A recent New York Times article regarding the quality of supplements at several major retailers has certainly created a buzz. Many people take supplements on a daily basis (myself included). How do you know if the supplements you are taking are worthwhile or a waste of money?
According to the NYT article, in 4 out of 5 cases, store brands of herbal supplements at GNC, Target, Walgreens and Walmart did NOT contain the herbs listed on their labels. The consumer thinks they are maintaining or improving their health by taking supplements. In reality, they are paying for inexpensive fillers which in some cases may negatively impact their health. How did this happen and how can we protect ourselves?
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not require testing of supplements. The system works on an honor code where the manufacturer is only required to verify that their supplements are safe and accurately labeled. Unfortunately for the consumer, supplements can be assumed safe until it is proven that they are unsafe.
Many companies do test their supplements on a voluntary basis to verify the quality, purity, and potency of their product. The United States Pharmacopeial (USP) established standards for supplements as early as 1820. They offer third party verification testing and also conduct audits to make sure companies comply with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). The National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) provides similar testing and GMP audits. Supplements marked with the USP and NSF labels have been verified by these organizations.
What Should You Watch Out For In Selecting A Supplement?
Richard Carlson is famous for his quote, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is”. We have all seen advertisements claiming unbelievable results for weight loss supplements, products that will melt away belly fat, and everything else on our wish list. If it was as easy as popping a magic pill, we would all be at the perfect weight and living in perfect health without a care in the world.
Good health takes time and effort, not a magic supplement. Don’t fall for those over-the-top promises.
Ask Yourself Why Do You Need This Supplement?
Was the supplement recommended by a doctor, nutritionist, alternative health practitioner, friend or the media? I’m a big fan of a short list of high quality supplements to provide my 토토안전사이트 body with certain nutrients that are hard to obtain on a daily basis from diet alone. However, I don’t feel that it’s necessary to take every supplement that’s currently in vogue.
It’s a good idea to do a self check every once in a while and ask yourself, “Why am I taking this supplement?” and “Has this supplement helped me to maintain or improve my health?”.
What’s The Best Way To Maintain Good Health?
High quality supplements are a great way to fill in the gaps in our diet. However, they are not a substitute for a good diet and healthy lifestyle. Here’s a short list of powerful tools you can use to maintain and improve your health.
· Eat more real, whole food. Many of these don’t have a list of ingredients because they are simply food.
· Begin to cut down on the amount of fast food and processed food that you eat. These foods tend to be loaded with sugar, salt, fat, preservatives and a lot of other ingredients that your body doesn’t like or need.
· Drink more water. Your body is 60% water and works better when it’s properly hydrated.
· Practice moderate exercise. Thirty minutes of exercise 3-5 times per week provides your body with a long list of benefits. Try a ‘walking’ break in place of your ‘coffee’ break.
· Discover your favorite stress reduction technique. You don’t have to meditate for hours a day, just 15 seconds of deep breathing a few times a day can provide amazing benefits.