The accepted view is that synthetic nutrients are almost chemically identical to those found in food.
However, the production process of synthetic nutrients is very different to the way plants and animals create them. So despite having a similar structure, your body may react differently to synthetic nutrients.
Synthetic Vitamin C is an isolated vitamin that is obtained from genetically modified corn. The natural and synthetic vitamin C have the same affect on the body, however its’ availability and absorption is significantly increased when consumed from natural wholefood sources containing bioflavonoids and phytonutrients.
Bioflavonoids (or flavonoids or vitamin P) are natural, water-soluble plant pigments found in fruits and vegetables, which possess distinct anti-inflammatory, antihistaminic and antiviral properties. In addition, flavonoids inhibit the destruction of Vitamin C in the body, thus further enhancing its efficacy.
This is because when you eat real food, you’re not consuming single nutrients, but rather a whole range of vitamins, minerals, co-factors and enzymes that allow for optimal use by the body.
Without these additional compounds, synthetic nutrients are unlikely to be used by the body in the same way as their natural counterparts.
For example, studies show that natural vitamin E is absorbed twice as efficiently as synthetic vitamin E.
If you already consume a wide range of nutrients through your diet, taking extra supplements can exceed the recommended daily intake of many nutrients.
When taken in excess, water-soluble vitamins like vitamin C and B vitamins are flushed out of the body through your urine. However, fat-soluble vitamins — vitamins A, D, E, and K — may be stored in the body. This means that there is a risk of them accumulating to high levels, leading to hypervitaminosis.