nutritional supplement

Nutritional supplements are taken by large number of people from middle age onwards to fulfil the deficiency of some nutrients they cannot get from diet. They come in various forms like capsules, tablets, drinks, and powders and bars. They give daily requirement of almost all vitamin, protein, minerals like calcium and iron. Fish oil, pro biotic, garlic, echinacea herb and glucosamine also come as nutritional supplements.
Generally People who fail to get the essential daily amount of particular nutrition take them through supplements.
Certain category of people need nutritional supplements more than other because they need it more and cannot get all need from the diet they take.
These people include:
1. pregnant women
2. senior people
3. baby feeding mothers
4. strict vegetarian people
5. people with food allergies
6. people with bone issues
7. people facing medical problems

nutritional supplements


Based on the sales and demand following supplements often come on the top list of nutritional supplements:
1. Creatine – one of the best supplement which is used by people doing intense workout. It helps muscle building and recovery after intense physical workout.
2. Multivitamins –  taken after any meal to fill the gap left by diet, the multi-vitamin come on the top of the nutritional supplement’s list. The age and gender of users must decide the quantity of tablets.
3. Vitamin B – B6 and B12 comes in this category. Older people and person who take drugs that interfere with absorption of vitamin can take vitamin B supplements.
4. Vitamin C – this vitamin is taken toward off cold etc. and gain immunity from infections.
5. Vitamin D – people with little exposure to sunlight and elders are main user of vitamin D. Infants are also given this supplements to strengthen their bones.
6. Sports nutritional supplements – these supplements are taken to enhance the performance in sports. They are also taken to reduce weight or fat. They are generally in drink form. Proteins, creatine, amino acids and fat burners form the bulk of sports supplements.
7. Casein whey protein supplements – used by body builders to get the nutrition for muscle building. It can be taken both by men and women. It is also used to recover after intense workout and weightlifting.
8. Calcium – one of the widely used supplements. It is taken by both men and women from middle age onwards who are unable to extract calcium from normal diet. Calcium is generally taken in tablets forms to strength the bones.
9. Glucosamine and Chondroitin – both are used by people having problem of joint pain. These two are taken as combination or alone.
10. Fish oil – It widely used nutritional supplement. Fish oil is general taken for omega 3 fatty acid, which is considered beneficial for heart.

nutritional supplements


The beneficial aspects of various supplements mentioned above has been explained now. Let us see the harmful sides of taking supplements.

The reason why supplements may be harmful to health:
1. Supplements and many multi-vitamins are not regulated by FDA (Food and Drug Administration) of USA. That means they are not tested before going into market.
2. The ingredients that they contain can cause serious damage to heart, liver and kidney.
3. FDA rules & regulations do not apply to companies that supply herbs, or other ingredients to manufacturers of supplements.
4. Some countries which supply raw ingredients are beyond the scope of any investigating agency of any country.
5. Supplements are contaminated with heavy metal, pesticides and prescription drugs are easily available.
6. Body or muscle building products often have steroids or steroids like products. weight loss products contain sibutramine and other drugs.
7. Supplements for body building, weight loss and sex enhancement often contain banned or hazardous ingredients. Cases of people suffering heart attack after taking performance enhancement supplements are common.

Caution in using supplements:
1. Users should keep in mind that some supplements can cause damage when taken with other drugs or medicines.
2. Never take any product for weight loss or body building without knowing ingredients or checking with doctor.
3. Do not buy any product that has ‘mega dose’ mentioned on it, because the supplements itself is enough for you. Over dose can be harmful.

The only way to counter the side effects of supplements is to take them only under guidance from physician. The best and safest method is to take balanced food and fruits instead of relying on supplements.

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Health World Journal