Supplement Myths

Natural supplements are not regulated as well as medicines and there are natural supplement myths that many take as fact. The safety of natural products is one myth. Just because something is natural does not mean it is always safe.

Myth: All Natural Products are Completely Safe

Although herbs and other natural supplements have fewer side effects than many synthetic drugs, overdoses can be dangerous. Some supplements should not be taken together with certain medicines and some should not be combined with other natural products. Certain supplements can be safe to some people but contraindicated in specific medical conditions. You should always find out about possible contraindications before starting to take new supplements. If you are taking prescription medicines, talk to your healthcare practitioner before combining natural products with medication.

Myth: All Supplements are Equal

Not all supplements are equal. Many multivitamin tablets on sale in supermarkets contain very low quantities of each vitamin. They usually follow the official recommended dietary allowance (RDA) guidelines. However, in many cases the RDA only indicates the minimum amount of this vitamin your body needs daily to survive. Some herbal products that are widely available contain only low amounts of the actual herb. To get vitamins, herbs and other supplements in higher concentrations you should visit a qualified nutritionist or a medical herbalist. They can also prescribe supplements that suit your medical condition or lifestyle.

Myth: You Cannot Take Too Many Herbs

It is possible to take an overdose of herbs or vitamins and an overdose can cause side effects. Typical side effects include nausea and headaches. Serious or fatal side effects are rare and usually follow a large overdose or an interaction with other medications, but it is always important to take only the suggested daily amount. Always follow the guidelines from the manufacturer or from your healthcare practitioner.

Many herbal remedies have been used for centuries in traditional medicine and are safe to use. However, most supplements have not been tested and researched as thoroughly as medicines. Many natural healthcare practitioners hope for more research and testing to counter all the natural supplement myths that confuse consumers today.

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