What You Should Look for in a Health Supplement
Health supplements are products that provide a range of health benefits. They have been used since ancient times as alternative medicine and are still used to this day.
However, you must be sure that you are taking quality health supplements that will not compromise your health or interact poorly with any medications you may be taking.
Here are some of the qualities that you should look for in a health supplement.
Health supplements that are derived from natural or organic ingredients run less of a risk of causing reactions compared to chemical-based supplements. For example, ginger has been used to help with digestion problems for centuries. People in ancient times used ginger to get relief from indigestion, cramps, stomach aches, and other digestive problems. Recent scientific studies have indicated that ginger may have some benefits when taken in health supplements.
Neglecting to research the ingredients can lead to taking health supplements that may harm you. For example, ephedra was taken to combat the appetite to control weight. The only problem with ephedra was that it was very addictive. Users who used it to lose weight would often have difficulty stopping once the appetite suppression effects wore off. People who took this diet aid started to develop kidney problems, high blood pressure, heart attacks, and strokes. Therefore, you should always research the ingredients in any kind of supplement or consult with your doctor.
Any supplements you take should be contributing important nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs to function at its best.
Nutrients, such as vitamin E, for example, are important and contained in many health supplements. Vitamin E, specifically, works to reduce inflammation and is thought to help in the reduction of cancer.
Another important kind of vitamin E is beta carotene, which is important to the skin. This vitamin helps the skin to be able to convert to the healthy color needed for healthy skin.
L-cysteine is another important kind of vitamin E, which helps in the production of collagen and is found in many health supplements. It is also said to be helpful for joint health. Many other important vitamins can be found if you research more on supplements.
3. Possible Health Benefits
The type of health supplement that you will look for largely depends on the possible health effects you desire. It is important to carefully research the supplement and see whether the possible health benefits mentioned are aligned to your health goal.
For instance, if its energy that you require, supplements that contain caffeine, niacin, zinc, magnesium, and vitamins A and E are advised. Caffeine is a stimulant that can enhance the performance of athletes, while niacin aids in energy and metabolism. Zinc supplements can be used to improve the metabolic rate and prevent cancer. Vitamins A and E are known for their antioxidant activities that may inhibit the development of cancer cells.
Another category of supplements is one that promotes weight loss. This category includes protein shakes, weight loss pills, diet pills, and amino acids. Protein shakes are usually used for protein synthesis and help stimulate muscle growth and repair. Weight loss supplements can be taken to help regulate appetite and promote better weight management. Protein supplements can also aid in building lean muscles and burning fat.
Another group of supplements includes those that improve the function of organs such as the liver and kidney. For example, calcium supplements help in bone development, while herbal supplements and minerals can help in maintaining the proper functioning of the immune system.
Other benefits of health supplements are protected against diseases and conditions and improving general health. These include protection from various types of cancer such as breast, lung, prostate, ovarian, colon, head and neck, urinary tract, oesophageal and stomach cancers, leukemia, lymphoma, cervical cancer, leukemia, pancreatic cancer, bladder cancer, kidney cancer, and bladder cancer. A healthy heart can help reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. The body’s ability to heal itself may be enhanced with the use of immune boosters.
4. Possible Side Effects
Determining the side effects of various health supplements requires research about the ingredients contained and a product review sweep before you begin using the supplements. Keep in mind that side effects are not always a result of poor-quality supplements or chemicals. Individuals respond to supplements differently and it is important to consult your doctor if you experience any side effects.
Side effects of health supplements may include dry and cracked skin, diarrhea, cramps, bloating, nausea and vomiting, headaches, and dizziness.
5. Ask Your Doctor
If you are looking to take health supplements to complement prescription drugs, you need to ask your medical doctor what exactly to look for.
Depending on your diagnosis, a doctor can suggest that you look for specific ingredients and nutrients. Some health supplements are not advised to be taken simultaneously with certain medications as adverse reactions may occur.
6. Choose Recommended Brands
Positive reviews and recommendations of a brand may indicate that the products are safe to use. Products of such brands would have gone through third-party quality testing and are certified.
One is advised to purchase health supplements from brands that clearly state their position regarding quality testing to reduce the risk of purchasing compromised products that may cause harm. Keep in mind that not all online reviews are authentic, and you need to use your discretion.
When looking for health supplements, you need to understand the ingredients and vitamins that are contained in the product. You also must know why you are taking the supplements as these serve different purposes such as weight loss or energy boost. Researching the possible side effects of the health supplement will help you monitor your response to the product. As soon as you experience any mentioned side effects, you must immediately seek medical attention.
It is important to ask your doctor about the types of health supplements that you can take. This will depend on your medical history as well as current prescriptions that you may be taking. Keep in mind that health supplements are not medicine and should not be taken as a replacement for medicine and treatment. Health supplements are meant to only complement the medication that you may be taking for possible health improvement or disease prevention.
Make sure to purchase health supplements from recommended brands that have undergone third-party testing. This will lower the risk of buying products that may cause more damage than wellness.