According to a recent report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the FDA, dietary supplement abuse lands thousands in the ER every year. About 23,000 dietary supplement-related ER visits were reported every year because of complications. Of those visits more than 2,000 required hospitalization.
Researchers said that people are not aware that taking more pills than on the label or taking dietary supplements when you have a health condition may lead to severe side-effects. Moreover, more than 20 percent of ER visits involved unsupervised children that took the supplements.
Dr. Andrew Geller, senior author of the study and CDC epidemiologist, told reporters dietary supplement abuse lands thousands in the ER every year because of the adverse effects.
CDC researchers sifted through surveillance data from 63 ER in the U.S. between 2004 and 2013. Most of the visits involved young adults that tried to trim the extra pounds with weight loss miracle cures or those taking energy pills. Many of them reported chest pain, palpitations and had an unusual heartbeat rate.
Supplements do not need FDA approval, and many people use them to enhance their health and supplement minerals and vitamins in their diets. They are not used to treat any disease.
According to a recent report 50 percent of Americans took dietary supplements in the past month, and dietary supplement industry is worth 37 billion every year. The CDC study showed that 72 percent of ER visits liked to supplement use were caused by energy or weight loss products. Some cases were related to swallowing issues especially among the elderly.
Dr. Andrew Greenberg said that people tend to overlook official recommendation when taking dietary supplements because they think that the pills are safer than prescription medicines. Dr. Greenberg knows people who were told to take two pills of a product but when they went to a nutrition store they thought that if two pills are good six must be great.
“In the supplement world, more is not necessarily good,”
Dr, Greenberg recommends people to talk with their doctors when they want to take certain dietary supplements because lay persons rarely know how the ingredients in these products affect their health. This is especially advisable for energy and weight loss supplements.
Those two categories should not be taken in excess or if you have a health condition because they can affect the heart, doctors warn. Additionally, you should tell you GP what dietary supplements you use.
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