Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Benefits Of Using Herbs And Natural Supplements

By Cathy Mercer

Advertisements and promotional campaigns often promote the benefits of herbs and natural supplements. While they are beneficial to a large extent and may even prove to be healthier than conventional medicines and regular food, any consumer must be aware of both the pros and cons first.

It is not only in modern times that the beneficial values of botanical products have come into knowledge of men and women. These have been used since the ancient eras in medicinal cures and treatments. Over the centuries, they have become more commercial in nature, leading to a high market value that has been created for these products. In many parts of the world, people are switching to healthier as well as more natural forms of food and medicine, as compared to pharmaceutical drugs.

Now, the medicinal and the dietary supplements should not be confused with one another. While the former are prescribed by professional medical consultants, the latter could be taken without any therapeutic supervision also.

This does not go to say that dietary supplements should be taken without prior consultation. In fact, a professional must be consulted before procuring any such product.

The flip side of using herbal or natural remedies without prior professional consultation is, as discussed above, misdiagnosis. This could even, in worst case scenarios, lead to irreparable damage to some or the other body parts. The chances of such dire consequences may not be very high, but exist nevertheless.

However, once you begin taking these supplements, the advantages could not be counted. They are healthy and help the body stay fit. Since they have ingrained medicinal qualities, they help the body heal and repair itself faster, when injured. The list continues.

The authenticity of natural medication versus its conventional counterpart will, no doubt, always contain a big question mark. While the latter is certified and passes through strict tests and procedures to be finally approved by an authority, the former often carries no such certification. The use of conventional treatments, therefore, are trusted more and recommended more widely by doctors.

If you do get prescribed any natural remedial products, do make sure you have your own personal checklist ready. Some of the items on it should include the name and address of the manufacturer, their contact details, dosage and expiry date of the product. The label should ideally contain all these details.

While the benefits of herbs and natural supplements are acknowledged far and wide, users should be knowledgeable of the adverse effects too. Only if a medical practitioner has prescribed the name and dosage should such products be taken. Else, they may just lead to harmful consequences. Therefore, be fully aware to avoid any errors.

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