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Health benefits of dietary supplements

Will dietary supplements benefit your health?
January 1999

Over half of all adult Americans view dietary supplements positively -- according to a recent survey -- and would continue to take them even if their doctor advised them to stop. Articles describing new and exciting research results appear regularly in the media. Nonetheless . . .

Determining which supplements are appropriate for specific health needs continues to be a challenging task.

The needs of individuals vary greatly, and experts don't agree about the benefits of supplements. Thus, people are making their own choices about what supplements to take -- both botanical and nutritional -- for purposes ranging from sports nutrition and longevity to dieting aids. Many people are taking several different supplements at the same time.

For all these reasons, there is a clear need for more and better information for consumers to act both safely and wisely.

To learn about the health benefits of specific dietary supplements, explore these links to sites that provide additional information.

Browse elsewhere on this SQ website to learn important information about safety, reading the label, questions you can ask the supplier, and standards and government regulations.


next page Standard terminology, an important first step in evaluating health benefits: Not all terms used to describe dietary supplements, particularly botanicals, are well-defined or consistently applied. A name used on one product label may not mean the same thing on another.




Read more about . . .

Standard terminology: the important first step in evaluating health benefits

What kinds of scientific evidence are useful for substantiating a health benefit claim?

Evaluating the research


Health benefits Safety Reading labels Ask the supplier Standards & regulations Contact us

(c) Copyright 1999-2003 Dietary Supplement Quality Initiative. For permission to reprint, please contact our editor.