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Health Report: Supplements 10/23/13

How to choose safe supplements.
Doctor Kenneth Spaeth recently noticed a problem, about 20 of his patients-taking the same brand and type of supplements-were getting sick. Some men lost their libido. Some women's voices became deeper and they grew facial hair. Doctor Spaeth says he suspected that three healthy life chemistry supplements-B50, multi-mineral, and vitamin C, all had contaminants and the signs were consistent with the presence of steroids. His suspicions led to a national recall. Howard Chasser owns a health food store and says you do need to be careful.

Chasser offers you three safety tips: First, choose a well-known brand. There are brands that contract the manufacturing process out-but many companies that do this have significantly less control over the quality of their products. And do your research. If the bottle says "manufactured for," then you can start by calling the contractor for information on raw materials used. And be critical. If the claims on the bottle sound too good to be true, Chasser says, they probably are. Doctor Spaeth advises that you always check with your doctor before taking any vitamin or supplement.

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