Tag: supplements

Smoothie Add-Ins: Worth It or Waste?

by in Healthy Tips, December 1, 2013

smoothies
When you’re already plunking down five dollars or more for a smoothie, it can be hard to justify the additional cost of the various supplements and mix-ins offered on the menu. But with names like “recharge,” “immune booster” and “cold fighter,” the pricey additions can be hard to resist.

Read more

Supplement Savvy: Moringa Oleifera

by in Diets & Weight Loss, May 14, 2013

green tea
It’s the newest supplement making headlines. Does moringa live up to the hype? More importantly, is it safe?

What Is Moringa?
Also known as the “Drumstick Tree” moringa oleifera is grown in the Himalayas, as well as throughout India and Malaysia. The bark, leaves, fruit, seeds and root are edible and are used to make teas, oils, extracts and other supplements.

Peddlers of morgina products claim it can boost energy, suppress appetite, lower blood pressure and improve mood.

Morgina products range from teas and oils, to capsules and liquid extracts. And these supplements aren’t cheap! A bottle of 120 capsules costs about $30 to $40.

Read more

Hot Weight Loss Products: Worth the Hype?

by in Food News, January 17, 2013

food on scale
Now that the holiday gluttony is behind us, ‘tis the season for countless weight loss products to come slithering into the spotlight. Lose weight without exercising or changing your diet? Don’t be fooled!

The “Experts” Weigh In?
More now than ever, prominent celebrities (including members of the medical community) are endorsing weight loss supplements – there’s an immediate reason to be skeptical! What’s most important to remember is that these popular figures are usually being compensated in some way to give such products their seal of approval.

Read more

Supplement Savvy: Kids’ Vitamins

by in Nutrients to Know, November 3, 2012

childrens' vitamins
Thinking about giving your kiddies a daily multi-vitamin? Or maybe you already are. Make sure you’re supplement savvy!

Dangers
Because of less-than-stellar regulations, dangers can be lurking in supplements, no matter who they’re made for. For obvious reasons, little clinical testing has been conducted for this age group. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, food should come first, but there are some cases where a supplement can be beneficial. If your child has special dietary needs, check with your pediatrician.

Thankfully many of the supplement makers are very conservative with their ingredients when it comes to children’s formulas, but some brands include amounts far beyond the needs of youngsters. Remember that the first line of defense is a good diet!

Safety is an issue for a number of reasons. Since most kids’ vitamins come in colorful, chewable forms, it should be made clear to everyone in the house that vitamins are NOT candy. Parents need to be sure to store all supplements in a safe and out-of-reach location.

Read more

Supplement Savvy: Diet Pills

by in Diets & Weight Loss, Nutrients to Know, October 21, 2011
diet pills
Is it ever a good idea to take diet pills?

These various concoctions of vitamins, herbs, caffeine (and who knows what else) promise to shed pounds in the blink of an eye. Not only are these pills and potions too good to be true, they’re downright dangerous!

Dangers
Diet pills are some of the most dangerous supplements out there. They’re unregulated mixtures of bizarre ingredients and people tend to take them often and in large quantity quantities. We’ll remind you again – the supplement industry is poorly regulated and just because you can buy it over-the-counter doesn’t mean that it’s safe!

Read more

Supplement Savvy: More Popular Supplements

by in Nutrients to Know, August 9, 2011

vitamins
We’ve been filling you in on the good, bad and ugly details about popular vitamin, mineral and herbal products but there are a lot of other supplements out there. Here are the facts on five of the most common – are they worth it?

Multivitamins
While they seem harmless, multivitamins can be a cocktail of dangerous ingredients including toxic amounts of vitamins and minerals, herbs and other substances that may cause side effects and interact with medications. If food allergies, dietary restrictions, or pregnancy warrant taking some extra nutrients from a multivitamin, look for one that only contains vitamins and minerals. Beware of bizarre herbs, “proprietary blends” and other ingredients you don’t recognize. Pass on products that have more than 500% of the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) listed on the label.

Read more

Supplement Savvy: Vitamins

by in Nutrients to Know, July 19, 2011
vitamins
How many of these do you really need?

Lots of folks take supplements to help keep them healthy, but in many cases, pills and potions aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. This new series is your inside guide for some of the most popular vitamins.

Why Supplements Can Be Dangerous
It may seem hard to believe but the supplement industry isn’t regulated by the FDA or any other government agency. It’s only after multiple reports of adverse effects of a product that the government can step in to investigate and attempt to take that product off the market. This means that many supplement companies can (and do) cut corners, skimp on research, and sell products that are of lesser quality. In some cases this can just mean a waste of money, in others it can be dangerous to your health.

There is some good news: many of the most basic vitamin supplements (such as the ones below) tend to be safe when taken properly.  Better yet, there are a few third-party companies that do independent testing and have their seal of approval on product brands that meet standards for quality, safety and efficacy. One such company is the United States Pharmacopeia (USP). Consumers can go online to check recommended brands and look for the USP seal on approved products.

Read more

Ask HE: Do Cold and Flu-Fighting Supplements Really Work?

by in Healthy Tips, February 17, 2011

cold and flu vitamin c

Cold and flu supplements have become a multi-billion dollar business. As the cold weather rolls in each year, consumers fork over a pretty penny for anything that promises to keep them healthy or get them better. Are these supplements all they’re cracked up to be?

Well…Get our take »

Healthy Pregnancy: Supplement Picks

by in Healthy Pregnancy, September 30, 2009

I’m not a big fan of supplements and try to get all my nutrients from healthy foods, but when you’re pregnant, your body needs an extra boost from a few key nutrients.

Read more »

5 New Supermarket Finds

by in Food News, Grocery Shopping, June 4, 2009

bobs red mill
Every year, dietitians from the Greater New York Dietitians Association get together to talk food (my kind of meeting!). I got to attend this year’s gathering and sampled several interesting new products — some already on your supermarket shelves. Check out these 5 goodies.

Read more »