Millions of Americans are also taking probiotics for digestive health. There’s evidence that some probiotics may help prevent diarrhea caused by infections or antibiotics. Some may also ease the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome or lactose intolerance. But the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hasn’t approved any health claims for probiotics.
“It’s always best to talk with your doctor before you start taking a supplement, especially if you already take medications, have health concerns or are pregnant,” advises Dr. Hollingsworth.
People who take more than one medication or supplement are at high risk for a potentially negative interaction, some of which can take weeks to develop.
When possible, foods, not supplements, are the best sources of nutrients. That’s because produce is packed with other naturally occurring substances that are good for you, too.
If you’re a caregiver who manages medications for a family member or loved one, be sure to keep a list of every medication your loved one takes. This includes prescription and nonprescription drugs, as well as nutritional supplements and vitamins. Give a copy to each health care provider that your family member or loved one sees.
Be sure to have a doctor or pharmacist review that list at least once a year and look for possible drug interactions.
Kettering Health Network is a faith-based, not-for-profit healthcare system. The network has eight hospitals: Grandview, Kettering, Sycamore, Southview, Greene Memorial, Fort Hamilton, Kettering Behavioral Health and Soin.