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July 13, 2021 6 min read

In this article:

  • What makes a supplement "ocean-friendly"?
  • How to discern ocean-friendly supplements
  • The best ocean-friendly supplements

What makes a supplement "ocean-friendly"?

There is no hard or fast rule for what makes a supplement or any other product "ocean-friendly". Like most things, it is dependent on what eco-friendly or sustainable means to you. For instance, those who are just starting their sustainability journeys might consider using reusable bags as a great eco-friendly option while still contributing to plastic waste via coffee cups, water bottles, and cutlery. On the other end of the spectrum, the most eco-conscious consumers might consider the taking of long showers or using a drying machine an ecological failure. Essentially, any improvement is an improvement!There is no such thing as being perfectly sustainable, ocean-friendly, or eco-friendly; every step helps and it's up to you to steer your own journey.

Large corporations and brands have a much bigger impact on our oceans than any one consumer can. That's why it's important to keep them accountable and "vote with your dollars" by purchasing products that align with your personal values.

How to Discern Ocean-Friendly Supplements

Traceability, transparency, and eco-friendly practices are now becoming requirements for all companies, whether they're selling t-shirts, chocolate bars, or supplements. Here are some fast facts on why choosing eco-friendly supplements matter:

  • About 12.6 million people around the world die annually due to working and living in unhealthy, polluted environments.
  • It's estimatedthat we consume 5g, or a credit card's worth of plastic every week via microplastics.
  • Every year, about 8 million tons of plastic waste makes its way into the oceans.
  • Around 17% of fish stocks worldwide are currently overexploited, 52% are fully exploited, and 7% are depleted according to a 2018 study.

Using eco-friendly packaging is just the tip of the iceberg. Starting with how the plant is grown and harvested, to how it's packaged and shipped to your door, there are opportunities to make a supplement more eco-friendly at every step.

  • Ingredients: Ingredients are the most important part of whatever supplement you choose. Say you are looking to improve brain health, or get more antioxidants in your diet. Doing a bit of research into which ingredients can do this most effectively is the first step regardless of whether or not sustainability is a priority.
  • Where was it sourced from?:Once you've settled on one or two ingredients you want to shop for, you might want to consider that specific supplement's formulation and determine where the ingredient was grown, raised, or derived from. Sourcing can play an important role in the sustainability of a product. For instance, sustainably caught fish is a better choice than farmed fish. Free-ranging grass-fed cows are more ethical and sustainable than caged or farm-raised cows. For plants, you might consider where they were grown to get a better idea of how their workers were treated and how likely they are to follow sustainability practices.
  • How was it harvested?:Overharvesting can permanently destroy certain ecosystems. Overfishing in pursuit of marine collagen or fish oil, for example, can be detrimental to many oceanic ecosystems. Overharvesting certain herbs like Palo Santo can eventually land them on the endangered list. The use of pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics can also affect the quality of a wellness supplement. Be sure to research sustainable harvesting practices for whatever food supplement you're interested in. If you are looking for ocean-friendly supplements, make sure the brand communicates sustainable fishing practices have been followed and marine plants have not been overharvested. Fair-trade certification is a great way to ensure neither people nor planet were harmed through the product’s harvesting, but not all products that don’t have this designation have poor labor practices. Transparency is king; when in doubt… ask!
  • Packaging:Plastic pollution and microplastics may be one of our generation's greatest challenges. Already, plastic is clogging our waterways and making its way into our food and drinking water. If you want a truly ocean-friendly supplement or any product for that matter, consider how it will be packaged and what you will do with that package after it's empty. Containers made from previously recycled plastics are a better alternative than new plastic production. Some brands have gone plastic-free; in some cases, glass containers may be easier to recycle and reuse than plastic. Amandean even made a commitment to go plastic-neutral, meaning we will remove as much plastic waste from our planet and its oceans as we use in our packaging. For more tips on how to reduce plastic waste at home, read on here.
  • Shipping:Next is to consider how the product made it to your doorstep. If you know its origin and manufacturing country, you may be able to get an estimate of this order's carbon footprint. Another thoughtful eco-friendly element of your order is the shipping materials. Using biodegradable/compostable or recyclable materials to ship your order to you helps to divert garbage from going to landfills.

At Amandean, we are always looking for ways to make supplements better for our bodies and planet. In addition to the two supplements listed below, we have created our Liposomal Glutathione and Vitamin C supplements from conscious sources rather than traditional sources. Our glutathione is made from vegan Setria(TM) in Japan, and our vitamin C is made from Quali-C(TM) in Scotland. Neither contain any animal based or sea-based ingredients, nor harm or pollute the sea in any way. And as always, our supplements are sustainably-sourced from non-GMO ingredients, soy-free, and formulated with non-GMO sunflower lecithin.

The Best Ocean-Friendly Supplements

  • High Quality Marine Collagen:Since collagen cannot be lab-grown or derived from plants, marine collagen is seen as the most sustainable source (compared to bovine and chicken collagen). Amandean's Premium Marine Collagen is made from the skin of wild-caught fish, sustainably taken from the pristine waters of the North Atlantic. Amandean partners with trusted fishermen that follow sustainable fishing practices so as to avoid overfishing. Typically, fish skins would be seen as an unwanted and unusable byproduct of the fishing industry. However, marine collagen makes use of this byproduct by hydrolyzing collagen from fish skins down to its most bioavailable form so that it can be consumed and used to produce new collagen by the human body. This helps to strengthen the gut lining, build muscle mass, improve joint health, and keep the skin firm and youthful. As always, the plastic used to create the container for this supplement will be offset through Amandean's plastic-neutral campaign.
  • Vegan Omega-3s:The widespread health benefits of omega-3s have made fish oil supplements in great demand. Omega-3 supplements were traditionally fish oil supplements. Fish oils contain omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). They are typically found in the tissues of oily fish such as anchovies, sardines, and even krill, which serve as vital pillars and sources of food in marine ecosystems. Now, we can bypass fish oil altogether and source omega-3s from algae. Amandean's vegan marine algae is grown safely in the USA and is a great source of both DHA & EPA to boost your immune system and counter inflammation. It is encapsulated in non-GMO, carrageenan-free soft gels, without contamination risk from ocean pollutants or heavy metals, like mercury.

Finding the right supplement for your unique health needs can be a battle in and of itself. Once you find which ingredients or nutrients you need to add to your diet, the next battle is to find a supplement that aligns with your personal dietary restrictions and values. Collagen and omega-3s are some of the most beneficial and well-rounded supplements that can benefit nearly everyone’s health and wellness, but they’re not all created equally. With Amandean, you can guarantee that you’re getting a supplement that does well by your body, and the planet.

Summary Points

  • There is no such thing as being perfectly sustainable, ocean-friendly, or eco-friendly; every step helps and it's up to you to steer your own journey
  • Starting with how the plant is grown and harvested, to how it's packaged and shipped to your door, there are opportunities to make a supplement more eco-friendly at every step
  • At Amandean, we are always looking for ways to make supplements better for our bodies and planet
  • Amandean's vegan marine algae is grown safely in the USA and is a great source of both DHA & EPA to boost your immune system and counter inflammation

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