Supplements can provide numerous benefits, but they aren’t without their own risks. It’s important to discuss any supplements you’re taking with your doctor or healthcare provider. Many supplements and medications — both over-the-counter and prescription — can interact with each other, which may prevent either from working properly or could increase your risk of adverse effects.
It’s also important to always check with a doctor or healthcare professional before taking supplements if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or intending to give supplements to children. Many supplements have not been tested on children or pregnant or breastfeeding women.
Caution is also advised before surgery. Some supplements, such as gingko, garlic, ginseng, green tea, glucosamine and vitamin E, can cause bleeding or affect your response to anesthesia and should generally be avoided before undergoing surgery.
Some supplements may also be linked to health problems. For example, comfrey, which may be used to treat a cough or chest cold, and kava, which some people use for anxiety, have been linked to liver damage. Some supplements marketed for erectile dysfunction may increase your blood pressure and heart rate and shouldn’t be used without doctor supervision.
Supplements are regulated, but not as strictly as prescription or over-the-counter medications. Supplement manufacturers do not have to prove that their supplements are safe or effective before they are marketed. While they can claim that the supplement addresses a nutritional deficiency and it supports health or bodily functions if there’s research to support the claim, you will always find a disclaimer on the packaging, stating, “These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and the product is not intended to diagnose, cure or treat any disease.”
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates dietary supplements following the policy of Good Manufacturing Practices. This requires supplement companies to show that their supplements are processed consistently and meet manufacturing standards. Once supplements are available for purchase, the FDA does monitor them for safety. If they find that a supplement is not safe — it may have an adverse effect like raising blood pressure or may not be safe for children or pregnant or breastfeeding women, for example — they will take it off the market or make the manufacturer put a warning on the label informing you of the potential risks. Supplements are also regulated by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC monitors the accuracy of label claims and package inserts to regulate against false advertising. They work with the FDA to limit the claims that can be made by supplement manufacturers.
The best way to get a good, quality supplement is to ask a doctor or healthcare professional what they would recommend. You should also do your own homework. Look for scientific research that supports the claims on what a given supplement may do for you. Check out ConsumerLabs.com. This website tests vitamins and supplements, evaluating how they dissolve, whether they contain the ingredients they claim and if there’s any contamination from lead or other substances.
If you’re getting your dietary supplements through the companies partnered with BodyLogicMD, you can rest assured that you’re getting a quality product. BodyLogicMD only partners with the best in the industry, providing the highest-quality pharmaceutical-grade supplementation available.
Read the full article: Filling in the Gas in Your Nutrition