A supplement is referred to as something that enhances or adds to something else. Ideally, a supplement should be used as an additional nutrient source for your daily diet.

Supplements come in many different shapes and sizes, promising various results. Some of the most popular supplements are daily multivitamins, dietary aids, and pre and post workout enhancements. While most supplements are safe and have positive impacts on our health, this is not true of all supplements.

The Good – Vitamins & Minerals

Almost every grocery store has a shelf or two of supplements, mainly consisting of vitamins and minerals. These daily multivitamins, when taken correctly and consistently, have been proven to add necessary nutrients to the body. It is not uncommon for doctors to suggest vitamins or multivitamins to patients who have a specific deficiency, or women who are pregnant. Many fitness experts will also agree that multivitamins are a great resource for positive health impacts.

Don’t be afraid to take a once-daily vitamin or essential vitamin pills to aid with a deficiency. Be sure to do your homework and make sure you are, in fact, consuming vitamins and minerals and not chemically manipulated ingredients.

The Bad – Dietary Aids

It is important to understand that if a bottle of pills is promising weight loss, it is not a safe alternative to diet and exercise. It is also highly unlikely that the product was or has been approved by the FDA.

Stay away from these dietary supplements as they have a disgraceful track record. If it seems too good or too easy to be true, chances are it is.

The Ugly – Muscle Enhancers

If you were to walk into any gym at any time of day, it is likely that you would see at least a third of the people drinking a chunky mixture of protein powder and water. It is also likely that some of these people are also consuming some form of workout enhancing supplements. And while many of these supplements have been pulled from shelves and banned for health concerns, there are still many more being created and distributed.

Muscle and workout enhancing supplements have been linked to countless health risks, and even a small number of deaths. The dangers of enhancement supplements are disturbing to say the least. The best thing you can do for your body, especially if you are working towards becoming healthier, is to avoid them all together.

The Natural Route.

A supplement should be used to fill in the gaps of your diet where you might be lacking in nutrients. Any other use is likely to cause more harm than good to your health. A little exercise and a little fruit can go a long way!

Micah Larsen

Micah is a traveling swim coach and personal trainer, depending on the season. She is also currently working on her Master of Science in Athletic Administration and Coaching. Micah loves to live an active lifestyle, whether she is competing in open water swims, running a road race, practicing yoga, or biking with her dogs. The main objective in her career is to... Read More

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