you know how vital they can be to your experience at Pharmaca. What you probably didn't know is that our team of practitioners also makes it possible for Pharmaca to carry practitioner-brand supplements, which must be sold under the guidance of a licensed practitioner. That means you'll find a host of brands at Pharmaca that you won't find at your corner drugstore or natural foods store.
Practitioner-brand supplements, such as those from Pure Encapsulations, are some of the purest, most potent forms of vitamins and nutrients available. They're formulated based on the clinical experience of medical practitioners, and often use patented raw materials, ones that are most bioavailable in the body and are therefore most potent. We spoke with some of our own practitioners, Brian Vaitkus, naturopathic doctor at our Portland store, and Sheila Devitt, herbalist in San Francisco, to find out what they love about practitioner brands.
"The purity of ingredients, and transparency on the labels, is exceptional," says Brian. "Plus, they're all clinically tested before they're put out on the market." Brands like Pure Encapsulations are also free of additives like magnesium stearate, which can reduce the bioavailability of many supplements found on the shelves of most drug stores.
Sheila appreciates the fact that many practitioner brands also strive to ensure their supplements are free of common allergens, like wheat, corn or soy-allergens that often show up in the manufacturing processes of other brands. As people see increasing allergies to these pervasive foods, she sees allergen-free supplements as more important than ever.
Finally, practitioner brands can be an integral part of doctor-recommended regimes for multiple health conditions, offering combinations of unique ingredients that simply aren't available in other formulations.
But because these formulations are so specialized, it's important to work with a practitioner when using these brands. "You want to make sure you have someone helping you make an informed decision," says Sheila. "Ideally you're working with a practitioner who can help gauge your progress."
If you're suffering from a chronic health condition or need allergen-free supplements, talk to a Pharmaca practitioner about whether a practitioner-brand might be right for you.