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What is a dietary supplement?

Dietary supplements: What do we talk about?
Dietary supplements are a concentrated source of 'nutrients' that is to say, the components of food that are normally provided by a varied and balanced diet.

Elements that enter into the composition of dietary supplements can be:

  • Vitamins (A, B group, C, D, E, K ...)
  • Mineral salts (calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium)
  • Trace elements necessary for many body functions with 13 trace elements (iron, zinc, copper, chromium, manganese, selenium, iodine, fluorine, cobalt, molybdenum, silicon, boron, lithium)
  • Antioxidants such as flavonoids, carotenoids (lutein, lycopene, zeaxanthin ...)
  • Essential fatty acids
  • Plants or their active ingredients, probiotics, mucilage ...

What are the regulatory issues?
Dietary supplements are subject to European regulations (Directive 2002/46/EC), which aims to ensure that dietary supplements are specific safeguards for the consumer.

The decree "Dietary Supplements" (No. 2006-352 of 20 March 2006) supplemented by an Order "Vitamins and minerals" May 9, 2006 has brought more safeguards and security by specifying the nutrients that can be used in the manufacture of food supplements.

Which imperatives food supplements should they respond?

The label must include:

  • The name of "food supplement"
  • The manual
  • The recommended daily dose
  • The list of components
  • And precautions

They come in various forms: capsules, tablets, liquids, powders, teas ...
But these are not drugs.

The principle of formulation is based on nutritional and physiological doses to compensate for the risk of overdose. The maximum amounts of vitamins and minerals are set for a daily portion.

Making procedures
They can be taken occasionally for ten to fifteen days or a period of one to three months, as recommended on the label.

But they should not substitute for a varied and balanced diet that can meet the needs of the body of nutrients.

(Agency for the Safety of Health Products) recommends following the recommended daily allowance (RDA).

Situations in which dietary supplements are useful?
Dietary supplements can be useful in certain situations to complete the diet.

  • In case of deficiency (rare in industrialized countries)
  • In case of lack of intake of vitamins, minerals and trace elements (poverty, elderly, tooth loss, anorexia, diet too restrictive ...)
  • In case of increased needs (pregnancy, alcohol, intense physical activity, elderly ...)
  • Or prevention of certain diseases (osteoporosis, recurrent cystitis, protection of the retina and the lens of the oxidation ...)
Note that speaks deficit intake component when its contributions are less than 2/3 of the recommended dietary intake (RDI)

What should I be wary?
Be wary of the risk of self-medication with prolonged or taken multiple combinations that can be harmful to health.

It should also be wary of fuzzy circuits mail, online or in some fitness clubs.

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