Bodybuilding supplements are quite popular these days, and the internet makes them widely available to purchase throughout the world.
However, with this easy access to goods people are often left wondering if it is safe to buy bodybuilding supplements online?
The answer for the most part is yes, but there are precautions to take that make you have to think before you buy a supplement. Let’s take a look at supplements, and if you should be taking the risk purchasing from online retailers.
The Big Issue with Supplements
Supplements are meant to support your already stable diet and training programs. They are not intended to take place of anything unless a doctor has told you to do so.
The issue with supplements is that they are not really controlled like they should be, so you could be consuming something that is harmless without knowing since the ingredient is considered safe, but the amount they provide is not.
Then you have to think about the ingredients allowed in supplements since there is no research saying they are harmful yet.
This is where you have to do your own research prior to consuming anything that is labeled as a dietary supplement. The uses could be for health, muscle gains, strength increases, fat loss, and most popularly the energy boost.
An example would be an energy supplement with 600mg of caffeine. That is like drinking 6-7 cups of coffee at once. Obviously this is too much caffeine, but you would not know unless you were aware that 300-400mg is the max amount a person should be consuming per day. Research is imperative when purchasing supplements online.
Safely Choosing a Supplement to Purchase Online
The primary area to start is looking at the company selling the supplements. Think about these questions when you search their “about us” or landing page:
- How many reviewers like this company?
- What else does this company sell?
- Do they provide images for all supplement labels?
- Are their prices too cheap to be real?
- How many products are they selling?
These are all good questions that need answers. Be cautious with on-page reviews because they are most likely paid for and falsely advertising the supplement. You have to find reviews for the company and supplement on third party sites that have no affiliation.
Another good area to research is product availability and production. A brand that creates bread and the all of a sudden sells protein powder seems a bit odd and should throw up caution signs in your mind.
We all love to save money when it comes to supplements online because they are not the cheapest thing to come by.
However, if it seems too cheap then something may be wrong with the product such as very low quality ingredients or they are expired.
Lastly, you want to see images of their actual product labels, the ingredient portion being the most important. A lot of wannabe supplement retailers only show the fancy front label of the product, but the ingredient listing is nowhere to be found. The servings should be looked at to see how much is required as well.
Are they Legal to Purchase in Your Country and Province?
Another thing to think about is if they are legal to purchase and have where you are from. For example, in the United States certain supplements and/or ingredients are banned in one state, but not any of the others.
Purchasing a supplement online that is illegal may end in unexpected consequences.
Supplements such as multivitamins, BCAAs, creatine, etc. are pretty safe products to purchase since they are technically natural. However, something labeled as a steroid or prohormone is a different story.
Usually you can go on any search engine and find the information you need. Normally most supplements are going to be allowed that you would want to take, but if they are illegal then there is probably a reason why.
It’s Pretty Safe to Buy Supplements Online
The internet has become one of the biggest areas for supplement stores to sell their products.
They are safe to purchase after you have performed the proper research as discussed above.
Ensure that the third party websites providing reviews have no connection with the brands to ensure realistic reviews have been placed. Many of companies pay people to review their products and give a high rating, which is illegal in most countries.
One final idea to consider is not purchasing from an online supplement retailer that does not have a secured server to make the transaction. This means a hacker has an easier way into your account information to perform frauds with.
When you go online to make the purchase think about the season you are in since supplements can become ruined when exposed to high temperatures for too long. Stay safe and make well researched decisions!