Empty pharmaceutical capsules are solid oral dosage forms used to deliver life-saving medicines, minerals, vitamins, or other health ingredients through supplements. These convenient packages enable reliable dosing, portability, and a high degree of consumer compliance. Alternatives include bulkier liquid, powder, or paste formulations. As the world's population ages and the need to deal with the virus requires health-conscious consumers to use dosage forms that are easy to use, easy to swallow, and carry.
Unlike tablets, which are essentially compressed powders, gelatin capsules are a convenient delivery system that beautifully encapsulates active fillers. Due to the low friction properties of the capsules - they are easy to swallow, which improves compliance. Pills are generally a generic term that includes any solid oral medication or minerals and vitamins.
Capsules can be made of gelatin or other hydrocolloids (gelling agents). However, gelatin has been used in oral dosage forms for hundreds of years and is loved and desired by consumers around the world. While gelatin capsules are considered the gold standard, new developments in plant-based gelling excipients have emerged over the past few decades, such as chemically modified celluloses such as starch, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC), carrageenan, amylopectin, and more for vegetarian or vegan recipes.
Gelatin means "stiff" and is a colorless dry powder that has been used for many foods and medicinal purposes for centuries. For consumers, gelatin dissolves in the body at normal body temperature and is an ideal ingredient in soft capsules. The gelatin in the soft capsule makes it easy for consumers to swallow while protecting the precious actives inside the capsule from oxygen, light, moisture, and dust. Consumers also appreciate that the size and color of the capsules can help them more easily identify the corresponding drug or nutrient inside.