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Can Supplements Have Harmful Side Effects? – MedShadow

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An analysis of supplement adverse events found that less than 1% of them were serious in nature. The research, which was sponsored by an industry trade group, comes despite a 2015 study that found more than 20,000 emergency visits each year are due to supplement adverse events and indications the true number of events are under-reported.

Researchers examined 41,000 adverse event reports related to supplements made by two manufacturers. The study was conducted by Supplement Safety Solutions, a safety consulting firm to the supplement industry, and the Council for Responsible Nutrition. The latter is a trade association and lobbying group for supplement manufacturers.

Results, published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements, found 0.48% of the adverse events were considered serious. More than two-thirds of those serious adverse events were in supplements marketed for weight loss. About 20% were for products purporting to help with glycemic (sugar) control.

The most common symptoms associated with the serious adverse events were dehydration, dizziness, headache, nausea and vomiting.

A 2018 study analyzing adverse events from supplements reported to the <span data-cmtooltip="The Food and Drug Administration is a federal agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, one of the United States federal executive departments.” class=”glossaryLink “>FDA over a 10-year period found serious outcomes included deaths, hospitalizations, life-threatening conditions and birth defects. It also estimated that the dietary supplement adverse event reporting rate is only about 2%.

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Jonathan Block
Jonathan Block

Jonathan Block is MedShadow’s content editor. He has previously worked for Psychiatry Advisor, Modern Healthcare, Health Reform Week and The Pink Sheet.

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Global Dietary Supplements Market Overview 2019-2026 : Amway, Bayer, Glanbia, Herbalife International of America, Abbott – Industry News Network

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The global “Dietary Supplements market” presents a widespread and elementary study of Dietary Supplements business at the side of the analysis of subjective aspects which is able to give key business insights to the readers. world Dietary Supplements Market 2019 analysis report offers the analytical read of the business by learning various factors like Dietary Supplements market growth, consumption volume, market trends and Dietary Supplements business price structures throughout the forecast amount from 2019 to 2026. Major Participants of worldwide Dietary Supplements Market – Amway, Bayer, Glanbia, Herbalife International of America, Abbott, BASF, Danone, NOW Foods, Pfizer, Pharmavite

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Best supplements for tiredness – the 1p a day capsules to boost energy and prevent fatigue – Express

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Feeling tired all of the time could be caused by not getting enough sleep, or by spending too much time at work. Tiredness that goes on for long periods of time isn’t normal, and may be caused by an underlying medical condition. But, taking some supplements may help you to feel more energetic, and less lethargic. You could lower your chances of feeling tired, and improve your day-to-day energy by taking vitamin B12 supplements, it’s been claimed.

Feeling fatigued more than usual could be a sign of a vitamin B12 deficiency, warned Harvard Medical School.

Vitamin B12 is needed to make red blood cells, DNA and nerves. But it can’t be made naturally in the body, and is needed from your diet.

You could top up on vitamin B12 by eating more clams, liver, beef, Greek yogurt, or even eggs.

“Vitamin B12 deficiency can be slow to develop, causing symptoms to appear gradually and intensify over time,” said the medical school.

“Given the array of symptoms a vitamin B12 deficiency can cause, the condition can be overlooked or confused with something else.

“Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms may include weakness, fatigue, strange sensations, numbness, or tingling in the hands, legs, or feet.

“A standard multivitamin delivers 6 micrograms, more than enough to cover the average body’s daily need.

“If you are over age 50, the Institute of Medicine recommends that you get extra B12 from a supplement, since you may not be able to absorb enough of the vitamin through foods.”

You could also be at risk of a vitamin B12 deficiency if you develop a swollen, or inflamed tongue, or difficulty walking.

Most people should be able to get enough vitamin B12 from their daily diet, said the NHS.

But, if you do decide to take vitamin B12 supplements, you should avoid taking more than 2mg a day, as it could be harmful.

Other than a vitamin B12 deficiency, your persistent tiredness could be caused by stress or anxiety.

Anaemia, an underactive thyroid and sleep apnoea could also lead to feeling tired all of the time.

If you’ve been feeling tired for more than four weeks, it’s a good idea to speak to a doctor, said the NHS.

Making sure you get enough sleep could help to prevent you from feeling sleepy the next day.

Most adults need between six and nine hours of sleep every night to perform at their best the next day.

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FDA proposes overhaul of dietary supplement industry – Healio

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The dietary supplement world is a murky place where you spend your money on a product that may or may not have any active ingredient in it, may not contain the promised dosage or concentration of the active ingredient, or it might include adulterants and contaminants.

I have read and written about many examples of this.

For example, some natural products for male enhancement, muscle building and weight loss that have been adulterated with unlabeled prescription drugs, including those banned by the FDA because they have been proven to be unsafe. In addition, the dietary supplement Kava had been considered safe for years before cases of liver toxicity suddenly started popping up, leading to worldwide restrictions and cautionary messages from the FDA. Kava didn’t suddenly become more dangerous; what likely occurred is that its growers started substituting a variety of the plant that grew faster to create greater yields, but the locals knew they should never use for medicinal purposes. 

The list goes on: some kratom products contain a far greater concentration of 7-hydroxymitrogynine than would occur naturally, leading to suspicion that it is enriched with a chemical that has stronger opioid effects and addiction potential; some cannabidiol products had only 12.5% of vaporization liquids, 25% of tinctures, and 45% of oils labelled correctly (plus or minus 10% of the labeled value). In most cases, these products contained far less cannabidiol than promised and some cannabidiol products contain enough THC to put the user in legal jeopardy of marijuana possession. Some dietary supplements have been shown to contain excessive amounts of cancer-causing polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and contaminants such as heavy metals and mold.  

How many more debacles must occur where the public trust is shoved aside to make a quick buck before people turn their back on natural remedies? The FDA can take decisive action that can reduce misinformation, fraud, abuse and unintentional poor cultivation and manufacturing practices. This can enhance the safety of dietary supplements sold in the U.S. and actually sustain this marketplace over the long-term.

No dietary supplement should be touted to prevent or cure any disease. Using a mouse study, in vitro cell study, or case report to market a dietary supplement’s disease modifying effects is fraudulent and hurts the public’s trust.

The FDA already had guidance on good manufacturing practices, but following them is not compulsory before placing a dietary supplement product on the U.S. market. Manufacturing plants, including those overseas, need to be personally inspected by the FDA. We know from the generic drug market and now the debacle with angiotensin receptor blocker manufacturers that the FDA’s history of inspecting foreign manufacturers is poor. Furthermore, all products should be tested periodically by an outside lab certifying that the products are free from contamination and adulteration, while possessing the promised dosage of the active ingredient, before it is allowed to be sold and randomly checked periodically thereafter. This would protect consumers and put the onus on the final manufacturer to ensure the quality of the products they are receiving from other cultivators or manufacturers. All of the costs of this outside testing should be borne by the manufacturers plus a surcharge to pay for additional FDA inspectors overseas. The current system where an overwhelmed FDA tries to fit in oversight of dietary supplements has to change.

Commissioner Gottlieb’s most recent proposal is sound and would go a long way in ensuring dietary supplement safety, but the agency will need a marked increase in resources to bring it to reality.

References:

Alltucker K, Hafner J. USA Today. “Why do blood pressure medications keep getting recalled? Here’s what we do know.” Accessed Feb. 12, 2019.

Liva R. Integrative Medicine: A Clinican’s Journal. “Facing the problem of dietary-supplement heavy-metal contamination: How to take esponsible action.” Accessed Feb. 12, 2019.

Tournas VH. Journal of Food Safety. 2009;doi:10.1111.j.1745-4565.2009.00167

White CM. Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2018;doi:10.2146/ajhp161035.

White CM. J Clin Pharmacol. 2018;doi:10.1002/jcph.1263.

White CM. J Clin Pharmacol. 2019;doi:10.1002/jcph.1387.

White CM. The conversation. “Beware of natural supplements for sex gain and weight loss.” Accessed Feb. 12, 2019.


  • C. Michael White, PharmD, FCP, FCCP

  • department of pharmacy practice, University of Connecticut

Disclosures: White reports no relevant financial disclosures.

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