There are many times when I have to tell a client that a supplement that they dearly want to try is not a good idea for them. Often these are weight loss supplements.
The bottles and boxes show pictures of fit people and claim that you can lose X number of pounds in the first three weeks if you follow their plan. In very small print at the bottom, under the fit person's picture, they admit that the amazing weight loss of the smiling person is not typical.
What is a weight loss supplement ? There are several herbs and chemicals that can change our metabolism and decrease hunger. Some of these can be beneficial under the right circumstances. That does not mean they all are or that they're all fine for every person.
Possible Problems : While the body is still developing some of these chemicals can create problems. Decreasing hunger levels sounds good, but a certain amount of calories are needed for growth. Some of the supplements also cause changes in the nervous system. In children that is still developing as well.
Dosing is different for different body weights. The right dose for an adult of 120 pounds is not the right dose for a child of 70 pounds. Overdosing some of these supplements could be dangerous.
There is also the problem of interactions. Children who have to take medications on a regular basis may have a dangerous interaction with supplements.
Qualified Professionals : Both a pediatrician and a qualified herbal practitioner should be consulted before giving any supplements to a child. The doctor can diagnose what is causing the weight issues. If there are no problems and supplement use is approved a qualified practitioner can help you understand what each product can do and which to avoid completely.