5 DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS WITH GOOD EVIDENCE OF EFFECTIVENESS
There is a large selection of nutritional supplements available, many with inflated claims that are not supported by scientific evidence. For instance, vitamin C is often touted as a remedy for the common cold. However, evidence from research studies does not strongly support this, and some evidence even shows no effect at all. But some supplements are effective at exactly what they claim to be, and they have good evidence to support them. Some of the most promising ones for body cleansing include vitamin D, fish oil, green tea for lowering cholesterol, St. John’s Wort, and selenium.
- Vitamin D – Although still in the preliminary stages, there is good evidence that vitamin D has a protective effect against many types of cancer. Ironically, too little sunlight exposure can actually increase the risk of cancers because of the lower vitamin D levels in such individuals. Some studies are conflicting, but there is a promising foundation that sufficient vitamin D supplementation may help.
- Fish Oil – Omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oil is well known for helping to prevent cardiovascular disease, such as heart disease and high blood pressure. Other fish oil benefits include an anti-inflammatory effect that may help fight prostate and breast cancer as well, although this is not as well established.
- Green Tea – Several studies report that green tea can help lower cholesterol and by extension heart disease. Evidence is fairly good for the effectiveness of this benefit. In addition, there is some evidence that green tea can help increase metabolism and help improve fat oxidation, which may help those seeking to lose weight.
- St John’s Wort – This herbal supplement shows promising evidence of being useful for mild to moderate depression, especially in children. Although it may not be as strong as prescribed depression medications, such as SSRIs, some studies have actually suggested that it may be comparable in some people.
- Selenium – For chemotherapy patients, there is good evidence that selenium may help improve the effectiveness of the treatment. In addition, it may help reduce the toxicity of chemo and the body’s negative reactions to it.
Vitamin D is a relatively safe supplement to take, and so those who do not get much sunshine should consider adding it to the diet in some way. Omega 3s, such as in fish oil, are essential to balance the omega 6s present in high degrees in most diets. Green tea comes in supplement form, and might help you lose weight, although it is far from the best diet pill. St John’s Wort may be a good medication try for depression sufferers, but check with your doctor first. And selenium might be a worthy addition to the diet of chemotherapy patients.