Study finds a major uptick in calls to poison control centers over dietary supplements

PHOTO: Dietary supplements are pictured in this undated photo.PlayGetty Images
WATCH Rise in calls to poison control centers related to dietary supplements

A new study found calls to poison control centers in the U.S. due to exposures to dietary supplements rose by nearly 50 percent between 2005 and 2012, and that a majority of those calls involved children being exposed to supplements.

The report, published Friday in the Journal of Medical Toxicology, called for an increase in regulation by the Food and Drug Administration for certain supplements that were associated with high amounts of toxicity.

Researchers combed through all calls that were made to poison control centers in the U.S. related to dietary supplement exposure between 2000 to 2012, and also found that the majority of supplement exposure calls (70 percent) involved children 6 years old and under.

Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News' Chief Women's Health Correspondent shared some tips on "Good Morning America" today to help keep your children safe from accidental exposures to dietary supplements, advising parents to treat supplements like prescription medicines, and keep them far away from children.

She adds that you should never assume that just because something is "natural" that it is safe.

Ashton recommends keeping a poison control center phone number handy in your home, and if you do suspect your child has accidentally ingested supplements, to never induce vomiting without speaking to poison control authorities first.