Many men and women choose to take vitamins and dietary supplements on a daily basis to improve their health. Taking dietary supplements is a great way to add more of the vitamins and minerals humans need to diets that may be lacking. For example, it’s hard for even the healthiest individuals to get all of the calcium and magnesium they need from their diets alone. With that being said, there are a few guidelines that should be followed to ensure that you are using supplements wisely.
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Discuss Supplements with Your Health Care Provider
The first guideline for taking supplements wisely is to always discuss which supplements you are taking or wish to take with your health care provider. They may be the ones who recommend some supplements to you. If you have read or heard about others that you are interested in taking, tell your doctor first because they could pose a risk to certain individuals. It’s wise to clear these things with a professional beforehand.
Always Follow the Label Instructions
First, make sure that you follow the label instructions on whatever supplements you decide to take. In most cases, you can’t overdose on supplements, but there are some vitamins that can be dangerous if taken in excess, so always follow dosage instructions.
Be Sure That Your Supplements Won’t Interfere with Medications
There are some supplements that could interact badly with medications that you may be taking. Even if you are not currently on medication, any medical problems that you may have could pose risks if you take certain supplements. Finally, those who are about to have surgery in the near future must always divulge which supplements they are currently taking to their surgeon because some supplements can cause complications. For example, a few vitamins thin the blood, and this can be a complication for invasive surgeries.
Be Skeptical about Supplements That Make Big Claims
Finally, you have to be smart about the supplements that you purchase and take. Unfortunately, there are some companies out there that are willing to sell you useless dietary supplements or those that may actually be dangerous. These companies may make grand claims about their supplements. As a rule of thumb, if it’s too good to be true, it probably isn’t true. In other words, if a dietary supplement claims to be able to help you lose 20 pounds in two weeks, this is probably a falsehood. Be smart about which dietary supplements you take, and always do your research.
A great way to know which nutrients you may need more of is to get your blood work done. Ask your doctor to give you a write up for basic blood work. Once you get this done, the results will tell you what you need. For example, you may find that you need more vitamin D, calcium or something else. Dietary supplements can be wonderful for improving energy, mood and overall physical health. Follow these guidelines to ensure that you are getting the most out of your supplements.