Having a browse through cyberspace you’ll come across all manner of food, nutrient and vitamin supplements. Some people attribute amazing positive benefits to certain supplements, and can get you so excited you can’t wait to order them yourself… but then… you start to find horror stories. Tales of woe and despair, and suddenly, you don’t know what the hell to think.
I’ve done this countless times, and it’s a bummer to say the least.
On my virtual travels I’ve seen cod liver oil, flax seed oil, whey protein and creatine being blamed for head aches, sickness, diarrhoea, weakness, and even hair loss.
What are you supposed to believe?
Well, there’s no question that whenever you get these kinds of stories it’s important to remember that for every positive review, and every horror story, there are millions of people out there who are taking these supplements every day and, don’t comment either way.
I feel if there were any inherent dangers or side effects from responsible supplementation with any of these supplements when taken at the correct dosage, then we would know about it by now.
Possibly the most controversial legal supplement is creatine, simply because it loads the body with a greater amount of an already naturally occurring substance.
There are no long term studies into the effects of creatine, but as of this point, it would seem that given no claims of severe health issues have been linked to the usage of creatine in individuals with healthy kidney function, that following the correct dosage should be just fine.
Here’s my advice on supplementation and buying supplements:
- If in doubt, don’t buy: It’s simple, but, there you go. Stick to healthy foods and train to your capabilities and you’ll get results no matter what. No supplement or vitamins are needed when a healthy diet is being followed… they are merely for convenience and maybe – arguably – a little bit of an extra push.
- If you do want to purchase supplements, do your research properly. Find out the possible (and impossible) risks. That way, you won’t be in the dark should something transpire and you can do your own tests and use your common sense to see what is perhaps causing the problem, and stop.
- If in doubt, stick to supplements which are known, reputable brands. And, perhaps even more importantly, buy only from reputable sources; that way you know you are getting the real deal.
- Always follow the recommended dosage. You can’t possibly exceed the dosage, experience ill effects and then complain that the supplement caused it. No – YOU caused it.