A new study published in early October revealed unapproved and sometimes dangerous drugs in 746 dietary supplements, almost all of them marketed for weight loss, muscle growth or sexual enhancement.1
About 80 percent of supplements were contaminated by one pharmaceutical that should not have been in the product. Twenty percent contained at least two such drugs, and two of the supplements contained six unapproved drugs. Despite these contaminants, fewer than half the products were recalled.2 In the United States, more than 50% of adults consume dietary supplements, fueling a $35 billion industry.3,4 As the dietary supplement industry continues to grow in the United States, it is essential to further address this significant public health issue.
What Does This Mean for You?
The presence of pharmaceutically active ingredients in dietary supplements makes them unapproved drugs and represents an important public health concern. The study found indications that a large percentage of products continue to be sold and are potentially dangerous even after FDA warnings. This is alarming, especially considering that the FDA is only able to test a portion of products available on the market. Taking a combination of herbal supplements or using supplements together with prescribed medications could lead to harmful, even life-threatening results.
Supplement Safety Tips
If you’re currently taking prescription medications and thinking about starting an herbal supplement, always talk to your doctor or pharmacist first about possible drug interactions.
Stick to brands that have been tested by independent sources
Check ConsumerLab.com or U.S. Pharmacopeia Convention (USP)
Do you have any questions regarding your supplements or medications?
Tria Health provides one-on-one confidential counseling with a pharmacist for any of your medication related questions. If Tria Health is currently a part of your healthcare plan, call the Tria Health Help desk today for any of your questions.
Disposing of medications safely can help protect your family from getting or using medications that are expired or out of date; prevent the illegal use of unused medications and minimize any potential negative impact on the environment. For this reason, the DEA is giving the public an opportunity to dispose of unwanted and/or expired prescription drugs. This is a FREE and anonymous service—take medications back, no questions asked!
Where do I go?
Visit the DEA’s website to find a collection site:
Unfortunately, throwing out your medications as home can lead to many harmful impacts on the environment or create safety risks for trash handlers. In addition, 53% of pain relievers for misuse are given by, bought from or took from a friend or relative.1 It’s important to safely dispose of your medications to help minimize the impact of the recent opioid epidemic.
How can Tria Health Help?
As a member of Tria Health, if you have multiple medications and are afraid you’ll throw away the wrong medication, we can provide additional assistance in selecting the proper medications. Tria provides one-on-one consultations with a clinical pharmacist who assists you with your medication management.
Tria Health’s Pharmacy Advocate Program offers one-on-one confidential counseling with a Tria Pharmacist to discuss how effective your medications are in treating your conditions. Your pharmacist will work with you and your physicians to reduce the risk of medication-related problems.
Shawnee County’s participation in Tria Health’s pharmacy advocacy program, which comes at an annual cost of $32,286, is on pace to save the county $254,415 this year, county commissioners learned this past week. Tria Health reviewed the prescriptions taken by those employees and found 84 “drug therapy problems” such as a patient’s receiving unnecessary drug therapy, a patient’s needing additional therapy or dosages being too high or too low. 1
While medications can help treat and manage migraines, there are plenty of other healthy habits that can sometimes help prevent migraines. Lifestyle choices that promote good health can also reduce the frequency and severity of your migraines.1 Here are a few ways you can change up your routine to help prevent migraines:
Create Good Sleep Habits
Oftentimes, migraines can be triggered back lack of sleep. It’s important to not only build a good routine, but have proper sleep hygiene including:
Minimize Distractions: Stay off your phone and don’t watch TV in bed. It’s important to save your bedroom solely for sleep.
Reduce Stimulants: Avoid caffeine and other stimulants that can interfere with sleep a few hours before bed.
Exercise & Eat Healthy
During physical activity, your body releases certain chemicals that block pain signals to your brain. These chemicals also help alleviate anxiety and depression, which can make migraines worse.1 Your diet can also impact your migraines, it’s important to keep track of what you eat and try to identify and potential triggers.
Keep a Migraine Diary
Triggers can vary for any person who suffers from migraines. It’s important to keep track when your migraines start and what you were doing before, to help identify any possible triggers. According to the mayo clinic, until recently, avoiding migraine triggers was considered the best advice. But new research suggests this may actually increase sensitivity to potential triggers. A more useful approach may be to learn to cope with these headache triggers by using behavioral management techniques, such as identifying and challenging negative thoughts, relaxation training and stress reduction.
Have any Questions for us?
Contact the Tria Health Help Desk at 1.888.799.8742
Happy National Pharmacists Month! The goal of this month is to recognize pharmacists for the significant role they play in effective medication management, patient education and overall medication safety. Learn more about how pharmacists can help you every day.
Safe and Effective Medication Use
Pharmacists help ensure that medications control conditions the right way. They help minimize any side effects and safeguard against any possible interactions with other medications that lead to more expensive health care costs such as emergency room visits, hospitalization, etc.
Did you know that more than 300,000 immunization-trained pharmacists administer vaccines, and nearly one in four adults receive their influenza vaccinations at their community pharmacy?1 Pharmacists can provide guidance on all vaccine-preventable diseases and which immunizations are best for you.
OTCs and Supplements
Pharmacists are experts in prescription medications, supplements and over the counter medications. They can tell you about potential interactions with foods, other drugs, or dietary supplements. And they can help you pick the perfect product. With over 100,000 over-the-counter products on the market, your pharmacist is always there to lend a helping hand!1
Did you know that pharmacists are experts and more than just medications? They are trained and educated in how to manage conditions as a whole. Tria Health has pharmacists who are certified diabetic educators on staff. This allows them to treat the person rather than the medication. They focus on non-pharmacy and pharmacy strategies to accomplish control of a disease.
Tria Health’s Pharmacists
Tria Health was founded on the belief that pharmacists play a vital role in the management of high-risk patients that drive the majority of health care spend. If Tria Health is currently a part of your healthcare plan, call the Tria Health Help desk today for any of your medication-related questions.