Dietary supplements, background information 

Dietary supplements have been defined as of 1994 via legislation.

What makes an OTC drug so much different than a prescription drug is regulation. While a prescription drug manufacturer can state their drug may diagnose, cure, treat, prevent or mitigate a disease, an over the counter manufacturer cannot legally state that. 

Further regulation of dietary supplements 

Contrary to a lot of belief, for a new over the counter entity a manufacturer is to provide the FDA with information regarding how it determined their product is safe for human consumption. Such evidence should be "reasonable." 

However, and unlike with prescription drug entities, over the counter drugs do not have to be officially approved by the FDA before they reach the market. Drug manufacturers must get approval from the FDA before a prescription drug can reach the market place. 

A couple reasons exist for removal of an ingredient from the market. One reason is safety, for example, Oxy Pro, a highly touted over the counter product was removed after the FDA proved it was unsafe. Another reason for removal is if the manufacturer states something deceptive and misleading on the product label of the over the counter entity. 

Important points

Over the counter products do not have to prove the purity and quality of the ingredients within the supplement but there is hope...

As of 2007, The FDA decided to release what are called good manufacturer practices that provide manufacturers a standard in which the entity should be made to provide quality. This guarantee, when met, is visible on the ingredient label as a seal. The seal ensures stringent requirements were met in order to produce the product, giving you a better product. 

There is not one standard seal that looks exactly the same on each product but if you search for it you'll find something that looks similar to this. 

A green seal with GMP in the middle of it to indicate the supplement  has been made with good manufacturing practicesSeal of approval

Health safety points to keep in mind

You should not take an OTC without first consulting with your health care provider especially if you have diagnosed youself. 

Remember, don't take a product along side or in the place of a prescribed medication without a consult from your doctor or pharmacist. 

Make sure to review with your doctor before having surgery if you are taking a product, make sure to tell s/he what it is you are taking. 

A natural product doesn't equate into a safe product. For example, St. John's wort interacts with many medications. Some products over the counter can even harm your liver such as comfrey and kava. 

Before taking a supplement ask yourself what the benefits are, is it safe, what dose should I take and how long should I take it? 

Other resources for helping you to 2CreateABody...

Of Further Interest. 

1. YouTube Video Of Ronnie Coleman Talking About Supplements He Takes. 

› Dietary Supplements
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