Due to a lack of a healthy diet, people are more susceptible to developing vitamin and mineral deficiencies. If you have visited the supplement section of a drug store, you must have been overwhelmed by the range of choices! Dietary supplement products have been flooding the market as their demand has increased significantly.
There are several factors to consider when selecting a specific dietary supplement. Although brands like Pure Encapsulations offer hypoallergenic, non-GMO, gluten-free, and research-based products; you still need to do a lot of homework before choosing one.
Know why you need them
Most people take dietary supplements to fulfill the daily requirement of essential nutrients. Multivitamins serve this purpose. However, those seeking to treat particular health issues like osteoporosis or anemia might need specific supplements such as calcium, vitamin D, or iron. In these cases, your doctor recommends the proper dosage and his or her trusted brand. If you want to prevent illness, a combination of good dietary choices and supplements can be effective in keeping a healthy immune system with which to fight off disease.
Third-party testing is not required by law. Some brands, such as Pure Encapsulations, voluntarily go through the procedure. This ensures their products are safe and high-quality.
You can find COA (Certificate of Analysis) on the brand’s website to know if their products are third-party tested or not. This certificate should be earned by a renowned company such as USP, BSCG, NSF, or BSCG. They test the product on various grounds:
- A complete list of ingredients is included in the product, with the amounts indicated.
- Each batch of products is standardized.
- It is free from contaminants.
- Absence of any undeclared ingredient.
Moreover, if you are an athlete, you should choose NSF-certified sports products. This certification assures that the product is free of 270 substances banned by most major sports organizations!
Choose a reputable brand
You might have been seeing some supplement brands for several years. They stay around because they probably deliver genuine products. Choosing brands that have acquired COA from the labs mentioned before should be your priority in such situations. You can ask someone for a suggestion in a drug or health food store, but you are in charge of your purchase.
Supplements should also be taken in the correct dosage. “More is better” is not the case with these as you might develop a rare but severe reaction to some vitamins and minerals. For example, too much vitamin D supplement can cause “Vitamin D toxicity” in some people.
Your goal should be to meet your nutritional needs through diet alone. But, your doctor will prescribe specific supplements if you suffer from nutritional deficiencies, inadequate access to healthy food, conditions causing malabsorption, or are going through pregnancy. Due to the FDA’s limited regulation of supplements, it can be hard to know which of them are the safest and most effective. You must do thorough research to avoid misleading claims and any potential side effects.
Make sure you buy a third-party tested supplement with high-quality and safe ingredients! Also, contacting your doctor before making any dietary changes is necessary! This is especially the case if you are pregnant or suffering from a medical condition.