Tablets vs. Capsules
Q: Are capsules better than tablets?
A: Capsules have some advantages in certain uses, but tablets have proven advantageous in others. For example, capsules increase the cost to the end user, it generally takes more capsules to contain the nutrients found in tablets, if the bottle is allowed to get too warm the capsules can melt or stick together, and the capsules have to be digested (broken down) before the nutrients inside can be released. On the “plus” side, capsules are generally easier to swallow, you can’t tablet a liquid (which thus MUST be in capsules), and capsules can be made opaque to protect delicate and easily-lost nutrients (such as CQ 10). A reputable company will not be tied exclusively to capsules OR tablets, but will select the delivery method that is most appropriate to the nutrient and the marketplace, considering all variables in the selection process.
Q: What are slow- or time-release tablets?
A: Time-release or slow-release tablets are manufactured in such a way that they release their contents in the digestive tract over time rather than all at once. This can be accomplished by a variety of methods. One method is called “enteric coating,” where the nutrient is coated with a substance that won’t break down in the stomach but will in the small intestine. Another method coats the nutrients with a substance that will be slowly digested, so that the nutrients are gradually released. Both of these (and other) methods can be useful, but care must be exercised in the manufacturing process to ensure the desired results.