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Do You Know What’s In Your Daily Supplement? 3 Hidden Dangers of Disorder Ingredients

By Sasha de Beausset Aparicio, MSc

Last Updated:

Disorder Ingredients

You buy a new brain supplement, and you look at the ingredients listed on the bottle, and you realize you have no idea what half of them are. How can you know if a formula is right for you or not if you can’t identify which ingredients are good for your health and which are not? How is a supplement manufacturer supposed to earn trust with the buyer if the formula is hidden behind “proprietary blends” and unknown ingredients you can’t even pronounce?

Here is where BrainReference comes into play. We have reviewed thousands of supplements and hundreds of articles from medical professionals and health experts, along with established research websites, to offer up what you need to know about brain supplement ingredients. And not just for brain supplements because every customer deserves to know exactly what’s in the product he pays for.

What are Disorder Ingredients?

Disorder ingredients are the individual parts that make up a brain formula. Each ingredient is essential, and each ingredient should be added with a purpose (other than just marketing). Sadly, for a manufacturer to add these ingredients to a brain supplement formula, they do not need to be clinically proven to work,[1][2][3] as long as there are no promises that read as medical advice or statements.

In essence, anyone could put ten different plant extracts (each with some anecdotal benefits for brain health) into a formula and claim it is an excellent brain supplement just because those plants have been used in the past to treat specific brain health concerns. They don’t need any proof to support these claims. You can’t always take a company on its word – you have to look to science.

How To Recognize A Trustworthy Company?

Supplement Manufacturers

There are some manufacturers out there that offer up clinically proven, effective, and safe, brain health ingredients, but you have to do some digging into the company’s background to see if they’re worth trusting. 

The best features of a trustworthy company are:

  • Valid address of the corporate office;
  • Customer service contact by phone;
  • Complete list of ingredients with links to clinical studies supporting the claimed benefits of these ingredients.

The Trifecta You Should Be Looking For

But there is more. Some companies have raised the flag and have reached a whole new level when it comes to the quality of the products they provide. In fact, these quality standards are quickly becoming the new standard for everyone else.

1) Non-synthetic ingredients

The problem we have with synthetic ingredients is that you don’t always get what you pay for. More and more clinical studies show that synthetic ingredients have poor bioavailability, lower absorption rate, and they drain the body’s reserves of other minerals and vitamins (like cofactors) required for proper absorption of other nutrients.[4][5][6]

Furthermore, it is entirely possible that in the long-term, you are not only NOT getting what you were hoping to get, but you may also lose some of what you already had. So here is our sincere recommendation: next time you are in the market for a top-quality supplement, avoid any formula filled top to bottom with synthetic ingredients and pick a supplement that is made using whole-food ingredients gathered from food sources that occur in nature.

2) Clean-Label Ingredients


Today’s smart consumers are not passive buyers. Fueled by a push towards healthier lifestyles built around high quality, genetically modified or non-processed consumables and foods, today’s user wants to know everything about the products they pay for. At BrainReference we praise this proactive approach to your health and safety. 

We genuinely believe in the “Clean Label Initiative.” We are not trend-friendly, we are science-driven and passionate about your health and well being. Clean label and full transparency are about you fully understanding what you are putting into your body.[7]

Manufacturers with less integrity will use unhealthy fillers as “grease or lube” to support easier and faster production. 

Coatings are added to make capsules easier to swallow.[8][9] Artificial dyes and colors are used to make supplements more appealing to the eye.[10] How do these fillers impact your body and health? Just like processed foods being loaded with additives and fillers, the same goes for supplements, no benefits, and increased risk of negative effects.  

Any supplement that has additives and fillers will be harmful to your health in the same way those processed foods are. The body doesn’t need or want these ingredients so don’t put them in there. They also block the absorption of nutrients that are good for you.

3) Allergen-Free Ingredients

Today’s user wants dietary supplements to be a cheaper, safer, and more accessible approach to health management with negligible risks of potentially unwanted adverse effects and undesirable adverse reactions, and for the most part, their expectations are justified. 

However, the current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMPs) suggested by the Food and Drug Administration only cover the bare minimum safety and quality standards that dietary supplements must meet before they can be approved for sale.[11] Because of this, the potential for a dietary supplement to produce an undesirable side effect, as in the case of allergens, or an unexpected reaction is still high.

Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) explicitly states that allergen labeling requirements apply only to those foods regulated by the FDA under the Federal Food, Drug, & Cosmetics Act.[12] 

In other words, for manufacturers of dietary ingredients and supplements is NOT mandatory to list allergens that may be included in the supplement nor provide any statutory warnings regarding the potential for allergic reactions from taking the supplement.

What’s The Final Take on Ingredients?

It’s straightforward when it comes to ingredients. Find safe, clinically proven ingredients offered up by a company that is trustworthy. We offer that information in thousands of supplement and ingredient reviews.

Reference Sources