We live in an age where good health (both inside and outside) is on offer all the time, everywhere. With the influx of dietary supplements, it is possible to improve our metabolism, meet the nutrient requirement of our body, brighten our skin, avoid hair fall and build muscles.
Many of us like to believe this is all there is to perfect health. But it is not as fancy as it looks. For all the good that supplements can do, if we are not careful, these can do more harm than good. So, how do you make the right choice? How to avoid making mistakes while buying supplements? Read to find out everything you need to know before buying supplements that give you the best results.
What are supplements?
Dietary supplements are the vitamins and minerals you take in addition to your regular diet to make up for any deficiency of vitamins, minerals, protein and omegas (we all know the billion-dollar industry that comprises sports drinks, protein shakes, gummy vitamins and other health powders).
Who can have supplements?
Anyone can have supplements. It is, however, important to know what you want and how it could benefit you. The best way is to consult a doctor and have them suggest what you should take and in what quantity. It is easy to overdose on a supplement and have it affect you adversely.
How to choose the right supplement?
Feeling moody? Tired all the time? Not able to put on weight? A few simple medical tests and a doctor consultation can help you figure out what supplement you need.
7 things to consider before buying supplements -
1. Supplements do not replace your food
We know there is no magic pill that will work on its own and give you instant results. All kinds of supplements work best with a steady diet and a consistent exercise regime.
2. Don’t let your desperation get the best of you
All mainstream supplement brands are playing on your insecurities and desperation - weight loss, sexual enhancement, etc. Always put your health first and always look for doctor consultation.
3. Don’t look for cheap products
You should not bargain with your health. If you want more affordable supplements, research them. Take multiple opinions, read reviews, etc. But do not buy something just because it is cheap.
4. Compare products and brands
Similar products of different brands can have different percentages of the supplement you need. This can affect you in ways where you might not get results for a long time or end up spending more money than required.
5. Read the label on the bottle
a. Always review the fact chart and the ingredients list to get an idea of what’s in the bottle
b. Always check the expiry date
c. Find out more about a brand’s quality and safety measures. You can even email a brand with your questions. The details are often mentioned on the bottle.
6. Avoid ‘extra’ ingredients
Often to entice customers, supplements are sold with extra ingredients. Let’s say you want a vitamin D supplement. You come across a brand that is selling you vitamin D + XYZ herb. These are the extra ingredients that you should be wary of because there is a likelihood they might cause some side effects. And do you need them? Just try and stick to the vitamin or mineral that you need.
7. Choose brands that you trust
a. Look for brands with the required verification mark in your country - FSSAI in India and Consumer Labs and The U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention in the USA.
b. While you can choose to support a new small business to buy some jewelry, the same is not a good idea for your dietary supplements. If a brand has a verified label and has been around for a long time, they probably have good products.
Finally, supplements do not replace a healthy diet. And they are not quick fixes. The changes they bring to your body are slow and steady. But for best results, always consult a doctor on The Wellness Corner- they will know the safest and most suitable option for you.
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