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Whether you've been taking daily vitamins since childhood or you've decided it's time to supplement your diet with the essential nutrients of a multivitamin, more and more adults are relying on subscription services to deliver their daily nutrition.

From personalized vitamins and supplements for dry skin to supplements to boost your immune system, there's a vitamin subscription company that meets your needs. Let's break down the differences between some of the leading vitamin subscription companies so you can choose the best brand for you and the environment.

What are Vitamin Supplements?

Vitamins are nutrients that our body cannot manufacture by itself, yet are essential for its proper functioning. Under ideal circumstances, you should obtain these vitamins through a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. However, multivitamin supplements can work to compliment your diet and provide you with complete nutrition. Some, like krill oil supplements, provide a single nutrient or vitamin while others contain a complete range of vitamins and minerals to help support your body. There are also dietary supplements like vegan plant-based protein powders that can help with nutritional goals.

A vitamin subscription allows you to set up a recurring delivery schedule for your daily vitamin supplement to ensure that you never run out, while also allowing you to choose the right types of supplements for you. In addition to vitamins, you can also find probiotics and digestive enzymes to help support digestive and immune health.

Our Top Picks for the Best Vitamin Subscription Brands

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

How We Chose these Subscriptions

There are a number of factors to consider when committing to a vitamin subscription. Here are a few of the key features that we prioritized in making our list.

  • Options: Vitamins and supplements can aid in filling gaps of what you need but aren't getting from your diet. Everyone's needs are different, whether you're pregnant, an older adult, or have medical afflictions such as immune or vitamin-deficiency issues. So having a wide variety of products to choose from can make the difference between a vitamin pack supplier being a go-to, or a hard pass.
  • Ingredients: Vitamins and supplements come from raw materials, and it's important to know how they source those ingredients. With that information in mind, you need to look for a company that does not include fillers, additives, or preservatives in products.
  • Testing: Daily vitamins have to be tested to ensure purity, efficacy, and bioavailability of ingredients. Expertise can not be improvised, and some brands even run several tests on their products before making them available.
  • Sustainability: If it's helping you, it should help the planet in the process. Suppliers that work with vegan, natural, organic, and even reusable packaging are a win-win on this matter. Since you will be getting their product delivered regularly, it is an important consideration. We also looked for companies committed to higher standards in their sourcing and manufacturing practices.
  • Cost: Depending on the number of recommended supplements, costs might vary from as low as $1 or less per day (in products with small batches) to up to $6 or $7 per day. Keep in mind that access to personalized knowledge centers can be included in some of the plans, and you will receive nutrition and wellness insights and dietary assessments.

Full Reviews of Our Favorite Vitamin Subscriptions of 2021

Best Overall: Ritual Essential for Women Multivitamin 18+

Ritual Daily Essential for Women Multivitamin

ritual.com

We like that Ritual makes all of its sources and suppliers fully traceable and available to consumers. Its website details the backstory of each carefully-sourced ingredient and the human supplier. This level of transparency is hard to find in the supplement world, and really sets Ritual apart.

Why buy: This women-founded and led business takes female health seriously and provides nuanced and targeted supplements to uniquely meet women's' nutritional needs. Their daily vitamin supplements are vegan, gluten-free, allergy-free, non-GMO, and free of synthetic fillers.

$30

Best Plant-Based: Vital Plan Daily Herbal

Vital Plan Daily Herbal Supplementvitalplan.com

Vital Plan was founded in North Carolina by Dr. Bill Rawls after he sought a more natural and holistic treatment for his chronic pain. An expert in modern herbology, Dr. Rawls formulated botanical herbal therapies that use high-quality, hand picked ingredients that are backed by clinical research and tested by third-party labs.

Why buy: We like Vital Plan's Daily Herbal supplement because it is a physician-formulated herbal supplement that can naturally support total body wellness. Vital Plan is also a certified B corp, an Environmental Working Group supporter, and a Pledge 1% member.

$44

Best for Sports Nutrition: Onnit Total Human Complete Supplement Packs

Onnit Total Human Complete Supplement Packs

onnit.com

Onnit Total Human Complete Supplement Packs are designed to deliver all of the vitamins and minerals you need to perform at your best in a convenient form. Instead of providing a single multivitamin, these supplements are divided into one pack for daytime support and another for nighttime support to give your body the nutrients it needs when it needs them.

Why buy: We like that Onnit Total Human packs offer different groups of clinically-researched vitamins and nutrients for different times of the day. The Day Pack includes support for focus, energy, and endurance while the Night Pack is meant to help with relaxation, rest, and recovery.

$138

Best for Immune System: Global Healing Plant-Based Immune Boost

Global Healing Plant-Based Immune Support

globalhealing.com

This Global Healing Plant-Based Immune Support supplement offers a natural way to help support your immune system with USDA organic herbs, mushrooms, and aromatics. This all-in-one formula contains ingredients like organic elderberry, echinacea, enokitake mushrooms, birch polypore mushrooms, olive leaf, and pine bark.

Why buy: We like this liquid vitamin supplement from Global Healing because it is USDA organic, vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, and not tested on animals. This plant-based formula makes it easy to help boost your immune response by taking one serving per day. You can even mix it into juices or smoothies.

$30

Best for Omega-3s: Sunwarrior Algae-Based Omega-3

Sunwarrior Algae-Based Omega-3

sunwarrior.com

Sunwarrior offers a unique omega-3 supplement that is a great alternative to traditional fish oil. They go straight to the source and derive their omega-3 DHA and EPA from sustainably-grown and harvested algae. These vegan softgels can help support heart, brain, eye, and joint health with plant-based nutrients.

Why buy: We love that Sunwarrior Algae-Based Omega-3 supplements provide a completely plant-based alternative to fish oil supplements. Use these softgels to get all of the benefits of omega-3 DHA and EPA fatty acids from a source that is better for our oceans and planet.

$35

Best Overall: GEM Daily Essentials

GEM Daily Essentials

dailygem.co

GEM is unlike any other supplement subscription on the market. Instead of sending powders or pills, your monthly GEM delivery contains chewable nutrition bites made with whole-food ingredients like spirulina, chia seeds, quinoa and dates. These are real food supplements made with plant-based ingredients.

Why buy: Their ingredients are carefully selected from trusted sources for maximum nutritional benefits and minimal processing. Each bite looks like something you could mix up in a food processor at home. We also love that your first month is delivered in a refillable tin and every subsequent month's bites come in a compostable pouch for waste-free packaging.

$39

Best for Personalization: Care/of

Care/of Daily Personalized Multivitamins

takecareof.com

Care/of has made a loud and public commitment to increasing the sustainability of their single-serving, daily dose personalized vitamins. The brand recently switched to fully compostable, plant-based packaging, the first step on their way towards a more sustainable business. Their basic multivitamin starts at $15, but you can also take a quiz for a personalized mix of daily vitamins.

Why buy: We like that Care/of offers both western-style letter vitamins and traditional ayurvedic herbs like ashwagandha and reishi for those looking for alternative solutions.The brand is also transparent about its sourcing from around the world, and it maintains close relationships with the producers who supply their products.

$15

Best for Heart Health: CocoaVia Heart & Brain Capsules

CocoaVia Heart and Brain Capsules

cocoavia.com

CocoaVia Heart & Brain supplements are meant to improve cardiovascular health, brain health, and overall wellness. Each CocoaVia serving (2 capsules) contains 450 mg of cocoa flavanols, which is the beneficial nutrient found in dark chocolate. This is a plant-based nutrient proven to improve heart and brain health when consumed daily at high levels.

Why buy: We like that CocoaVia capsules are backed by 20 years of research and over 30 clinical studies, and they are independently lab tested for quality. CocoaVia also partners with family farmers in Indonesia and carefully extracts the cocoa flavanols from the plant to maintain the true essence of the natural crop.

$50

Best for Energy: Beekeeper's Naturals B.Fueled Bee Pollen

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Fueled Bee Pollen

beekeepersnaturals.com

Beekeeper's Naturals offers a subscription option for their B.Fueled Bee Pollen supplement that can provide protein and B vitamins to help keep you going. This sustainably sourced raw wildflower bee pollen also contains free forming amino acids and antioxidants that can give you an energy boost for workouts or busy days.

Why buy: We love that Beekeeper's Naturals offers an easy way to enjoy "nature's multivitamin" with this sustainably sourced bee pollen. It contains wildflower bee pollen and nothing else, for a clean source of energy with no added sugars, artificial sweeteners, preservatives, gluten, wheat, corn, dairy, or soy.

$24

Best Vitamin Powder: NutraOne Vitality Powder

NutraOne Vitality Powder

5starnutritionusa.com

NutraOne Vitality Powder delivers all of your daily vitamins, minerals, and even digestive enzymes, in a convenient and highly-absorbable powder. You can mix in a scoop of powder with a glass of water each day to help boost your energy, immune system, metabolism, and support strong bones.

Why buy: We like that this multivitamin powder also includes digestive enzymes to help promote better digestive health so you get more nutrients from the foods you eat. NutraOne Vitality Powder can also help boost your metabolism to help you manage blood sugar, blood pressure, inflammation, and mood. It's also naturally sweetened with stevia leaf extract

$30

What to Look for in a Vitamin Subscription Service

These days, there are more and more daily vitamin packs available. Dietary supplements are just another industry that has jumped onto the subscription train. As a consumer, it can be hard to cut through the noise around vitamins, supplements, superfood powders, prenatal, and other "good for you" dietary additions.

How can you be sure that a vitamin subscription service is right for you and reach your health goals? There are a few things to look out for.

First, where does the company source its ingredients? Just like with food, where your vitamins come from matters. And because there aren't strict governmental regulations on supplements, it's even more important to investigate how transparent your vitamin brand is.

Look for a brand that promises to include no fillers, additives, or preservatives in their products. Gluten-free and corn-free vitamins is also a good sign, as corn and wheat are often used as fillers to bulk up pills without any nutritional benefit.

Many of the brands below offer full transparency about where their products come from and even the specific suppliers they work with. You should check each ingredient of each vitamin in your subscription box.

The other important question to consider from a sustainability perspective is packaging. If you're having vitamins delivered to your home every 30 days, tiny plastic bottles, lids, cardboard, and bubble wrap can add up quickly.

Several companies listed below offer refillable packaging and use only materials that can be reused, recycled, and often composted. Choose from a brand that wants to deliver a daily dose in as little plastic as possible.

What are the Benefits of a Vitamin Subscription?

These services provide customized nutrients in convenient packs for daily health and wellness improvement. Not only can they give you more targeted dietary recommendations, they can help you identify any deficiencies that you can correct with a supplement to optimize your health. Not to mention that they offer the convenience of delivering your personalized supplement packs directly to you. And with a subscription, you'll never run out of your daily vitamins.

Should You Take Vitamin Supplements?

Whether you're looking for a complete vitamin recommendation, like prenatal vitamins, to control allergies by caring for your immune health, to lose weight, or trying to correct for a vitamin deficiency, there's a vitamin subscription for you. There are daily vitamin packs that can boost every type of person and every type of health goal. And with a personalized vitamin pack, you can get a curated supply of supplements that will best work with your body's needs.

What are Some of the Most Common Vitamin Supplements?

If you don't know where to start, here are some of the most crucial vitamins the body needs to function:

Vitamin D: Vitamin D plays a pivotal role in a number of bodily functions, and can help improve a range of ailments and conditions, including poor bone health, type 1 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and hypertension.

Magnesium: Magnesium is important for muscle and nerve functioning, and it has been recently touted for its ability to reduce the frequency and symptoms of migraine, headaches, as well as improving sleep.

Fish Oil: This supplement contains omega-3 fatty acids, which help In everything from cardiovascular health and brain functioning to arthritis and inflammation.

Vitamin C: Researchers have found that vitamin C acts as an antioxidant, which can lower the risks of cancer, cardiovascular disease, age-related macular degeneration. It also plays an important role in the immune system.

Takeaway

When selecting a vitamin subscription service to commit to, it's important to consider everything from the ingredients to the packaging materials. Some subscriptions use a simple questionnaire and an algorithm to pick your vitamin regimen. Others may ask you to submit to a blood test or DNA test. How personalized you want your program to be is up to you.

We recommend consulting a healthcare professional or registered dietician if you're making any major decisions about your health. Also take into considerations any potential allergens or the availability to supporting health products at your local drugstore to build out your routine.

Lizzy Briskin is the founder of Earthen Food Co. She is a chef, food writer, and recipe developer who helps people eat more mindfully for themselves and the environment, without overthinking it.

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Christina Victoria / Unsplash

It's hard to discuss the secrets to a healthy microbiome without mentioning probiotic supplements. But with so many options on the market, how do you know the best probiotic for you?

We break down the ins and outs of probiotics, including the best probiotic supplements available and what to look for in a high-quality probiotic. We also explain the different strains, number of CFUs, the difference between probiotics and digestive enzymes, and the benefits that these dietary supplements may have on your overall health.

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are good-for-you living organisms and beneficial bacteria that thrive in your digestive system. Contrary to popular belief, not all bacteria are bad for us. In fact, probiotic strains contribute to digestive health, which in turn supports your immune system and overall health. Taking a probiotic can sometimes be just as effective as taking a supplement to boost your immune system.

Our bodies need probiotics to maintain the right balance between good and bad bacteria within the gut. This balance keeps our digestive systems operating normally. In particular, probiotics stimulate the nerves responsible for moving food through the digestive system. This helps alleviate certain health issues, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), diarrhea, and even eczema and allergies.

Some probiotic strains help your gut absorb medications more effectively and turn elements of the food you eat into vitamins that your body needs to thrive. In this way, a well-fed and active gut microbiome is key to a healthy immune system and metabolism.

So how do the tiny organisms do all this work? Again, it's all about balance. If bad bacteria enter your body and threaten to make you sick, the probiotics you eat or consume in a supplement counteract these bad actors to keep you healthy. Likewise, beneficial gut bacteria fight inflammation, which is a factor in many leading chronic diseases in the U.S., including diabetes and heart disease.

How can you support your microbiome with plenty of probiotics? First, you can eat foods that naturally contain probiotics. These natural sources include fermented foods, such as yogurt, sauerkraut, miso, kefir, kimchi, kombucha, and tempeh.

However, if you want to maximize the good bacteria in your gut and reap the health benefits of probiotics without drowning in miso soup, then a supplement might be right for you. Just like a daily vitamin subscription can help support your overall health, a daily probiotic may help boost your immune and digestive health.The key is to find the best probiotic for your needs.

Our Picks for the Top Probiotic Brands

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

How We Chose the Best Probiotics

Here are the factors we considered to create our list of the best probiotic supplements.

Probiotic Strains

We looked to see how many different probiotic strains were included in each product and the types of strains used.

Number of Colony Forming Units

The number of Colony Forming Units, or CFUs, is the number of active microorganisms present in each serving of the probiotic.

Other Ingredients

We noted if the supplement contained additional digestive enzymes, fiber, or prebiotics to help boost digestive health.

Dietary Concerns

The best probiotics are also vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and non-GMO.

Our Top Picks for Probiotics for Gut Health

Best Overall: Sunwarrior Probiotics

Sunwarrior Probiotics

sunwarrior.com

  • Strains - 4 active strains
  • Strength - 10 billion CFU
  • Added Ingredients - 4 strains of non-fiber phage prebiotics, spinach extract

Why buy: Sunwarrior Probiotics include 10 billion CFU of four different active soil-based probiotic strains. These soil-based organisms are thought to be more naturally resistant to the harsh conditions in your gut, giving them a better chance at thriving to help your digestion. We like that this probiotic is also vegan and plant-based, and includes four strains of prebiotics and Solarplast, a unique spinach-extract that provides added chloroplasts.

$35

Best Prebiotic: Bulletproof Innerfuel Prebiotic

Bulletproof Innerfuel Prebiotic

bulletproof.com

  • Strains - None
  • Strength - 17 grams of prebiotics
  • Added Ingredients - Organic acacia, guar fiber, Larch Arabinogalactan (bark and heartwood of Larch tree)

Why buy: Bulletproof Innerfuel Prebiotic is a keto-friendly, plant-based source of prebiotics designed to help nourish and boost the good gut bacteria in your body. It contains organic acacia, guar fiber, and nutrients from Larch tree bark and heartwood that feed the bacteria in your microbiome to support healthy digestion and your immune system. Mix this unflavored powder into smoothies or drinks to get the most out of your probiotics.

$40

Best Probiotics + Enzymes: Onnit Total Gut Health

Onnit Total Gut Health

onnit.com

  • Strains - 5 active strains + Saccharomyces Boulardii yeast
  • Strength - 10 billion CFU probiotics blend; 5 billion CFU S. Boulardii
  • Added Ingredients - Full spectrum digestive enzyme blend, Betaine HCI, organic Jerusalem artichoke root, organic dandelion root
Why buy: We like Onnit Total Gut Health packets because they give you more than just probiotics. In addition to the 10 billion CFUs of five different active cultures, it also contains S. Boulardii, a beneficial yeast that acts like a probiotic, and a proprietary blend of digestive enzymes to help you better digest fats, carbs, proteins, and fiber. They come in easy to take packets so you can maintain a healthy microbiome on-the-go.
$76

Highest CFU: Global Healing Floratrex

Global Healing Floratrex Probiotic

globalhealing.com

  • Strains - 25 active strains
  • Strength - 75 billion CFU
  • Added Ingredients - Prebiotic blend, including a patented PreforPro® Bacteriophage Prebiotic

Why buy: At 75 billion CFU and 25 active strains, Floratrex from Global Healing is the strongest probiotic on our list. Each probiotic strain is designed to help promote healthy digestion, reduce gas and bloating, and can help boost your immune system. This vegan and gluten-free supplement also contains a unique prebiotic blend to help the good bacteria thrive so you can enjoy better gut health and overall wellness.

$70

Best Plant-Based: Vital Plan Advanced Biotic

Vital Plan Advanced Biotic

vitalplan.com

  • Strains - 6 clinical grade herbs to support microbiome
  • Strength - 1.3 grams of herbs per serving
  • Added Ingredients - Plant cellulose capsule, rice flour, rice hull concentrate, plant-based magnesium stearate

Why buy: While not technically a probiotic, Vital Plan Advanced Biotic can help promote digestive health and a balanced biome. It contains 6 clinical-grade herbs that work to help support your gut flora, including Japanese knotweed, Cat's Claw, andrographis, garlic, sarsparilla, and barberry. We like Advanced Biotic from Vital Plan because it offers an herbal option to promote healthier digestion and to nourish your microbiome.

$58

Best for Exercise Recovery: NutraOne Probiotic X

NutraOne Probiotic X

5starnutritionusa.com

  • Strains - 11 active strains
  • Strength - 25 billion CFU
  • Added Ingredients - Proprietary enzyme blend, NUTRAFLORA FB P-95 (Fructooligosaccharides)

Why buy: NutraOne Probiotic X is designed to support healthy microflora in your digestive system for healthier digestion, immune system functioning, and even recovery from exercise. It includes the probiotic strain DE11, which may help to reduce inflammation in muscles after workouts. We like this probiotic because it can help you feel less bloated while boosting your ability to digest proteins.

$30

Best Probiotic + Fiber: Poophoria Rhythm + Harmony

Poophoria Rhythm + Harmony Probiotic

getpoophoria.com

  • Strains - 2 active strains
  • Strength - 20 billion CFU
  • Added Ingredients - Sunfiber (water-soluble dietary fiber)

Why buy: The Poophoria Rhythm and Harmony bundle is meant to both balance your microbiome to perform at its best and help ease digestion. The Harmony probiotic includes active strains of Lactobacillus casei and Bifidobacterium lactis that can improve your digestive health and support your immune system. The Rhythm supplement includes soluble fiber and magnesium to improve the health of your intestine and colon, and to activate digestive enzymes in the gut.

$89

Best for Travel: Care/of Gut Check Probiotic

Care/of Gut Check Probiotic Quick Sticks

takecareof.com

  • Strains - 2 active strains
  • Strength - 1.5 billion CFU
  • Added Ingredients - Natural flavors, tapioca starch, maltodextrin, magnesium oxide, xylitol, erythritol

Why buy: We love these Care/of Gut Check probiotic quick sticks because they make it easy to support healthy digestion and microflora on the go. Each stick contains 1.5 billion CFU of two important stains of good bacteria, B. longum and B. lactis. The probiotic powder has a blueberry flavor, and is quick dissolving so you can take it without water. Gut Check probiotics are perfect for travel, the gym, or the office.

$5

The Benefits of Probiotic Supplements

Why should you add a probiotic supplement to your daily routine? For starters, if you don't enjoy eating a lot of fermented foods, taking a daily supplement of live bacteria can ensure that you enjoy the health benefits of probiotics without majorly altering your diet. A probiotic supplement works just like taking vitamins and supplements for dry skin or adding a plant-based protein powder to your diet. Simply find the brand and form you will be comfortable taking each day to boost your health.

By taking a daily probiotic product, you may reduce the risk of serious and uncomfortable digestive concerns. Some studies, including a six-week study on 70 petrochemical workers, suggest a link between regular probiotic supplementation and a reduced risk of depression and anxiety. Probiotics have even been shown to help boost the immune system and may help your body fend off respiratory infections.

There are also weight-loss benefits of probiotics. Probiotics can help increase satiety by increasing fullness hormones, leading you to eat less and experience fewer cravings. Some types of bacteria, such as Lactobacillus gasseri, are linked to a reduction in belly fat and BMI in human studies.

What to Look for in a Probiotic Supplement

There are a few important things to look for when choosing the best probiotic supplement.

Multiple Bacterial Strains

Opt for a supplement that contains multiple bacterial strains. Brands offer everything from one to dozens of probiotic strains, and studies suggest that multi-strain supplements offer more health benefits than single-strain.

CFU Count

Each organism in a probiotic supplement is called a colony-forming unit, or CFU. Ensure that your product lists a specific CFU count, which can range from 1 to over 900 billion per dose. Supplement manufacturers are only required by the FDA to list the total weight of bacteria in their products. However, this weight can include living and dead bacteria. Since you can only reap benefits from live microorganisms, CFU count is the best measure of a supplement's potency.

In addition, bacteria die off over time. So after checking the CFU count, ensure that the product lists CFUs at expiration, not at the time of manufacture.

That being said, more CFUs does not always equal better results. Because everyone's microbiome is different, there's no rule for selecting the right number of CFUs for you. The best probiotic supplements will be somewhere around 50 billion, and remember that more is not always better, but is usually more expensive.

Lab Testing

The best products are third-party lab tested. This means that an independent scientific lab has assessed the product for effectiveness and to ensure that it meets claims outlined on its packaging, including the number of CFUs and potency.

At the end of the day, there's a lot of information to dig through to choose the best probiotic supplement for your lifestyle. But with a better understanding of the jargon and what to look for on packaging, you can be a better-informed consumer and find the right product to help your microbiome thrive.

How to Use a Probiotic

Most probiotics are nutritional supplements that you take daily, either as a capsule or a powder. Some brands recommend taking them with a meal while others advise taking your probiotic before eating. Almost all are best taken with a full glass of water. Many people take probiotics year round to support ongoing gut health, while others take them for a certain period of time to help rebalance their microbiome. Probiotics can also be good for travel if you suffer from digestive issues while on the road or flying.

Safety & Side Effects

According to the Cleveland Clinic, probiotics are generally considered safe since they contain bacteria and microorganisms already present in the human body. In the first few days after taking them, they can cause upset stomach, diarrhea, and bloating as your digestive system adjusts to the new strains of probiotics.

There are certain instances where people should be extremely cautious when taking probiotics because of a risk of infection. This includes those with a weakened immune system, those who recently had surgery, and anyone with a critical illness. Though rare, probiotics are linked to certain side effects including a risk of infection, developing a resistance to antibiotics, and developing harmful byproducts from the supplement.

Always talk to your doctor before starting probiotics, especially if you have any serious digestive or gastrointestinal disorder or illness.

Lizzy Briskin is the founder of Earthen Food Co. She is a chef, food writer, and recipe developer who helps people eat more mindfully for themselves and the environment, without overthinking it.

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seed.com

You can't discount the importance of your gut health. Research shows that the microbiome within your digestive system has a disproportionate impact on how well your whole body functions.

Unfortunately, bad diets, the overuse of antibiotics, and other stressors mean many of our digestive systems are in trouble. Probiotic supplements claim to solve this problem by replenishing your gut with the healthy bacteria it needs for optimal functioning. Here, we'll analyze the popular probiotic brand Seed to determine whether its supplements are worth taking.

How We Review Probiotics

Whenever we review a probiotic supplement, we evaluate six specific categories.

  • Number of active strains - How many types of bacteria are included?
  • AFU (Active Fluorescent Units)/ CFU (Colony Forming Units) - These units of measurement tell you how many billions of bacteria are estimated to be within each supplement dose.
  • Storage Requirements - Some probiotics are shelf-stable, while others require refrigeration.
  • Ingredient Transparency – does the company disclose where it sources its active strains and provide clinical research for their efficacy?
  • Value - How are the probiotics priced? Can you purchase them without an auto-ship program?
  • Sustainability - Does the company show ways its supplements are better for the environment through sustainable ingredient sourcing or packaging?

Let's evaluate these criteria for Seed.

About Seed Probiotics

Seed is an e-commerce supplement brand with a single product—the DS-O1 Daily Synbiotic probiotic. The company got its start in 2018 when cofounders Ara Katz and Raja Dhir determined that the current probiotic supplements available weren't hitting the mark.

Katz's experiences of pregnancy and breastfeeding as a new mom led her to develop a deeper appreciation of the body's microbiome and its role in overall health. She joined forces with Dhir, who had the scientific experience to understand what could be improved within the probiotic industry.

Together, they strove to create a supplement that "raised the bar on bacteria" by giving the body what it needed for all its systems to operate most effectively. They collaborated with a large team of entrepreneurs, artists, and scientists to develop a probiotic known as DS-01 Daily Synbiotic.

The Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic

Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic

Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic

seed.com

  • Active Strains - 24
  • AFU - 53.6 billion AFU
  • Storage Requirements - Shelf-stable for 18 months after opening
  • Ingredient Transparency - Clinical data available for each strain
  • Sustainability - First order ships in reusable glass canisters and subsequent orders arrive in compostable biofilm.
  • Value - $49.99/60 supplements (30-day supply subscription)
$50

The DS-01 Daily Synbiotic is a broad-spectrum probiotic that combines 24 probiotic strains with a non-fermenting prebiotic concentrate of Indian pomegranate for better delivery. Of these strains, 23 are human-derived, and one is isolated from fruit and added to promote healthy cholesterol levels.

These strains work synergistically to support the 38 trillion bacteria that make up your microbiome. They will purportedly help the body digest food, minimize inflammation, and better synthesize nutrients.

This supplement contains four distinct probiotic blends:

  • Digestive Health/ Gut Immunity/ Gut Barrier Integrity: 37.0 Billion AFU
  • Dermatological Health: 3.3 Billion AFU
  • Cardiovascular Health: 5.25 Billion AFU
  • Micronutrient Synthesis: 8.05 Billion AFU

(See strain-specific studies here)

How It Works

With these multiple strains, the company claims to take a 'Microbe-Systems Approach' through microbes that impact specific physical functions beyond the digestive system. These include skin and heart health, better immune system functioning, and micronutrient synthesis.

In other words, DS-01 goes beyond digestive issues to support full-body health. The company claims it's even one of the first probiotic formulations able to synthesize folate and increase its production.

Seed's DS-01 Daily Synbiotic probiotic also stands out with its delivery system. The supplement utilizes "nested capsule technology" along with a patented algae delivery system. This two-in-one capsule design houses the probiotic formula within a prebiotic casing made from Indian pomegranate to ensure these fragile bacteria survive both sitting on store shelves and the perilous journey through stomach acid to your colon.

Through this method, Seed claims to average a 100% delivery rate of the probiotic's starting dose to your colon. According to internal testing, DS-01 probiotics will exceed the living cell counts listed on the label even after ten days of constant 100º F exposure.

Usage Instructions

Adults can take two Seed probiotic supplements per day, preferably at the same time. It's best you do so on an empty stomach to limit the capsule's exposure to digestive enzymes that start to break it down. However, those with sensitive stomachs may want to eat something first. While you'll get optimal results from taking the supplements daily, it's not a problem if you occasionally skip one.

If you're new to probiotics, start by taking one per day for the first three days and then increasing your dosage to two per day. You may feel its effects on your digestive system within 48 hours, though long-term improvements to the cardiovascular system take more time and might not be noticeable to you.

Seed probiotics don't need require refrigeration. They are shelf-stable for 18 months at temperatures up to 78℉ and are safe to take when expired. Just note that the company can't guarantee their potency at this point.

How to Buy

Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic probiotics are only available on a subscription basis. They cost $49.99 per month and ship free throughout the US (international orders include a $10 shipping fee).

You will receive a 30-day supply (60 capsules) when you order through the company website, and the first order includes a reusable glass canister and travel vial. Each subsequent order arrives in compostable biofilm so you can transfer the capsules to the reusable ones.

All first orders are covered by a 30-day risk-free trial, during which you can return the probiotics for a full refund. It's possible to cancel the subscription at any time by contacting customer service at [email protected].

Note: At publication, these probiotics were sold out. They are available for pre-order and expected to ship again in 2-4 weeks.

What We Like About Seed

As a product within the largely unregulated supplement industry, Seed broad-spectrum probiotics earn major points from us for both transparency and abundant clinical research. The company shares detailed information about every bacterial strain within the supplement and links out to the scientific studies highlighting their effectiveness.

Customer reviews on Facebook and other review sites show that Seed probiotics work as described for many users. Some shared they experienced positive improvements in their digestive system within 48 hours and noticed better-looking skin within a month.

Those with allergies or food sensitivities will also appreciate these supplements are soy-free, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, corn-free, and free of binders and preservatives.

From a consumer standpoint, Seed makes taking probiotics simple. The shelf-stable formula means you won't have to store them in the fridge, and each 30-day supply is guaranteed to remain viable for 18 months after opening. Likewise, the nested capsule delivery system should improve how many billions of bacteria make it into your digestive system intact.

Equally noteworthy, we love Seed's commitment to environmental sustainability. By sending each customer two reusable glass containers at the start of their subscription, the company minimizes the packaging waste for each subsequent order.

What We Don't Like

Despite these positives, Seed broad-spectrum probiotics have some downsides. To start, they are pricier than many competitors. You will pay $1.66 per day's dose, which is more than some want to pay for supplements.

It's also not possible to try them without committing to a monthly subscription. While it will take several weeks or longer to start noticing their effects, some customers might not want to be locked into an auto-ship program so early in the experimenting process.

Likewise, some customer reviews complained of unexpected side effects such as breakouts and rashes. It's not clear whether these went away for users after a few weeks of use.

Finally, it's currently only possible to pre-order these supplements. If you're dealing with digestive distress today, you may want to try a probiotic brand that's available right now for faster relief.

Seed Safety & Side Effects

Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotics are considered safe for adults over 18. Each supplement is vegan and free of common allergens like gluten, dairy, soy, and corn. They have undergone extensive third-party testing and adhere to the highest global regulatory standards for safety.

As with all probiotics, you might notice unpleasant side effects when you start taking them. Many people experience bloating, increased gas production, constipation, and other gastrointestinal problems for the first few days.

This can be discouraging, as many users take probiotics precisely to combat these symptoms in the first place. However, your system should adjust to the new bacteria within two weeks, and this digestive distress should diminish accordingly.

The DS-01 Daily Synbiotic is classified as safe for women who are pregnant and breastfeeding, although the company recommends speaking with a medical professional before starting them. As will all probiotics, you should not take these supplements if you have a weakened immune system, recently underwent surgery, or if you have a serious illness. Speak with your doctor before starting any dietary supplement if you have concerns or questions.

Takeaway: Are Seed Probiotics Worth It?

The Seed DS-01 Daily Synbiotic is well-formulated and shows clinical evidence of improving your gut biome for far-reaching health benefits. The company solves the tricky problem of selling a live product with its innovative delivery system that keeps the bacteria within the supplement safe both on the shelf and through the digestive process.

If you are dealing with digestive problems, or are looking for a way to improve your general health, then this broad-spectrum probiotic might be one worth trying.

Just keep in mind that you might feel worse for a few days before the microbes will take full effect in your gut and that giving it a try means you are committing to a monthly subscription.

Lydia Noyes is a freelance writer specializing in health and wellness, food and farming, and environmental topics. When not working against a writing deadline, you can find Lydia outdoors where she attempts to bring order to her 33-acre hobby farm filled with fruit trees, heritage breed pigs, too many chickens to count, and an organic garden that somehow gets bigger every year.

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Catherine Falls Commercial / Moment / Getty Images

There's no better way to show your dog that you love them than by keeping them healthy. In addition to exercise, a healthy diet, grooming, and regular checkups at the vet, you can also help support your dog's wellbeing with CBD dog treats. Learn how CBD oils and treats can benefit your four-legged friend and see which brands made our list of the best CBD treats for dogs.

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CBD creams and other topical ointments are a great way to help treat pain and dry skin naturally. If you've been in the market for a CBD topical but don't know where to begin, we've got you covered. Read on to see which brands are our top picks for the best CBD creams, salves, and lotions.

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Photo by Elsa Olofsson on Unsplash

If you've been wanting to try CBD oil, but have been concerned about the price, our guide to the most affordable CBD oils will help you find the best quality CBD products from reputable and trusted brands. We explain how and why we chose our top recommended CBD oils as well as how affordable CBD oils could benefit you. Keep reading to find the right CBD oil for you and your wallet.

CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the hundreds of natural plant compounds called cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. CBD oil is made by extracting this compound from the hemp plant, then filtering and purifying it into an ingestible tincture. Most CBD tinctures use a carrier oil, like hemp seed, olive, or coconut oil. There are affordable CBD oils and very strong CBD oils. It's important to pay attention to what you're buying.

CBD then works in the body by interacting with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which may play a role in regulating process from mood and mental wellness to inflammation and pain. While it is similar in some respects to another naturally-occurring cannabinoid, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects and will not get you high. Like any natural supplement, it's important to choose a high-quality CBD oil from a reputable brand to ensure it is safe and effective.

Cheap CBD Oils vs Cheaply-Made: Spotting the Difference

The price for CBD oils can vary greatly depending on the brand, the concentration, and the amount, among other factors. It's important to note that while you should not automatically select the cheapest option without considering the quality, the most expensive CBD options are not always the best ones either.

An affordable or cheap CBD oil does not mean a cheaply-made CBD product. Instead, our guide highlights CBD products that offer a natural, safe, and effective hemp extract with a competitive price for the type and amount of CBD it includes. We want to help you find dependable and trustworthy CBD at affordable prices, not unsafe or questionable CBD solely based on low prices.

Our Top Affordable CBD Oils for 2021

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

How We Chose the Best Value CBD Oils

In researching the most affordable CBD brands, we looked closely at a number of different criteria to make sure that we only recommended clean, effective, safe, and fairly-priced CBD oils. Here are the details of how we compared each brand so that you can compare for yourself and find the right balance between quality and affordability.

Potency

How much CBD a tincture contains will determine how strong it is. The more CBD, in milligrams, per milliliter in a product, the more potent the tincture will be. The strength and potency of the product you choose should be determined by both your experience with CBD and what you are trying to accomplish with it. For example, if you have extreme pain from a chronic health condition, you will want a stronger, more potent CBD oil. Conversely, if you're new to CBD or only want to support your overall wellness and health, then you will want to go with a lower strength.

Extraction Method

There are a few methods in which CBD is extracted out of the hemp plant. Those methods include steam distillation, ethanol (solvent) extraction, Co2 extraction, and hydrocarbon extraction. Out of all of these methods, Co2 extraction is the cleanest and most effective because it pulls out higher levels of CBD from the hemp plant. Lastly, of all the methods mentioned, hydrocarbon extraction is the least preferred because it can deposit dangerous toxins in the final product.

Hemp Source

CBD comes from industrial hemp plants. The overall quality of the hemp will have a large role in determining how much a product costs as well as the quality. Organic hemp that is clean and pesticide-free, herbicide-free, and chemical-free produces the highest quality CBD oils. CBD brands that use organic hemp will have products that are slightly more expensive than brands that use hemp that is not carefully crafted to be of the best quality. We also typically recommend choosing CBD made from U.S. grown hemp.

Independent Lab Testing

Before you purchase any type of CBD product, you should look to see if it includes independent third-party lab test reports. Even though you are purchasing affordable CBD, you should still know what you are putting into your body. These lab tests will confirm the safety and potency of the products you are purchasing.The top brands that we recommend based on our strict guidelines all utilize independent third-party lab testing and make the results easily accessible for each batch of products.

Price

We also considered the price of each product on our list to make sure that we recommended quality CBD products that are also easy to afford. Since the concentration of CBD can affect the price dramatically, most of the CBD oils we included on our list are lower strength and offer a great place to start if you are new to CBD. Remember, you don't have to sacrifice quality for price and you should never risk taking an unsafe or untested product just because it is cheaper.

6 Best Affordable CBD Oils of 2021 Reviewed

Best Overall: Cornbread Hemp

Cornbread Hemp Distilled CBD Oil 25 mg

cornbreadhemp.com

  • Type of CBD - Full Spectrum
  • Strength - 25 mg CBD per serving
  • Source - Kentucky

Why buy: We recommend Cornbread Hemp because their CBD oils are USDA organic, made from Kentucky-grown organic hemp, and use a unique flower-only extract for a cleaner CBD oil with a light flavor. Their Distilled USDA Organic CBD Oil is a great option for daytime use, and may help provide a sense of calm and relief from anxiety. For a high-quality organic CBD oil, it also comes at an affordable price.

$40

Most Affordable: R+R Medicinals

R+R Medicinals Organic Full Spectrum Hemp Extractrrmeds.com

R+R Medicinals Fresh Mint CBD Tincture

  • Type of CBD - Full Spectrum
  • Strength - 16.67 mg CBD per serving
  • Source - Colorado

Why buy: R+R Medicinals offers the most affordable CBD oil on our list, but we like it because it's also USDA organic and made from Colorado-grown hemp. This full spectrum oil comes in a tasty Fresh Mint flavor, from natural mint flavoring, and contains over 2 mg of secondary cannabinoids including CBG, CBC, CBN, THC, and CBL. Choose this oil for a potent dose of natural relief at a fantastic price.

$27

Best Full Spectrum: CBDistillery

CBDistillery Full Spectrum CBD Oil 17 mg

thecbdistillery.com

  • Type of CBD - Full Spectrum
  • Strength - 17 mg CBD per serving
  • Source - USA

Why buy: Not only is CBDistillery one of the most trusted CBD brands out there, they are also one of the most affordable. We like their Relief + Relax Full Spectrum CBD oil because it made using the aerial parts of non-GMO, U.S.-grown industrial hemp for a dependable full spectrum oil. The 17 mg strength is a good place to start if you are new to CBD as it will allow you to begin with a relatively low dose to see how it affects you. We also love CBDistillery's CBD gummies.

$35

Best Broad Spectrum: Medterra

Medterra CBD Oil 16 mg

medterra.com

  • Type of CBD - Broad Spectrum
  • Strength - 16 mg CBD per serving
  • Source - Kentucky

Why buy: Medterra is one of our favorite brands because they offer a line of THC-free broad spectrum oils made from organic hemp grown on farms in Kentucky. The brand's broad spectrum tinctures utilize the full-plant hemp extract without any THC, but still contain other beneficial compounds such as CBG, CBN, CBC, CBL and natural terpenes. This is an affordable and effective option if you want a THC-free CBD oil.

$35

Best for Beginners: Naternal

Naternal Full Spectrum Oil

naternal.com

Naternal Full Spectrum

  • Type of CBD - Full Spectrum
  • Strength - 40 mg CBD per serving
  • Source - North Carolina

Why buy: Naternal CBD oils are both affordable and high-quality. The brand strives to create potent, clean, and affordable oils using organic hemp grown in North Carolina that is free from pesticides, herbicides, and chemical fertilizers. We especially like Naternal's easy-to-use dosing guide including on each box. This makes it especially simple for new users to measure the appropriate amount of CBD for each serving.

$40

Best Flavors: FAB CBD

FAB CBD Full Spectrum oil

fabcbd.com

  • Type of CBD - Full Spectrum
  • Strength - 10 mg CBD per 1 mL dropper
  • Source - Colorado

Why buy: All of FAB CBD's organic hemp is from Colorado and is pesticide-free, herbicide-free, and devoid of harmful chemicals. FAB CBD also uses the extremely clean Co2 extraction process to acquire its hemp extracts. This is another CBD oil that comes in a great starter dose, and we love the five different flavor options. Choose FAB CBD for an easy and affordable way to introduce CBD into your wellness routine.

$39

The Research on Affordable CBD Oil

CBD oils contain a host of beneficial compounds, phytonutrients, and terpenes. Two of the main cannabinoid compounds are cannabidiol, or CBD, and tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. When these compounds combine with each other, they produce what's known as the entourage effect. In the entourage effect, the different cannabinoids and compounds work synergistically with the body's endocannabinoid system to enhance the overall benefits of the hemp extract while reducing any side effects.

Every human has an endocannabinoid system that works to regulate bodily functions and sensations. The endocannabinoid system contains two receptors, CB1 and CB2. The CB1 receptors that are found throughout the body work to regulate pain, emotion, movement, thinking, appetite, memories, and other functions. CB2 receptors are located within the immune system and work to regulate inflammation and pain. When a full spectrum oil enters into the body, the trace amounts of THC will latch onto the CB1 receptors while CBD will attach itself to both the CB1 and CB2 receptors to help the body maintain a state of homeostasis.

Multiple research studies have shown that CBD may help to provide relief for conditions like:

How to Shop for Cheap CBD Oil

While it might be tempting to only purchase cheap CBD oils based on price, it's better to buy affordable oils from reputable brands instead of cheap oils from brands that potentially cut corners and use inferior ingredients. Hemp plants are bioaccumulators, meaning that they absorb any compounds found in the soil where they grow. Cheaply-made CBD oils may use hemp that has absorbed harmful compounds like heavy metals, pesticides, or other toxins if it is not grown organically.

What to Look For

Here are some of the primary things to look for when comparing the best value CBD oils to make sure that you get high-quality and cheap CBD instead of just cheaply-made CBD.

Lab Testing

The most important thing to look for in any CBD product is proof of independent third-party lab testing. This tells you exactly what is in the tincture and how much CBD is contained in each serving. All of the brands on our list make the lab test results of their products easily available, either through their site or through a QR code included on the packaging.

Certifications

An easy way to identify quality CBD products is to look for professional certifications or seals of approval from industry groups. These can include symbols like USDA organic, U.S. Hemp Authority certified, the Non-GMO Project, and ISO 9001:2015 manufacturing certification.

Cost

While looking for cheap CBD, you should make sure to compare prices for similar products and potencies. Certain brands may offer special deals or sizes for a lower price in certain cases, but if you notice a product's price is way off from similar CBD oil options from other brands, it might be too good to be true. Again, you are looking for affordable CBD, not the cheapest option out there.

Customer Reviews

Check both the brand's site and online for verified customer reviews. These can tell you how the product worked for other users and whether or not it helped provide any benefits. If you can't find any reviews or additional information on a product, it might be better to choose one that has been tried and tested by other actual customers first.

How to Read Labels

When you shop for the best cheap CBD oils, it's a good idea to look at the labels for key information about the product. Here are some tips on how to read them and what kinds of info to look for.

  • Concentration - The label should clearly tell you the CBD content of the tincture. This is typically measured in milligrams per 1 milliliter dropper.
  • CBD Spectrum - Make sure you know the type of hemp extract used in the product. This is especially important if you want to avoid even trace amounts of THC for a drug test.
  • Carrier Oil - Each CBD tincture uses a carrier oil to make the hemp extract digestible. Always make sure that you are not allergic to the carrier oil or any other ingredients present.
  • Test Results - The most important thing to look for is certification that the CBD oil has been independently tested by a third-party lab. Most brands include a QR code on the label that links to the results.

How to Use

When it comes to using CBD oil, it's important to understand that there is not one set dose that will work the best for everyone. Everybody is different, and everyone's body responds differently to CBD.

Always remember to start low and go slow. The best general guideline to follow is to begin with 5 mL, or half a dropper full, once a day for one week. After a week has elapsed, see how you're feeling. If you aren't achieving your desired effect, then you can increase the dosage to half a dropper full twice a day for one week. After the week has passed, increase again if needed. Remember, your body needs to adjust to the CBD and that CBD typically works best by building up in your system over time.

Safety & Side Effects

While CBD is generally considered safe and well-tolerated by most adults, it can cause a few side effects. These side effects are typically mild and are often the result of taking too much CBD at one time. Always consult with your doctor before starting CBD, especially if you have concerns about how CBD will interact with your medications.

Some common side effects of CBD are:

  • Dry mouth
  • Drowsiness
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea
  • Changes in appetite
  • Mild nausea

If you're taking prescription medication, then you might be familiar with the Grapefruit Rule. Put simply, the rule states that some medications cannot be taken with grapefruit or other citrus fruits and juices. CBD functions in very much the same way, as it may change the way that the body metabolizes certain medications. Always consult with your doctor before starting CBD, especially if you have concerns about how CBD will interact with your medications.

Takeaway

There are a lot of affordable CBD oil options out there today, but it's important to distinguish between the brands that have a cheap price and the brands that use cheap ingredients. It's important to find an affordable CBD oil that works best for your budget and for your overall health without sacrificing quality or safety.

Although considered safe overall, aloe vera does carry the risk of making some skin rashes worse. serezniy / Getty Images

By Kristeen Cherney

Skin inflammation, which includes swelling and redness, occurs as an immune system reaction. While redness and swelling can develop for a variety of reasons, rashes and burns are perhaps the most common symptoms. More severe skin inflammation can require medications, but sometimes mild rashes may be aided with home remedies like aloe vera.

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We've all seen the CBD oil craze that's taken off over the past few years, but what about other cannabinoids like CBG? Cannabis plants contain over 100 cannabinoids, and CBD (cannabidiol) is only one of them.

CBG (cannabigerol) is another, and this compound is starting to get a little more notoriety for its own set of wellness benefits, some of which are different than CBD. What is CBG and what are the best CBG oil products?

Our Picks for the Best CBG Oils

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Best CBG Products

While CBG is quickly on the rise, there aren't nearly as many CBG oils as there are CBD products on the market. However, we did some digging to find the best hemp oils on the market that contain high levels of both CBD and CBG so you can reap the benefits of both of these compounds. To determine which products were the best, our team personally tried several CBG oils, read hundreds of customer reviews, and considered lab testing and hemp source as a part of our review process, and determined the top three CBG oils and products, listed below.

NuLeaf Naturals CBG Oil

NuLeaf Naturals

NuLeaf Naturals CBG is a full spectrum oil with a natural flavor. The product comes in three strengths, each containing about 30 mg of CBG per serving.

Why buy: They source their CBG from organically grown U.S.A. industrial hemp, and combine it with an organic virgin hemp seed carrier oil. All of their products are also tested by independent third-party labs to ensure purity and quality.

$39

NuLeaf Naturals CBG Softgels

NuLeaf Naturals

If you want to avoid the natural taste of a hemp extract, NuLeaf Naturals CBG capsules may be right for you. With 30 mg of CBG per serving, these capsules are strong, but may take some time to take effect as your body processes the pill.

Why buy: This plant-based soft gel makes it easy to take CBG, and provides a consistent dose every time. It's made from organic full spectrum hemp extract, organic virgin hemp seed oil, cassava root extract, water, and vegetable glycerin.

$39

Plant People Relief Drops

Plant People

As an alternative to NuLeaf Naturals, we recommend Plant People Relief Drops. This is another great, full spectrum brand that is a certified B Corp. This oil contains both CBD and CBG, and is designed to help support your body for pain and inflammation with natural botanicals like turmeric and ginger.

Why buy: Plant People's CBD + CBG oil is USDA certified organic, vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, and KETO-approved. It is third-party lab tested for quality, and meets the Current Good Manufacturing Practices (CGMP) standard.

$50

What is CBG?

CBG stands for cannabigerol, and it's a very unique cannabinoid because it's essentially the stem cell or "chemical parent" that produces other phytocannabinoids. Within the hemp plant, CBG transforms to create minor cannabinoids like CBN (cannabinol) and CBC (cannabichromene), as well as more well-known compounds like CBD and THC (the latter of which is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis).

Exactly how this transformation process takes place is somewhat complicated, so without getting too deep into the science behind it, here's a brief explanation of how it works:

  • The cannabis plant produces what's known as cannabigerolic acid (CBGA).
  • Enzymes held within the plant take that CBGA and break it down into different cannabinoid acids, specifically cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA).
  • As a result of aging or a heating process called decarboxylation, those acids convert to CBD and THC.

Essentially, without CBG, some of the most popular cannabinoids like CBD and THC would not exist. And with the increased popularity of cannabis products, more people are starting to learn about the many potential benefits of full spectrum hemp extracts that contain CBD, CBG, and various other phytocannabinoids.

What are the Benefits of CBG?

We've all heard story after story about the miraculous benefits of CBD oil, but speaking honestly, there's a lot more research that needs to take place before we can fully understand the impact of CBD on the human body. Now when it comes to CBG, there are even fewer studies and scientific evidence to grasp the full breadth of CBG's benefits. However, there have been studies that illustrate the positive effects it may have in relation to certain health and wellness concerns.

Inflammation

Much like CBD, there are indications that CBG has anti-inflammatory properties, especially when it comes to the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). One particular clinical study used mice as part of its experiment, and found that CBG diminished inflammatory markers in the test subjects and may be considered for clinical trials in human patients.

Glaucoma

A unique trait of CBG may be its ability to help treat glaucoma by reducing intra-ocular pressure, according to one study published in 2008. In fact, glaucoma is one of the most common reasons for using prescribed medical marijuana strains that have adequate CBG content, which may be a key reason why cannabis helps treat this condition.

Appetite

Cannabis is known for giving users the "munchies," and CBG is one cannabinoid that may also elicit these effects but without the high. A more recent animal study suggested that CBG may be an appetite stimulant, which can benefit those who struggle to get enough food intake naturally due to underlying health conditions like cancer or hypothyroidism.

Bacteria

CBG has shown to have certain antibacterial effects, particularly when studied on methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). This kind of bacteria is responsible for different types of staph or skin infections, and is resistant to traditional drugs and antibiotics. CBG's potential ability to kill existing drug-resistant bacteria and prevent more from forming may prove to be helpful in future treatments of MRSA infections.

How Does CBG Work?

Just like CBD, CBG elicits its beneficial effects through the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which helps us regulate many other systems to help us maintain homeostasis (the state of stability and optimal functioning).

CBG works by interacting with the cannabinoid receptors (also known as CB1 and CB2), endocannabinoids, and metabolic enzymes that form the ECS. Our cannabinoid receptors play a pivotal role in normalizing physiological processes like our mood, pain sensation, and hunger signals. The intense reaction that occurs when CBG meets these receptors is what produces its wellness benefits.

CBG also increases a naturally occurring endocannabinoid in our system called anandamide that helps to regulate functions critical to survival, including sleep and memory. And similar to CBD, CBG also has little to no negative side effects when taken in appropriate dosages.

CBG vs CBD

CBG and CBD are similar cannabinoids found within cannabis plants, but the primary differentiator between the two comes from how they interact with cannabinoid receptors. CBG binds directly to CB1 and CB2 receptors within the nervous system, while CBD interacts indirectly with these same receptors. Because of this, CBG may have a greater potential to impact a person's health.

It's important to add that one trait CBG shares with CBD is that it is non-intoxicating. Unlike THC, those who use CBG (or CBD, for that matter) won't receive a mind-altering high—in fact, it's one of the benefits that users most appreciate about the experience.

Is CBG Better Than CBD?

CBG has yet to achieve the critical acclaim of CBD, but that's not to say it doesn't pack a punch—or that its time isn't coming. CBG products actually supply much of the same benefits that CBD offers, and they allow you to stack the two cannabinoids together for more potential benefits. Therefore, it's not necessarily that "one is better than the other," but that you should look for hemp oil products that feature both compounds and a full spectrum of other phytocannabinoids in order to get the best effects.

Josh Hall has been a professional writer and storyteller for more than 15 years. His work on natural health and cannabis has appeared in Health, Shape, and Remedy Review.

EcoWatch is a community of experts publishing quality, science-based content on environmental issues, causes, and solutions for a healthier planet and life.
Photo by Candace Mathers on Unsplash

Whether you've been taking daily vitamins since childhood or you've decided it's time to supplement your diet with the essential nutrients of a multivitamin, more and more adults are relying on subscription services to deliver their daily nutrition.

From personalized vitamins and supplements for dry skin to supplements to boost your immune system, there's a vitamin subscription company that meets your needs. Let's break down the differences between some of the leading vitamin subscription companies so you can choose the best brand for you and the environment.

What are Vitamin Supplements?

Vitamins are nutrients that our body cannot manufacture by itself, yet are essential for its proper functioning. Under ideal circumstances, you should obtain these vitamins through a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. However, multivitamin supplements can work to compliment your diet and provide you with complete nutrition. Some, like krill oil supplements, provide a single nutrient or vitamin while others contain a complete range of vitamins and minerals to help support your body. There are also dietary supplements like vegan plant-based protein powders that can help with nutritional goals.

A vitamin subscription allows you to set up a recurring delivery schedule for your daily vitamin supplement to ensure that you never run out, while also allowing you to choose the right types of supplements for you. In addition to vitamins, you can also find probiotics and digestive enzymes to help support digestive and immune health.

Our Top Picks for the Best Vitamin Subscription Brands

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

How We Chose these Subscriptions

There are a number of factors to consider when committing to a vitamin subscription. Here are a few of the key features that we prioritized in making our list.

  • Options: Vitamins and supplements can aid in filling gaps of what you need but aren't getting from your diet. Everyone's needs are different, whether you're pregnant, an older adult, or have medical afflictions such as immune or vitamin-deficiency issues. So having a wide variety of products to choose from can make the difference between a vitamin pack supplier being a go-to, or a hard pass.
  • Ingredients: Vitamins and supplements come from raw materials, and it's important to know how they source those ingredients. With that information in mind, you need to look for a company that does not include fillers, additives, or preservatives in products.
  • Testing: Daily vitamins have to be tested to ensure purity, efficacy, and bioavailability of ingredients. Expertise can not be improvised, and some brands even run several tests on their products before making them available.
  • Sustainability: If it's helping you, it should help the planet in the process. Suppliers that work with vegan, natural, organic, and even reusable packaging are a win-win on this matter. Since you will be getting their product delivered regularly, it is an important consideration. We also looked for companies committed to higher standards in their sourcing and manufacturing practices.
  • Cost: Depending on the number of recommended supplements, costs might vary from as low as $1 or less per day (in products with small batches) to up to $6 or $7 per day. Keep in mind that access to personalized knowledge centers can be included in some of the plans, and you will receive nutrition and wellness insights and dietary assessments.

Full Reviews of Our Favorite Vitamin Subscriptions of 2021

Best Overall: Ritual Essential for Women Multivitamin 18+

Ritual Daily Essential for Women Multivitamin

ritual.com

We like that Ritual makes all of its sources and suppliers fully traceable and available to consumers. Its website details the backstory of each carefully-sourced ingredient and the human supplier. This level of transparency is hard to find in the supplement world, and really sets Ritual apart.

Why buy: This women-founded and led business takes female health seriously and provides nuanced and targeted supplements to uniquely meet women's' nutritional needs. Their daily vitamin supplements are vegan, gluten-free, allergy-free, non-GMO, and free of synthetic fillers.

$30

Best Plant-Based: Vital Plan Daily Herbal

Vital Plan Daily Herbal Supplementvitalplan.com

Vital Plan was founded in North Carolina by Dr. Bill Rawls after he sought a more natural and holistic treatment for his chronic pain. An expert in modern herbology, Dr. Rawls formulated botanical herbal therapies that use high-quality, hand picked ingredients that are backed by clinical research and tested by third-party labs.

Why buy: We like Vital Plan's Daily Herbal supplement because it is a physician-formulated herbal supplement that can naturally support total body wellness. Vital Plan is also a certified B corp, an Environmental Working Group supporter, and a Pledge 1% member.

$44