US government creates databases for supplement info

By Lorraine Heller

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Dietary supplement ingredients, Nutrition

US government agencies have joined forces to create a database of dietary supplement ingredients and brands, designed to provide publically available information on the levels of different ingredients in supplement products.

The Dietary Supplement Ingredients Database (DSID) is said to provide better estimates of actual nutrient intake from supplements than databases that rely on label values alone.

Developed by the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Nutrient Data Laboratory (NDL) and the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the first release of the database – DSID-1 – includes estimates of 18 nutrients in adult multivitamins and minerals, established through chemical analysis of products in the market.

Nutrient levels

According to USDA, the DSIS will be “critical in assessing the total intake of nutrients and other components from foods and supplements for their impact on public health”.​ The information will ultimately be used to assist in evaluating data and health interrelationships.

Representatives from NIH and USDA will be introducing the database to industry at the SupplySide East trade show in Secaucus, New Jersey, in April. Results of a nationwide analytically-based adult multivitamin/mineral research study will also be presented, with a view of its research applications in the DSID-1.

In addition, the agencies will demonstrate the way this and other nutrient databases can be used, providing specific data on ingredients such as omega-3 fatty acids, individual carotenoids and vitamin K, together with specialty databases for flavonoids and isoflavones.

Supplement label database

In parallel, the National Library of Medicine’s Dietary Supplements Label Database has been established to provide information about ingredients in over 3,000 supplement brands.

Based on the Dietary Supplements On-Line Database (DSOL), it is designed to help researchers and consumers by consolidating information on products in order to allow for “informed decisions about supplements”.

The information is derived from a range of sources, including product-specific labels and information from manufacturers’ websites. Other resources include lists of FDA warnings and recalls. To access the database, click here​.

Related topics: Regulation

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