Nutritional Supplements: Do You Know What You're Doing?

By Nicole Dennison  | Submitted On March 10, 2018

When we talk about nutritional supplements, what are we talking about?

According to the FDA: Nutritional supplements, also called dietary supplements, are products you ingest that contain a dietary ingredient intended to add further nutritional value to (supplement) the diet.

The most popular are multivitamins, calcium, and vitamins B, C and D. They can also be an amino acid, a mineral, an herbal or other botanical. They come in tablets, capsules, liquids, or powders.

According to the National Institute of Health News in Health: "More than half of all Americans take one or more dietary supplements daily."

What that means is that there are a lot of people taking supplements not knowing what they're doing.

Is that you?

What's at Stake?

As busy professional women, we're used to working long days, skipping meals, and picking up 'take out' on the way home for dinner. It seems easier to just reach for a supplement to fill in the nutritional 'gap' rather than slow down and eat healthfully.

As Americans, it seems we're always in a hurry. We eat fast, drive fast, multi-task, and hurry to the doctor's office for a pill to get better quickly.

I wonder... Are we also popping supplements, willy-nilly, without thought?

When it comes to nutritional supplements, do you know what you're doing? Are you qualified to decide for yourself what supplements to take?

When it comes to choosing nutritional supplements, besides a daily multi-vitamin, most of us don't have a clue.

Here's the problem: When you reach for that bottle of vitamin C or pop a fish oil pill, do you know if you're taking the right amount for your body? Do you know if your supplements are safe to take with prescription medications?

Take an Active Role in Your Health with the Right Mix of Supplements.

As busy professional women, you already take an active role in your business. You make informed decisions and don't do anything willy-nilly.

It should be the same with your health.

Choosing the right mix of supplements is important for anyone interested in taking an active role in their health.

While most supplements don't have side effects, they still impact our body.

For instance, vitamin C when taken in the right dosage helps build the immune system. Adversely, in higher doses, it's a laxative. The amino acid L-Theanine can help to lower cortisol levels and aid in relaxation. If you're currently taking a prescription to lower blood pressure, you wouldn't add L-Theanine as a supplement.

Three Avenues to Pursue When Seeking Nutritional Supplements

What a busy professional woman to do?

Nutritional supplements can be a powerful ally for busy professional women interested in achieving optimal health. And while it is possible to get all the nutrients you need by eating a variety of healthy foods, it's difficult to do so.

If you do decide to take supplements, here are three avenues to pursue:

1. Consult with a doctor - just not any doctor.

For optimal holistic health, seek advice from a degreed medical professional. One that is trained to focus on whole-body health. Doctors of Oriental Medicine, Naturopaths, Alternative or Integrative Medical Doctors, for instance, can advise you on nutritional supplements.

N.B. Traditional, western medicine doctors are neither trained nor able to be licensed to discuss nutritional supplements with clients!

2. Partner with a Holistic Health Consultant.

A lower cost alternative to seeking advice from a holistic medical doctor is to consult with a certified holistic health consultant. Many are educated and trained in how to help you wisely choose supplements best for your health goals.

Be cautious of 'health coaches.' Not all health coaches are certified. Be particularly wary of anyone who wants to sell you their health product.

3. Do your research on Google.

Although this is the lowest cost alternative, it takes the most amount of time. To become knowledgeable about nutritional supplements you'll need to do one heck of a lot of research, slog through endless websites touting elixirs to optimal health, and sort through a dizzying amount of contradictory information. Word to the wise: If you go this route, read carefully.

Nutritional supplements can be a powerful ally for busy professional women interested in achieving optimal health. However, before you go off, willy-nilly, choosing whatever nutritional supplement you think would do you good, make sure you know what you're doing. Pursue these three avenues when deciding on what nutritional supplements to take. Your body will thank you.

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