Posted on

What Is Bioavailability?

Bioavailability is Usability

So what is Bioavailability? According to the FDA, bioavailability is defined as the rate and extent to which the active ingredient or active moiety is absorbed from a [drug or supplement] product and becomes available at the site of action. In more simple terms, it is the proportion of the total amount of a consumed substance that the human body is able to absorb and utilise. In the context of food and nutrition, not all of the nutritional value a foodstuff contains is used by the body with total efficiency. The process commences in the mouth with chewing, which is assisted by the enzymatic action of saliva, and after swallowing move to the digestive tract where the food is broken down into macro- and micronutrients, which are absorbed by the intestinal lining, and secreted into the bloodstream, and then distributed throughout the body.

Nutrient Types

Macronutrients include proteins, carbohydrates and dietary fats. They are required in large amounts and likely to be up to 90% utilized. They facilitate tissue growth and provide the body with highly bioavailable energy. The body only needs trace amounts of micronutrients: the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and particular phytochemicals – examples of which include vitamin A, iron and folate. Of all the micronutrient deficiencies, magnesium deficiency is one of the most widespread, and has been linked to osteoporosis, diabetes, dementia, epilepsy and hypertension.

Why Is Bioavailability Important?

Bioavailability has a recognisable impact on cellular metabolism, each individual cell a living, functional metabolic organism, requiring a spectrum of nutrients, each with a myriad functions. A balanced diet and quality nutritional supplements simply optimise the human experience. Whole, real organic food is the best source of quality nutrition, and a drastically reduced amount of harmful chemicals and toxins. A balanced diet should include all the macro- and micronutrients the body requires, but that doesn’t happen by accident. Life doesn’t always facilitate a perfectly balanced diet, but nutritional supplements certainly will ensure that any deficiencies are efficiently dealt with.

What About Supplements?

It is important to know what liposomic encapsulation entails in order for one to appreciate why this mechanism facilitates effective bioavailability of supplements, and therefore improved utilisation of nutrients within the body. A liposome is a tiny bubble made from phospholipids – the same material as a cell membrane. Liposomic encapsulation is where the molecules of a particular supplemental substance such as Vitamin C are contained within these liposome bubbles with the purpose of improving the bioavailability thereof. Effectively, liposome encapsulation protects the encapsulated nutrients from degradation as they pass through the harsh environment of the stomach and the intestines into the blood. The nutrients are more effectively delivered to the cells because the cell membrane is similar in chemical structure to the liposomes, allowing the nutrients to more easily enter the cells.