The Story of Optimum Health: Formulator Focus {Part II}

Part II of my interview with John Biggs, the co-founder and president of Optimum Health and Kolya. Our conversation continues around the process of sourcing and formulating the OHV-brand of supplements, his personal favourites from the line, and what's next for Optimum Health and Kolya.

What was it like learning how to become a formulator? For instance, how did you learn to source raw ingredients?

I quickly learned that standardizing the quality and potency of your raw ingredients from batch to batch was of the utmost importance, and that led me to truly understand the value of trademarked ingredients.

 The use of trademarked raw ingredients ensures the least amount of variation and highest quality from batch to batch. We use over 25 trademarked raw ingredients in our OHV-brand formulas. When you want to guarantee the results and consistency of your product, you are willing to pay more for the expensive trademarked ingredients. 

Our OHV-brand supplements are of extremely high quality, and we are able to keep the prices so reasonable by being the manufacturer. All the different hats I have worn throughout my professional career - from nutrition student to nutritional consultant, to small business owner, to manufacturer - each role enriches the skills of the other, and contributes to the effectiveness of the whole.

Where are the OHV products manufactured?

The great thing about Canadian manufacturing facilities is that you cannot find one where GMP or Good Manufacturing Practices are not standard, and which are not inspected regularly by Health Canada. We did our research; we have used some of the same manufacturers as brands that we sell and have found some on our own.

 Over the years, we have worked with seven different facilities. The facility we currently use is in the process of gaining their ISO certification, and so are absolute sticklers as far as testing for purity and potency. Raw materials are tested when they arrive at the facility, as well as throughout the manufacturing and encapsulation process. The finished product is then tested again for stability at different intervals, to ensure it meets label claim - that its best before date is true and accurate.

If you had to pick a favourite product from your line that you personally could not be without, what would it be?

Oh no. That is so hard to say. Could I have 2?

Sure, your top 2 personal picks.

For me, it would definitely be Optimum Immunity and Opti-Elite Probiotics, because those two supplements together have a huge positive impact on my quality of life!

Whenever I am having a sensitivity reaction to food, be it from dairy or soy or whatever, I can take those supplements and within 30 minutes, the reaction is subsiding and I am feeling better.

The Optimum Immunity + Opti-Elite Probiotics combination is just as effective for colds and flus as it is for calming histaminic reactions to foods, something many of us deal with much more frequently. I think it is awesome to be able to naturally ‘walk back’ the immune response that is causing the symptoms - bloating or itching or anxiety or whatever - and provide a real solution, quickly.

Which OHV-brand product in our Big Winter Sale do you wished more people knew about and why? 

Um, this is going to be the same problem. Can I pick 2?  Actually, can I pick several?

(Laughter.) Sure, several.

Alright, great. I can't pick just one or two!

  1. Opti-Silver Solution  Due to the action of the Ag4O4 structure and technology, it has an extremely pronounced and prolonged killing effect on microbes, penetrates your tissues extremely easily (nano-particles), yet won't precipitate out in to your passes out in approximately 3 days, and keeps killing bugs the whole time.
  2. Opti-Elite CardioClear - helps maintain healthy levels of both cholesterol and triglycerides, as well as being highly antioxidant. This product combines extremely well with L-Carnitine, and secondarily with alpha-lipoic acid.
  3. Opti-L-Lysine - to help support immunity, and particularly to ward off cold sore. Combines well with Optimum Immunity.
  4. Opti-Mental Energy -  gives you that morning boost to get you going, and the adaptogenic benefits to help keep you going under stress. Combines very well with Cell Fuel® and GSH+.
  5. Optimized DIM & D-Glucarate - helps you produce "friendly" estrogen metabolites that are protective, rather than "unfriendly" ones that can be inflammatory and harmful. This formula and also helps you get rid of old estrogens that have run their course, rather than reabsorbing them over and over. Combines well with Optimized Female Balance, Opti-Liv Extra, and Opti-A.I. Extra.

Who are the people you give credit to for your success?

Besides myself, my wife Nicola, who has been there to hold up the other parts of my world as we build our company and brand. 

I would also credit Jeff Bland and Dr. David Perlmutter, who was one of my teachers at the IFM, as well as Dr. David Jones, the founder of the IFM.

Lastly, I would give credit to my mother…. if there was one person I would write my ‘opening credits’ to, it would be my mom. Mary was such a trail-blazer, and she was the woman who first put a vitamin in my hand.

What’s next for the OHV brand?

The future is bright! Next up is getting my inflammation model and the OHV line out to a wider audience through more wholesaling opportunities, as well as further enriching the educational content of our website in regards to our OHV formulas, their raw ingredients, and the mechanisms by which they work.

We are also looking forward to unveiling a new look for the line later this year... stay tuned! 

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