Next time you go to a supplements store, look at the supplement fact panel on the back of a few products to assess the % Daily Values provided. In our experience, we’ve seen Daily Value percentages ranging from 2% on the low end to 32,000% on the high end (not kidding). Needless to say, this is an absurdly wide range.
We think your vitamin should act as it’s supposed to: as a supplement to your existing diet (where you already get many vitamins and minerals). We formulated Dosely with all the essentials to fill in the most common dietary gaps without any extras or gimmicks.
Through our anti-excess approach, we’re able to deliver 22 essential nutrients in just one small daily capsule. You don't need a handful of pills.
To get more specific, we’ve capped all our ingredients to a maximum of 100% of the FDA’s Daily Value. For vitamins and minerals, the FDA sets their Daily Value targets at the level scientific research indicates is sufficient for 98% of healthy individuals. You read that right: the FDA’s DVs are set at levels shown to be sufficient for 98 out of 100 people.
So, if you’re like the majority of people (roughly 98% of us) and believe you don’t need excessive dosages, stop reading and go subscribe to Dosely. If you want to learn more about the FDA’s scientific methods, read on!
For starters, what is the FDA?
The FDA (The Food and Drug Administration) is tasked with protecting public health. The FDA covers a wide range of categories from ensuring the safety and efficacy of human drugs to monitoring our nation’s food supply. The FDA even governs the safety of cosmetics and also helps protect our furry friends through veterinary oversight.
This might sound like a lot of government bureaucracy, but we need the FDA. In fact, we rely on the FDA daily:
- When we’re sick, we rely on the FDA to verify that our prescription medications have been reviewed and approved for safety and effectiveness.
- When we’re at the grocery store, we lean on the FDA’s guidelines when making nutritional choices, such as calorie counting or macronutrient distributions.
- When we’re on the beach, be thankful that every sunscreen product must undergo third party testing to verify their SPF protection claims are accurate.
For dietary supplements, the FDA sets out a variety of regulations and guidelines to keep the industry safe. The FDA’s guidelines for nutritional health includes intake recommendations for daily vitamin and mineral consumption—which is what we use to determine maximum nutrient levels for our products. In many instances, we further limit our dosages to below 100% of DV to avoid excessive levels from accumulating in your body overtime.
So, how does the FDA set its recommendations for vitamins?
For vitamins and minerals, the Recommended Daily Values (RDV) used in nutrition labeling on food and dietary supplement products in the U.S. is the daily intake level of a nutrient that is considered to be sufficient to meet the requirements of 97.5% of healthy individuals—across every demographic.
For vitamins and minerals, DVs are calculated by first determining the Estimated Average Requirements (EAR). EAR is set at the amount shown to be sufficient for 50% of people—the median individual’s requirement. Then, the FDA uses the distribution, or standard deviation (SD), which is a statistical representation of the variation between individuals regarding how much of a nutrient is required (which is useful since we’re all unique). The FDA conservatively adds two standard deviations to EAR when determining the RDV to ensure their recommendation is sufficient for a majority of people—97.5% of people to be exact for those who recall their dreaded stats homework on distributions. The equation used is:
RDV = EAR + 2(SD)
When standard deviations for EAR are not available, a placeholder of 10% variance is used. In these situations, RDV is linearly just 20% higher than EAR. In both calculation methodologies, RDV is higher than EAR (the median person’s daily requirement).
Avoiding excessive dosages is more important for certain micronutrients.
Water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin C and the B vitamins, are not stored in the body and should be replaced daily. If you consume more than you need, the excess will be excreted in your urine. Vitamin B-12 is an exception: it’s water soluble, but stored in the liver.
Moderate dosages are particularly important for fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamins A, D, E and K, which are stored in the liver and the body’s fatty tissues if you consume more than you need.
Minerals, such as magnesium or zinc, are also stored in the body, similar to fat-soluble vitamins. For example, calcium and other minerals are stored in your bones. The difference between vitamin and mineral storage is that minerals are stored mainly for metabolism and structure, not nutrient reserves.
Because certain vitamins and all minerals are stored in your body for long periods, toxic levels can build up.
For the micronutrients that your body stores, the difference between “just enough” and “too much” is often tiny. Thus, it is important to only consume supplements, like Dosely, that do not exceed safe levels. Don't fall for the myth that you just pee out the excess. This is false!
Here’s a quick recap to summarize things.
Given the FDA provides RDVs that are scientifically found to be sufficient for 98 out of 100 healthy individuals, we think your vitamin should not have excessive dosages. In particular, focus on avoiding excessive dosages for fat-soluble vitamins and minerals, which are stored for long periods of time.
There’s no such thing as a cure-all or magic supplement. Instead, focus on getting a good chunk of your nutrients from your everyday diet, and find a vitamin (ahem, Dosely) to fill in the gaps. We carefully formulated Dosely to provide all the essentials you need, without any excess or upsells you don’t need. You don’t need to choke down a handful of pills.