How can I choose quality herbal supplements?

Advertisement
Advertisement
Tod Cooperman, MD
Health Education
There is a lot to check before you purchase (and swallow) an herbal supplement; unfortunately, you can’t tell from looking at a product if it is high quality or not. What you can do, however, is check reports on reputable websites to find those which have passed rigorous testing, including tests for key ingredients and heavy metal contamination.

Consider this sobering fact: research has shown that more than 30% of herbal supplements don’t meet strict criteria for quality. Among products that have passed testing, though, certain products are more reasonably priced than others--so you can seek out the best herbal supplements at the lowest cost.

This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com.
Harris H. McIlwain, MD
Rheumatology
Plants can vary greatly in their potency, and there is no government regulation for ingredients in herbal remedies. How do you know which supplements are effective? When choosing herbs, look for the ones labeled “standardized.” This means the manufacturer measured the amount of key ingredients in the herbal batch, so the chances are greater that you will get what you pay for in a “standardized brand.” Also, buy herbs from a reputable manufacturer instead of an off-brand that may be cheaper. Some of the known brands include General Nutrition, Natrol, Sundown, and Nature’s Bounty, among others. You might ask your pharmacist to recommend a reputable brand.
Diet for a Pain-Free Life: A Revolutionary Plan to Lose Weight, Stop Pain, Sleep Better and Feel Great in 21 Days, ADA...sound nutritional advice...do-able, delicious..a godsend to pain sufferers.

More About this Book

Diet for a Pain-Free Life: A Revolutionary Plan to Lose Weight, Stop Pain, Sleep Better and Feel Great in 21 Days, ADA...sound nutritional advice...do-able, delicious..a godsend to pain sufferers.

Do you wake up each morning aching with joint or muscle pain? Have you been trying to lose stubborn belly fat for years? Do you wish you could be active without pain medications? Look no further:...

Continue Learning about Dietary Supplements

Dietary Supplements

Whether you're visiting the drug store, grocery or natural food shop you'll likely find an aisle where there are jars and bottles of things for you to put in your body that are neither foods nor medicines. Ranging from vitamins an...

d minerals to fiber and herbal remedies, these supplements are not regulated in the same way as either food or medicine. Some of them are backed by solid research, others are folk remedies or proprietary cures. If your diet does not include enough of certain vitamins or minerals, a supplement may be a good idea. Natural treatment for conditions like constipation may be effective. But because these substances are unregulated, it is always a good idea to educate yourself about the products and to use common sense when taking them. This is even more true if you are pregnant or taking a medicine that may be affected by supplements.
More

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.