Are nutritional supplements really necessary? This is a debate that has been hotly contested within the medical community and even among nutritionists for decades. The reason that so much debate exists is because it is extremely difficult to answer the question with a simple yes or no. Instead, one has to look at each individual situation in order to determine whether or not nutritional supplements are indeed necessary.
What Do Nutritional Supplements Do to the Body?
In some cases, a person can truly benefit from taking nutritional supplements but in other cases, there is virtually no physical benefit whatsoever. It is also important to point out that there are those instances were taking the wrong supplements or taking too much of a particular supplement can cause far more harm than good.
People that are genuinely healthy and in the prime of their life typically do not need nutritional supplements, especially if they spend quite a bit of time outdoors, they eat well, and they get plenty of exercise. Most of the time, these individuals are not really hurting themselves by taking these supplements but they aren’t really helping themselves, either.
More often than not, they are simply throwing money away from their bank account for no reason. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule. There are individuals that can truly benefit from these nutritional supplements, especially if they have a tendency to be deficient in certain nutrients or they constantly push their bodies to the limit and need additional help in the form of supplements in order to recover.
Furthermore, people that have weakened immune systems or some type of underlying medical condition that makes them deficient in certain vitamins can dramatically benefit from nutritional supplements. The same could be said for those individuals who stay indoors and lead a mostly sedentary lifestyle. The supplements can often help them remain healthier for longer periods of time when they aren’t necessarily getting the nutrients or the activity that they need through more traditional means. However, even the most benign supplements can be dangerous if the person taking them has an allergic reaction, or if that individual is taking far more than the recommended dose.
So What Now?
If all of this is true, what is a person supposed to do when trying to decide whether or not these supplements are right for them? The most important thing that any individual can do is seek professional advice. Trying to decide whether or not certain supplements are needed and how much should be taken without this advice can prove detrimental to one’s health and as previously mentioned, it can be dangerous. Granted, taking a multivitamin or drinking a shake is not going to cause any problems in all likelihood, but people have a tendency to experiment with specific supplements and in many cases, they start tinkering with the dosage until they are moving toward something that could potentially be harmful to them. For these reasons, anyone that is considering taking supplements should discuss their concerns with their physician so that a specific plan can be developed and followed while that individual is under constant medical care.