When you search on Amazon for “COVID supplements,” pages upon pages of search results come up. When you search the same thing on Google, you get a warning. A warning that you should be taking medical advice from actual doctors and scientists. What’s the difference?
On Amazon, people pay to become part of a selling network that reaches tens of millions of people. Amazon asks them nicely not to do anything unsafe or illegal. However, the only real safety mechanism in place is an agreement that they won’t. As a result Amazon sells 77% of the supplements sold online. An unnerving quantity of them are counterfeit, fake, or mislabeled.
Thus, when it comes to low quality supplements, most people are taking them to try to get better, not to get worse. However, the result is that more than five thousand people a year end up hospitalized because of injuries from these poor quality or mislabeled supplements.
A whopping 82% of bodybuilding supplements sold online are fake or mislabeled. 69% of CBD products sold online and even half of the multivitamins, single vitamins, and herbal supplements. What’s more, one in three people taking supplements and prescription medications are at a higher risk of adverse drug interactions.
Third-party sellers are the main issue behind the dangerous supplements being sold on Amazon. Not all of the sellers are intentionally selling unsafe items. For example, third party sellers sometimes buy lots from store closures and resell them. Not knowing whether items are expired or have been recalled or are otherwise unsafe.
It’s important to do all the research you can when buying supplements online. Learn more about supplement safety from the infographic below.