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Product Reviews (101)
Fish Oil and Omega-3 and -7 Supplements Review (Including Krill, Algae, Calamari, and Sea Buckthorn)
Black Currant Oil, Borage Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Flaxseed Oil, and Hemp Oil Supplements Review: Sources of ALA and GLA (Omega-3 and -6 Fatty Acids)
CL Answers (114)
How can I get tested for the coronavirus? Can I get a home-test for COVID-19? Which are the best tests? Are any tests free?
Do any supplements help with the coronavirus (COVID-19)? Do supplements like zinc, vitamin C, or herbals work?
Can I use a home test for mercury to check for mercury in fish, like canned tuna, fresh fish, and sushi?
Have you tested vitamin K supplements with MenaQ7? Is this a good source of vitamin K if I need to avoid soy?
What's really in supplements for "adrenal support" and "adrenal fatigue"? Do they work and are they safe?
I read an article stating that some of the ingredients in Centrum multivitamins may be dangerous or toxic. Is that true?
Is it okay to buy supplements as tablets? I've heard that tablets may go through our system without dissolving. Is there any way to know whether tablets will properly dissolve?
I read that sterol supplements to lower cholesterol like CholestOff can block the absorption of vitamins. Is that true?
I'd like to know which supplements may help with my different medical conditions. What's the best way to look this up on ConsumerLab.com?
I use a brand of curcumin and the most recent bottle contained capsules a few shades lighter than what I am accustomed to taking. Is this color change an issue to be concerned about?
I heard that some types of fish oil are esterified and can dissolve plastic foam (polystyrene or Styrofoam). Is this right and, if so, should I be concerned?
Does taking natural versus synthetic CoQ10 make a difference? How do you know which product is natural or synthetic?
I read that famotidine (Pepcid) may help treat COVID-19. Is this true? Are there risks with taking famotidine?
How can I tell if my fish oil supplement is rancid (oxidized) or spoiled? And if it is spoiled, is it still safe to take?
Someone told me that one Brazil nut can provide your entire recommended daily intake for vitamin E. Is that true?
I developed a rash after taking an iron supplement and then realized the supplement contained soy, to which I am allergic. Can your reports help me avoid soy and other allergens in supplements?
Is it better to use a powdered product that you mix with liquid than to take a pill. I was told that the vitamins will be more completely absorbed. Is that true?
Is it better to eat farmed salmon or wild salmon? Which one has more omega-3s and less contamination with PCBs, mercury, etc.?
I heard that Theracurmin, a form of curcumin, was shown to help with memory, but it's expensive. Does Theracurmin really improve memory and is it worth it?
I recently read that a gluten-free diet may increase your exposure to arsenic and mercury. Is this true?
I'm a vegan but my doctor wants me to take fish oil with EPA and DHA. Is there something I can take that would be as good as fish oil capsules but would satisfy the needs of a vegan?
Is it true that oat cereals, like Cheerios, oatmeal, oatflakes and steel-cut oats can be contaminated with a toxin?
Is Rhodiola rosea effective for depression and does it have other uses? Will ConsumerLab.com be testing these supplements?
What are the health benefits of coconut oil and medium chain triglycerides, such as those used in Bulletproof Coffee?
Should I be worried that my supplement contains "caramel coloring IV"? I've heard that it has been linked to cancer.
Lovaza, a prescription omega-3 fish oil, is very expensive. Can I get the same omega-3 oils from a supplement that costs less?
I am curious why some probiotics do not require refrigeration even though they contain some of the same bacteria in probiotics that require refrigeration? Which probiotics need to be refrigerated?
Do Sugar Bear Hair Vitamins make hair shine, nails stronger, and help both to grow? They taste good but are super expensive.
Does Oral-B Glide or other dental floss contain toxic chemicals called PFAS? Are there PFAS-free alternatives?
My dog is getting older and his veterinarian recently recommended giving him a glucosamine supplement for his joints. Has ConsumerLab.com tested these, or other supplements for pets?
What are the health benefits of avocado oil? Is it healthier than olive oil? Which avocado oils are best?
I have IBS and don't want to take medication if I can help it. I've heard that peppermint works for IBS, but is there good research to support this?
I've heard that soaking dried beans for 24 hours reduces the phytate level, allowing for greater access to nutrients. Is this true?
Some websites are highly critical of magnesium stearate, which is in many supplements. Is this substance toxic and should I avoid it?
What is the ingredient zeolite I see in Natural Cellular Defense and other detox supplements? Does it help in any way?
Which supplements are important after bariatric surgery (i.e., weight loss or stomach-reducing surgery)? Are there any I should avoid?
Do vitamins, minerals and nutritional supplements lose effectiveness with exposure to high temperatures and is it safe to order supplements by mail in the summer?
What is BioSil? Can it really increase collagen production and strengthen hair, skin, nails and bones?
Encyclopedia Articles (10)
Recalls & Warnings (87)
Maker of Concentration, Pain, Immune and Cholesterol Supplement and More Warned For Drug Claims
Marketers of "Genetically Customized" Supplements Settle FTC Charges of Deceptive Health Claims
Problems Found with New Zealand Fish Oil Supplements, Concerns Raised About Testing Methods
"The Truth About Nutrition" Marketers Agree to Pay $3 Million to Settle Charges of Deceptive Advertising of Dietary Supplements and Devices
Maker of Hoodia and Green Tea Products to Pay $2.65 Million Settlement for Unfair Business Practices
Seller of "Super Strength Prostate Formula," Acai Berry Supplements & More Warned for Drug Claims
Seller of Alpha Lipoic Acid, Cinnamon Supplements and More Warned For Manufacturing Violations
Sellers of “Fat Trapper Plus” and “Exercise in a Bottle” Banned from Advertising Weight-Loss Products
Health Research Labs Agrees to Settle FTC Charges of False Claims, Deceptive Marketing of BioTherapex and NeuroPlus
Manufacturer of Heart, Multivitamin, Cranberry, and Longevity Supplements Warned For Adulteration and Drug Claims
Recall of Calcium & Magnesium Softgels Containing Excessive and Potentially Toxic Amounts of Vitamin D
Seller of Diabetes, Prostate Supplements and More Warned for Manufacturing Violations, Drug Claims
Supplement Maker to Pay over $3.5 Million to Settle Deceptive Advertising Charges for Immune Dietary Supplement
Supplement Company to Pay over $3.5 Million to Settle Deceptive Advertising Charges for ImmuneDietary Supplement
Sellers of Popular Weight Loss Supplements Pay $25 Million Over FTC Allegations of Deceptive Advertising
Direct Marketers of Weight Loss, Impotence, and Arthritis Supplements Charged with Deceptive Claims
Clinical Updates (143)
Vitamin D for Hypertension?
Some studies have suggested a modest reduction in high blood pressure with vitamin D supplementation. However, a recent study did not find such a benefit - although a closer look reveals why these results may not tell the full story. Get the details, plus more information about vitamin D and cardiovascular health, and test results for 55 vitamin D supplements, in the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Green Tea Extract and Prostate Cancer
A new study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, showed that fewer men with pre-cancerous lesions developed prostate cancer if given a daily green tea extract supplement, although the results were not statistically significant due, in part, to the small size of the study. However, a somewhat similar study found a significant benefit. Learn more about these studies, and see our test results for green tea supplements, teas, and drinks, in the Green Tea Review >>
Green Tea for Weight Control?
Many studies have looked at whether green tea can help with weight management. The results have been mixed. A recently published study used a high-dose green tea extract. Although the researchers concluded it worked, a closer look suggests otherwise, and points to a potential risk. For details, as well as the results of our tests of green tea supplements, beverages, and brewable green tea, see the Green Tea Review >>
Growing Concern with Biotin Causing False Lab Results
Biotin (a B vitamin found in B-complex and hair and nail supplements) can interfere with laboratory results resulting in the missed diagnosis or misdiagnosis of cardiovascular and hormonal conditions, such as Graves' disease (a form of hyperthyroidism). Physicians and lab personnel may be unaware of this interference. For details, see the "Biotin" section of the B Vitamins Review >>
Have you ever wondered what taking a stimulant supplement for weight management or energy might do to your body? Researchers recently gave Zantrex-3, Xenedrine EFX, Metabolift, or a brand of Guarana to young men while monitoring their heart rates and other vital signs, and recording side effects. The results raise concerns. Get the details, plus test results for 14 other supplements, in the updated Weight Supplements Review >>
Antioxidants: Too Much of a Good Thing?
A new, long-term study of Americans found the risk of dying over the course of the study (about 14 years) was lowest when antioxidant levels in the blood were above the lowest levels (the bottom 20% of the population). However, for people in the top 20% of blood levels for vitamins A and E, the risk of death increased compared to people with moderate levels. For selenium and beta-carotene, there was no significant difference in the death rate between moderate and high levels, although for vitamin C some additional benefit was seen at high, but not the highest, levels.
The results suggest that antioxidant supplements may be useful for those who are nutritionally deficient, but, as noted by the researchers, "beyond a certain threshold, higher levels do not lead to additional benefit, and may potentially be toxic." More details (including specific serum levels) are found in the linked updates to the following reviews, which include our test results and quality ratings of products:
Fish Oil for Brain Function
Healthy people, ages 50 to 75, given a specific fish oil supplement for 6 months experienced significant gains in their performance on visual tasks, reading, and verbal fluency in a recent placebo-controlled study. Brain scans also showed significant gains in the structure and volume of tissue in several areas of the brain. For details about the type and dose of fish oil taken, as well as test results and comparisons for 74 fish and other marine oil supplements, see the updated Fish/Marine Oil (Omega-3) Supplements Review >>
Fish Oil Linked to Prostate Cancer?
Headlines this week about a study showing an association between the fatty acids in fish oil and the development of prostate cancer have stirred concerns about consuming fish and fish oil supplements. For details about this study and studies of other effects of fish oil and omega-3 fatty acids, as well as test results and comparisons for 74 fish and other marine oil supplements, see the updated Fish/Marine Oil (Omega-3) Supplements Review >>
Calcium and Vitamin D to Prevent Fractures
A large study among post-menopausal women receiving hormone therapy showed a much lower rate of hip fracture among those who received a specific calcium/vitamin D supplement compared to those who did not get the supplement. For details about the supplement, as well as test results and comparisons for 13 calcium/vitamin D supplements, see the updated Calcium Supplements Review >>
Probiotic for Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
A popular probiotic given in a yogurt appeared to reduce symptoms in people with irritable bowel syndrome. However, people taking a yogurt without the probiotic did just as well, if not better, over time, raising doubt about the value of the probiotic. For more details, as well as test results and comparisons for 29 probiotic supplements, see the updated Probiotic Supplements Review >>
Vitamin D & Depression
Women with depression and type 2 diabetes were given high-dose vitamin D for several weeks in a small, pilot study. By the end of the study, vitamin D levels in the blood had risen considerably and mood was significantly improved, as was blood pressure. Although just a pilot study, this is not the first study to suggest that vitamin D may help with depression. For more details, as well as test results and comparisons for 55 vitamin D supplements, see the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Vitamin D for Lupus
A recent small study found that vitamin D supplements helped people with lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus -- SLE), a long-term autoimmune disease. See the update to the Vitamin D Supplements Review which has details on who may benefit, dosage, and results of our product tests. More >>
Vitamin D Tests Unreliable
A preliminary report suggests that many vitamin D blood tests are incorrect, often yielding low results. This can lead to the diagnosis of vitamin D deficiency when it does not exist. Certain people may be more prone to a false low reading due to their source of vitamin D. Learn more in the update to the Vitamin D Supplements Review entitled Vitamin D Tests -- Not Always Reliable >>
Cancer Findings with Natural Vitamin E
Clinical studies have raised doubts, and even concerns, about the relationship between vitamin E supplements and cancer. However, recent studies in animals suggest the tocopherols found in natural forms of vitamin E may help prevent cancer -- although the results are preliminary. For more about this, and our tests of vitamin E supplements, see the updated Vitamin E Supplements Review. More >>
Fish Oil No Help for Heart Disease?
A new study found that taking a fish oil supplement did not reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke in people with multiple risk factors for heart disease. But this doesn't tell the whole story. Get the bottom line on fish oil for heart disease and test results for over 70 fish oil supplements, in the updated Fish Oil and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements Review >>
Lower Risk of Fibroids With Vitamin D
A study of women in Washington, D.C. showed that those with higher blood levels of vitamin D had a 32% lower risk of uterine fibroids -- the most common reason for hysterectomy. Unfortunately, most of the women had less than sufficient levels of vitamin D. Find out the levels associated with lowest risk of fibroids, learn how to improve vitamin D levels (without overdoing it), and get the results of our latest product tests in the Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Red Yeast Rice Supplements Unchecked
University researchers recently asked the FDA whether it was testing or keeping track of red yeast rice supplements -- which can lower cholesterol levels. The answer was no. However, the researcher noted, ConsumerLab.com periodically tests these products, checking for levels of active compounds as well as a potential toxin which can occur in red yeast rice. Get more details and results of our product tests in the Red Yeast Rice Supplements Review >>
B-12 and Folic Acid for Memory
Small but significant improvements in short and long-term memory were found to occur in older people (aged 60 to 74) given modest daily amounts of vitamin B-12 and folic acid. But don't expect immediate results. Improvements were seen only after 2 years of supplementation. See the update in the B Vitamins Review for the dosage used, as well as our ratings of supplements with vitamin B-12 and folic acid.
Algal Oil vs. Fish Oil
Fish get their omega-3's from algae and many people are now doing the same by taking algal oil, but how does it compare to fish oil? Experts recently reviewed studies of algal oil and concluded that it boosts ("good") cholesterol but it also increases LDL cholesterol -- which is often thought of as "bad" cholesterol. But there's more to the story. Get the details in the recently updated Fish/Marine Oil Supplements Review, which includes our test results for algal, krill, and fish oil supplements.
Concern with Rancid Fish Oil
As our tests have shown, some fish oils are spoiled by the time you buy them. Spoilage produces a variety of compounds. You can smell and taste some of these (if you take the oil directly by spoon, for example) but others you cannot. An expert panel recently reported on the safety of consuming rancid fish oil. See their conclusions in the Fish/Marine Oil Supplements Review, which includes our test results.
Ginkgo Fails Alzheimer's Trial
Over two thousand people with memory complaints were given Ginkgo biloba extract or placebo as part of a five-year study. The results, published this week, showed no difference between the groups in the percentage who eventually developed Alzheimer's disease or dementia. See how this compares to other studies of ginkgo in the updated Ginkgo Biloba Supplements Review, which includes our tests and reviews of ginkgo products. More >>
Curcumin May Help Prevent Diabetes
Past research has suggested a potential role for curcumin (from turmeric) in blood sugar control. A recently published placebo-controlled study of curcumin given daily to people with prediabetes (those with blood sugar levels somewhat higher than normal) produced dramatic results in reducing the percentage of such individuals progressing to diabetes. Get the details in the latest update to ConsumerLab.com’s Turmeric and Curcumin Supplements Review -- which includes quality ratings of products and other potential uses of curcumin. More >>
Low Vitamin D Levels and Obesity -- A Dangerous Combination
A new study links low blood levels of vitamin D in obese individuals to a greatly increased risk of insulin resistance (a condition linked to type 2 diabetes). The results add to the growing list of reasons to make sure you maintain a sufficient level of vitamin D. Get the details in the latest update to ConsumerLab.com’s Vitamin D Supplements Review. More >>
Do Multivitamins Help You Live Longer?
Based on recent analysis of a study following over 180,000 people aged 45-75 years for about 11 years, the use of multivitamins was not associated with a reduced risk of dying over that period. However, the results were not analyzed by specific type of multivitamin. See the Multivitamin/Multimineral Review for more >>
A new study shows that chromium supplementation can sometimes cause a worsening of insulin sensitivity, raising some concern about its use. For details (as well as test results and comparisons for 8 chromium supplements) see the updated Chromium Supplements Review >>
Green Tea to Treat Fibroids
A new study suggests that green tea extract may help shrink uterine fibroids (common in women of childbearing age) and reduce symptoms. For details, as well as test results and comparisons of green tea extracts and brewable teas and drinks, see the updated Green Tea Review >>
Vitamins C & E Blunt Exercise Effect
A recent study found that giving high-dose vitamin C or vitamin E to people involved in intensive exercise training blunted cellular changes thought to be important for improving muscular endurance. These and similar results recently reported with resveratrol raise concerns about high-dose antioxidant supplementation during exercise training. For details, see the updates to the "Concerns and Cautions" sections of the Vitamin C Supplements Review >> and the Vitamin E Supplements Review >>
Vitamin D and Breast Cancer Survival
A new analyses of clinical studies found that women with the highest blood levels of vitamin D had a much higher rate of survival from breast cancer than women with the lowest levels. Details on what may be the most beneficial levels, as well as our test results for vitamin D supplements, are found in the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Calcium During Breast Cancer Treatment
A recent analysis of clinical studies concluded that supplementation with calcium and vitamin D during breast cancer treatment does not help maintain bone mineral density, although often given for this purpose. Calcium and vitamin D may certainly play other important roles. For more details, as well as test results and comparisons for 33 calcium supplements, see the updated Calcium Supplements Review >>
Green Tea and Liver Toxicity
Green tea extract was listed as one of the most common dietary supplements linked to liver injury in a newly published guideline for diagnosing and treating drug-induced liver injury. Find out what one of the authors of the guideline had to say about the catechin content of some green tea supplements, and get our test results showing the amounts of catechins in green tea supplements in the Green Tea Supplements, Drinks and Brewable Teas Review >>
When Vitamin C May Curb a Cold
A recent small study among men with low to adequate levels of vitamin C showed that supplementing with vitamin C reduced the incidence of colds compared to placebo. The men taking vitamin C also reported having more energy -- although this finding was not statistically significant. Learn more about what vitamin C can and cannot do, the dose used in this study, and results of our tests of vitamin C supplements, in the update to the Vitamin C Supplements Review >>
Vitamin C: Does It Fight Colds?
A new analysis says it can help – a little. Get the bottom line, plus test results for 27 products, in the updated Vitamin C Supplements Review >>
Alzheimer's Changes Slowed with B Vitamins
A combination of B vitamins was found to slow brain loss in areas of the brain associated with Alzheimer's disease. This same combination of vitamins has also been shown to slow cognitive decline. Get the details on who may (or may not) benefit, dosage, plus test results for over 35 B vitamin supplements in the updated B Vitamin Supplements Product Review >>
Optimum Level of Vitamin D
New research shows that blood levels which are too low or too high for vitamin D are associated with increased risk of heart attack and earlier death. Find the "sweet spot" for vitamin D levels as well as test results for 55 vitamin D supplements in the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Resveratrol May Blunt Positive Effects of Exercise
Although experiments in animals suggest that resveratrol improves athletic endurance, a new, placebo-controlled study in men found it to blunt some of the positive effects of exercise. Get the details plus test results for 20 resveratrol supplements and more information about resveratrol's effects in the updated Resveratrol Supplements Review >>
Supplement Helps Dry Eye
A supplement containing omega-6 (from black currant seed oil) and omega-3 fatty acids (from fish oil) was recently shown to improve symptoms of dry eye. Get the details about this formula (plus our test results of other omega-3 and -6 fatty acids supplements) in the updated Black Currant, Borage, Evening Primrose, and Flaxseed Oils Review >>
New Probiotic Study
A new study raises questions about the efficacy of taking probiotics to reduce the occurrence of antibiotic-associated diarrhea. For more details, as well as test results and comparisons for 29 probiotic supplements, see the updated Probiotic Supplements Review >>
Ginseng Reduces Cancer-Related Fatigue
A well-controlled clinical trial recently showed reduced fatigue among cancer patients given a particular type and dose of ginseng. Get the details, as well as our test results for 16 ginseng supplements, in the updated Ginseng Supplements Review >>
Flaxseed Oil for Improving Cholesterol?
A recently published study looked at the metabolic effects of taking daily flaxseed oil on middle-aged men. It found a possible benefit among those with higher triglyceride levels, but overall results were not impressive. More about the study, flaxseed oil, whole flaxseed, and our tests and comparisons of products, is found in the Flaxseed Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Borage Oil, and Black Currant Oil Supplements Review >>
Niacin Reduces Skin Cancer
A recent study suggests that high-dose niacin (vitamin B-3) may reduce the risk of developing certain types of skin cancer. A closer look at the study, however, raises questions about its relevance to people in North America. Get the details, as well as more information about niacin and our product test results & comparisons, in the B Vitamin Supplements Review >>
Fish Oil Increases Muscle/Strength
Last week we reported that vitamin D could help increase strength -- this week it's fish oil. A recent study found that taking a high dose of fish oil led to increases in muscle and strength in older individuals -- without additional exercise. As reported earlier, a lower of dose of fish oil may improve results of exercise. For the details, including specifics about the fish oil used, see the Fish Oil Supplements Review >>
Ginseng for Lower Blood Sugar
A new study found that a certain kind of ginseng helps lower blood sugar levels in people with impaired fasting glucose. For more about this study and related studies on blood sugar and diabetes with other types of ginseng (which have had mixed results), see the Ginseng Supplements Review >>
Turmeric for Memory
A new study shows a modest benefit of turmeric on short-term memory among older individuals with pre-diabetes. Details about the study and dosage used, as well as results of our tests of popular products, are found in the Turmeric and Curcumin Supplements Review >>
Impressive Results with Curcumin in Colitis
A recent study in people with ulcerative colitis not responsive to traditional therapy found that the addition of curcumin to the regimen led to remission in more than 50% of patients. For details about the treatment, as well as our reviews of curcumin products, see the Turmeric/Curcumin Supplements Review >>
Alpha Lipoic Acid Improves Results When Dieting
Women who took alpha lipoic acid while dieting lost significantly more weight and body fat than those who only reduced their calorie intake, according to a new study. For the dose, how it was taken, plus our tests of popular alpha lipoic acid products, see the Alpha Lipoic Acid Review >>
Vitamin D for Diabetic Neuropathy
Supplementing with vitamin D can reduce pain and symptoms of diabetes-related peripheral neuropathy in people with type 2 diabetes who are vitamin D deficient, a recent study reports. More about the use of vitamin D in diabetes and many other conditions, as well as our product test results, are found in the Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Saw Palmetto for Prostate?
Saw palmetto extract was once popular for reducing symptoms of prostate enlargement, but studies subsequently failed to find a benefit. A recent study assessed whether it could boost the effectiveness of conventional medical treatment. Get the results in the What It Does section of the Saw Palmetto Supplements Review.
Bioengineered Salmon Approved
As of this month, genetically engineered salmon can be legally sold in the U.S. Learn how it compares to other salmon in terms of EPA and DHA in the Farmed vs. Wild Salmon section of our Fish Oil Review. (Also see the results of our tests of canned fish in the separate Canned Tuna and Canned Salmon Review.)
Best Oats for Controlling Blood Sugar?
Gummies vs. Tablets for Vitamin D
Vitamin D for Psoriasis?
Avoiding Microplastics in Bottled Water
There is increasing evidence of microplastics appearing in water -- including a study of popular bottled water brands. See the results in our answer to the question: Is it true that there are bits of plastic in drinking water and specialty salts? How concerned should I be?
Vitamin D for Diabetes Prevention
Does Dark Chocolate Improve Mood?
Does Tart Cherry Improve Memory?
Can tart cherry juice improve memory and cognitive function? See the results of a recent study in our full answer to the question: What are the benefits of tart cherry juice?
Is Niagen Safe?
Niagen (nicotinamide riboside) was recently studied for its safety and ability to raise NAD+ in the body. See the results and learn more about this form of niacin (which is also in the product Basis) in the Niacin section of the B Vitamin Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for niacin and other B vitamin supplements.
Turmeric for Knee Pain
Probiotic to Trim Belly Fat?
Does Green Tea Prevent Cognitive Decline?
L-Theanine for Sleep and Cognition?
Several studies have evaluated whether a single dose of L-theanine (found in green tea) can reduce stress and anxiety. A new study has evaluated the effect of L-theanine when taken daily for several weeks. See the results in the What It Does section of the L-Theanine Supplements Review. Also see our top choices for L-Theanine.
CBD Safe for Pets?
Supplement for Pain?
Magnesium for Memory
There is growing evidence that getting the right amount of magnesium reduces the risk of developing cognitive decline and dementia. For details, including results of a new study, see the Dementia and cognition section of the Magnesium Supplements Review. Also see our Top Pick among magnesium supplements.
Cinnamon for Arthritis
Taking cinnamon as a supplement was found to decrease symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis in a recent study. Get the details and learn what else cinnamon can do (particularly regarding blood sugar) in the What It Does section of the Cinnamon Supplements & Spices Review. (Also see our test results for popular cinnamon supplements).
Curcumin for Polyps?
Resveratrol for Memory?
CoQ10 for Fibromyalgia?
A recent study evaluated whether CoQ10 improved symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia when added to standard prescription treatment with pregabalin (Lyrica). See the results, and learn more about what CoQ10 can and cannot do in the What It Does section of the CoQ10 and Ubiquinol Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for CoQ10 and ubiquinol.
Problem With Aloe Gel
We received a report from a consumer who used a popular aloe gel on her hair, with disastrous results. The product had failed our tests for aloe and listed as "Not Approved" in our Review. For details, see the Updates near the top of the Aloe Liquids, Gels and Supplements Review >>
Lower Heart Risk With Olive Oil
Using olive oil was associated with a dramatic reduction in the risk of cardiovascular disease in a recent study. But what about using olive oil along with other oils? Get the results and learn more in the "What It Does" section of the Extra Virgin Olive Oils Review. Also see our Top Picks among extra virgin olive oils.
Does Curcumin Lower Cholesterol?
A recent study evaluated whether curcumin can help lower cholesterol levels, as well as further reduce levels in people using a phytosterol spread. Get the results and details about the type and dose of curcumin used, in the "What It Does" section of the Turmeric & Curcumin Supplements Review >> (Also see our Top Picks among products.)
For more about cholesterol-lowering, also see our Phytosterol Supplements Review >>
For more about cholesterol-lowering, also see our Phytosterol Supplements Review >>
Creatine for Older People
Theanine for Anxiety?
Fish Oil to Improve Cognition?
Vitamin K for Bone Density?
Vitamin K (as MK-7) was given daily for one year to older men and women to see if it would improve bone mineral density. Some also received vitamin D and calcium. Find out if it helped, as well as the results of related studies, in the What It Does section of the Vitamin K Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks among vitamin K supplements.
Is Quercetin Safe?
Quercetin has been proposed as a treatment for a range of medical conditions, including COVID-19, but is it safe? Find out what studies have found, including results of a recent, small clinical trial, in the Concerns and Cautions section of the Quercetin Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for quercetin.
Does Fish Oil or Curcumin Increase Brain Blood Flow?
A study among people ages 50 to 80 evaluated the effects of fish oil and curcumin on blood flow to the brain and on other aspects of cardiovascular function. See the results in the "What It Does" section of the Fish Oil Supplements Review and the Curcumin Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for fish oil and curcumin.
Does MSM Help Joints and Muscles?
MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is commonly in supplements for joint and muscle pain, although the evidence behind it has been limited. Its effectiveness in reducing pain, muscle damage, and oxidative stress was recently evaluated in people running a half-marathon. See the results in the "What It Does" section of the Joint Health Supplements Review (Glucosamine, Chondroitin, MSM, and Boswellia), which includes our Top Picks among products.
Collagen for Wrinkles?
A new study put a popular branded collagen ingredient to the test, measuring its effects on collagen content in the skin and on facial wrinkles, including wrinkles around the eyes. See the results in our updated answer to the question: Do collagen or hyaluronic acid supplements really help aging or wrinkled skin?
Kava for Anxiety?
See the results of a recent study with kava in our updated answer to the question: What are the best supplements for depression and anxiety?
Cinnamon for Prediabetes?
Casein at Night?
It has been suggested that casein protein be taken at bedtime because it is absorbed relatively slowly, providing a more continuous supply of amino acids throughout the night to maintain muscle. A study recently put this theory to the test. See the results in the Casein section of the Protein Powders Review. Also see our Top Picks among products.
Anxiety Treatment -- Low-Dose CBD?
Is Methylfolate the Best Form of Folate?
Methylfolate has been promoted as a better form of folate (vitamin B9), particularly for people with certain common genetic variations. A clinical study recently put methylfolate to the test against folic acid and folinic acid. The results were surprising. Get the details in the Folate section of the B Vitamin Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks among folate and other B vitamin supplements.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Diabetes
Several studies have looked at the effects of consuming extra virgin olive oil on improving blood sugar control. The most recent study looked at whether it could delay the need for glucose-lowering medication in people with type 2 diabetes. Get the results in the What It Does section of the Extra Virgin Olive Oils Review. Also see our Top Picks among products.
Apple Cider Vinegar for Eczema?
Probiotic for Anxiety?
Fish Oil for Heart Failure?
Best Way to Take CBD
If you use CBD, it's important that you take it in a way that maximizes its absorption. To learn more, see the What to Consider When Using section of the CBD Oils and Hemp Extracts Review, where you'll also see results of a new study showing that how you take CBD may dramatically affect how long it remains in your body. Also see our Top Picks among products.
Adding Fish Oil to Statins?
Effect of High-Dose Vitamin D on Bones
A 3-year study among people with osteoporosis compared the effects of moderate vs. high doses of vitamin D on bone density and bone strength. The results may surprise you. Get the details in the How Much Do You Need and How Much is Too Much? section of the Vitamin D Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for vitamin D supplements.
Getting the Most from Green Tea
Our Green Tea Review shows that matcha green tea provides higher amounts of healthful catechins than regular green tea. This week, we added information about why this is as well as the results of a new study showing which type of matcha provides the highest levels of polyphenols (i.e., catechins). For details see the What to Consider When Buying section of the review. Also see our Top Picks among green tea products.
CBD for Sleep?
Vitamin D & Coronavirus
Studies are linking low blood levels of vitamin D to higher risk of testing positive for the coronavirus and/or developing more severe disease. Find out what blood levels appear to be protective, as well as the results of the most recent study, in the COVID-19 section of the Vitamin D Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for vitamin D.
Melatonin for Sleep and Parkinson's
Vitamin D for COVID-19 Patients
Collagen for Knees?
Collagen supplements have been tested in many studies to reduce pain and/or improve function in osteoarthritic knees. A recent study focused on collagen peptides. Find out if they worked (and see the results for other collagen products) in the Joint Pain section of the Collagen Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks for collagen supplements for joint pain and for wrinkles.
Fish Oil and Heart Disease
Many studies have assessed the potential benefits of taking fish oil supplements. Results have been conflicting, but one of the largest and longest-term studies was recently published. See what it found in the What It Does section of the Fish Oil Supplements Review. Also see our general recommendations for using fish oil for heart health and check out our Top Picks for fish oil supplements.
Vitamin D and Inflammation
A new study of elderly people given vitamin D showed little effect on markers of inflammation in the body. Correcting very low levels of vitamin D may be helpful, but further raising vitamin levels does not seem necessary for proper immune function. In fact, there may be some downside. For details about this and other uses for vitamin D (and our product test results), see the Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Does Fish Oil Slow Cognitive Decline?
Results of a large U.S. study suggest that taking fish oil does not slow cognitive decline in the elderly. Before you nix fish oil for this purpose, be aware of an important caveat about the people in the study. Get the details about this and other studies of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as our tests of popular products, in the Fish Oil and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements Review >>
Vitamin D Reduces Risk of Falls
A study found that giving a modest daily dose of vitamin D significantly reduced the rate of falls in women who were prone to falls and were deficient in vitamin D. Get details about this and other studies, as well as results of our product tests, in the Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Maca for Improved Functioning?
Flaxseed Lowers Blood Pressure
Consuming milled flaxseed significantly lowered blood pressure in people with peripheral arterial disease, according to a recent clinical trial. Additional analysis of those results suggests the alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) -- an omega-3 fatty acid -- in flaxseed may be responsible for the effect. Get the details, including the amount of flaxseed used, plus our tests of flaxseed, evening primrose, borage, and other seed oils containing ALA and GLA, in the updated Flaxseed Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Borage Oil, and Black Currant Oil Supplements Review >>
CoQ10 Improves Symptoms in War Veterans
A new study found that a moderate dose of CoQ10 improved symptoms of Gulf War illness (such as word recall, fatigue, and irritability) in veterans. A larger dose did not show this effect. Details, as well as results of our product tests, are found in the CoQ10 & Ubiquinol Supplements Review >>
Ginseng for ADHD
A ginseng extract showed promise in improving the symptoms of attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) without adverse effects in children ages 6 to 15 in a placebo-controlled study. You can get details about this and other studies with ginseng, as well as our test results for ginseng supplements in the Ginseng Supplements Review >>
Keep Energy Drinks Away from Kids
It was reported this week that 40% of calls to poison centers for "energy drink exposure" involved children under age 6, many of whom experienced serious side effects. For more about this and other concerns with energy drinks, as well as our test results for popular products, see the B Vitamins & Energy Drinks Review >>
Knee Arthritis & Vitamin D
People with knee osteoarthritis (worn joints) and generally low vitamin D levels given vitamin D for 2 years showed greater improvement in some, but not all, symptoms compared to those given a placebo. Get the details (as well as our product test results) in the Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Curcumin and Cognition
Curcumin (from turmeric) has been shown to provide anti-inflammatory effects, helpful in osteoarthritis and gastrointestinal conditions, and even an anti-depressant effect. A recent long-term study evaluated its effects on cognition and memory in older people. See the results in the "What It Does" section of the Turmeric/Curcumin Supplements Review (which includes our tests of popular products) >>
Knee Supplements Studied
A recent clinical trial evaluated glucosamine with chondroitin versus placebo for reducing pain and improving function in people with osteoarthritis of the knee. See the details, along with results of our tests of popular supplements, see our Review of Glucosamine, Chondroitin, MSM and Boswellia Supplements for Joint Health >>
Folic Acid Supplementation Mitigates Alzheimer's
A recent study in people with Alzheimer's disease found that folic acid supplementation decreased inflammation and slightly improved mental functioning. However, participants began the study unusually low in folic acid relative to normal U.S. levels. For more details see the B Vitamin Supplements Review >> Also see results of a folate/B-12 study which showed reduced brain shrinkage in Alzheimer’s patients.
Niagen Form of Niacin May Cause Flushing
Niacin is known to cause flushing (redness) and skin tingling at moderate doses. Other forms of niacin are said cause less flushing. One of these is Niagen. However, results of a recently published study suggest that it can cause flushing and "hotness" after just a single dose. More details are in the "Niacin" section of the B Vitamin Supplements Review >>
Anti-Inflammatory Effect of Juice Plus+?
Chronic systemic inflammation is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer. A recent clinical trial assessed the product Juice Plus+ for its ability to reduce this inflammation in obese men and women. The abstract of the published study indicates that it works, but the results tell a different story. For details, see the "What It Does" section of the Greens and Whole Foods Powders, Pills, and Drinks Review (which includes our tests of products) >>
DHA for Rheumatoid Arthritis?
A new study tested DHA from microalgae as a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. The results are mixed. For details, see the "Rheumatoid Arthritis" section of the Fish Oil and Omega-3 Supplements Review >>
DHA to Boost Children's IQ?
Supplementing with DHA during pregnancy has been touted as a way to increase the IQ of offspring, but results published this week seem to quash that hope. However, there may be other benefits, particularly for women with normally low intake of DHA, as discussed in the section "During Pregnancy: Effects on Children” in the Fish Oil and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements Review >>
Very high-doses of biotin (vitamin B-7) can cause misleading laboratory results and lead to unnecessary antithyroid treatment, according to a new report. For details, see the Biotin section of the B Vitamins Supplements Review >>
Niacinamide for Alzheimer's Disease?
Niacinamide (a form of niacin) has been promoted as a way to protect against memory loss associated with Alzheimer's disease – a claim based on studies in mice. A recent study put this to the test in people. See the results in the "Niacin" section of the B Vitamin Supplements Review >>
FDA Finds High Cadmium in Cocoa Products
Researchers from the U.S. FDA recently reported finding high levels of cadmium in cocoas as well as cocoa nibs and dark chocolates – particularly in cocoas from certain parts of the world. The results are similar to what ConsumerLab has reported. For details, see the Dark Chocolate, Cocoa Powder, Nibs, Extracts & Supplements Review >>
Does Protein Hurt Bones?
Ginseng Role in Diabetes
Results of a recent study suggest that a form of ginseng can help control blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes. Get the details in the What It Does section of the Ginseng Supplements Review.
L-Arginine for Workouts?
CBD for Schizophrenia?
Fish Oil for Dry Eye?
A recent study assessed the effect of MitoQ, a compound related to CoQ10, on the functioning of arteries in older adults. Get the results and learn more about MitoQ in the ConsumerTips section of the CoQ10 Supplements Review.
More Evidence Against Too Much Vitamin D
A well-controlled study has shown that post-menopausal women do not benefit from taking vitamin D when they are not truly deficient. Get the details on appropriate dosage and use of vitamin D, as well as product test results, in the Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Green Tea and Ovarian Cancer
Drinking green tea was associated with a reduced risk of developing ovarian cancer in a recent analysis. Get the details about this and green tea’s relationship to other types of cancer in the What It Does section of the Green Tea Review. (Also see our test results for various types of green tea, including matcha, bagged tea, loose tea, and supplements.)
Krill Oil for Strength?
Evidence from several studies suggests that fish oil can help modestly improve muscular strength and/or endurance and enhance the effects of training. A recent study investigated whether krill oil can do the same. See the results in the What It Does section of the Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplements Review (Fish, Krill, and Algal Oils). Also see our Top Picks among products in this category.
Methylfolate vs. Folic Acid
Methylfolate (L-5-methylfolate, sold as Metafolin and Quatrefolic) is a form of folate promoted for use by people with common genetic mutations that affect the MTHFR enzyme. But is it really better than folic acid? A study recently tested them head-to-head. Get the results in the Folate section of the B Vitamins Review. Also see our Top Picks among methylfolate and folic acid products.
Probiotic for IBS?
Studies have shown that certain probiotics help relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), although this can depend on the type of IBS. The most recent study focused on people with diarrhea-predominant IBS. Get the results in the What It Does section of the Probiotic Supplements Review. Also see our Top Picks among probiotics.
Niagen for Blood Sugar Control?
Anxiety and Fish Oil
Melatonin vs. Light Therapy for Sleep
A recent study found that melatonin was slightly better than light therapy in helping children fall asleep. The overall results, however, may have been better with a lower dose. For details see the "What It Does" section of the Melatonin Supplements Review >>
What NAC (N-Acetylcysteine)
NAC is both a supplement and a drug used to treat conditions ranging from flu and chronic bronchitis to compulsive behavior. A recent study evaluated its use in preventing kidney injury during angiography (imaging of blood vessels). Get the results and learn more in the "What It Does" section of the NAC (N-Acetylcysteine) Supplements Review >> Also see our top choices among NAC supplements.
Fish Oil for Stress?
A recent study investigated whether taking fish oil rich in the omega-3 fatty acid EPA would reduce chronic stress. See the results in the "What It Does" section of the Fish Oil Supplements Review >>
Fish Oil Drug May Help
High doses of fish oil highly-concentrated in EPA and/or DHA are known to lower elevated triglycerides. But can they reduce the risk of cardiac events, such as heart attack? Preliminary results from a new study suggest that one product can – at least in certain people. Get the details in the Prescription Fish Oil vs. Supplements section of the Fish Oil Supplements Review. (Also see our Top Picks among fish oil supplements.)
Can a B Vitamin Lower High Blood Pressure?
A common mutation of the MTHFR gene is associated with an increased risk of hypertension. A recent study tested whether supplementing with a specific B vitamin could reduce blood pressure in affected individuals. Get the results in the MTHFR section of the B Vitamin Supplements Review. (Also see our Top Picks among B vitamins.)
Mixed Results for EPA/DHA Fish Oil
Concentrated EPA/DHA fish oil given daily to a cross-section of Americans was not found to lower the risk of cancer or cardiovascular disease except for those with low fish intake and for African-Americans. See the details in the What It Does section of the Fish Oil Supplements Review. Also see which supplements are comparable to the fish oil in the study.
Is Taking Vinegar Helpful?
Boswellia for Osteoarthritis
Red Yeast Rice Better Than Statin?
Red yeast rice lowered cholesterol as well as a statin drug but with a lower rate of muscular side-effects, according to a new study. Other studies have shown similar results. But is red yeast rice right for you? There are pros and cons. See the "What It Does" section of the Red Yeast Rice Supplements Review for more details. Also see "What CL Found" when popular brands of this supplement were tested.
Ginger for Nausea During Chemo?
Ginger and ginger extracts help reduce nausea in certain situations. A recent placebo-controlled study evaluated its effect on people undergoing chemotherapy and the results suggest it may be more useful in some people than in others. For details, see the "What It Does" section of the Ginger Supplements Review, which includes our Top Picks for ginger root powders and extracts.
Vitamin D and Diabetes Risk
A new study shows a strong association between lower levels of vitamin D in the blood and a higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes (i.e., requiring insulin). The risk of diabetes was more than 3.5 times as great among people with low levels of vitamin D compared to those with higher levels -- although no additional benefit was found for people with the highest levels of vitamin D. Find out more -- including the specific level associated with the lowest risk of type 1 diabetes -- in the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review, which includes our test results for 51 vitamin D supplements. More >>
Up To a Point, Alzheimer's Risk Falls with Vitamin D
A new study shows that, up to a point, the risks of developing Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia fall with higher blood levels of vitamin D. However, the research also clarifies that exceeding a certain blood level of vitamin D provides no further benefit. In fact, additional research suggests that too much vitamin D can have negative effects. The message: Make sure you have a sufficient, but not excessive level of vitamin D. For details about these levels, as well as results of our tests of vitamin D supplements, see the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review >>
Lead in Dark Chocolate
Our recent tests of cocoa-based products found problems with many popular brands of cocoa powders, which were high in cadmium and/or lead. No problem was found, however, with a widely-sold dark chocolate bar, which also had a good amount of potentially beneficial flavanols. A new report by academic researchers in Brazil shows that some dark chocolate bars do contain lead in excess of what the FDA permits (although brands were not identified.) More about this, as well as our test results for 15 cocoa products, is found in updated Review of Cocoa/Cacao Powders, Extracts, Nibs, Supplements, and Chocolate >>
Vitamin D May Protect Bones From Aging
Researchers recently analyzed bone samples from people who were deficient in vitamin D and found changes indicating that the bone had "aged" and was more brittle than bone from people not deficient in vitamin D. For details about this study -- including the levels of vitamin D associated with Vitamin D May Protect Bones from Aging -- Researchers recently analyzed bone samples from people who were deficient in vitamin D and found changes indicating that the bone had "aged" and was more brittle than bone from people not deficient in vitamin D. For details about this study -- including the levels of vitamin D associated with these changes, studies of other effects of vitamin D, as well as test results and comparisons for 55 vitamin D supplements, see the updated Vitamin D Supplements Review >>