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TAKE ACTION NOW: FDA "Compounds" Its Attack on Supplements

Posted By Administration, Monday, July 13, 2015

The FDA’s hostility toward both supplements and compounded medicine is legendary—after all, they compete with the FDA-approved drugs that pay the government’s bills. Now the agency is attacking compounded supplements. Action Alert!

A few weeks ago, we reported on an amendment designed to fix a number of the most problematic regulations arising from Congress’s Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA). The amendment would clarify provisions governing “office use,” allowing physicians to keep certain quantities of compounded drugs on hand in their office, and also remove the cap on interstate shipments if the medication is for an individual patient. ANH-USA strongly supports this amendment, as it would ensure patient access to important compounded medications which are currently endangered.


Tags:  action amendment  compounds  FDA  House appropriations committee  supplements 

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Guest Editorial: Supplements & Your Practice

Posted By Daniel Breeman, Editor-in-Chief, Natural Practitioner Magazine, Wednesday, April 15, 2015

On the surface, the recent front page news regarding the New York Attorney General's cease and desist notification to four of the nation's largest retailers (Walmart, Target, Walgreens and GNC), ordering them to pull from their shelves certain store-brand herbal supplements, may not mean much to those physicians who have already been hesitant about encouraging their patients to use nutritional supplements.

 But a closer look should stir up some cause for concern, especially among the complementary, alternative and integrative physician world, about what this attach on supplements may potentially mean for their practice going forward. Many integrative physicians support or even encourage their patients to supplement their diets with nutritional supplements, and nearly all trust that the products they are purchasing from their vendors and promoting to their patients are safe and effective.

Is there a way to guarantee the safety of these products? Regardless of which side you stand on regarding the attorney general's actions (not to mention the alleged flawed DNA barcode testing methods), the front page news should make all health care practitioners re-examine their selection process for purchasing herbs and other nutritional supplements for the safety of their patients and the good of their practice.

The chances are pretty good that those physicians who have historically turned away from nutritional supplements will continued to do so, equipped with only more "evidence" to say, "I told you so." This many be especially true among conventional physicians, many of whom have waited for an incident like this one to find greater justification in turning a blind eye to nutritional supplements.

So as alternative, complementary and integrative health care practitioners looking to treat the whole person, should you now be scared off by the attorney general's findings and move away from nutritional supplement use in your practice?

As mentioned previously, perhaps the best way to approach this for both your practice and your patients is to not lose faith in herbal products or other nutritional supplements that may indeed by the right call for what ails them. Instead, a closer look at your purchasing methods, who is involved in making those decisions, and perhaps asking a few more questions of your supplier is the right path to choose. Remember, there's nothing wrong with asking questions, which in the long run will likely only enhance the relationship between you and your supplier.

Review each product you select carefully, perhaps bringing in the opinions of other physicians in your practice if possible, along with an herbalist and/or nutritionist to make sure all the bases are covered.

As health care practitioners, you are likely receiving higher quality grade supplements products than those that were pulled off the store shelves at your favorite retailer. Make sure the pharmaceutical-grade supplements you recommend are top of the line, not taking anything for granted.

Remember, your patients are worth it.

Tags:  supplements  your practice 

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When Do You Take Your Supplements?

Posted By Joel Lopez, MD, Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Updated: Thursday, January 30, 2014

Are you taking handfuls of supplements? You might wanna think about what you’re doing if you’re in the habit of doing that. Timing of supplement intake is as important as the form in which you take them. That would have to be a totally different discussion altogether though. For now, let’s discuss ways in which to optimize the effectiveness of your nutritional supplement program. One thing to take note though before I make general recommendations is that everybody is metabolically different and unique and as such, an individualized program has to be in order.

Multivitamins, whole-food based, should be taken with food a couple of times a day. I’m not a huge fan of time-released multis because they usually come in the form of tablets (which by the way, may have unnecessary binders and fillers).

Probiotics ideally, are taken on an empty stomach unless they’re enteric-coated.

Supplements such as essential fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A, D, E and K are best taken with the heaviest meals.

Mineral supplements are taken apart from meals since fiber from food would actually interfere with their absorption.

Amino acids should ideally be taken apart from food as well. Examples include NAC, L-carnitine and L-tryptophan.

Digestive enzymes such as pancreatic enzymes should be taken 15-30 minutes prior to meals.

Plant-based enzymes such as bromelain and papain are more stable in an acid environment and as such, can be taken with meals.

I’m available for in person and virtual consultations. Contact me at +1-415-800-3757 or on Skype at drjlopezmd. Yours in wellness, DrJLo.

Tags:  integrative medicine  supplements 

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