8 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying Supplements Online

Category: Drug Information, Ordering Questions


Posted on September 7, 2020

Vanessa is a health writer and blogging expert. Her specialities are medicine, health and wellness. She is proud to call Vancouver, BC her home where she enjoys the ocean and mountains with her dog Mr. ChowChow.

buying supplements online


Did you know that, according to the New York Attorney General, major conglomerates such as Walmart, Target, Walgreens, and even big-time nutritional store GNC are selling fake supplements? 

Aside from those major chains, there are thousands of online retailers where you can try buying supplements online. If you want to know eight things to avoid, keep reading, and you'll learn what they are. 

1. Watch Out for Fillers

Many supplements contain fillers. Fillers are like fluff in a blog or website content. When you read something written with fluff, it's pretty much empty. That's what fillers are like. They do nothing for you.

They don't contribute any nutritional value. The only reason fillers are put in there is to stretch out the mileage companies get on their vitamins and supplements. Take protein powders, for instance.

Many protein powders have so many fillers all you feel is bloated after downing a shake. Instead of taking in clean protein, you're taking in extra crap that your body doesn't need.

Labels for supplements with fillers will have ingredients that aren't original to whatever vitamin or supplement you're taking.

2. Too Good To Be True

You know how the saying goes. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you've ever watched a late-night infomercial about a "hot" new dietary fad, or supplement, you've undoubtedly seen the hyperbole.

They make their product out to be the end all be all of the fitness industry. These companies make bold claims that are usually not backed by any research. Heck, they even claim research studies support them without showing any proof. 

Most of the time, they're making these grand statements to charge two or three times as much for the product as they should be. Don't get sucked into this. 

3. Prices Too Low

On the other hand, some companies lowball their products. If they were any good, they couldn't possibly sell them for next to nothing.

That's because real high-quality products come from the best ingredients which aren't cheap to find or manufacture. These types of supplements barely have any nutritional value.

Not only are the ingredients not good for you, but the process they use to mix them together is also bad for you. 

4. Too Flashy

Is the T.V. commercial way too flashy? Are they trying to blind you with smoke and mirrors? You can dress up something any way you want, but when it's all said and done, if the product is terrible, it's terrible. 

The companies that engage in this practice overcompensate because they know their product is weak or inferior to high-quality supplements. 

5. Don't Always Trust the FDA

The FDA can't always be trusted. Plus, they don't actually approve dietary supplements, only new pharmaceuticals or drugs. The FDA doesn't review the safety and effectiveness of any products unless they're a new supplement.

If the supplement wasn't marketed in the US before October 15, 1994, then the FDA needs to approve it. They need to do so 75 days before the product hits the market. It should be noted that the FDA can monitor a product after it hits the shelves.

If for some reason, a health concern or an efficacy problem arises, the FDA can then start an investigation into the product and determine if it should remain on the market or not. 

6. Don't Forget These Ingredients to Watch Out For

There are many ingredients that you should keep an eye out for. You can even find these ingredients in some of the most popular supplement brands. Carefully reading product ingredients is extremely important. 


Aconite can cause heart problems, vomiting, shortness of breath, paralysis, and even death.


Chaparral might cause liver problems, kidney damage, and possible death, especially when mixed with other stimulants.


Not only does this ingredient sound bad, but it's also bad if taken with the wrong stimulants. It can cause heart palpitations and cardiac arrest.

Beard Moss

Beard Moss is also called Usnic Acid, Usnea, or Tree Moss. This ingredient can hurt your liver. 


When mixed with certain other ingredients, Germander can damage your liver, cause hepatitis, and even kill you.


Comfrey is something you should definitely stay away from. It might cause cancer, liver damage, and death. 


Coltsfoot is thought to be carcinogenic. It can also cause liver damage if consumed in higher amounts.  

Caffeine Powder

Caffeine can be good for you in the right amounts. But, if you overdo it or mix it with certain other stimulants, you can cause heart arrhythmia, seizures, cardiac arrest, and death.

7. Don't Forget to Check for Coupons

Often we leave free money on the table when we order things online. The same goes for supplements. Every time you go to your cart to checkout, you should always perform a quick search for coupons. 

You'll find that there's a coupon code for most things you order more times than not. It may take a few tries to find one that's active, but I assure you it's worth it.

Sometimes you can even get 40-50 percent off of a product, especially if it's your first time purchasing the supplement.

You'll typically find five, 10, or 20 percent off of any given supplement. So don't forget this tip before you hit the order or confirm button. 

8. Don't Forget About a Recurring Subscription

We've probably all fallen prey to this upsell tactic at one point or another. Some supplements come with an automatic recurring subscription, whether you want it or not.

Others will give you an extra five or 10 percent off if you sign up for a recurring shipment of their product.

Whether you have no choice or you willingly sign up for the recurring shipments or subscription, write down the date, you must cancel before you're charged for another month's supply.

Keep this near your computer or write it on your calendar as a reminder. 

Buying Supplements Online

When buying supplements online, there are some things you really need to watch out for. However, by doing so, you can make your experience a positive one. Contact us to see our online supplements or medications that best suit your needs.


*Works Cited

Web MD












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