A dietary supplement, also known as food supplement or nutritional supplement, is a preparation intended to supplement the diet and provide nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, fiber, fatty acids, or amino acids, that may be missing or may not be consumed in sufficient quantities in a person's diet.
Some countries define dietary supplements as foods, while in others they are defined as drugs or natural health products.
What are they legally
the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994  (DSHEA) as a product that is intended to supplement the diet and contains any of the following dietary ingredients:a vitamin, a mineral, a herb or other botanical (excluding tobacco), an amino acid, a concentrate, metabolite, constituent, extract, or combination of any of the above.
And must also conform to the following criteria:intended for ingestion in pill, capsule, tablet, powder or liquid form, not represented for use as a conventional food or as the sole item of a meal or diet, labeled as a "dietary supplement"
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Regulation part 1
While pharmaceutical manufacturers must demonstrate their products are effective as well as being safe, supplement manufacturers are not required to demonstrate efficacy.
If a dietary supplement claims to cure, mitigate, or treat a disease, it would be considered an unauthorized new drug and in violation of the applicable regulations and statutes.
The DSHEA was heavily lobbied for by the supplement industry, and was criticized for exposing the public to worthless compounds that bilked consumers out of money to no benefit.
A 2001 study, published in Archives of Internal Medicine, found broad public support for greater governmental regulation of dietary supplements than was currently permitted by DSHEA.
On September 24, 2007 the FDA has implemented a "current good manufacturing practices" policy to ensure dietary supplements "are produced in a quality manner, do not contain contaminants or impurities, and are accurately labeled" and covers the manufacturing, packaging, labelling and storing of supplements, with requirements for quality control, design and construction of manufacturing plants, testing of ingredients and final products, record keeping and complaints processes. 
United States Pharmacopeia manages the Dietary Supplement Verification Program (DSVP).
Its USP Verified Mark seal indicates that the product has been tested for integrity, purity, dissolution, and safe manufacturing,  and it is the only certification program which conducts random off-the-shelf testing. 
On Dec. 15, 2010, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took new steps aimed at keeping consumers safe from harmful products that are marketed as dietary supplements and that contain undeclared or deceptively labeled ingredients.
FDA has found that these products are often promoted for weight loss, sexual enhancement, and bodybuilding.
The new steps FDA has taken include:
A letter from Commissioner of Food and Drugs Margaret A. Hamburg to the dietary supplement industry emphasizing its legal obligation and responsibilities to prevent tainted products from reaching the U.S. market.
A new rapid public notification system7 (RSS Feed) on its website to more quickly warn consumers about these products.
A mechanism for industry to alert FDA about potentially tainted products and about the firms that make them.
An antioxidant is a molecule capable of inhibiting the oxidation of other molecules.
Oxidation is a chemical reaction that transfers electrons from a substance to an oxidizing agent.
Oxidation reactions can produce free radicals.
In turn, these radicals can start chain reactions that damage cells.
Antioxidants terminate these chain reactions by removing free radical intermediates, and inhibit other oxidation reactions.
Low levels of antioxidants, or inhibition of the antioxidant enzymes, cause oxidative stress and may damage or kill cells.
As oxidative stress might be an important part of many human diseases, the use of antioxidants in pharmacology is intensively studied, particularly as treatments for stroke and neurodegenerative diseases.
Antioxidants are classified into two broad divisions, depending on whether they are soluble in water (hydrophilic) or in lipids (hydrophobic).
In general, water-soluble antioxidants react with oxidants in the cell cytosol and the blood plasma, while lipid-soluble antioxidants protect cell membranes from lipid peroxidation.
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People who eat fruits and vegetables have a lower risk of heart disease and some neurological diseases, and there is evidence that some types of vegetables, and fruits in general, protect against some cancers.
Since fruits and vegetables happen to be good sources of antioxidants, this suggested that antioxidants might prevent some types of diseases.Melatonin is a powerful antioxidant and, unlike conventional antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and glutathione, it is both produced in the human body and is acquired in the diet (fruits, vegetables, cereals and herbs etc.
Melatonin easily crosses cell membranes and the blood-brain barrierAs an active contributor to all aspects of cellular function, coq10 has become universally regarded as one of the most vital nutrients ever made available to the public.
Alpha Lipoic Acid is central to recycling other antioxidants like Vitamin E, Vitamin C, and GSH glutathione.
Resveratrol Synergistic Formula, Resveratrol Supplement, Nature's Way 37.5mg - 60 Capsules
SmartRelease Garlicin odor free garlic supplement is the most effective garlic supplement on the market today.
Lycopene Super Antioxidant, Lycopene Supplement, Nature's Way, 5 mg - 60 Softgels
Many vitamins have antioxidant properties or involvement.
Vitamin C ââ‚¬" a water-soluble nutrient that plays a vital role in a variety of biological functions.
Vitamin A - a fat-soluble nutrient that occurs in two different forms in nature.
Vitamin B12 ââ‚¬" helps preserve a healthy nervous system, increase energy and lower the risk of heart disease.
Folic Acid - a critical vitamin in preventing birth defects and heart diseases.
Vitamin E- Facts About Vitamin E. What are the health benefits of vitamin E?
Vitamin K - an essential nutrient for synthesizing the liver protein that controls blood clotting.
Vitamin B6 - Read how Vitamin B6 benefits your body
Vitamin D - The benefits of vitamin D have long been known, but science is only now coming to recognize all of the roles it plays in your health.
Calcium - This is the most abundant mineral in the body and is a crucial element for maintaining bone health.
Magnesium - This mineral is an essential co-factor in hundreds of the body's enzyme systems.
Chromium - Discover The Benefits Of Chromium. Could chromium be the answer that all dieters have been waiting for?
Selenium - Selenium is a trace element essential for a healthy immune system.
Zinc - an essential nutrient that is involved in a wide range of metabolic activities. Discover the benefits of zinc supplements.
Indium - helps reduce the signs of aging and provide greater immunity.
Iodine - Iodine is a trace mineral that is vital to maintaining a normal metabolism.
Potassium - The benefits of potassium include chemical processes that keep your bodily systems working well together.
Benefits of Manganese - How much do you know about the benefits of manganese? How much do you know about manganese? Read this .
Paba Side Effects - Many people who are taking PABA-based products go on using them without regard to PABA side effects. Learn more about the potential side effects of PABA and know what to look out for.
All amino acids are essential for proper protein synthesis.
Vegetarians should note however, that soybeans are one of the few vegetable sources that will supply complete protein which will give a little more flexibility when combining foods. Effects of Tryptophan - L-tryptophan can have many positive effects on your body. Find out if you could benefit from them.
Sources of Tryptophan - If you suffer from constant tiredness and low moods your body may be lacking in tryptophan. Find out just what the best sources of tryptophan are and how you can supplement them in your diet.
Lysine Benefits - If you suffer from cold sores or the herpes virus find out how lysine benefits your body and helps to fight these attacks.
Benefits of L Arginine - From enhancing your immune system to beating male infertility problems, find out how the benefits of L arginine can help you.
Amino Acid List - Want to learn more about amino acids and how important they are in your body? This article contains important information on amino acids and contains a list by categories.
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