Dispatches from Supply Side West 2013

Supplements are cost effective, survey finds

25-Nov-2013 - By Hank Schultz
Supplements are cost effective, survey finds
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Dietary supplement use isn’t just about health;  certain supplement regimens can be shown to deliver significant cost savings, said Steve Mister, president of the Council for Responsible Nutrition.


In a survey conducted by Frost & Sullivan and commissioned by the CRN Foundation, supplement use can add up to billions of dollars in potential health care cost savings by limiting the number of hospital visits and the use of other services for people in certain traeatment groups.

The survey looked at eight different regimens: Omega-3s, B vitamins, plant sterols and psyllium dietary fiber in heart health; lutein and zeaxanthin for eye health; chromium picolinate for coronary heart disease induced by diabetes and for bone health, the survey looked at calcium and vitamin D and magnesium separately. 

“They case a very broad net and look at all of the research that looked at these supplements and their ability to reduce the risk of these diseases.  They included not only the positive studies but also the negative and null studies because we really wanted to create a state of the evidence review.  That allowed them to generate a number such as calcium with vitamin D can reduce the risk of medical events from osteoporosis by 16.8%,” Mister told NutraImgredinets-USA.

Aftepr applying the survey’s economic model to the risk reduction assessments in each category, the cost savings identified in the report were nothing less than astounding, Mister said.

“We were able to look at insurance data and determine what a single fracture event related to osteoporosis costs, and it is over $14,000.  When you look at the number of people who could reduce their risk and the medical events we could avoid you could save over $1.5 billion a year with a calcium vitamin D supplement regimen,” he said.

Other cost savings ranged as high as $3.3 billion for plant sterols, the report found.

Related topics: Regulation, Research, Bone & joint health, Cardiovascular health, Eye health