More and more Americans are taking dietary supplements with the intent of boosting their health, when in fact they may be harming themselves. It’s important to check the labels and understand what ingredients are included in your health supplement.
According to a recent article in the Journal of the American Medical Association, many supplements have added illegal weight-loss chemicals, sexual-enhancement, bodybuilding compounds or other additives, such as caffeine. The journal reported that 51 percent of Class 1 recalls by the Food and Drug Administration – concerning products that can cause serious health problems or even death – involved dietary supplements.
Unlike prescription drugs, supplements do not undergo regulatory scrutiny. Currently, the FDA has no authority to require detailed ingredient information from a manufacturer about a dietary supplement before it is put on the market.
Legislation has been proposed in the U.S. Senate that would require additional product information on labels. The bill would also give more authority to the FDA by requiring manufacturers to register their products and the ingredients, and to provide proof of health-benefit claims.
Recently, a popular vitamin B supplement was found to contain two potentially harmful anabolic steroids, methasterone, a controlled substance, and dimethazine, that were not listed on the label. Anabolic steroids have been linked to health problems ranging from increased risk of heart attacks and strokes to male infertility. Consumers of this particular supplement experienced such symptoms as fatigue, muscle cramping, muscle pain, and had abnormal laboratory findings for liver and thyroid function and cholesterol levels.
Make sure you are checking your supplement labels, and remember, if you have any questions don’t hesitate in asking your doctor to get recommendations for nutritional vitamins and supplements that would be best for your health.
Angels Senior Home Solutions is a based-in-faith company that provides in-home healthcare and personal care services for seniors.