Delivery Methods: Types of Dietary & Nutritional Supplement Tablets
What do you get when you combine a well-crafted supplement formula, some specialized machinery, and a little manufacturing magic? A tablet, of course! Okay, while we may be oversimplifying tablet manufacturing process a little, there's still no denying that tablets are one of the most popular nutraceutical delivery methods available today!
Even though there can be dozens of different factors to consider when formulating and manufacturing a supplement tablet, for brand owners and consumers understanding the different types of tablets that can be manufactured and what makes each type unique is a must.
Popular Nutritional & Supplement Tablet Varieties
We've gathered up four of the of the health and wellness industry's more popular tablet varieties:
While almost all tablets available on the market today can be sorted under the "compressed tablet" umbrella (thanks to the fact that they're manufactured with the help of the aforementioned specialized machinery and some serious pressure), "compressed tablet" or "tablet" is often used when referring to your run of the mill, oval, capsule or round-shaped tablet.
Unlike some of the other varieties on our list, standard compressed tablets are typically meant to be swallowed without being broken, chewed, or dissolved in any way. More often than not, this type of tablet will only begin to break down once it's reached the stomach (or some other stretch of the gastrointestinal tract).
From cartoon-themed children's multivitamins to Vitamin C tablets, chewable tablets – as the name suggests – are designed to be chewed before making their way into the stomach.
For those looking to manufacture chewable tablets and for those looking to take them, there's one particularly important factor to consider: Flavor. Even if a particular dietary supplement product is capable of providing your with the specific nutrients or ingredients that you're looking for, if it doesn't taste good there's a fairly strong chance that you'll: A) Never want to take, or B) Never purchase that particular brand again.
Sublingual & Buccal Tablets
Generally, both sublingual (under the tongue) and buccal (in the pocket of the cheek) tablets work in a very similar way: Consumers taking the tablet place it in the designated area, at which point it's then dissolved by the saliva in their mouths.
Once again, taste and texture can play a huge role when it comes to the effectiveness and popularity of dietary supplement that chooses a sublingual or buccal tablet as its delivery method.
The "fizzy lifting drink" of the supplement world, the effervescent tablets includes a number of different nutraceutical and pharmaceutical products including (most famously) a myriad of antacids, cold relief supplements, and minor pain relievers.
With the help of some basic chemistry, when an effervescent tablet (which will usually contain sodium bicarbonate) is placed in water it starts dissolving immediately and will release carbon dioxide in the process – ultimately creating the effervescent fizz that these tablets are known for.
Like chewable tablets, flavor, taste, and texture are key factors to consider when manufacturing and purchasing a supplement in the form of an effervescent tablet.
Fact: There's a lot of information worth discussing when it comes to nutraceutical tablets, much more than we've discussed here. For those looking to learn more, a conversation with your contract manufacturer is always a great place to start.
About the Author: Melissa DellaBartolomea
Melissa DellaBartolomea was the resident Content Marketing Specialist at NutraScience Labs from February 2016 to July 2018. Driven by a passion for the world of written, visual, and digital media, she's dedicated herself to keeping up with all things nutraceutical. From ingredient insights to the latest in contract manufacturing regulations and trends, her mission is to provide our readers (like you) with the stories and knowledge they need to fuel long-term growth and nutraceutical industry success.