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Are Herbal Supplements Safe? – What You Should Know

Posted Jan 06 2010 11:01am
Both herbal supplements and mineral supplements have been used in various forms throughout history. In the United States, medicines and foods are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and are tested for safety before being placed on the market. Herbal supplements, however, fall under a subcategory of “dietary supplements” and are regulated under a different set of rules. For this reason, it is important to do some research before choosing the appropriate herbal or mineral supplement for a particular diet.

When considering which supplements might be appropriate, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine can be an excellent resource. In addition, the herbal supplements manufacturer or mineral supplements distributor should be able to answer questions regarding their products.

Another method consumers have in protecting their health is to be cautious. When taking a particular mineral supplement, for example, the user should follow the recommended dosages, keep a record of what is being taken along with the benefits and any side effects experienced. In addition, supplements produced outside of the U.S. may not be held to any FDA regulations and can contain ingredients not considered safe by FDA standards. The NCCAM keeps a list of supplements that are currently under review, so double checking this resource helps the consumer avoid questionable choices.

The addition of both herbal supplements and mineral supplements to one’s diet can have considerable benefits. With a little common sense and a desire for safety, herbal supplements can offer a natural alternative to many pharmaceuticals on the market today.
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