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Unstandardized Extracts

Posted by Ryan Wade on Feb 12, 2019

Unstandardized Extracts

I don’t like the vague or the ambiguous, but I thrive in the nuance and in the subtle. This isn’t wishy-washy—this is where the macro and the micro are stitched as one.

I prefer the provable, the measurable, the quantifiable. When I bake bread, I weigh each ingredient to the gram. I take the temperature of the dough. I know exactly how hot my oven is and I monitor the humidity as the dough proofs.

So when I tell you that we are replacing our 10:1 concentrated Pine Pollen Extract Powder with our unstandardized Pine Pollen Extract Powder, well, then, you better believe that it’s for good reason—you better believe that it is for a compelling reason.

And rest assured, it is.

But to understand why this is we need to understand the nuance and the subtle. We need to understand how extract powders are manufactured and what it means to have an extraction ratio. That takes time and expertise and I will do my best to summarize it below.

The Two Types of Extract Powders

Broadly speaking, there are two different types of extract powders:

  • Concentrated extracts (e.g. 5:1, 10:1);
  • Standardized extracts (e.g. 40% Fulvic Acid, 70% Polysaccharides).

Each have their own benefits.

Concentrated extracts are broad and full-spectrum, capturing the multitude of compounds a medicinal herb has to offer. Standardized extracts—which we can call isolated extracts—offer a known, quantifiable level of certain compounds present in an herb.

And just as each have their own benefits, each have their costs: With a standardized extract the full-spectrum of compounds are lost and with a concentrated extract the known isolated compounds are not standardized. It’s a little of missing the forest for the trees while also a little of missing the trees for the forest.

For certain medicinal plants and fungi, I prefer standardized extracts, such as our Elevated Astragalus, which contains an extract standardized to contain 70% polysaccharides combined with an extract standardized to contain the specific polysaccharide Astragaloside IV, a compound which has been show to reverse cellular aging.

For others, I prefer concentrated extracts.

This preference is for those plants that tend to have a wide range of phyto-chemicals acting in unison to promote a wide range of health benefits. These tend to be the adaptogens, the tonics, and the pro-androgenics. And in a lot of ways, this is the true soul of herbal medicine. Mountain Harvest Pine Pollen is a prime example of a medicinal herb which I prefer to have concentrated extracts of.

And yet—and still—for others, we are getting fantastic results by combining the two. Our Elevated Tongkat Ali Capsules are a hallmark of this, where we’ve taken our full-spectrum Tongkat Ali Extract (a 200:1 concentration) and have combined it with an extract standardized to Eurycomanone, the compound present in Tongkat Ali known for its pro-androgenic properties. The result is an absolutely impressive product. There is a second standardized ingredient here, too, which is Piperine. Piperine is a compound isolated from Black Pepper that has been demonstrated to increase the bio-availability of certain medicinal herbs by an order of many magnitudes, It is also an exercise memetic. It's what I call a win-win.

What is an Unstandardized Extract Powder?

Most commonly, extract powders are available as concentrated ratios, such as a 5:1 or a 10:1.

A 5:1 extract powder is concentrated 5 times (5x). For each one pound of extract, five pounds of raw herbs are required to produce the final product. A 10:1 required 10 pounds of raw herbs for each pound of extract powder.

To produce these different concentrations, a master extract is first made, and then it is adjusted down to the specific requirements of the customer. The master extract is usually a 50:1 concentration. Five time stronger than a 10:1. This extract is then adjusted, usually with the use of an inert ingredient (e.g. rice powder) down to what the customer is requires.

For many companies, a 10:1 extract will contain as much as 30% filler material (see our footnote below).

These companies mostly likely do not even realize this. You can ask them and they could, pretty much, truthfully state that their products do not contain filler—because they have no idea.

Remember when I said that I like the measurable and the nuance?

Most people prefer “yes” answers. I prefer “no” answers. It is the “no” answers that get us closer to knowing what we don’t already know.

And this is why I am so proud to have developed these unstandardized extracts.

What Products Contain Unstandardized Extracts?

If this information has piqued your interested, our unstandardized extracts are currently available in—but not limited to—the following products:

What are the Benefits of Unstandardized Extracts?

What you receive with our unstandardized extract powders is the mother extract—the master extract. The extract in its purest and its most potent form. It is clean. It is high integrity. It is what we know our customers deserve and it is what we know you expect from us.

These extracts are full potency, full spectrum, and unstandardized. Proudly unstandardized. Unabashedly unstandardized.


Footnote: Our extracts are made for us, to order, to our specifications. Meaning that our concentrated extracts, such as our  Cistanche tubulosa 10:1 extract powder, is produced to a 10:1 concentration. Because we are not purchasing our ingredients in the open market as most do, our extracts are not adjusted down to a 10:1—they originate at a 10:1.

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