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Capsules, Tablets, Powders or Liquids – Why Your Supplement Type Matters

When deciding to take supplements, how do you determine what kind of supplements to take? Whether you’re taking them to boost your nutrient intake or for a nice pre-workout boost, there are countless choices when it comes to consuming or even manufacturing a supplement. There are capsules, tablets, powders, liquids, and more. How do you choose which one is going to give you the best result?

Different forms of supplements have different advantages and disadvantages. We’ve outlined four common forms of supplements so you can be well informed on the pros and cons of each before you decide on which one to go with.


Capsules are made from two pieces of gelatin or vegetable-based alternative. The two pieces are interlocked and filled with the supplement. The filling can either be in liquid or powder form.


  • Can be opened and the content can be mixed into juice or a smoothie.
  • No aftertaste from coating
  • Liquid-filled capsules are absorbed by the body in just a few minutes
  • Great for oil and fat-soluble nutrients
  • Unique sizes are available for manufacturers


  • Capsules can limit the dosage of the supplement
  • Can end up being very large, and difficult to swallow, if the supplement has a large dosage
  • Liquid-filled capsules can wear off quicker due to the fact they are absorbed quicker
  • There can be variations in fill volume causing inconsistency
  • More expensive


Tablets are made from powdered ingredients or supplements that are tightly compacted to form a hard pill. They can either be coated (usually with a sugar coating) or uncoated. Tablets typically take around 20 to 30 minutes to absorb into the body.


  • Due to the compressibility, they can hold more nutrients than a capsule while staying at a reasonable size
  • Benefits can last longer
  • Tablets can be crushed to mix into a drink for those who cannot swallow pills
  • Chewable tablets are a good option for children or adults who cannot swallow pills
  • Affordable
  • Long shelf life
  • Customizable – size, shape, and color


  • The coatings can leave a bad aftertaste
  • They take longer to absorb than capsules, so the effects are not immediate


Consuming supplements in powder form is common for things like protein. Powder supplements are often made through a process of extracting, drying, and filtering the nutrient to turn it into a powder substance. The process varies depending on the type of powder supplement.


  • Easy for consuming large servings
  • Allow for easy dosage adjustment
  • Long shelf life
  • Easy to buy in bulk
  • Easily consumed by the 40% of Americans who have trouble swallowing pills
  • Easily blended into smoothies, juices, or water
  • Easily digestible


  • Must be mixed into a liquid substance
  • Many powders contain added sugars for flavor


Liquids are another form of supplements. They often are made from products either natural or synthetic, and have added flavor.


  • Absorbed into the body within 1-4 minutes
  • Easily digestible
  • Can be much more potent because there is nothing to break through
  • Great option for children or adults who have trouble swallowing pills


  • Can contain added sugars for flavor
  • Do not allow for timed-release substances
  • Some ingredients can be less stable in a liquid, making it have a shorter shelf life

Overall, there isn’t a bad option when it comes to the form of the supplement you choose to take as long as you are checking the label and being mindful of what you are consuming. Always do your research or talk to a doctor before adding supplements to your diet. If you are looking to have a supplement manufactured, make sure you are using a trusted source and get their advice on which supplement form to use. At Sawgrass Nutra Labs, we use the highest-quality ingredients available, third-party lab test each product, and provide constant contact with you the whole way through. Start your manufacturing process – contact us today!