HEALTH

Report: Dietary supplements utilized as preventive health care can save health system tens of billions of dollars

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — The Council for Responsible Nutrition on Thursday released a report finding that dietary supplementation can save the healthcare system tens of billions over the next decade. 

The report demonstrated that supplementation at preventive intake levels in high-risk populations can reduce the number of medical events associated with heart disease, age-related eye disease, diabetes and bone disease in the United States, representing the potential for significant cost savings.

“This report reiterates what the dietary supplement industry has advocated for over the last several decades,” John Shaw, executive director and CEO of the Natural Products Association said. “Nutritional supplements proactively contribute to the overall health and well-being of American consumers. But as we can see from this data, the benefits of supplementation are much more far-reaching, with the entire health care system seeing positive results from this common-sense approach to staying healthy.”

“Chronic diseases are one of the greatest contributors to health care costs in this country,” commented Steve Mister, CRN president. “If we can identify and motivate those at risk to effectively use dietary supplements, we can control rising societal health care costs, but also give sick individuals a chance to reduce the risk of costly events and, most importantly, to improve their quality of life.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 75% of total health care expenses are spent on caring for people with preventable diseases, with only 3% spent on prevention. Between 2013 and 2020, the number of people with preventable diseases is likely to increase, as projected by the report. For instance, the number of U.S. adults over the age of 55 with coronary heart disease is expected to rise 13%. However, if these same U.S. adults with CHD take phytosterol dietary supplements at preventive intake levels, the risk of having a CHD-related medical event can be reduced by 11.2%, saving the system $26.6 billion over the next seven years.

The report, “Smart Prevention—Health Care Cost Savings Resulting from the Targeted Use of Dietary Supplements,” was presented by Mister at the latest educational briefing held for Capitol Hill staff week by the Congressional Dietary Supplement Caucus. 

In addition to CRN and NPA, the American Herbal Products Association, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association and the United Natural Products Alliance are members of the CDSC.

The full Frost & Sullivan economic report is available for free at www.supplementforsmartprevention.org.

 

 

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Reports: Drug industry organizations sue Seattle-area county government over drug-disposal ordinance

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Four drug industry trade groups are suing the board of health in King County, Wash., over a local health ordinance that they say shifts the burden of sustainable disposal of unwanted drugs onto drug companies, according to published reports.

The Seattle Times reported that the groups sued the board of health of King County, where Seattle is, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, alleging that a requirement that they provide safe-disposal containers to pharmacies and police stations violates the commerce clause of the Constitution. According to reports, the groups include the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association and the Biotechnology Industry Organization.

The program is one of several set up around the country as part of an effort to keep unused and expired drugs out of landfills and sewage systems, where, research has shown, they can contaminate soil and drinking water.

The King County policy was modeled on a similar one in Alameda County, Calif., that a federal court upheld, according to The Seattle Times.

 

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J.KESSLER says:
Dec-09-2013 12:22 pm

Pharma cannot effectively comply nor absorb multitude regulations that are set up on a county-by-county basis. This is a very incorrect approach to tackling the ultimate end goal. The DEA has already established annual / bi-annual national take-back programs, which Pharma ultimately pays for through various federal and state fees. A more sane approach would be to involve community hospitals, non-acute care clinics, physician offices, and retail pharmacies as sites for take-back programs. The destruction services should be provided by the municipalities or counties and the expenses associated with this could be added to propertay tax or water bills, similar to how recyling is managed today. The end-user patient must take some responsibility in this matter, as we know that lack of patient prescription compliance is the biggest contributor to excess medication in home medicine cabinets. If these county-by-county regulations are allowed to become law, the patient will end up absorbing the costs associated with this one way or the other. Why not do it right and help to improve overall compliance, mitigate additional healthcare costs, and allow the actual health-care providers to become actively involved in the solution.

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ZeaVision expands distribution of its EyePromise supplement line

BY Michael Johnsen

CHESTERFIELD, Mo. — ZeaVision on Wednesday announced that its EyePromise natural supplements are now available for broader distribution through vitamin, health retail and e-tail channels.

EyePromise products contain the highest levels of natural zeaxanthin of any eye health supplement, according to ZeaVision. The newest formula, EyePromise vizual EDGE, is based on the success of EyePromise vizual EDGE PRO, popular among professional athletes because it enhances their ability to see objects better and, therefore, react faster.

"With more than 40 million doses consumed, thousands of consumers and professional athletes have already experienced the benefits, so this is the next natural step in our evolution,” stated Dennis Gierhart, ZeaVision founder. “We’ve developed a line of nutraceuticals with the optimal combination of natural ingredients to deliver on our mission to improve and preserve healthy vision.”

ZeaVison cited research that demonstrated that consuming the optimal amount of zeaxanthin (found naturally in the center of the eye) builds the density of macular pigment. Zeaxanthin is scarce in most diets and only supplementation can deliver enough to build the macula, ZeaVision suggested. A daily dosage of zeaxanthin enhances vision in a variety of ways related to color saturation, contrast, glare and light sensitivity that can improve eye function.

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