Natural vs. synthetic vitamins – which are better for us?

Do you take any nutritional supplements during the year? Many people, especially during the autumn and winter, supply themselves with various vitamins and minerals to support immunity. But in which form should we use them to make it really good for our health?

We looked at the differences between natural and synthetic vitamins, their composition and also the effects, even the undesirable ones. Because there are times when vitamins from a pharmacy help us, yet they are not always really as effective as they might seem at first glance.

What role do vitamins play in our body?

Whether we are talking about vitamins, minerals, trace elements or other valuable substances, these are essential micronutrients, necessary for the proper functioning of our body. Each of them fulfils its specific role in our body.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A contributes to the optimal functioning of our immune system and helps us maintain, for example, healthy skin or eyesight.

B vitamins

Vitamin B1 is involved in the proper functioning of our energy metabolism, vitamin B2 protects our cells from oxidative stress and vitamin B3 helps reduce fatigue. Vitamin B5 is involved in the metabolism of amino acids, vitamin B6 contributes to the normal metabolism of proteins, and vitamins B9 and B12 are needed, for example, for the healthy development of a child’s brain.

Vitamin C

We hear the most about vitamin C, especially in terms of its immune nature, but it also contributes to the normal production of collagen and supports the health of bones and skin.

Vitamin D

Like vitamin C, vitamin D contributes to the optimal functioning of our immune system and also helps to properly absorb calcium and phosphorus in the body.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E protects our cells from free radicals, making us an excellent antioxidant.

Vitamin K

Vitamin K plays an important role in blood clotting, contributing to its optimal coagulation.

Differences between natural and synthetic vitamins

But not all vitamins are created equal. Did you know that natural vitamins have a different composition than synthetic ones? Even the very name suggests that there is a difference between the two, in their chemical structure. And that is exactly what affects their absorption, transport in the body or their overall effect. Let’s take a look at an example of how different their composition actually is.

Differences in the chemical structure of natural and synthetic vitamins

As we have already mentioned, it is clear from the very name of the individual examples that there is a difference between the composition of natural and synthetic vitamins.


Vitamins Natural composition Synthetic composition
Vitamin B1 Free or esterified thiamine Thiamine mononitrate/ thiamine hydrochloride
Vitamin B2 Riboflavin bound to coenzymes Isolated riboflavin
Vitamin B3 Nicotinamides bound to coenzymes, nicotinic acid Niacin, nicotinic acid, nicotinamide
Vitamin B5 Pantothenic acid linked to coenzymes, pantothenate Pantothenic acid, pantothenol, calcium pantothenate
Vitamin B6 Free or glycosylated pyridoxine Pyridoxine hydrochloride or pyridoxamine
Vitamin B9 Folates (polyglutamates) Folic acid (monoglutamate)
Vitamin C L-ascorbic acid, dehydro-L-ascorbic acid Ascorbic acid, sodium ascorbate
Vitamin E RRR-α-tocopherol, beta, gamma and delta forms, tocotrienols 8 stereoisomers of α-tocopherol (racemic mixture), tocopheryl acetate


The effects of natural vitamins are well known to have a positive effect on human health. But opinions on the synthetic ones differ. So let us compare these two types of vitamins with practical examples.

Natural vitamins

The best source of natural substances is certainly fruits and vegetables. But did you know that the amount of individual nutrients in certain foods has decreased in recent years? Already in a study from 2004, researchers at the University of Texas have seen a decrease in vitamins B2 and C. They studied 43 different fruits and vegetables. Many studies have concluded that today’s foods no longer contain as many vitamins and minerals as they once did.

Why is that so? This decline may be due to various innovative agricultural practices. They have developed them to improve the properties of various products, such as improving their size, growth rate or resistance to pests. However, they forgot that it could also have adverse consequences, on their nutritional value, for example.

For this reason too, many people prefer synthetic vitamin substitutes. Few people consume enough fruits and vegetables to avoid a shortage of certain vitamins or minerals.

Synthetic vitamins

So, majority of people rely on synthetic vitamins because they are convinced, they are doing something for their health. They still have enough valuable substances, don’t they?

However, few people realize that the amount of those substances from the pill is not actually used by our body and we simply excrete it from the body over time. As we have already mentioned, synthetic vitamins have a different composition than natural ones. Our body is adapted to the natural composition, but not so much to the synthetic one.

Another problem arises because these synthetic vitamins are combined with other various substances, such as sweeteners, colorants, preservatives and the like. Thanks to this, their use also has side effects.

Examples from studies

Did you know, for example, that synthetic vitamin C kills beneficial bacteria in the body’s intestines and thus disrupts our natural microflora? Ascorbic acid does not occur in nature. It can only be produced in laboratories. This study of vitamin C is also evidence.

Another example is vitamin E. Because synthetic vitamin E has a different composition, its effect is a half of the effect of natural vitamin E. And at the same time, we can easily find it in peppers, tomatoes, eggs or leaf vegetables.


A big downside to synthetic vitamins is that you can overdose with them. Especially with fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K), their incorrect ratio and improper dosage can be paid for dearly.

Which type of vitamins is more suitable for our health?

Natural vitamins are definitely a more suitable solution for our health. It does not have to be just about including fresh fruits and vegetables in the diet. Pure nutrient concentrates in their natural form contain a number of natural supplements. And that is why we at BoraTree have decided to go the way of purely natural products, thanks to which you are guaranteed the usability of individual vitamins or minerals and also their functions.

The ideal case of supplementing the necessary substances into the body is therefore the use of natural nutritional supplements, which do not contain any additives, artificial colors or sweeteners. In our products, therefore, you get a mix of healthy substances extracted from various superfoods, which can support each other in their effects.

4 tips for fruits and plants high in vitamins

Finally, we have prepared for you a few tips for fruits and plants that are high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other valuable and beneficial substances for the body.


Acai Berry is a fruit native to the Amazon rainforest. It is characterized by its rich composition with a high content of antioxidants, healthy omega fatty acids, vitamins A, B, C and E or minerals such as calcium, zinc, iron and selenium.

Acai is most often used to support the immune system. However, it might also contribute to improving the condition of our large intestine, neutralization of cell oxidation and strengthening the memory. In addition, it also fights inflammation and has a positive effect on the skin, thanks to which this fruit is also used in the cosmetics industry.


Acerola, originally from the rainforests of Brazil, can also be known as tropical cherry. It contains many vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins A, B and C, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, zinc or iron.

Acerola extracts are used to protect cells from oxidative stress, to support the immune system or to support collagen production. It also prevents fatigue and exhaustion and contributes to the proper functioning of metabolism.


Chlorella, a green plant native to Taiwan, contains a number of macro and micronutrients. The vitamins are B vitamins, especially vitamin B12, vitamin C and E. It also contains various antioxidants, carotenoids, especially beta-carotene, and minerals such as phosphorus, potassium, calcium and iron. We must not forget the content of green dye, chlorophyll.

Thanks to its nutritious composition, chlorella might contribute to the normal functioning of the immune system, nervous system or for example to the absorption of cholesterol.


Spirulina is an algae found in the wild in both fresh and salt waters. It is a rich source of vitamins A, B, E and K, fibber, chlorophyll, antioxidants and minerals such as iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium.

Spirulina is mostly talked about in connection with digestion, as it contributes to the proper functioning of the intestines. It also supports our immune system and supplies our body with energy.

What do you prefer?

What is your experience with various natural as well as synthetic nutritional supplements? What really helped you and what do you think was money wasted?