Page 8 - July August 2018 Edition
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Health & Wellness

                                                    Dietary Supplements

                                     •  is intended to be taken by   sources (Even if you are eat-
                                        mouth as a pill, capsule,   ing whole food, they may be      Kate Thomsen MD, MPH
                                        tablet, or liquid, and     lacking nutrients because they
                                     •  is labeled on the front panel   are “old”, or grown in depleted    IntegratIve and HolIstIc HealtH
                                        as being a dietary supple-  soils.)                                          and Wellness
                                        ment.                        In such a rapidly growing      •  Be sure to check the serving size (eg: 2 capsules contain…)
                                        The FDA reports that there  industry, how does one assure    when calculating the dosage you are looking for
                                     are more than 29,000 differ-  the quality of a dietary supple-  •  Some companies print “expiration dates”, some print
                                     ent nutritional supplements on  ment? Unlike pharmaceutical     “manufactured on” dates. An unopened dietary supplement is
                                     the  market  today.  No wonder  drugs, dietary supplements do   generally good for 2 years from date of manufacture but less (1
                                                                                                     year) for oils (fish oil, evening primrose oil …) and probiotics
                                     you’re confused in the aisles  not require review or approval   •  Be sure the form of the supplement is highly bioavailable if you
                                     of the health food  store!!! In  by the FDA to enter the mar-
        Dr. Kate Thomsen and Silky   February 2017, Consumer-      ketplace.  However  the  com-     want it to be absorbed into your blood (eg, Curcumin BCM
                                                                                                     95), or poorly absorbed if you want it to stay in your intestines
                             released  a  survey  of  pany is responsible for selling   for laxative effects (eg, magnesium oxide). The form matters!!!
           The dietary supplement    9,505 people who used dietary  products that are safe. Supple-  •  Check with your health care provider if you take supplements
        industry has been growing rap-  supplements. The most popu-  ments are regulated by the FDA   and you are scheduled to have any type of surgical procedure.
        idly. In 2016 the global dietary   lar supplements included (in  under the 1994 Dietary Supple-  Some supplements will increase bleeding.
        supplements market was val-  order of popularity): Vitamin  ment Health and Education Act   •  Check with your health care provider if you take supplements
        ued at 133.1 billion dollars. In   D, fish oil, CoQ10, probiotics  (DSHEA). These regulations   and you will be going for a blood test. Taking high dose biotin
                                                                                                     can interfere with blood test results including thyroid results
        the US, retail sales of vitamin   and multivitamins. This list was  include testing of raw materials
        and nutritional supplements   followed by: B vitamins, mag-  and finished products and other   •  Check with your health care provider if you take supplements
                                                                                                     and want to become pregnant
        just reached 37 billion dollars   nesium,  curcumin/turmeric,  Good Manufacturing Practices.   •  Check with your health care provider if you take supplements
        according to the National Insti-  Vitamin C, calcium, melatonin,  You should look for a GMP   and you also take pharmaceutical medications. They can
        tutes of Health. This is up from   protein and nutrition powders  (Good Manufacturing Prac-  interact or counteract each other.
        28 billion in 2010. With this   and drinks, digestive enzymes,  tices) seal on the supplement or   •  Keep good records of what supplements you take with the
        kind of money to be made, you   joint supplements, green tea,  the website. GMPs are aimed   specific name, brand, dose, dosing schedule and reason for
        can be sure there are companies   and zinc.                at assuring the identity, purity,   taking it. A good resource for this is “My Medicine Record”
                                                                                                     found in the website
        that cut corners, companies     People take dietary supple-  strength, and composition of
        that over-hype their products,   ments for many reasons. I pre-  their products. For example,   •  Use the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements as a resource for
                                                                                                     basic information:
        and much controversy about   scribe them in my office when  The FDA expects that products
        value.                       clinically indicated. In func-  should contain the amount of                      Office of Dr. Kate Thomsen
           71% of American adults take   tional medicine there are his-  active ingredient they claim                   252 West Delaware Ave.
        dietary supplements – the most   tories, symptoms and lab tests  and  be free of  contaminants                   Pennington, NJ 08534
        popular being a multivitamin.  that can indicate the need for  like bacteria, pesticides and                        609-818-9700
        But a 2013 Annals of Internal  digestive enzymes, micronutri-  heavy metals like lead and mer-      WWW.DRKATETHOMSEN.COM
        Medicine editorial cited several  ents like B vitamins or Vitamin  cury. High quality supplement   Additional articles on holistic health topics
        multivitamin studies showing  C, and anti-inflammatories like  companies will spend resources             can be found on the website
        no  clear beneficial effect on  curcumin. Targeting  the  spe-  to get other independent qual-
        prevention of cardiovascular  cific  need  for dietary  supple-  ity assurance testing. Other
        disease or cognitive impair-  ments can increase benefit by  seals of approval you may see   not been evaluated by the FDA.  high value on quality and have
        ment. This review was widely  reducing symptoms, improving  include: U.S. Pharmacopeia,   This product is not intended to  visited many manufacturing
        reported in the news and many  clinical prevention outcomes, and NSF   diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent  facilities. There are extraordi-
        people stopped taking their  and avoiding further expensive  International.
        multivitamins  –  for  a  short  health care costs.          The  supplement  label  must   any disease.” This is to differ-  nary companies out there with
        while. The paper was countered   Some people take supple-  have a Supplement Facts panel   entiate supplements from phar-  extraordinary products  – but
        with compelling studies show-  ments to help them get ade-  listing the contents, amount of   maceutical medications.  there are also many poor quality
        ing the benefits of vitamins for  quate amounts of essential  active ingredients per serving,   There have been reports of  products and lots of hype. The
        the above and other conditions.  nutrients.  In  our  fast  paced  and non-dietary ingredients   adverse reactions from dietary  dietary supplement industry has
        Some people remain unsure  lifestyle, I hear many of my  (fillers,  binders,  sweeteners,   supplements. One report from  come a long way – but to maxi-
        and  confused  but  85% of  the  patients tell me they skip break-  flavors,  artificial  coloring).  the CDC and FDA claimed  mally  benefit,  you  should  find
        American public surveyed have  fast (and not purposely because   These will be listed by weight   23,000 emergency department  an expert to guide you.
        confidence in the safety, qual-  of an Intermittent Fasting plan)  in descending order of quan-  visits annually due to complica-  Dr. Kate Thomsen’s office
        ity and effectiveness of dietary  or they grab a granola bar to  tity. The label should also   tions from dietary supplements   for holistic health care is
        supplements.                 be a meal replacement. Person-  indicate what the supplement is   with 2,154 of these requiring   located in Pennington, NJ.
           So what are dietary supple-  ally, I like to make a protein  used for. This is called a claim.   hospitalization. This pales in
        ments? Why do we take them?  smoothie in the morning, and  According to the 1994 DSHEA   comparison to the adverse     She is trained in Family
        And are they effective? In 1994,  while it is quick to prepare, it is  there are 3 types of claims the   reaction incidence from phar-  Medicine, and Board
        The US Congress defined a  jam packed with protein, essen-  company can make: a health   maceutical medications which   Certified in Integrative
        dietary supplement as a prod-  tial oils, phytonutrients, vita-  claim (that an ingredient has   result in 700,000 emergency   Medicine, and is an
        uct that:                    mins and minerals from both  been shown in the literature to   department  visits  and  100,000   Institute for Functional
        •  is intended to supplement   whole foods and supplements.  benefit a condition), a nutrient   hospitalizations. In 2000, the   Medicine Certified
           the diet                  A nutritious variety of foods  content claim (the amount of   Institute of Medicine reported   Practitioner. She has been
        •   contains one or more     should be supplying us with the  nutrient in the product), or a  7,000 deaths annually from   practicing Functional
           dietary ingredients (includ-  majority of our dietary needs.  structure/function  claim  (how  adverse drug reactions. In my
           ing vitamins, minerals,   Dietary supplements can fill in  the supplement may affect the  mind  dietary supplements  are   Medicine for 20 years. For
           herbs or other botanicals,   gaps due to: poor digestion and  organs or systems of the body).  far safer, and when targeted   more information see
           amino acids, and other    absorption, genetic or lifestyle  All dietary supplement labels  for the right reason and the
           substances) or their con-  based increased requirements,  must include the famous dis-  right dose, are definitely my   or call the office at
           stituents                 and less than optimal food  claimer,  “This  statement  has  first line of treatment. I place a   609-818-9700.

        Mercer County Woman                                                     8                                                    July/August 2018
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