Supplements have become increasingly popular among men looking to improve their health and wellness. But are they really necessary? This article explores men’s supplements in terms of their potential benefits and drawbacks, so you can decide whether they’re right for your journey to better health.
What Are Supplements & Why Do Men Use Them?
Supplements are over-the-counter (or eCommerce) products—meaning you don’t need a prescription to access them. They’re taken orally and contain one or more dietary ingredients, such as vitamins, minerals, herbs, or amino acids.
Men use supplements for various reasons, including to improve athletic performance, build muscle, boost energy, and support overall health. Some men may also use them to address health concerns like poor digestion or low libido. However, it’s important to note that the FDA does not regulate supplements; therefore, they may not be safe or effective for everyone.
Benefits of Men’s Supplements
There are several potential benefits to taking supplements for men’s health. For example, specific vitamins and minerals can help support immune function, improve heart health, and promote healthy skin and hair.
Additionally, some supplements may help improve athletic performance or aid muscle recovery after exercise. However, it’s important to note that not all supplements are created equal, and some may not be as effective as advertised. Therefore, you’ll want to consult a men’s health professional before starting any supplement regimen.
Potential Risks & Side Effects of Men’s Supplements
While there are many potential benefits to taking supplements for men’s health, there are also some risks and side effects to consider.
For example, some supplements may interact with other medications, leading to adverse health outcomes. Additionally, some supplements may cause gastrointestinal issues, headaches, shortness of breath, or skin reactions.
It’s also important to know how much of a nutrient you’re ingesting from food already to ensure you’re not consuming too much via OTC supplements. Therefore, it’s important to read labels carefully and do your research.
Choosing Men’s Supplements: Top 3 Considerations
In the process of making decisions about supplements, there are a few essential facts to consider first:
Beware of the overwhelming health claims many supplement manufacturers promise—as they often make unsupported claims. Remember, the FDA does not require supplements to be tested through rigorous clinical trials to prove their safety and efficacy. Further, without FDA regulation, rigorous dosing standardization requirements do not exist, and therefore, the consumer is left to hold blind trust in the quality of the supplements they purchase.
While supplements remain without regulation, be sure to investigate the manufacturer. At EveresT Men’s Health, we believe that if a person is interested in pursuing supplementation, it’s best practice to seek a pharmaceutical-grade supplement company that elects to implement its dosing standardization to ensure the quality of its products.
The selected dosing is a further differentiator between pharmaceutical-grade supplements vs. standard retail formulations. Many OTC retail supplements may follow RDA (recommended dietary allowance) guidelines, established early in the twentieth century. RDA determines dosing to prevent outright deficiency of specific vitamins and minerals.
Today’s pharmaceutical-grade nutrient dosing is significantly higher than those established on RDA recommendations. Except for fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K), the risk of toxicity is typically minimal with pharmaceutical-grade dosing.
Many men will spend significant amounts of money on a variety of supplements. Therefore, we recommend that you seek a knowledgeable healthcare provider to review and discuss men’s supplements if you have questions.
What Supplements Should Men Take?
As men age, their nutritional needs change. By focusing on a recommendation for general supplements that have broad-spectrum health influences, we suggest the following options for men in their 30s, 40s, 50s, and beyond:
A pharmaceutical-grade multivitamin will provide essential vitamins and nutrients to support bodily functions. The body will utilize elements not picked up through nutrition and excrete the rest.
A great source of Omega-3 fatty acids is an excellent supplement, as it is commonly deficient in the standard American diet. This can be found in a good quality Cod Liver Oil (oral or encapsulated) or FlaxSeed Oil (as a vegetarian option). Many hear of the health benefits of eating fish due to the concentration of Omega-3 fatty acids. Yet, increasingly the store-sold fish is farm-raised, which is high in Omega-6 fatty acids and low in Omega-3 fatty acids, so be sure to identify if your store-bought fish is farm-raised or wild-caught.
One of the most essential vitamins for men is Vitamin D; It’s essential for strong bones and a healthy immune system. As men age, their bodies become less efficient at producing vitamin D from sunlight, making it important to get enough through diet or supplements; therefore, having your Vitamin D level checked by a men’s health provider and supplemented, if low, is a good general recommendation.
Other Essential Vitamins for Men
Vitamin B12 is important for energy production and brain function.
Vitamin C is an essential nutrient crucial in maintaining a healthy immune system and promoting skin health.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that can help protect against heart disease and slow aging. It works by neutralizing free radicals, unstable molecules that can damage cells and contribute to chronic diseases.
Connect with Our Men’s Health Experts
Before starting any supplement regimen, it’s essential to consult with one of our men’s healthcare professionals. We can help you determine if supplements are necessary for your individual health needs and goals and can recommend specific supplements that are safe and effective.
Additionally, we will help you avoid potential interactions with any medications you may be taking and can monitor your progress to ensure that the supplements are working as intended.
To learn more, schedule an appointment with EveresT Men’s Health today. Offering three convenient locations in Plymouth, Woodbury, and Eagan, we’ll help guide you throughout your journey to better health and better living.