Diet supplements have often had a bad reputation for being unsafe or ineffective. While the times have changed and some medications are now safer, the fact still remains that some weight loss supplements are dangerous and many are misused. However, many people are still unaware that these supplements can negatively impact their health.
Diet Supplement Dangers
Nearly $24 billion was spent on dietary supplements in the United States in 2007, and about $1.7 billion of that was spent on weight loss pills. Because many diet pills of today are supplements, they aren’t regulated by the FDA, which means users don’t really know what they contain or if they are effective. The name supplement also gives manufacturers more freedom with marketing and production, and the term tends to mask the pills’ potential for danger. Diet supplements, however, often contain more caffeine than energy drinks, and many have been found to cause serious health risks, including chest pain, high blood pressure, heart attacks, and strokes.
The real danger comes, however, when people abuse these supplements by taking more pills than they should, or by combining pills in order to achieve faster results. Other people, looking for a quick fix, take large amounts of supplements and then exercise for hours. A study done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that 15% of American adults use weight-loss supplements, and most of those people do so without talking to their doctor about it. Many people today, desperate for weight loss, misuse diet pills without even knowing the dangers.
Healthy Weight Loss
Over the years, science has developed some wonderful medications and treatments, including those that help with weight loss, but because we are a society that likes to see results immediately, people tend to overuse and abuse things like diet pills. Too often, we let our unhealthy lifestyles jeopardize our weight, our happiness, and our overall well-being. There are healthy ways to lose weight, however, and those who are patient and dedicated will experience positive results. Diet supplements should always be used with caution, and under the supervision of a trusted doctor.