Many Dietary Supplements Dangerous for Teens

While taking vitamins may be fine for teens and young adults, supplements for weight loss, muscle-building and added energy may trigger severe medical problems, new research suggests.

Regulations to keep these potentially harmful products out of the hands of young people are urgently needed, the study authors said.

“The [U.S. Food and Drug Administration] has issued countless warnings about supplements sold for weight loss, muscle-building or sport performance, sexual function and energy, and we know these products are widely marketed to and used by young people,” said lead author Flora Or. She is a researcher with Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Strategic Training Initiative for the Prevention of Eating Disorders, in Boston.

For the study, Or’s team looked at FDA reports of medical problems associated with these supplements among