Myths About Supplements

August 12, 2019

Supplements are helpful, but not a shortcut: Some common myths about them



If you take the word literal, supplements are made to support a healthy, fit, and longer life. If there was an “easy button” to swallow, the world would not be facing an increasing rate of people developing chronic diseases. Dietary supplements have exploded over the years. Actually it became a billion dollar market, as over billions of US dollars are spent on vitamins and minerals annually. With so much advertisement, it is hard to believe which facts are true and false. The goal of this is to shed some light on some misconceptions on dietary supplements.


A reminder is that this is not going against supplements. A person eating a healthy, balanced diet can consume all vitamins and minerals needed. However, is this day and age with the rise of convenience and other factors, it is hard to eat that “healthy” diet. I personally believe that each person should take a:


• Multi Vitamin
• Omega 3 (Fish Oil)
• Vitamin D (for Women)


Consult with your doctor or dietician if you have any specific questions about dietary supplements.



#1: More is Better!

Like almost everything in life, more is NOT ALWAYS better. It has been proven that this is true. Each vitamin and mineral has an upper limit (UL). The tolerable UL is the maximum consumption without adverse effects. Consuming past each supplements UL can lead to harm to the body. An example is vitamin A. Too much vitamin A will put you at risk for osteoporosis. So when you are choosing what brand of multivitamin to buy, look for ones that contain no more than 100 percent. Also be careful of combining a multivitamin with isolated supplements in your diet.



#2: An Unhealthy Diet can be Fixed by Supplements

Going back to the word supplement- a healthy lifestyle and diet can be complimented by dietary supplements. Like the saying “you can’t out train a poor diet”, this is similar to supplements. So eat your vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins. Try to limit your fats and extra/refined carbohydrates. Always consume supplements with food. An empty stomach will make the absorption of supplements less effective.



#3: Supplement Labels Provide Correct Information

Let’s put this clear, there is too many new supplement chains popping up that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cannot possible keep track of them all. Supplements aren’t being regulated nearly as close as food. Therefore, new supplement companies are not necessarily required to back up their research. So be careful, and do YOUR research! If you read something that you never heard of on the nutrition label of a supplement, be skeptical. It could be dangerous!

The Author

Carlo Varquez, M.S.

I believe in the practice of preventative health. The only way to combat chronic diseases is through preventative action such as exercise and diet. My health and wellness career started within myself. After being an active person in high school through sports, my fitness dropped entering college. I gained unhealthy habits that lead to weight gain. To prevent any complications, I made some time to be active again by picking up weight lifting. Through that, I found myself wanting to help others before it was too late for them. As I gained my masters degree, I interned at the Cardiac Rehabilitation department at Advocate Lutheran General. I saw firsthand what cardiovascular disease can do, and what the action plan is to help those people return back to their daily routine. The time to make change is now, but it doesn’t need to be done alone. The science behind exercise is a powerful tool that is often overlooked. I want to motivate and increase self-efficacy to help others achieve their goals.

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