Dietary supplements are not regulated by the U.S. government in the same way as pharmaceuticals. When you buy such a product, you are placing your trust in the manufacturer that the product:
- really contains the ingredients stated on the label
- is not only safe, but effective for the intended use
- was harvested, extracted and/or produced using high-quality ingredients and manufacturing standards
- was not contaminated during production
- will not interact dangerously with other drugs, supplements or even foods.
Trust? Maybe. Verify? Definitely!
Because of these problems, it would be easy to take a broad stroke and denounce all herbs and other dietary supplements. But there are many, many of these so-called “natural” products that are produced under the strictest quality and safety standards and are indeed safe, effective and useful health aids.
So where does this leave you with regard to buying nutritional supplements and alternative medicine products? Pretty much on your own, for now, to research quality, safety and efficacy issues in every way possible. But increasingly, information on these products is becoming part of the mainstream medical literature.
Now, if you do find reliable evidence that a particular supplement has medicinal value, do not skip the next step. Check out the vendor and the manufacturer to make sure you are buying a product that will help you, not harm you.
The Real Secret to Weight Loss – Hard Work
The second issue is weight loss pills and products. We have mountains of proof that there is no magic pill for permanent weight loss. Yet Americans spend billions of dollars looking for that elusive solution. Even the government-approved diet pills state clearly in their ads that these drugs will not work by themselves — you have to make the effort and commitment to lifestyle changes if you want to take off weight permanently.
Many studies show that weight loss which results from pills and crash diets is short-term weight loss, with most people eventually gaining back everything they lost, plus some.
The key to weight loss is exercising and eating a healthy and balanced low-fat diet that avoids extremes. If there is a secret to success, it is to make long-term goals and change your habits slowly, incrementally over a period of months or as long as you need to make the changes stick.