It’s not uncommon for many of us, hearing a lot about supplements and its benefits and importance. In fact, many of us need them badly because we don’t have time to eat healthily and add all the required daily nutrition requirements each day.
Few of us take it on a daily basis, and few on a weekly basis, but at the end, the number of users of supplementary usage is increasing in number. Dietary supplements come in many forms, like it powder form, capsules, tablets, and even in drinks and energy bar forms.
The most common and the popular supplement is the Sunshine Capsule, the Vit D, followed by Calcium, and then by Iron. This capsule also help in hair growth.
So, how do you choose the best supplement or hair growth shampoo for you or your loved ones? Well, you may say, by reading the label! So, are you a good at chemistry to know all the chemicals and its compositions and limitations? That’s really not everyone’s cup of tea, and not required for every man. But to say that a product is good, especially in the artificial food industry, the label is an important part to be looked at. What goes into its making, the artificial flavors, compounds, artificial to natural ingredients ratio and synthetic food substances usage levels etc. are few of the factors that one must concentrate on!
The products that are supplementary, dietary supplement have a label with facts panel that speaks about the active contents in the supplement, a number of such ingredients per serving, and added flavors or fillings. The serving size will also be mentioned, but your medical practitioner must also provide you with the exact amount of serving, based on your health
How effective and efficient are these supplements?
Supplements are taken in place for nutritious healthy foods, but they cannot totally replace the healthy foods. One can’t take too many supplements as a food. Following a healthy diet and healthy practice is very important, that can’t be replaced by supplements. Our body needs more of natural food, adequate water, proper sleep and good exercise to stay active.
Few supplements like the calcium and Vit D ones are known to improve the bone strength, in turn, contributing to overall health. Folic acid supplements are taken to decrease any birth defects, fish oils are taken to help improve heart health. But the remaining supplements be it anything for overall good health or proteins should be considered before taking, with the help of health care provider. There is a governing authority to check the genuineness of the product, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The quality of the supplements:
Whatever we talk about, quality is the major criteria, is it clothing or the food we consume we take in each day. Natural foods quality can be judged by its grown way, without pesticides and chemicals, grown under suitable conditions etc. so, how is the quality of supplements judged? We can’t go by word of the mouth, as one product doesn’t suit all!
The FDA has established Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)s for these supplements to ensure their purity, strength, identity, and its composition. These GMP’s ensure that no wrong ingredient is added or an ingredient is added in excess quantity or below the actual amount, either of any leads to complications in humans.
There are many other independent organizations that are open to check the quality of the dietary supplements, to re-assure about the quality of ingredient and its manufacturing quality. These approvals don't guarantee they are extremely safe and effective, they only tell you that they are good based on their quality.
Safety and risk factors involved:
Anything in excess is always dangerous, that should be the rule of thumb for anyone looking to buy dietary supplements. These supplements are known to cause some side effects even in a normal person, based on the ingredients and body reaction to these.
Taking too many supplements without doctor’s prescription, taking them instead of medicines and food has definitely caused serious problems in people. Dietary supplements can intervene with other medicines and cause problems. Below are some of the examples of these instances,
An antioxidant supplement like Vit C and E are seen to reduce the effects of some types of cancer chemotherapy.
Vit K supplement can reduce the effectiveness of a blood thinner medicine, used to prevent clotting.
So, we advise you to take caution and a word from your regular health care provider before starting on any health supplement. Prevention is always better than cure.