Researchers make frightening dietary supplement discovery

Researchers make frightening dietary supplement discovery

Think you're doing your body good by taking dietary supplements? Think again, claims an alarming new study.

Attention, dietary supplement users: a new study by Consumer Reports has just come to some alarming conclusions that you should pay attention to. Because supplements are not regulated in the same way as medications, there is a strong risk to consumers that many may not be aware of.

A daily supplement is often a routine for Americans, but the report indicates that producers of dietary supplements have little regulation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which can make them dangerous.

Supplements often have side effects, and these side effects may interact with medication the person is currently on. Supplements are basically treated as food, which means they don’t have to be proven safe and effective like prescription drugs are. And because the labels of supplements aren’t bound by the same regulations as pharmaceuticals, you can’t trust what you see on the label.

A total of 23,000 people end up in the emergency room each year because of supplements, according to Consumer Reports.

There is a way to protect yourself: You can look for the USP (U.S. Pharmacopeia) label indicating the contents of the supplement have been verified.

Supplements aren’t always innocuous, and consumers should keep that in mind and check with their doctors first before starting on a supplement regimen.

Consumer Reports has listed the following 15 supplement ingredients to always avoid, as it can result in organ damage, cancer, cardiac arrest and other ailments:


Claimed Benefits


Also called: Aconiti tuber, aconitum, angustifolium, monkshood, radix aconti, wolfsbane
Reduces inflammation, joint pain, gout

Nausea, vomiting, weakness, paralysis, breathing and heart problems, possibly death

Caffeine Powder
Also called: 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine

Improves attention, enhances athletic performance, weight loss

Seizures, heart arrhythmia, cardiac arrest, possibly death; particularly dangerous when combined with other stimulants

Also called: Creosote bush, greasewood, larrea divaricata, larrea tridentata, larreastat

Weight loss; improves inflammation; treats colds, infections, skin rashes, cancer

Kidney problems, liver damage, possibly death

Also called: Coughwort, farfarae folium leaf, foalswort, tussilago farfara

Relieves cough, sore throat, laryngitis, bronchitis, asthma

Liver damage, possible carcinogen

Also called: Blackwort, bruisewort, slippery root, symphytum officinale

Relieves cough, heavy menstrual periods, stomach problems, chest pain; treats cancer

Liver damage, cancer, possibly death

Also called: Teucrium chamaedrys, viscidum

Weight loss; alleviates fever, arthritis, gout, stomach problems

Liver damage, hepatitis, possibly death

Greater Celandine
Also called: Celandine, chelidonium majus, chelidonii herba

Alleviates stomachache

Liver damage

Green Tea Extract Powder
Also called: Camellia sinensis

Weight loss

Dizziness, ringing in the ears, reduced absorption of iron; exacerbates anemia and glaucoma; elevates blood pressure and heart rate; liver damage; possibly death

Also called: Ava pepper, kava kava, piper methysticum

Reduces anxiety, improves insomnia

Liver damage,exacerbates Parkinson’s and depression, impairs driving, possibly death

Also called: Asthma weed, lobelia inflata, vomit wort, wild tobacco

Improves respiratory problems, aids smoking cessation

Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, rapid heartbeat, confusion, seizures, hypothermia, coma, possibly death

Also called: Oxilofrine, p-hydroxyephedrine, oxyephedrine, 4-HMP

Weight loss, increases energy, improves athletic performance

Causes heart rate and rhythm abnormalities, cardiac arrest; particularly risky when taken with other stimulants

Pennyroyal Oil
Also called: Hedeoma pulegioides, mentha pulegium

Improves breathing problems, digestive disorders

Liver and kidney failure, nerve damage, convulsions, possibly death

Red Yeast Rice
Also called: Monascus purpureus

Lowers LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, prevents heart disease

Kidney and muscle problems, liver problems, hair loss; can magnify effect of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, increasing the risk of side effects

Usnic Acid
Also called: Beard moss, tree moss, usnea

Weight loss, pain relief

Liver injury

Also called: Johimbi, pausinystalia yohimbe, yohimbine, corynanthe johimbi

Treats low libido and erectile dysfunction, depression, obesity

Raises blood pressure; causes rapid heart rate, headaches, seizures, liver and kidney problems, heart problems, panic attacks, possibly death



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