Vitamins & Supplements

Vitamins & Supplements Articles

Precious metals and other important minerals for health

The body doesn’t manufacture essential minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, chromium, copper, and iron. Instead, the minerals come from diet. Most people can meet recommended intakes of dietary minerals by eating a healthy diet rich in fresh foods. But some minerals, such as magnesium, iron, potassium, and calcium, may be harder for people to obtain in the proper amounts. In those cases, it may be necessary to increase dietary intake of certain minerals or to take a dietary supplement. But it depends on an individual’s needs. (Locked) More »

When it comes to protein, how much is too much?

You've probably heard the claims by now:  Here's a diet that's delicious, easy to stick with, and guaranteed to help you lose weight effortlessly.  Or, perhaps it's supposed to build muscle, protect your joints or prevent Alzheimer's.  Whatever the diet and whatever the claim, there's a good chance that it is, indeed, too good to be true. In recent years, high protein diets are among the most popular, whether the protein is consumed as a supplement (protein shakes for body builders!) or simply a larger than usual portion of a balanced diet (such as The Zone, Atkins or Paleo Diets). More »

Managing your medications before a medical procedure

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), anticoagulants, and certain herbs and supplements can increase the risk of bleeding with surgery. They may need to be stopped before a procedure. However, some medications, such as those taken to manage blood pressure, Parkinson’s disease, or type 2 diabetes, may need to be taken on the day of surgery. Instructions for stopping or restarting medications and supplements should come from one’s doctor, at least one week before the surgery. (Locked) More »

Can vitamin K supplements help protect against heart disease?

Some research has suggested that eating foods rich in vitamin K, which helps the body make blood clotting proteins, can protect against heart disease. However, vitamin K supplements have not shown the same benefit and are not recommended for preventing heart disease. (Locked) More »

Gut reaction: A limited role for digestive enzyme supplements

Prescription enzyme products can help when natural production is low because of a health condition such as chronic pancreatitis or cystic fibrosis. Likewise, taking an over-the-counter lactase supplement (such as Lactaid or Lactrase) can help manage lactose intolerance, and taking an alpha-galactosidase supplement (such as Beano or Bean Relief) may reduce gas and bloating for people who have a hard time digesting the sugars in beans. But for other common gut problems, like heartburn or irritable bowel syndrome, there is little evidence that nonprescription digestive enzymes are helpful. (Locked) More »

Should you consider taking a fish oil supplement?

Fish oil is rich in the omega-3 fatty acids known as DHA and EPA. These fats have biological effects that may benefit the cardiovascular system, potentially including easing inflammation and preventing blood clots. Fish oil supplements might slightly lower the risk of dying after heart failure or a recent heart attack. But they do not prevent heart disease, according to a 2017 advisory from the American Heart Association. In addition, they are not necessarily free of risk. Some fish oil supplements may contain trace amounts of contaminants. And too much fish oil may increase bleeding risk, especially in people who take anti-clotting medications. (Locked) More »