HEALTH

Study finds physicians, nurses use dietary supplements, recommend them to patients

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON Physicians and nurses are as likely as members of the general public to use dietary supplements and most physicians and nurses recommend supplements to their patients, according to a new study published in Nutrition Journal.

The study, which utilized data from the Council for Responsible Nutrition’s “Life…supplemented” Healthcare Professionals Impact Study, found that 72% of physicians and 89 of nurses used dietary supplements and that 79% of physicians and 82% of nurses said that they recommend dietary supplements to their patients.

“Health professionals including physicians and nurses are just as interested in healthy lifestyles as members of the general public and are just as likely to benefit from rational supplementation,” said lead author Annette Dickinson, consultant and past president of CRN.

The study found that the dietary supplement product most commonly used was the multivitamin, with or without minerals. Vitamins and other minerals most commonly used by both physicians and nurses after multivitamins included vitamin C, a B vitamin complex, vitamin D, vitamin E and calcium. However, physicians and nurses seemed to differ slightly on the non-vitamin and mineral products they used most often — physicians reported higher usages of green tea, fish oil, glucosamine, soy, flax seed and chondroitin (in that order) while nurses tended to use green tea, fish oil, echinacea, glucosamine and flax seed, respectively.

Overall health and wellness is the biggest motivator for taking dietary supplements, according to 40% of physicians and 48% of nurses who take supplements. However, more than two-thirds cited multiple motivations, including bone health, flu or colds, heart health, immune health, joint health, energy and musculoskeletal pain. Most physicians and nurses cite similar reasons for recommending dietary supplements to their patients, with the most common reason being for overall health and wellness (41% of physicians who recommend supplements and 62% of nurses who do). Over three-quarters (75% of physicians and 79% of nurses) also indicated that they would be interested in Continuing Medical Education regarding dietary supplements.

“It may appear surprising that physicians and nurses are as likely as the general population to be using dietary supplements, given the negative views sometimes expressed editorially in medical journals,” Dickinson said. “Physicians and nurses, as well as lay consumers, are exposed to these divergent views and must make their own decisions regarding their personal approach to wellness. The majority opt to use dietary supplements.”

KelloggsDRSNhttp://www.centerstoregrowth.com

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HEALTH

Wyeth Consumer Healthcare launches new gender-, age-specific multivitamin line

BY Michael Johnsen

MADISON, N.J. Wyeth Consumer Healthcare on Tuesday announced the availability of a new gender- and age-specific adult multivitamin line. Centrum Ultra Women’s and Men’s and Centrum Silver Ultra Women’s and Men’s are specially formulated, taking into account recommendations established by the Institute of Medicine along with the latest nutritional science, the company stated.

“Millions of Americans have relied on Centrum, the world’s leading adult multivitamin brand, for more than 30 years,” stated Paul Sturman, president Wyeth Consumer Healthcare. “We listen closely to the needs of our consumers and combine these insights with the latest nutritional advances. Centrum Ultra provides a new, scientifically advanced option to meet consumers’ growing demand for gender-and age-based multivitamins.”

Many Americans still find it difficult to get the recommended amounts of vitamins and minerals they need from food alone despite the wide variety of nutritional choices available. The 2005 U.S. Department of Agriculture Healthy Eating Index found that the U.S. population did not take in enough fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fat-free or low-fat milk and suggests that Americans can improve their diet by choosing more nutrient rich foods.

Centrum Ultra Women’s is specially formulated with key nutrients to help meet a woman’s nutritional needs. It includes vitamin D, which emerging science suggests supports breast health, and calcium for bone health; 500 mg of calcium, more than any leading women’s multivitamin brand; biotin, beta-carotene and vitamins A, C and E to help maintain healthy skin, hair and nails; B vitamins to help unlock energy; and antioxidants including selenium and zinc to help support immune function.

In addition to many of the vitamins and minerals listed above, Centrum Ultra Men’s contains vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid to help support heart health.

Centrum Silver Ultra Women’s, formulated for women ages 50 and older, contains lutein and vitamins A, C and E to help support healthy eyesight.

KelloggsDRSNhttp://www.centerstoregrowth.com

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Report: Sales of energy shots set to double

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK Sales of energy shots are expected to nearly double this year, according to a New Your Times report published Saturday, to some $700 million citing Consumer Edge Research projections, which do not include projected sales from Walmart.

The market is dominated by Living Essentials, which fields the premiere energy shot — 5-Hour Energy. According to the Times report, Living Essential’s sales account for approximately 80% of the market.

However, the market for energy shots is heating up — Red Bull brought its venerable energy-drink brand name into the mix with the introduction of a 2-oz. shot last month, and Dr Pepper Snapple recently began test-marketing a 3 oz. version of its Venom energy drink, called Venom Bite. Coca-Cola last year introduced a shot based on its NOS energy drink.

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