When you are looking to buy a supplement online, it can be hard to make the right choice! Many discounted chemists and online pharmacies make misleading claims or sell supplements that have unnecessary additives, which means you need to do some research before ordering your supplement online.
We have put together a quick guide for you to find the right high-quality supplement online for yourself.
1. What Do You Need?
It is important to understand what you need first, as not everyone needs a supplement and the requirements vary from person to person. You might not need a supplement if you maintain a balanced diet but you might have some deficiencies you need to address or other requirements that supplements can help with.
People usually buy supplements for the following reasons:
A. Age: due to ageing, some people need to buy vitamins as they are more at risk of deficiencies (for example Vitamin D)
B. Medications: some medication could suppress the production or absorption of certain vitamins (for example proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), can inhibit the absorption of vitamin B12)
C. Medical conditions: certain medical conditions could induce certain deficiencies (for example, coeliac disease due to the gut’s partial damage)
D. Allergies: which could affect the diet and in some cases derive the body from certain vitamin-rich nutrients
E. Diet: people on a certain diet might find it hard to find food which contains the required vitamins (example: vegans might find it difficult to find food rich in Vitamin B12)
F. Pregnancy: which requires a higher intake of certain vitamins such as folic acid
It is best to consult your GP and get a blood test to help you understand whether you have any deficiencies for which you would require certain supplements. This would help you make an informed decision about whether you need a supplement. This is especially true if you are on any medications, in which case it is crucial to discuss with your doctor first.
2. Find High-Quality Supplements Online
Now that you know which supplement you require (if any), it is important to know where to find a good supplement and if you can buy online.
What to watch out for:
- Be cautious when you find any claim that is too good to be true, such as ‘Burn 2000 calories with 1 pill’ – it probably is false.
- Check the ingredients and ensure you understand what they are since many cheap supplements contain unnecessary additives that could be harmful. This is especially important for those with allergies or intolerances.
- Check the dosage and make sure this is in line with what you require. More is not always better and over supplementing your body is not a good idea and could lead to health problems that are worse than the deficiencies (for example Vitamin D toxicity).
- Bioavailability: which is the amount of the nutrient that can be absorbed by the body.
- Cost: some supplements are too expensive, make sure it is affordable since you will need to use it mid to long term. If you cannot find what you need in stores, check an online chemist.