Dietary Supplements - Know The Risks And Benefits

Dietary Supplements - Know The Risks And Benefits

Most supplements on the market are safe and have real health benefits, but you can't play blind to the fact that there can be risks associated with taking some of these supplements. The dietary supplements increase the daily intake of nutrients, mainly minerals, and vitamins, and the ingredients are selected in accordance with what the supplement is intended for. Apart from the minerals and vitamins, you can also get probiotics, enzymes, oils, essential fatty acids, amino acids, and herbal ingredients in the supplements.

Supplement Benefits

The biggest benefit of taking dietary supplements is providing extra nutrients that you don't get enough from your diet. There are health issues that can cause deficiency or insufficiency and in such cases, the supplements come in handy.
In general, dietary supplements provide your body with basic micronutrients that are important and beneficial to the body. The multiple vitamins are safe to use as they contain small amounts of every nutrient contained in them. However, you can get specific supplements that contain high amounts of specific vitamins and minerals depending on the use.

Dietary supplements help treat deficiencies such as iron deficiency and they can also be used for therapeutic purposes to address risk factors and health conditions. For example, folic acid can be used to reduce spina bifida, a birth defect, while niacin can be used to improve the levels of good cholesterol in the body.

Additional risks

It should be noted that dietary supplements are not as strictly regulated as drugs and this means that not every supplement available on the market is proven to be effective and safe to use. Of course, suppliers are banned from selling unsafe products, but they still find their way into the market and so you need to be careful about the supplement choices you make so that you really get value for the money you spend on your supplements.

Aside from getting supplements that have no health benefit at all and likely contain unsafe ingredients, there is a risk if you don't follow the directions for use. Most people think that taking large doses of the supplements will get them to their health goals faster, but this couldn't be further from the truth. Such large doses can have strong effects on the body and you should never take supplements in large doses unless this is what you are advised to do.

Some of the ingredients that should be used with care when it comes to dietary supplements include fat-soluble vitamins D and A that can build up to levels that are toxic. Iron and selenium supplements should also be used with caution, as large amounts can become toxic to your body.

Another risk you run when taking a dietary supplement is a potential interaction with a prescription or over-the-counter medications. If you are taking more than one supplement, they can also interact and it may not be a good idea to take them before surgery. Always consult your doctor to reduce the risks.

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