How to Choose an Online Supplement Shop for Beginners
Americans between the ages of 35 and 54 have the highest usage of dietary supplements (81%). Meanwhile, about 77% of the country reports using supplements. Are you one of them?
More people are staying home to protect themselves from COVID-19 now more than ever. You shouldn’t have to risk your health to pick up supplements. Instead, consider finding an online supplement shop you can trust.
Not every online store is the same, though. It’s important to find a reputable online shop that provides the best products.
Otherwise, you could end up buying from a scam website. In addition to losing money, you might also put your private information at risk.
Here are eight tips that can help you find a trustworthy supplement shop online. With these tips, you can buy with peace of mind.
Start shopping with these eight tips today!
1. Make a List
Even if you find a trustworthy online supplement shop, you could unintentionally buy supplements that will cause your body harm. After all, you don’t want to take certain supplements in excess.
Instead, it helps to know exactly what your body needs.
For example, vitamin A plays a part in your immune system, reproduction, and vision. It’s ideal for people who are struggling with eye disease, pancreatic disease, or measles. You might also need vitamin A if you’re not getting it from your diet.
If you are taking too much vitamin A, you might experience:
- Joint and bone pain
- Thinning bones
- Birth defects
- Liver damage
- Skin irritation
- Blurry vision
Vitamin A can also interact with certain medications, including anticoagulants and retinoids.
If you don’t need vitamin A, you don’t need to add it to your supplement plan. Instead, consider scheduling an appointment with your doctor. Ask if they can complete a blood work test to determine if you have a vitamin deficiency.
Before your appointment, try keeping a log of your diet and lifestyle habits. Keep track of each ingredient and how much you consume.
Are you on a specific diet, like vegan, vegetarian, or keto? Let your doctor know. Your dietary habits can affect which supplements you’ll need.
For example, vegans and vegetarians often require B12 and vitamin D.
What about your workout regimen? Do you lift weights or are you training to run a marathon? You might need vitamins specifically for muscle recovery.
Talk to Your Doctor
About 30% of Americans suffer from at least one vitamin deficiency. Scheduling a blood work test with your doctor will help you determine which vitamins you need.
Let your doctor know if you’re suffering from any specific symptoms. For example, are you feeling tired? Maybe you need more B12.
During your appointment, it’s also important to discuss your medical history. Does your family have a history of a specific illness? Are you at risk for a health condition like osteoporosis or diabetes?
Reviewing these factors will help them determine which supplements you need.
What new supplements should you start taking? Which should you remove from your supplement plan?
Ask your doctor if they can recommend a safe online supplement shop, too. Their recommendation can save you a lot of time and grief.
Ask About Interactions
Before you leave the doctor’s office, ask if the supplements on your list can interact with any of the medications you’re taking.
Many people are so focused on a supplement’s benefits that they neglect this step. Ignoring potential supplement side effects could put your health at risk.
For example, are you currently on a blood thinner your doctor prescribed? Avoid taking a vitamin K supplement. When taken with a blood thinner, vitamin K could cause your blood to clot.
The foods you eat could interact with your supplements, too. For example, do you need to start taking iron? Don’t swallow it down with milk.
Milk’s calcium could have a dangerous interaction with the iron supplement.
If you forget to ask your doctor, that’s okay. You can use this tool to check for any potential interactions.
Ask your doctor about how much of each supplement you’ll need, too. It’s important to determine your dose before you start buying supplements online. Remember, you don’t want to take too much of any one supplement.
2. Avoid Scammers
Now that you know what you need, you can start your search for a trustworthy online supplement shop. First, you’ll need to learn how to avoid scam websites.
There are many illegal supplement shops and pharmacies online. Choosing from an illegally operating store could risk your health. For example, you could take a supplement with harmful ingredients or fillers.
Look for a physical address on the website. If they don’t have one, how are you sure they’re operating legally?
Scam sites usually offer super-low prices. They’ll also send unsolicited emails about cheap products and deals.
Can you speak with someone on the website? If there’s no contact information, consider it a red flag.
3. Ignore Outlandish Claims
You can also differentiate trustworthy resources from scams by reviewing their marketing strategy.
Does the website make any outlandish claims? For example, someone might promise a “cure-all” supplement or claim they have a miracle weight loss pill. Don’t trust these claims.
Instead, prioritize websites that offer transparency.
They should offer a list of the ingredients found within their supplements. Do they list supplement side effects on their website? Do they make any medical claims?
If the site makes a claim, they should back it up with medical research.
Choosing an online supplement shop that remains transparent with their customers can give you peace of mind.
4. Use the Right Resources
There are a few resources you can use to differentiate safe shops from scams.
First, visit the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. The site will help you learn more about each store at the supplements they offer.
Don’t forget to check the FDA’s website, too. Checking the FDA website will help you catch any product warnings. The site will also keep you apprised of recalls.
Looking for the most popular supplement brands available? Check the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) website.
These tips will help you start buying supplements online from shops you can trust.
5. Consider Their Pricing
“Wow, that’s so cheap!” Don’t get so excited. When a price seems surprisingly low, it usually is.
Instead of buying from the cheapest online supplement shop you can find, comparison shop. Comparing different shops will help you find the average price for each supplement on your list. If one seems like an anomaly, it’s likely not as potent as the brand claims.
Make sure to use these combined tips to find the best supplements online. Otherwise, choosing the cheapest option could cause you to purchase a supplement full of fillers.
6. Review the Website
First, make sure to check the website’s URL. Do you see a lock in front of the URL? What about “HTTPS”?
These factors indicate the website is safe to make purchases from. An insecure website, on the other hand, is vulnerable to hackers. You don’t want to make a purchase only to have someone steal your private contact or credit card information.
Choosing websites that are secure will give you peace of mind about your choice.
7. Look at Every Label
Now that you have a list of popular supplements brands to consider, take the time to look at the products.
First, remind yourself to avoid marketing messages. After all, these messages are designed to draw you in. Focusing solely on the marketing message could cause you to make a mistake.
Instead, first look at the dosage. Does this dose meet your needs? If it’s too high, look for another option.
Next, look for certifications on these labels. You might notice the certifications from the USP and NSF International. Look for a certification from ConsumerLab.com, too.
These three certifications often mean the product is meeting proper manufacturing standards.
What about supplement side effects? Does the label warn you of any potential side effects on interactions? Remember, you want to choose popular supplement brands that are transparent.
Check the label for expiration dates and mentions of medical research, too.
8. Read Reviews
If you’re on the fence and in between popular supplement brands, look for customer reviews. Reading online reviews can help you gather insights from customers just like you.
After all, these customers are prioritizing finding high-quality products and shops they can trust, too.
Look for reviews from various resources. These can include the store’s Google My Business and Better Business Bureau listing. Try Protein Daily and Supplement Reviews as well.
Did any of these shoppers experience adverse effects after buying supplements online? Did any of the products include dangerous ingredients?
If you have questions about a shopper’s experience, respond to their post. Learning from other consumers will help you make an informed shopping decision.
How to Choose an Online Supplement Shop: 9 Tips for Safe Shopping
Ready to shop from the most popular supplement brands? Keep these eight tips in mind before you start shopping! With these tips, you can find an online supplement shop you can trust!
Eager to start shopping? We’re here to help.
Explore our shop today to find the herbal supplements you need to achieve your long-term health goals!