Americans spend billions on supplements. No wonder. We are bombarded by the media, advertising, MLM’s, and even friends to try yet another supplement. If I tried every supplement that promised to give me energy, loose weight, live longer, decrease wrinkles and help me sleep, I would be popping hundreds of pills a day. We wouldn’t do that with prescription drugs, so why with unregulated supplements?
Over the years, I have tried many supplements. Most of the ones that I fee
In my own search for good information and to be sure I spend my money wisely and safely, I’ve gathered this information and tips:
I have concluded that most of us do not need to take many supplements. We need to spend that money on fresh, unprocessed, organic food.
I believe there is enough information available, along with enough conflicting information, to show that unless we have a reason to take a supplement – and my only reasons are because I have been tested deficient, or I am actively treating a condition – we do not need supplements.
If I do take a supplement, I make sure it is safe to do so.
- The FDA does not regulate dietary supplements like other drugs. It is difficult to know what ingredients are actually in supplements and if they have the potency they claim or if there are hidden ingredients that may not be safe. This infographic explains some things to be aware of and that should be tested for. Make sure your supplement company does so.
- Supplements of any kind have biochemical properties that when ingested, can have unwanted effects. That is why your doctor asks you about anything you are taking, be it prescription drugs, recreational drugs, alcohol, certain foods, over the counter, or supplements. Be sure to talk to your health care provider before you take any supplement.
- If you suspect you may be deficient in vitamins or minerals, get tested. You may need to go to a Naturopath or through an independent lab, and unfortunately these may not be covered by your insurance. I still feel it is more cost effective then buying unnecessary supplements and you may get a bigger and better picture of your overall health. Of course there are no tests to see if you are deficient in herbs, such as oregano oil or echinacea, as these types of supplements are considered foods.