Nutrition products have been around since the earlier part of the 1940s. In that time many people have been using them for various reasons such as providing the daily recommended amounts of minerals and vitamins.
Research has proven that over forty percent of women and men are using nutritional products on a regular basis. This leads us to the most commonly asked questions: How safe are these nutrition products and are they really helping us stay healthy?
Overview Of The Different Type Of Nutrition Products
Products including minerals, vitamins, herbs, amino acids, and enzymes are all classified as nutrition products. Most people are familiar with the most commonly used nutrition product, called dietary supplements. Dietary supplements are extremely popular as they provide either a portion or the full daily recommended amount of vitamins and nutrients.
It is most likely that you will find nutrition products in ingestible forms such as capsules, powders, liquids or tablets. What many do not know is that there are nutrition products that can be absorbed intravenously.
Next to the popularity of dietary supplements, multivitamins/minerals are rising in popularity in recent years. What are they exactly? They are products that contain a variety of several different minerals and vitamins that are used for various purposes.
Below we will take a look at the other nutrition products, including vitamins, sports nutrition products, minerals and more.
Quick Overview Of Minerals
Minerals are the micronutrients that are needed for your body to function properly. Your body's cells need minerals as components of their make up as well as to maintain chemical balance.
Minerals are presented in every food you consume. Your body will either use these minerals in large quantities or in smaller ones, depending on what mineral it is.
Your body uses potassium, calcium, sodium, phosphorus, and magnesium in large quantities, whereas your body will use only small quantities of zinc, iron, selenium, chromium, copper, iodine, manganese and several others.
Vitamins At A Glance
Unlike macronutrients which are absorbed in large quantities, vitamins are classified as micronutrients and are only used in smaller quantities. You can find vitamins in many natural foods, however there are many factors that determine the quantity of these vitamins present in said foods.
When grains are processed into flour, the vitamins are reduced, as well as the minerals and fiber naturally found in whole grains. When your body is lacking certain vitamins, known as vitamin deficiency, you are at risk of developing illnesses and problems due to the fact that your body does not function properly without the right amount of vitamins and minerals.
Vitamins are necessary for your body in order to maintain their biochemical functions. Vitamin C and B-Complex are water-soluble while vitamins K, E,A and D are all fat-soluble. Unlike water-soluble vitamins, fat-soluble vitamins are stored for longer periods of time in your body's fatty tissues.
Other Nutrition Products and Sports Nutrition
There are many nutritional supplements that are specifically designed to target athletes. Many of these are made of products rich in protein including protein powder and amino acids.
On the flip side, some of these nutrition products contain nutrients that help to boost the metabolism, performance, recovery and energy levels in athletes. Sports drinks that contain a blend of salts, known as electrolytes, help the body to recover the electrolytes lost through sweating and exercising.
There are weight loss supplements that help people lose weight effectively as well as body building supplements that help people build muscle mass. There are also performance enhancement supplements that help athletes perform at their best.
All of these supplements are considered to be nutrition products. Fat burners, protein and creatine are all ingredients found in these products. While bodybuilding supplements may prove to be beneficial, research has shown that these supplements may leave to liver damage if used for long periods of time.
Why Does The Nutrition Product Business Thrive So Well?
Considering that many people find using supplements as the easiest way to ensure that they are getting the recommended daily amount of vitamins and minerals, it is no surprise that the nutrition product business continues to thrive so easily.
There are supplements out there today that swear that they can help to provide the nutrients necessary to maintain one's health, ensure better physical performance, help one to lose weight, and help to boost the immune system. There are even supplements that say they can help to improve sexual performance in men and women alike. Sports nutrition has also seen a huge spike in interest in recent years.
One report from 2015 states that the sports nutrition market was at around sixteen billion dollars., with more than seventy percent of that being from protein powders. That's insane, right?
While research has shown that nutrition products may be able to help lower a person's risk of developing certain diseases, nutrition products cannot prevent or cure a disease and they definitely should not be taken in place of medication prescribed by your doctors. You should also be sure to tell your doctor about any and all supplements you are taking.
Who Controls And Regulates The Nutrition Products That Make It To The Store's Shelves?
Unlike drugs that are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Authority, nutrition products do not need to be regulated in the same way.
Though the FDA may not have the authority to regulate nutrition products, however, those who make and sell nutrition products are required by law, to alert the FDA of all reports of Adverse Event Reactions.
This is due to the Dietary Supplement and Nonprescription Drug Consumer Protection Act that was passed in the second half of 2016.
Adverse Event Reactions are reports that include any serious side effects linked to a nutrition product or dietary supplements. This includes, but is not limited to, deaths, hospitalization and life threatening side effects.
Once a nutrition products makes it onto store shelves, the FDA is only responsible of making sure that the product contains safe ingredients and seeing what the risks linked to the product may be. If there are risks linked to the product, then the FDA is able to either restrict who purchases the product or pull it from shelves completely if it proves to be too dangerous to ones health.
If all of the ingredients in the product or supplement are not listed on the container, then the item is not legal and that is when the FDA may be forced to pull the product from store shelves.
Another thing to consider is that the FDA does not have rules to cover suppliers of raw ingredients that go into nutrition products. That being said, many companies that manufacture nutrition products get their raw ingredients from China.
Farmlands in China are believed to have high levels of heavy metals present. This means that many products that use raw ingredients may contain not only pesticides, but heavy metals such as nickel, cadmium and more This is because the FDA does not inspect raw ingredients before they are manufactured into supplements and nutrition products.
If you take a look at recent reports, in 2013, there were over three thousand Adverse Event Reactions reported to the FDA. While this number does not include mild side effects such as headaches, nausea, etc, it gives you an idea of just how dangerous these products can potentially be.
Due to the rising number of Adverse Event Reactions being reported each year, many institutions and organizations are pushing for nutrition products to be tested for their safety and effectiveness before they hit the market.
What would these tests do? They would make sure that products are labeled properly, with all ingredients being listed, as well as test for whether or not these nutrition products have been manufactured correctly and that they do not contain dangerous levels of contaminants such as heavy metals and pesticides. This would ensure that these products are not as dangerous as they are today.
Before you purchase any nutrition products, take a look at the resources we have listed before and check to see if your supplement or product has been proven to be safe.
A Great Place To Start Is ConsumerLab.com
Known for providing customers and doctors alike with information regarding nutrition products, ConsumerLab.com, LLC is an independent organization that publishes their test results online for easy access.
When you see the CL Seal of approval, you know the product you are looking at is trusted by doctors, books and more. If a company wishes for their product to be listed on the Approved Quality product list, they must request that their product be tested. This test looks at the purity, strength, and disintegration of the product or supplement, as par the label.
If a product fails, the maker and seller can request the test results to see what went wrong. If a product passes the Quality Certification Program, it will then be posted on ConsumerLab's website. If a manufacturer or seller does not want the information listed, they may opt for it to be removed.
While this seal of approval is only good for twelve months, a product can be retested yearly to remain on the ConsumerLab Seal of Approval list.
Do Not Forget To Check Out The United States Pharmacopeial Convention (Also Known As USP)
With standards that are enforced by the FDA in the United States, The U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention is known for testing nutrition products and dietary supplements for quality, strength, and purity of the food ingredients listed in these products. They test products that are taken, sold and made around the world.
These standards are used in over 130 countries worldwide. When a product has the USP Seal of Approval, it means that it has passed a very strict testing method and is deemed to be as safe as possible for human consumption.
Take A Look At The National Medicines Comprehensive Database (Also Known As NMCD)
The National Medicines Comprehensive Database was publicly released in 1999, which made it possible for people to access information that has been researched extensively about nutrition products and dietary supplements that are sold in stores and online.
Back when the organization was just getting started, many people were concerned about the safety and integrity of these products and supplements and back then, there was not much information on their safety or purity available to the public.
The National Medicines Comprehensive Database has reports on all different brands of products available for the public to search. These reports offer information about the safety of a product, how it reacts when taken with other drugs, how effective it is, and any known side effects from every ingredient that is listed in the nutrition product or dietary supplement.
What is even better, is that the NCMD and the USP work together to keep their databases up to date every day of the year. This means always getting accurate information, at all times. Making these databases an excellent source of information for patients, consumers and doctors alike when it comes to choosing nutrition products and supplements.
Take A Look At NSF International
While they do not test nutrition products, so to speak, they do perform tests based on certifications and standards in regards to water, food and other products that people consume.
What Is Affecting Your Body's Intake Of Nutrients?
While the average American may be consuming the average amount of some nutrients, it is believed that their diets lack a handful of the other nutrients that our bodies require to function properly.
Vitamins C,D, A, and E, as well as calcium, choline, dietary fiber, magnesium and potassium are all under consumed. While this is largely due to unhealthy diets, it may also be due to the fact that certain foods are also lacking nutrients for other reasons.
However, since the average person is consuming less than the daily recommended value of certain vitamins and minerals, these dietary supplements are then pushed into the market, helping to supply people with the nutrients that they are lacking.
But why are certain foods lacking these essential nutrients? There are several things that can cause this. The quality of the soil that vegetables are grown in can cause there to be lower levels of nutrients, due to the fact that poor soil quality leads to the plants not being able to absorb oxygen, water and nutrients that are necessary for the plant to grow it's fruits or vegetables properly.
Another thing that can affect the nutrients found in natural goods is the amount of time the food is stored. Fruits and vegetables are most nutritious as soon as they are picked. The longer they are stored, such as when they are picked, stored and shipped to stores and supermarkets, the less nutritious they are.
What many people do not know, is that canned and frozen vegetables and fruits have a higher nutrient count, as long as they do not have added sugars and salts, than the fruits and vegetables you purchase at your local supermarket.
This is largely due to the fact that frozen and canned vegetables and fruits do not fall victim to oxygen deterioration like the fruits and vegetables in the produce isle do. This is also because there is a fairly large time gap between when the fruits and vegetables are picked and when they are finally eaten. Remember, the longer a vegetable or fruit sits, the less nutrients it will contain when it is finally eaten.
Another factor that decreases the amount of nutrients in fruits and vegetables is when the produce is processed. Processed foods almost always contain fewer nutrients than their raw, whole counterparts.
Your age and overall health can also play a role in how easily you absorb nutrients. If you are fifty years or older, it may be hard for your body to absorb vitamin B12. Which is why most people over 50 are required to take a vitamin B12 supplement.
If you have certain medical conditions, your body may not absorb nutrients as much either. These conditions are generally known as malabsorption. That means that your body will not be able to absorb all of the nutrients that it needs to function properly from the foods you eat.
Due to intestinal issues, if you suffer from iron deficiency anemia, your body is not able to absorb iron properly. Conditions like this require you to take a daily dietary supplement containing the lacking nutrients in order to maintain your health and to keep your body functioning like it should.
What Happens If Your Body Does Not Have Enough Of A Certain Nutrient?
There are several nutrient deficiencies that can cause serious complications to your health. Below we will touch base on what these deficiencies are and how they can seriously impact your life and what the complications may be if you do not get the right nutrients for your body to function properly.
If your body lacks magnesium, your metabolism will not function properly. Magnesium aids the body in detoxing and purifying the blood. Magnesium deficiency is the leading cause in metabolic deterioration and that can then put you at higher right for more serious complications with your health.
Hypocalcemia is when your body does not have enough calcium. This can lead to your hair and nails growing weaker, seizures, and a loss of memory. It can also lead to brittle teeth and bones, since the most important component of your bones and teeth is calcium. You also need calcium to aid in stabilizing your blood pressure.
But what can cause hypocalcemia? Hypocalcemia is often caused by menopause, aging, malnutrition, malabsorption and hormone disorders. Symptoms of hypocalcemia include depression, muscle spasms, hallucinations, and numbness and/or tingling of your hands and feet.
If you do not get hypocalcemia treated, it can cause you to suffer from osteoporosis and damaged eyes. If you end up with osteoporosis, you can fracture your bones and spine and that can lead to permanent problems. Left untreated, hypocalcemia can end up causing death.
If you suffer from choline deficiency, you may experience memory loss and extreme tiredness. This is because choline is important when it comes to brain development and health. Choline is also an anti-inflammatory. This means it helps to keep the cell membranes healthy.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency:
Vitamin B12 is also known as cobalamine. Cobalamine is often considered the vitamin that gives us energy. Cobalamine aids the body in producing energy, DNA synthesis, making myelin, and the formation of our blood.
The effects of vitamin B12 deficiency do not show right away. That means it could take years before a person realizes that they are lacking B12. If you are experiencing memory issues, tingling or weakness in your hands or feet, mood swings, and extreme tiredness, you may be lacking vitamin B12. Consult your doctor right away, as they may recommend a dietary supplement to boost your vitamin B12 levels.
Vitamin D Deficiency:
Most people know that the easiest source of vitamin D is sunlight, but when you consider that being in direct sunlight means exposing yourself to harmful UVB and UVA rays, you probably use a lot of sunscreen when outdoors.
While sunscreen is great for protecting you from these cancerous rays, it also makes you unable to absorb vitamin D. Those at high risk of vitamin D deficiency are the elderly, those with a darker skin tone, and children, as parents tend to cover them head to toe in sunscreen.
Another reason you may not be getting the optimal amounts of vitamin D is due to processed foods. Processed foods that have herbicide glyphosate can compromise the enzymes that activate vitamin D in your kidneys and liver.
If you suffer from a vitamin D deficiency, you may show symptoms including feeling sad, your head may sweat, your bones may ache, obesity, and you may get sick more often. Vitamin D is essential to your overall health and wellbeing.
Vitamin E Deficiency:
Vitamin E is essential in protecting our bodies from free radicals that can harm our cells from the inside. Vitamin E also helps to decrease our signs of aging. While it is highly unlikely for someone to suffer from vitamin E deficiency, those who do suffer from vision problems, damaged muscles and an immune system that does not function as it should.
Vitamin K2 Deficiency:
Vitamin K2 is very important to our body functioning properly. It helps keep your bones healthy, along with keeping your blood vessels and arteries healthy. Vitamin K2 also aids in the growth and renewal of cells and can help prevent certain types of cancers.
It is also crucial for a healthy pregnancy. It is recommended that vitamin K2 is paired with vitamin D, calcium and magnesium. If you suffer from a vitamin D deficiency, it can hinder how vitamin K2 works with your body.
When you suffer from an iodine deficiency, it impacts how your thyroid functions and how your metabolism works. A lack of iodine can also cause certain types of cancer.
If you suffer from dry skin which is caused by tissue damage, do not sweat, suffer from dry mouth because you cannot produce the necessary saliva, a hard time concentrating and being alert, a lower IQ and fibromyalgia, then you may be suffering from an iodine deficiency.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids Deficiency:
This deficiency is a huge one, as it is the sixth largest killer in the United States. This is because the diet of Americans consists of a lot of vegetable oils that have been processed.
These oils are full of Omega 6 fats. These fats in turn lead to those who live in the United States being at a higher risk of suffering from cancer, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. When the Omega-3 fatty acids and Omega 6 fats are not balanced, there are several other symptoms that develop.
Alzheimer's disease, depression, skin that flakes on the backside of your arms, dry hair and dandruff on your scalp, rheumatoid arthritis, brittle nails that break easily, a short attention span and extreme tiredness are all symptoms linked to Omega-3 deficiency.
Iron is extremely important for your body to function properly. Iron has countless enzymes and proteins in it, along with the ability to transfer oxygen which then regulates the growth of cells.
Additionally, iron is a good source of hemoglobin, which is the key protein that makes up red blood cells. If you did not have iron and your cells are not oxygenating properly, every cell in your body would die at an exceptionally quick rate. If you suffer from an iron deficiency, your doctor will probably require that you take an iron supplement to meet the necessary amount of iron each day.
Those who suffer from iron deficiencies notice symptoms such as extreme tiredness, iron-deficiency anemia, and a lower immune response. These traits are more common in women who have not gone through menopause yet.
Keep in mind, that if you do take an iron supplement, you must make sure you are not exceeding the daily recommended amount of iron, as too much iron is just as dangerous as not enough.
If you consume more iron than your body needs in order to oxygenate the cells, the extra iron gets backed up in your body and can cause very, very harmful effects to your body. The iron could potentially speed up oxidation and make free radicals grow quickly, therefore damaging your cells and potentially damaging your DNA. Always remember to consult your doctor before starting an iron supplement.
Where Can You Find Nutrients Naturally?
There are many foods that offer you natural sources of nutrients better than any supplement on the market. When facing the decision of whether or not to use supplements, first take a look at your diet. If you are eating a healthy, well balanced diet, you may not need supplements at all.
- A great source of calcium, iodine, choline, and vitamin D comes from grass-fed cows. Milk is the best way to get your daily recommended amount of calcium.
- Seeds and nuts are excellent sources of natural nutrients. Sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds are all great sources of magnesium. Sunflower seeds are also an excellent source of vitamin E. If you are looking to get more omega-3 fatty acids, flaxseed and walnuts are great sources of that. Hazelnuts and almonds are rich in vitamin E as well! Seeds and nuts are also great sources of protein, making for a very healthy snack!
- Certain fish, such as sardines and salmon are great sources of natural nutrients. Sardines are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, choline, vitamin B12, and calcium. Salmon is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, as well as vitamin D and vitamin B6.
- Vegetables are all excellent sources of natural nutrients. Spinach is an amazing source of folic acid, magnesium, vitamin E and vitamin A. Leafy greens are rich in calcium. Tomatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, and cantaloupe are all rich in vitamin A,
- If you are looking for an excellent source of vitamin K, fermented foods such as natto, specific types of cheese, and raw butter are your best options. The bacteria that causes fermentation is what is responsible for the production of vitamin K.
- Chicken and turkey livers and oysters are great sources of iron. So are certain nuts.
Overall, there are plenty of healthy options for natural sources of nutrients. All you have to do is a little research and adjust your diet to include healthy, nutritious food options!
Who Is Most Likely To Need Dietary Supplements?
Some people may need some additional nutrients due to several factors, including age, life style, health, medications, and how well their bodies absorb nutrients. For some, their life style requires more nutrients than they can easily obtain through their current diets.
Vitamin B12 supplements may be necessary for vegetarians and anyone over the age of 50. For those who are over 50 years of age, their body is not able to absorb vitamin B12 as easily as it did when it was younger, therefore their doctors are likely to be prescribed a vitamin B12 supplement by their doctors.
Pregnant women are more likely to be told to take folic acid and iron in the form of dietary supplements. It is recommended that pregnant women consume 400mcg a day of folic acid to reduce the risk of neural tube defects in their babies. Many pregnant women become anemic while pregnant, which is why iron is often prescribed.
For women who have gone through menopause, their doctors may prescribe calcium and vitamin D in order to prevent the bones from breaking down and reduce the risk of fractures. When a woman goes through menopause, her body loses between three and five percent of her bone mass.
By taking calcium along with estrogen supplements, a woman's bones will not break down as quickly as her body may be able to absorb the calcium in her gut more effectively.
What Are Some Of The Most Effective And The Safest Supplements Available Today?
Considering the amount of time and research that the independent organizations put into their databases and their lists of approved supplements and nutrition products, we were able to compose a list of supplements that made it onto the approved and safe supplement lists across the boards.
As always, make sure you consult your doctor before starting a supplement or nutrition product.
For those who suffer from Alzheimer's disease, vitamin E has proven to be a great supplement to help with cognitive function. Keep in mind that vitamin E is split into two types, tocotrienols and tocopherols, which is known as the true vitamin E. When you decide to choose a vitamin E supplement, make sure your is made of natural vitamin E.
Bear in mind that in order for a vitamin E supplement to be sold, it must be clearly labeled as to whether the vitamin E is natural or synthetic. Synthetic vitamin E will be listed as “dl-” forms and natural vitamin E will be listed as d-alpha tocopherols or d-beta-tocopherol. Knowing what you are consuming is crucial in order to truly benefit from the supplement.
Coenzyme Q10 has been shown to help prevent the recurrence of migraine headaches. Coenzyme Q10 may also be able to lower blood pressure, ease symptoms of muscle dystrophy, and help to slow down how quickly Parkinson's disease progresses.
Vitamin A is necessary for proper bodily functions. Not only is vitamin A important when it comes to the health of your eyes, skin, teeth, and bones, it is also important for keeping your immune system functioning properly.
Vitamin A is best taken with a vitamin D supplement, as studies have shown that vitamin A may not be as effective if it is not paired with vitamin D. Vitamin A may also be toxic if it is not paired with vitamin D.
Vitamin D is very important in helping to lower the risks of osteoporosis. This is especially true when vitamin D is taken with calcium. If you are currently taking corticosteroids, vitamin D may be able to help lower the risk of bone loss linked to corticosteroid usage.
Bear in mind however, that vitamin D should not be taken in large dosages. Large dosages of vitamin D may result in side effects including muscle weakness, extreme tiredness, nausea and headaches. If you are taking birth control pills, HIV/AIDS medication, or atorvastatin and other heart medicines, a vitamin D supplement may impact how effective these drugs may be.
Always consult your doctor prior to starting a vitamin D supplement.
Magnesium is important in aiding the body in absorbing calcium. Calcium must be absorbed properly in order to strengthen your bones. Magnesium may also be taken as a supplement to help people avoid the risks of diabetes.
For those who already suffer from diabetes, a magnesium supplement could help to regulate their blood sugar levels, which is definitely helpful. Keep in mind that your body's magnesium levels can be effected by diuretics and antibiotics. This is why a supplement may be necessary.
Another winning point for magnesium is that it may be able to prevent heart disease and migraine headaches as well as lowering the risk for diabetes.
Sterols and Stanols
While you can commonly find stanols and sterols in whole grains, nuts and seeds, you can also find it in supplement form. Recent studies have shown that a particular stanol, called sitostanol, may be able to lower bad cholesterol levels (LDL) by almost fifteen percent.
Probiotics are considered a good bacteria that are necessary in your guts overall health. These probiotics are excellent in helping with stomach upset and diarrhea. Probiotics have also been proven to aid in reducing the inflammation in stomach ulcers.
Bear in mind that if you purchase a probiotic supplement, you may need to store it in the refrigerator. Another great place to find these live bacteria is in yogurt that states “live and active cultures” on the label.
Studies have shown that pygeum may be able to reduce symptoms linked to an enlarged prostate. However, pygeum can also cause negative side effects including abdominal pain and nausea. Talk to your doctor if you want to know if the benefits outweigh the risk when it comes to a pygeum supplement.
SAMe has been shown to improve osteoarthritis. SAMe has also been shown to reduce symptoms of major depressive disorders and many different types of pain. Despite these benefits, there are side effects linked to SAMe.
Side effects such as headaches, dry mouth, anorexia, dizziness, sweating, and dry mouth have all been reported while using SAMe. Those who suffer from depression have also reported feeling anxious while taking SAMe.
If you are taking certain types of antidepressants, narcotic pain relievers or cough medicines, it is highly recommended that you do not take SAMe as it may prove to have toxic reactions. Always consult your doctor prior to starting SAMe.
St. John's Wort
St. John's Wort is most commonly known for how it helps those who suffer from mild depression. That being said, St. John's Wort does come with several side effects including vivid dreams, anxiety, insomnia, and headaches.
Some of those who have taken St John's Wort have also reported being more sensitive to sun than before hand, leading to severe sunburn. If you are taking birth control pills, heart medicines, and HIV/AIDS medications, St. John's Wort can alter how effective these drugs are.
Psyllium is often used as a stool softener to aid with constipation. Some people have reported serious allergic reactions while taking psyllium. Others have reported diarrhea, constipation, and stomach pain while using psyllium.
If you suffer from diabetes and are currently taking medication to control your diabetes, psyllium can cause low blood sugar. Always use with caution and report any side effects to your doctor immediately.
Glucosamine sulfate is best known for helping to slow the progression of osteoarthritis in the knees. It can also help alleviate some of the symptoms related to the condition. That being said, glucosamine sulfate comes with a small handful of side effects, including constipation, nausea, and heartburn.
If you can get past the nasty aftertaste, fish oil is one of the best supplements to help reduce one's risk of strokes and heart attacks. If you suffer from heart disease, fish oil can aid in preventing the arteries from hardening.
It is also believed that fish oil may be able to help prevent certain forms of cancer, as well as to ward off diseases relating to the eyes. There are some side effects linked to fish oil though.
If you take it in high dosages, it can spike your bad cholesterol levels, which is dangerous. Those on blood pressure medication should be cautious when taking fish oil, as it can react negatively with high blood pressure medications.
If you suffer from lactose intolerance, this one is for you. Lactase can help to alleviate the gastrointestinal problems related to lactose intolerance. There are no side effects currently linked to lactase either, making it one of the safest supplements on our list.
We all know how important calcium is for our teeth and bones. Calcium supplements are often advertised to prevent bone loss and osteoporosis. If you take calcium and vitamin D together, you are helping your bones stay healthy and strong.
For women who consume calcium twice daily, they suffer from fewer PMS symptoms. Calcium can however, effect how well your osteoporosis medications work as well as some antibiotics.It is recommended that you take calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and vitamin K2 together, due to the fact that taking calcium on it's own can lead to strokes and heart attacks.
When you take vitamin K2 and calcium together, your body is able to take the calcium in your arteries and transport it to your bones and teeth, where it is most needed. The best way to get your daily recommended amount of calcium is through milk and plant based products.
What Ingredients Or Supplements Have Proven To Be Dangerous?
There are several ingredients used in dietary supplements that have been proven to be dangerous over the years. Through extensive research, we have been able to compose a list of ingredients that should be avoided due to the high amount of negative reactions linked to these ingredients.
While you can use bitter orange in oil form as a topical treatment for fungal infections and jock itch, you should never consume bitter orange. Bitter orange can cause heart-rhythm issues accompanied by fainting.
Even more concerning, when bitter orange is consumed, it can cause stroke, heart attack and death. While bitter orange was once marketed to combat nasal congestion, allergies and weight gain, it should never be consumed.
Aconite roots are extremely high in chemicals that have proven to be toxic. Aconite roots were originally used as a treatment for joint pain, wounds, gout, and inflammation. Over the years, it has been marketed to help with numb fingers, hair loss and skin diseases.
However, due to it's neuromas side effects, it has been deemed a dangerous ingredient in most databases across the board. Side effects from using aconite roots include nausea, low blood pressure, vomiting, weakness, sweating, respiratory-system paralysis, and death.
While comfrey is often used as a treatment for heavy menstruation, chest pain, cough and cancer, comfrey is actually shown to cause damage to your liver and cancer.
Colloidal silver is generally used as a treatment for rosacea, psoriasis, food poisoning and fungal infections, as well as Lyme disease, chronic fatigue syndrome and HIV/AIDS. Despite it's apparent benefits, it is not recommended to consume colloidal silver due to the blue skin associated with it's use.
Studies have shown that colloidal silver have absolutely no benefits to the human body and can actually cause a build up of unnecessary silver in the body, surrounding various organs like the liver, brain, muscles, spleen and kidneys.
Chaparral was once largely used as a treatment for inflammation, colds, cancer, and detoxification of the body. Chaparral however, is known to cause liver damage, kidney damage, and other issues.
Greater Celandine is commonly believed to treat liver disorders, cancer, detoxification, irritable bowel syndrome and stomach problems, however research has shown that Greater Celandine can cause liver damage.
Coltsfoot is commonly used as a treatment for laryngitis, sore throats, coughing, asthma and bronchitis. Research has shown that coltsfoot causes liver damage and certain types of cancer, so it should be avoided.
Country mallow is advertised as a treatment for allergies, weight loss, bronchitis, and nasal congestion, however, it is more harmful than it is helpful.
Country mallow has a whole list of side effects, including heart arrhythmia, heart attack, stroke, and even death. The FDA banned ephedrine alkaloids in 2004, which was largely associated with the dangerous side effects that were linked to the usage of country mallow.
While Kava is commonly said to be an all natural, safe herb, in reality, it is very dangerous. While it is said to treat anxiety, it is more likely to be linked to liver damage than it is to it's effectiveness in treating anxiety. Kava is currently banned in Canada, Switzerland and Germany.
While germanium has been linked to the treatment of infections, liver problems, arthritis, osteoporosis, pain, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, cancer and heart disease, it is also known to cause kidney damage, kidney failure and death.
Ever since 1993, he FDA has been warning against the usage of germanium due to large numbers of Adverse Events Reactions reports.
Yohimbe is known for its use as an aphrodisiac, as well as to treat chest pain, diabetic complications, erectile dysfunction and depression. Despite spotty research, what we do know is that the normal dose of Yohimbe can lead to high blood pressure, while a higher dose can lead to dangerously low blood pressure and deadly heart problems. These reactions can then lead to death.
In 1993, the FDA has warned that the usage of Yohimbe is dangerous due to the fact that it contains yohimbine, which is a drug you can only get with a prescription.
While lobelia was once believed to help people quit smoking, studies have shown that it is completely useless in doing so. Lobelia was also marketed to treat asthma and coughing, despite the fact that lobelia is toxic when taken orally.
When consumed, lobelia can cause low blood pressure. It can also cause you to fall into a coma and even die as a result. This is due to a lobelia overdose.
As with any supplement, always do your homework and check the multiple databases available to you online. Always check with your doctor first and weigh the pros and cons before consuming any and all dietary supplements.
What Are The Risks Indirectly Linked To Nutrition Products?
There are several risks to consider when taking nutrition products. These risks are not directly linked to nutrition products, but they are related.
- If you suffer from cancer, you need to be very cautious when taking supplements, as they may effect your cancer treatment. If you are taking antioxidant supplements such as vitamin E and vitamin C, your chemotherapy and cancer drugs may not be as effective. Antioxidants may also effect the treatments that kills cancer cells, so be sure you consult your oncologist before taking supplements if you are currently being treated for cancer.
- If you currently smoke or have ever smoked, you should be wary when taking supplements that are rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene. Both of these nutrients have been associated with lung cancer in smokers and former smokers.
- Before you have surgery, don’t forget to tell your doctor what supplements you are currently taking. Your doctor will then be able to let you know which supplements you should and should not take before your surgery and after your surgery procedure is completed. Some supplements can effect your body in different ways. Take fish oil for instance, which can interfere with how well your blood clots, therefore rising concern when surgery is concerned.
- If you are on birth control pills or antidepressants, you may want to steer clear of St. John's Wort, even though the supplement has been proven to be both effective and safe. St. John's Wort can make your antidepressant and contraceptive pills less effective. This means your primary care physician should be the judge as to whether continuing the use of this supplement is beneficial or not.
What Are Some Precautions I Should Consider When Taking Dietary Supplements And Nutrition Products?
There are several precautions you should take while taking any supplements or nutrition products. Below we will touch base on these precautions.
- Always report any problem you have to the company that made the supplement and the place that sold you the supplement.
- Never use a dietary supplement in place of your prescription medication. Think of it this way, supplements are meant to supply you with additional nutrients, not to treat or cure a disease or condition. Both the makers and the sellers of these supplements are required by law to make sure that these products are not labeled to do so.
- Even though vitamin A, iron, and vitamin D are all necessary for a healthy body, you should never consume them in large dosages, as they can lead to a number of negative side effects.
- Always consult your doctor before you combine dietary supplements. Keep in mind that when you combine supplements with your medications, you can impact how effective they are. Not only that, but mixing these together can lead to very dangerous side effects. Your doctor is the best person to tell you which supplements are safe to take with your current medications and which ones can cause you a whole load of problems if you mix them.
- Always check for the Seal of Approval that we talked about earlier. These seals are approved by the FDA and can give you peace of mind that you are choosing a supplement that has passed countless tests and regulations. These products will also have information listed on the USP, NCMD, NSF International, and Consumer Labs websites.
- If you are trying to lose weight or bulk up, always choose with caution. There are a lot of dangerous ingredients in these supplements and you could end up doing more harm to your body than good. A healthy lifestyle is the best way to maintain your ideal weight. Sports and weight training can help you bulk up or tone down. Many of the weight loss supplements out there are often misleading and do not work anyway. Always make sure you do research prior to buying a weight loss or bulking supplement such as protein shakes.
- And lastly, always, always, always consult your doctor before choosing a supplement. Your weight, age and overall health all play a role in which supplements are best for you and which ones you do not need. Remember, you may not need the nutrients you think you do, you might be getting enough from your diet alone. Your doctor is the best person to help guide you in a safe direction.
The Right Dietary Nutrition Supplements Conclusion
When you are shopping for supplements, it is very important that you remember that it is not so much the supplement as a whole that you need to worry about, as it is each and every ingredient listed in it.
There are many ingredients that offer nutrients that your body needs, but on the flipside, there are a lot of ingredients that have solid evidence that points to them being very dangerous to the human body when consumed.
Always do your research before choosing a supplement. Not just of the supplement itself, but of the ingredients, effectiveness, maker, seller and any side effects that have been seen while taking the supplement. Make sure the supplement is properly labeled with a seal of approval.
Even better, consult your doctor before choosing any supplement.
While many people may benefit from adding supplements to their diet, it is important to remember that while our bodies need a certain amount of each nutrient to function properly, too much can lead to more harm than good.
As always, be careful and use your head. Do your homework and be wary if something sounds too good to be true.