A food supplement is usually a manufactured herbal product meant to augment one’s daily diet with vitamins, minerals, amino acids or other nutrients not available in the naturally occurring foods. The various food supplements have different purposes and for different people. A food supplement may provide essential nutrients either naturally extracted from plants or that are synthetic to boost the amount of the intake. It also has additives like coloring, flavoring or texturing to make it attractive to the taste buds. Some food supplements also claim to be able to treat certain conditions like arthritis or heart disease.
However, this kind of product has no scientific proof yet that they do what they claim. Also, a lot of these products are usually sold over the counter and without doctors’ prescription. Food supplements containing vitamins, amino acids, fatty acids, minerals and herbs (herbal mixtures) are popular nowadays. Usually, they come in capsules or concentrated juice or tinctures. The nutrient content varies among different kinds of food supplements.
However, the question still remains whether there are really any food supplements that work. Most nutritionists believe that natural, whole food supplementation is still the best way to provide the necessary nutrients for health and to avoid any nutritional deficiencies. They also believe that a balanced, proper diet is still the best way to ensure optimal health. Dietary supplements may provide some of the essential nutrients that your body needs. The question is whether the nutrients are still properly assimilated into your body.
One of the main reasons why some people take food supplements is to meet their daily nutrient requirements without increasing their caloric intake. One of the most common claims of a food supplement is to boost your metabolism. A fast metabolism is important in order to burn excess fat and calories faster. When you have a fast metabolism, it helps you reduce the amount of fat and calories you consume during the day and at night. This is very important for those trying to lose weight because most diet plans only emphasize increased food consumption and little emphasis is placed on exercise and activity. A diet supplement can help you eat less and still increase your metabolic rate.
There are many health claims that are made about food supplements. They range from the usefulness of certain vitamins and minerals to the efficacy of some herbs and plants. In general, most of them remain unproved and controversial. The reason why they remain controversial is because they are unregulated. While they may contain some medicinal properties, no one has yet been able to prove their effectiveness in treating health problems.
Some health claims that have been proven in the past decade are greater absorption rates, better nutrient absorption, the regulation of blood sugar levels, and the prevention of allergies. For example, some food supplements have been found effective in lowering homocysteine levels which cause an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. However, these claims are mostly unproven and controversial. Since these are nutritional products, no food supplements will be allowed to bear the name of “health claim” because they do not meet the standards set by health services authorities.
Most food supplements are usually taken once a day with a healthy diet and lots of water. Most also come in powdered form, so that they can easily be mixed with water or juice. There is no recommended daily intake level for any of these supplements. The only thing you need to remember is that they cannot replace other healthy diet and exercise habits. They should be used as supplements to complement those.
Food supplementation may also be considered by people who are trying to lose weight or gain muscle. While these dietary supplements cannot make up for the effect of a bad diet and exercise routine, they can definitely improve the results of your goals. Their main function however is to augment the effects of the above dietary regimens. They are recommended to be used in conjunction with a balanced and nutritious diet and a regular exercise program. With the right advice, they can help you achieve your weight loss or muscle building goals.