Our Members Asked:
Is it safe to chew softgel supplements instead of swallowing them? Does this affect absorption of the ingredients?
As long as the softgels that you are chewing are not enteric-coated or delayed-release formulations, there is usually no downside to your chewing them. They will just release their contents earlier – similar to taking the supplement in liquid form. An important caveat is if the contents of a softgel or other type of capsule is very acidic or basic (alkaline), chewing it could irritate your throat and esophagus. For example, ingredients such as alpha lipoic acid, apple cider vinegar and L-arginine can irritate and even damage the throat. However, this is unlikely to be the case with fish oil or CoQ10 and ubiquinol.
If you prefer not to swallow pills or have difficulty doing so, keep in mind that chewable and liquid formulations of supplements are often available. See our Tips to Avoid Getting a Pill Stuck in Your Throat.
For tablets and caplets, see our article about the best way to break or crush other types of pills, and learn about pills that should not be broken.