Nutritional Supplement Industry Goes Mainstream

by Christine Hronec

According to a recent article published in Forbes [1], the nutritional supplement industry has been named one of the fastest growing industries in the world. This product category more broadly known as Vitamins, Minerals, and Supplements or VMS generated approximately $32 billion in revenue in 2012 alone. According to the Nutritional Business Journal, This figure is projected to double to greater than $60 Billion in annual revenue by 2021.

The reason for this level of exponential growth is due to the fact that proper health and nutrition has gone main-stream. Over ten years ago nutritional supplements were once a staple of bodybuilders and weekend warriors. These days they are sought out by men and women of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds. Former NFL player and founder of Muscle Pharm, Brad Pyatt shared with Forbes, “People see the need to stay healthy with the uncertainty of Medicaid and Medicare and so they were seeking alternative ways to do it.”

For those that don’t currently consume a nutritious variety of foods, some supplements can ensure adequate amounts of essential nutrients. Scientific evidence shows that some dietary supplements are beneficial for overall health and for managing some health conditions. For example, calcium and vitamin D are important for keeping bones strong and reducing bone loss; folic acid decreases the risk of certain birth defects; and omega-3 fatty acids from fish oils might help some people with heart disease [2]. Dietary supplements are products intended to supplement the diet. They are not drugs and, therefore, are not intended to treat, diagnose, mitigate, prevent, or cure diseases. Keep in mind that dietary supplements should not be taken to treat a self-diagnosed health condition without consulting with a health care provider.

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