If you have just made the decision to take supplements, congratulations! You are taking a positive step towards boosting your health. You can support this commitment by doing your homework and ensuring that you consume a high-quality supplement. After all, you wouldn’t want to waste your money on a product that your body can’t properly use and benefit from.
Choosing the best supplements for your body can be overwhelming, what with thousands of nutritional supplements available today. It is not just about which supplement is right for you, but it’s also about identifying which product is effective and safe.
Here are some of the most important considerations when searching for the right supplement, along with great resources where you can learn more.
Vitamins and dietary supplements were created for various purposes. At different stages of life, you will need specific vitamins and minerals to support your body and your daily functions. It is crucial that you choose the right supplements for your age so you can get the maximum benefits.
For example, there are supplements for seniors that will help take care of a body that may not be as strong and agile as before. Also, there are supplements that can help kids develop stronger bodily systems.
Just as different supplements are created for various age groups, there are also vitamins and minerals that are made for men and for women.
For example, prenatal vitamins are made to help pregnant women whose aim is to have stronger and healthier babies. These supplements will give them the right amounts of vitamins and minerals necessary for the proper growth of their little ones.
Be extra careful when taking in something that will affect your body. Make sure to pick the most credible manufacturer of supplements you can find.
There are plenty of new businesses and multivitamin manufacturers that have emerged from nowhere in the past couple of years. Not all of them are credible, so it is your responsibility to be meticulous in your research. Besides, it is your body that you would be putting at risk if you fail to do your due diligence.
Trustworthy nutritional supplement manufacturers formulate their products according to findings of scientific research. Also, they purchase the best raw materials and work with independent labs to ensure that their products meet label claims and don’t have any contaminants.
It is a good idea for you to ask for a verification of quality from the supplement manufacturer. Reputable companies have product specifications, studies supporting their formulas, and lab tests showing that their ingredients are free from any contaminants. These important pieces of information can be found on their websites.
4. Nutrient Form
Carefully read the labels to know what nutrient forms are included in the product. These are enclosed in a parenthesis after the nutrient’s name.
However, keep in mind that there are some nutrients that have no special form. For instance, any kind of vitamin C (natural or synthetic) is acceptable. However, beta-carotene and Vitamin E are another story because their natural forms are far more superior.
Minerals come in different forms as well. Elemental minerals are not absorbed easily so manufacturers bind them to substances like amino acids that your body can take in. These are popularly known as chelated minerals.
As much as possible, you want to save money; however, remember that price has some bearing on the supplement’s quality.
Avoid buying dirt-cheap brands without carefully reading up on the manufacturer and studying their labels. Understand that manufacturers of discount products must save money somewhere, and they might do it by using improper nutrient forms, inadequate dosages, and other cost-cutting measures.
A study by the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy states that some arthritis products with chondroitin or glucosamine deviated significantly from what was present in the products. And price seemed to be a crucial factor. Most products that cost less than $1 per 1,200 mg of chondroitin have less than 10% of the label claim. Some costly products, however, were also deficient.
You can actually get this type of information from organizations evaluating consumer products, such as ConsumerLab.com and NSF International. They provide independent test results to help healthcare professionals and consumers identify the best health and nutrition products. They also provide general recommendations.
6. Dosage Level
Make sure that the product has enough amounts of nutrients that can improve your health. Some products may contain a wide range of good ingredients, but if you look at their labels, the amount of every ingredient is so small that it won’t possibly have a therapeutic effect.
So do not be fooled by this marketing tactic. You must know the recommended dosages for important nutrients before shopping for a product. This way, you can identify which product is right for you.
7. Red Flags
Aside from looking at the right nutrients and dosage level, you must also look for red flags on labels. Artificial flavoring, coloring, sugar, additives and preservatives like chlorine must be avoided.
Remember that every person is unique and has different needs. Supplements that work for your friend or relative might not work for you. Do not be afraid to ask help from healthcare professionals when looking for the right supplements that could yield the specific benefits you seek. Most importantly, do not decide to consume dietary supplements to treat health conditions that you have diagnosed yourself without consulting your healthcare provider.
Gehana Kennedy is the owner of vitaminshop.ae, the go-to source for high-quality wellness products including a range of step-by-step formulated vitamins, fitness supplements and natural skin care products. With innovative ideas and implementation of new technologies, she was able to establish a platform that offers not only quality products but also valuable information for customers.