In the United States alone, the supplement industry is roughly worth 35 billion dollars. Eager to take their piece of the pie, many companies have invested in developing supplement products with little regard to the consumer. The supplement industry has received a bad rap for a few of these companies, but they aren’t all harmful.
There are a few reasons, however, that you should be picky when it comes to choosing your own supplements.
Interactions With Medications
When it comes to supplements, there can be many interactions with medications that you are taking, you might not even be aware of. One of the most common interactions is between St. John’s Wort and birth control medications. Make sure you are talking to a doctor about any supplements you’ll be taking. The aforementioned supplement can depreciate the efficacy of contraceptives and lead to unexpected consequences. Other supplements like Vitamin E or Vitamin K may interact with medications such as Warfarin, a medication responsible for anticoagulation.
Time and time again in the United States supplement companies are being caught with misleading labels. Products including St John’s Wort and Ginseng were being sold by four companies, when they were tested they contained little to none of the active ingredient advertised. This is a fraudulent practice as consumers have given money to these companies and then they were found to be purchasing something else. It’s scary to think that you have to be worried you’re even getting the product that you want!
Even more worrisome – these companies claimed their products were wheat free but they included wheat. For persons with celiac disease, this can lead to problems with their health. If you have any allergies, it’s important to always read and check the label. Do your research on the product before purchasing it, read the reviews of people who have already tried it and don’t hesitate to ask your doctor their professional opinion about it . You can start off with the professionals at FitnessInformant.com, they have a wide selection of supplement reviews that you can read up on. They have got you covered, from pre-workout supplements to ‘pump’ activating ones and you know you’re being given accurate information because they have gone that extra mile for you and tried these products out themselves.
Overdosing On Supplements
There’s a reason that caffeine powders are now prohibited by the FDA. There’s no way to ensure that something in dry powder form has the same consistency throughout the material. Sometimes, when companies are not adhering to their quality assurance standards, they may be selling products that are too high in a supplement. In cases of water soluble substances, this is not of particularly high importance. However, in the case of fat soluble vitamins such as Vitamin E, A or K – you can eventually end up storing too much of a nutrient. Research product reviews and the news to make sure you aren’t giving money to a company that doesn’t have your basic safety in mind.
Hidden Consequences of Supplements
Some supplements have hidden consequences you may not be aware of. This may be due to the supplement itself, or because the supplement has been mixed with a hidden pharmaceutical by the company. A Harvard health study published showed that some supplements marketed for sexual performance had hidden drugs inside them. These included; antidepressants, anabolic steroids, and pharmaceutical sexual performance drugs. Always speak to a physician prior to taking any form of supplements in order to avoid these cases.
Supplements such as Kava may be sold under the impression they assist with anxiety and insomnia. Kava can increase the amount of damage sustained by the liver and this is exacerbated from alcohol intake. The FDA may not require that warning labels are included in these kinds of products. Doing some research from home about the pro’s and con’s of certain supplemental administration will greatly benefit you in these instances.
Some companies might attempt to sell you the same product at a higher cost for absolutely no reason. Although they may tout that their product contains the “purest” form of a supplement, they are probably just upselling. Always be sure to read product labels and compare them to other companies offering the same product. You don’t want to be misled into giving someone money who isn’t offering any sort of competitive advantage. You’ll want to be careful as many businesses will try to do this, there are good health supplement sellers out there though.
There are many reasons to be picky regarding the type of health supplement you’re purchasing. Companies have been caught selling products with none of the active ingredient, or introducing pharmaceutical drugs into their product illegally. Always be sure to talk to your doctor, and research the company you’re thinking about purchasing from. Try to be safe and do your due diligence and I’m sure you’ll find one of the safest companies out there!