Finding natural health solutions to chronic illness or disease is becoming more common as we query the effectiveness of some drugs we see on pharmacy shelves. Fortunately, there are now many choices when it comes to natural supplements but that wasn’t always the case when Dr. Traj Nibber, PhD was a pharmacist 30 years ago. His frustration that there weren’t nutritional supplements available to those suffering from AIDS led him to investigate and source his own compounds which in turn led to him founding Advanced Orthomolecular Research (AOR), now a leading supplier of natural health supplements in North America.
What makes AOR stand out is their thorough research into raw materials that serve as the basis of their supplements. Raw materials are supplied from many countries including India, China and within Europe but ultimately where they come from is down to what is most appropriate for the product.
“Once we have made a determination about the specific requirements of the raw material, based on available literature, we then look at vendors and sources,” says Dr. NavNirat Nibber, AOR’s Medical Advisor and Brand Educator. “We need to ascertain the correct source and ask are there any environmental or sustainability considerations we need to know about? This is important when sourcing botanicals, for example.”
AOR researches, tests and manufactures at their own plant in Calgary. This has its advantages as they can control and ensure no contaminants are introduced at any time and they are constantly testing from the time they start processing to outputting the finished product. The timeline to develop new supplements varies – it can take months, sometimes years.
The final product undergoes rigorous clinical trials and must meet the regulatory standards. Health Canada has to give its stamp of approval with a Natural Product Number (NPN). This verifies the potency and usage of the product’s ingredients, and it gives the consumer an assurance that they can make an educated choice when purchasing the product. AOR has it own quality standards and are also guided by Canadian Good Manufacturing Process (cGMP) in its best practices. If raw materials are sourced from Europe, then there are further regulatory requirements to abide by.
AOR products range from Anti-Aging, Cognitive Health and Eye Health to Immune Support, Pain & Inflammation and Performance Nutrition. But it is the Bone & Joint Health products that is proving to be the most popular. ‘We produce these from a therapeutic and preventative angle ensuring we have products for every age,” Nibber explains. “In your 30’s you may need co-factors to help build bone but later on helping to encourage bone re-modelling on a cellular level is important.”
When designing products, AOR research different populations to ascertain who will benefit. For their gluten free and vegan supplements, they ensure there aren’t any impediments, particularly any allergens or animal by-products. The company is also very mindful of emerging chronic health conditions and will adjust their requirements accordingly.
For 30 years AOR has been an innovator in providing safe, science-based, quality health products and looking forward they will continue to evolve and adapt to consumer needs. “When we started, we wanted to elevate the industry and as a dynamic company we will continue to follow the science and engage with our customer base. The safety of our consumers is a high priority.” says Nibber.