According to a new study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, teenagers are putting themselves in harm’s way by using dietary supplements. The study included reports of health issues that kids, teens, and young adults have experienced after consuming vitamins and supplements, as well as some cases reported to the Food and Drug Administration between 2004 and 2015.
40 percent of 977 cases that this study identified included a trip to the emergency room, hospitalization, disability, or even death. Even though vitamins were included in the research, the analysis showed that it was the supplements which caused the majority of health problems.
Researcher at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the author of the study, Flora Or, said that compared to vitamins, supplements triple the possibility of significant health problems.
Though the study did not investigate the specific ingredients or how the supplements and vitamins were consumed, it suggested that there were two ways they could cause harm to the organism. First, the research pointed out the possibility that they contained substances not listed on the label. Second, the users might have combined them with other supplements or prescription medications.
Authors of the study suggested that the data they presented might have been underestimated because consumers aren’t always conscious of the relations between symptoms they’re experiencing and dietary supplements.
Chronic diarrhea, dehydration, seizures, stroke, and kidney and liver damage are just some of the health problems that earlier studies connected to supplements for weight loss, building muscle mass, and energy boost.
Although the Food and Drug Administration warns about some supplements for weight loss and weight gain, the Council for Responsible Nutrition assures the public that most of the dietary supplements are safe. CRN’s CEO, Steve Mister, highlights that there is a problem with “tainted,” illegal merchandise masquerading as dietary supplements and urges consumers to choose products made by responsible companies who scrupulously adhere to the law.
Dangers of Creatine
Experts claim that one of the most dangerous supplements is creatine. Kids and teens can quite easily get access to dietary creatine that is used to boost muscle despite the fact that labels on most of the products say they are not for persons under the age of 18. In the long run, this supplement can cause dehydration and kidney or liver damage, yet even children can get a hold of it.
In 2017, Dr. Ruth Lynn Milanaik, a specialist in developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen Children’s Medical Center in Hewlett, did a study which consisted of calls to 224 stores that sell dietary supplements. The phone calls were made by her colleague who pretended to be a teenage boy and asked store clerks to recommend her a product for muscle boost. Suffice to say, 67 percent of the clerks recommended creatine.
Furthermore, teens may not use these products appropriately, and they might consume a larger dose than suggested. That is why reputable doctors can give them the best advice for building muscle mass. Such information will probably consist of a supplement-free program, including weight training, a diet rich in protein, fruit, and vegetables.