Many times you hear “natural” and automatically think it is safe. However, make sure to do your research when planning to take any kind of natural dietary supplement. Even when a dietary supplement says it is “natural” or “organic”, they can have adverse effects, both alone and when mixed with other medications and supplements.
Most of the time when someone is speaking of natural dietary supplements, they are speaking of herbs and botanicals. These natural dietary supplements contain active ingredients or extracts from many things in nature, like roots, seeds, leaves, flowers, berries, buds and stems. Some of these natural dietary supplements are well known, like garlic and ginseng. Other types of natural dietary supplements are out of the mainstream and you probably have never heard of!
Some common supplements that are well known are:
St. John’s Wort
With the above mentioned natural dietary supplements, there are studies showing that they do benefit our health in some way. Some of those benefits are:
Cranberries can be eaten or cranberry juice ingested to get the health benefits, or you can take capsules of this natural dietary supplement. Cranberry has been shown to help keep your urinary tract healthy while also helping to prevent and treat UTIs (Urinary Tract Infections). Even with large amounts ingested, no serious side effects were noted.
This natural dietary supplement comes from the leaf extract from the Ginkgo tree. This substance has been used medicinally for about 4000 years by the Chinese! The health benefits attributed to this natural dietary supplement are:
a. Increased blood flow to the brain – this may improve cognitive functioning.
b. Memory enhancement.
c. Helps with athersclerosis in the calf muscle blood vessel. This may help reduce pain when you are walking.
No serious side effects have been noted with Ginkgo Biloba.
Sometimes called purple coneflower or snakeroot, this natural dietary supplement comes from a prairie flower from central North America. Echinacea has been shown to help boost and stimulate the immune system.
Fresh whole garlic has been used for thousands of years in many different ways. In the past, this natural dietary supplement has been used for things such as treatment of tumors, fatigue, wounds, headaches and a wide variety of other ailments. When looking at the uses of garlic, the health benefits which are associated with it are:
d. The reduction of HBP (High Blood Pressure)
e. Helps alleviate blood clotting disorders
f. Reduces LDL-cholesterol levels
As the second highest consumed beverage in the world (after water), green tea is used across the globe for medical reasons. Green tea has been shown to contain antioxidants called polyphenols. With regular consumption, this natural dietary supplement can have the following benefits:
g. Helps boost and stimulate the immune system.
h. Helps those trying to lose weight.
i. May help protect the body from some kinds of cancer.
j. May lower cholesterol levels.
k. Can decrease blood clotting.
The health benefits can be great when you use natural dietary supplements, but it is best to consult with your doctor if you are on any medications, drugs or under going other medical treatments, as an adverse reaction or negative side effect can occur.