Did you know that there are 54,000 dietary supplements on the market and that there are 1000 new supplements being introduced every year?

As you might already know, supplements don't require FDA approval which can potentially put consumers at risk because of the little research performed on the safety of some supplements as well as harmful additives that can be present in supplements.

Consumer Reports just released a report that identifies The Dirty Dozen supplements that consumers should avoid taking because of potential health risks.

The 12 Potentially Harmful Supplements

  1. Aconite- Highly toxic as 2 mg of pure aconite or 1 g of plant may cause death.
  2. Bitter orange- When combined in supplements with caffeine it increases the risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, fainting, and stroke.
  3. Chaparral- Can cause permanent kidney damage and liver damage.
  4. Colloidal silver- Can accumulate in the skin and organs causing permanent discoloration.
  5. Coltsfoot- Toxic to the liver and not recommended for internal use.
  6. Comfrey- Associated with liver damage and shouldn't be used internally.
  7. Country mallow- Contains ephedrine.
  8. Germanium- Associated with kidney problems and can contain harmful additives.
  9. Greater celandine- Stomach problems, itching, and liver problems.
  10. Kava- Allergic reactions, blood in the urine, changes in vision, enlarged pupils, lack of coordination, muscle weakness, puffy face, red eyes, shortness of breath, weight loss.
  11. Lobelia- profuse sweating, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, rapid heartbeat, mental confusion, convulsions, hypothermia, coma, and possibly even death.
  12. Yohimbe- High blood pressure, increased heart rate, headache, anxiety, dizziness, and sleeplessness, kidney damage.

Consumer reports also noted that many supplements are sourced from China where less strict manufacturing methods are allowed and sometimes harmful additives can be found in the supplements.

As with any supplement, it's important to consult your doctor before taking it as well as to check ingredient labels closely as many of the above supplements can go by different names.