Are you focused on improving your health this year? You’re not alone! In fact, nearly 80% of Americans already use dietary supplements to improve their overall health.
Supplements can help you avoid a potential vitamin deficiency. Before you start shopping online, however, it’s important to consider where you’re shopping. Otherwise, you might buy a low-quality product that won’t benefit your health.
Here are eight tips for buying supplements online. With these tips, you can choose supplements with your health goals in mind.
You can avoid potential scams at the same time, too.
Start your search for quality supplement shops with these tips today!
1. Visit Your Doctor
Before you start buying supplements online, schedule a visit with your doctor. Ask if they can run a blood test to determine if you have a vitamin deficiency. Speaking with your doctor can help you make more informed decisions regarding your health.
Otherwise, you might end up buying supplements you don’t need.
Consider talking to a dietitian, too. They can help you choose vitamins and supplements that complement your diet.
Let your doctor know if you’ve experienced any health changes recently.
For example, are you feeling drained of energy? Your doctor might realize you’ve developed a vitamin B12 deficiency.
You can get vitamin B12 from animal products. If you’re on a vegan or vegetarian diet, you could risk a deficiency, too.
Consider tracking your dietary habits the week before your doctor’s appointment. Then, talk to your doctor about your:
- Lifestyle habits and routine
- Eating and drinking habits
- Potential risk for future medical conditions
- Family history of medical conditions
Your doctor can help you determine which supplements you need based on your lifestyle. For example, you might want to ask about supplements for fitness. Maybe you’re concerned about weight loss supplements instead.
You can use these tips to get rid of stubborn fat.
Your doctor can recognize the vitamins and minerals you’re not getting from your diet, too.
Make a list of questions to ask your doctor before your appointment as well. For example, you can ask:
- Will this supplement cause any side effects
- Are these supplements safe to take while I’m nursing or pregnant
- What dosage do I need
- How often should I take this supplement
- Will it interact with any medications or foods
Your health goals and needs are unique. Speaking with your doctor beforehand will help you develop a plan based on your goals.
2. Avoid Potential Conflicts
Don’t forget to talk to your doctor about any potential conflicts you might experience, too. You don’t want to purchase supplements that might interact with the medications you’re taking. Otherwise, you might put your health in jeopardy.
For example, your doctor might tell you to avoid vitamin K if you’re taking blood thinners. Otherwise, vitamin K could cause your blood to clot.
If you have a surgery planned in the future, make sure to avoid omega-3 supplements. Otherwise, your risk of bleeding could increase.
Some supplements can interact with beverages or food, too. For example, don’t take iron with milk. Otherwise, the calcium could interact with your iron supplement.
Make a list of the potential side effects you might experience while taking certain supplements, too. Let your doctor know if you experience side effects right away.
3. Read the Label
Find a few online supplement stores to look into. Make sure to stick to the list of supplements your doctor provided.
Americans spend over $30 billion a year on dietary supplements. You don’t want to spend money on supplements you don’t need.
When buying supplements online, take the time to read the labels on products. Try to ignore marketing claims. If it seems too good to be true, it likely is.
Instead, look for:
- The supplement’s name
- The manufacturer’s contact information
- A list of the ingredients
- Information about how much of each nutrient is in the supplement
Look for certifications, too. For example, you might notice certifications from ConsumerLab.com or NSF International. Look for the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) logo as well.
These certifications mean the product meets manufacturing standards.
4. Determine the Dose
Make sure to talk to your doctor about the dose you need for each supplement on your list. When buying supplements online, make sure the dose suits your health needs.
Avoid buying products that offer more than what you need. Otherwise, you might have to cut your supplements in half to adjust the dose.
5. Find High-Quality Brands
Take the time to prioritize shopping from high-quality brands.
First, choose respectable brands that have lasted in the industry for years. Visit the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements, too. Their site can help you learn about each supplement and brand.
Make sure the FDA hasn’t issued any warnings or recall alerts for that product, either.
Otherwise, check the USP website for a list of brands you can trust.
6. Review the Site
Before buying supplements for fitness or weight loss online, take a look at the site.
Make sure the site has an SSL certificate. You should see “HTTPS” before the domain name. These sites are safe to buy from.
Otherwise, you could leave your private information vulnerable to hackers.
7. Read Reviews
Read online customer reviews to learn more about each product and brand as well.
You can find reviews on Supplement Reviews and Protein Daily. Learn from consumers who were once in your shoes.
Check the company’s Better Business Bureau and Google My Business listings, too.
8. Know What to Avoid
While you’re buying supplements online, it helps to know what to avoid.
Check the labels on products for a list of their ingredients. Avoid:
- Bitter orange
- Contaminated L-tryptophan
These ingredients can cause adverse effects like liver damage. Check the FDA’s list of tainted products, too.
Otherwise, remain selective. Remember to prioritize your health and wellbeing above all else.
Shop Smart: 8 Tips for Safely Buying Supplements Online
You don’t have to start buying supplements online from the first stores you find. Instead, use these tips to become a savvy shopper. With these tips, you can find the best fitness and weight loss supplements with your goals in mind.
Searching for more useful tips and tricks for your health journey? We can help.
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