It is estimated that two-thirds of adults and one-third of children living in the United States are classified as obese or overweight. The medical community has long connected obesity with a string of health problems including heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Healthcare experts agree that the best way for a person to lose weight is to reduce their caloric intake, increase their exercise, sleep more, and minimize stress. However, while taking these steps seem good on paper, making lifestyle changes can be difficult for people. For this reason, many have turned to dietary supplements to promote weight loss and to help them achieve their weight loss goals.
How Common is Weight Loss Supplement Use?
It is estimated that approximately 15 percent of adults in the United States have used some type of weight loss supplement. The result is a $2 billion a year market for dietary supplements.
This has led to a growth in the types of supplements that are available. A person can buy weight loss supplements in capsules, bars, powders, and tablets. The manufacturers of dietary supplements make a lot of claims about how their supplement can reduce body fat, suppress a person’s appetite, increase their metabolism, and lead to weight loss.
Most dietary supplements have ten ingredients, but some have more than 90. The most common ingredients include herbs, minerals, and dietary fibers.
Are Dietary Supplements Safe for Use?
Since 1994, the FDA has regulated dietary supplements that are designed to cause weight loss. Although they are not classified as drugs by the FDA, they still must meet certain standards. The difference is that unlike medications, the creators of dietary supplements do not need premarket approval from the FDA.
It is up to the creator of the supplement to make sure that the product is safe and that their labels do not have misleading or false claims. If the FDA learns that a supplement is unsafe, they will either remove it from the market or encourage the manufacturer to do a voluntary recall.
The Federal Trade Commission may step in if it becomes clear that a dietary supplement is making unsubstantiated weight loss claims. The FDA monitors the content of dietary supplements, preventing them from using pharmaceutical ingredients. Additionally, dietary supplements cannot claim to prevent disease, treat disease, cure disease, or diagnose disease.
The Effectiveness of Dietary Supplements
There can be no overall statement about the effectiveness of dietary supplements. Each dietary supplement varies in the ingredients it uses. Dietary supplements work best when they are used in conjunction with exercise and lifestyle changes. They are an effective tool when used properly to help a person lose weight.
Contact Doctors Supplement Store today if you are a doctor interested in providing weight loss supplements to your patients.