Dietary supplement use more popular than ever: CRN study

By Danielle Masterson

- Last updated on GMT

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The widespread use of dietary supplements among adults of all ages is on the rise.

Dietary supplement use has reached an all time peak, according to new research from the Council for Responsible Nutrition​. The CRN Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements found the highest overall dietary supplement usage to date, with 77% of Americans reporting they consume dietary supplements.

The survey reports the majority of both males and females, aged 18+, take dietary supplements, which is in line with previous surveys’ findings. More women take dietary supplements than men, 79% versus 74%. Among all the age groups, adults between the ages 35 – 54 have the highest usage of dietary supplements at 81%. Adults with children under the age of 18 were the most likely group to consume supplements, at 83%. 

Dietary supplements becoming mainstream 

“While the industry continues to innovate, there is no denying that these regulated products have become mainstream. More than three quarters of Americans are taking dietary supplements each year—a crystal clear trend that serves as an indicator of the vital role supplementation plays in their overall health and wellness regimens,”​ said Nancy Weindruch, vice president, communications, Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN).  

In its 20th year conducting surveys, CRN pointed out that vitamins and minerals continue to be the most commonly consumed supplement category, with 76% of Americans having taken these products in the past twelve months. The second most popular category is specialty supplements at 40%, just ahead of herbals and botanicals 39%, sports nutrition supplements at 28%, and weight management supplements at 17%. 

Dietary supplements are now more popular than ever and the CRN analysis suggests Americans trust the safety of their supplements. The survey reaffirmed strong consumer confidence in dietary supplements and the dietary supplement industry as a whole. The study also identified growth in specific categories, such as herbals and botanicals, as well as in specific supplements, such as vitamin C and melatonin as well as key trends. CRN says those details will be available later this year. 

“The dietary supplement industry’s success in bringing to market safe, high-quality dietary supplement products that are an increasingly important part of Americans’ self-care regimens is reflected in our survey results,”​ said Weindruch. 

According to the current analysis of Reports and Data​, the global Dietary Supplements Market was valued at $124.8 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach over $210 billion by 2026, at a CAGR of 6.4%.

The research highlights the vital role supplementation plays in the lives of most Americans. In the words of former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb, dietary supplements have become “a routine part of the American lifestyle.​” 

Study Details 

The survey was conducted online and included a national sample of 2,006 adults aged 18 and older living in the United States, including 1,529 among those who are considered supplement users. The precision of Ipsos online polls are measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points for all respondents, and plus or minus 2.9 percentage points for supplement user

Who Takes Dietary Supplements? 77% of US adults

Supplements spoons © Getty Images supitchamcsdam
© Getty Images / supitchamcsdam

83% of adults with children under 18 in the household
75% of adults without children under 18 in the household
81% of adults employed full-time
77% of adults employed part-time
68% of adults without employment
76% of retired adults
81% of adults who are married
73% of adults who live in the Northeast
74% of adults who live in the Midwest
80% of adults who live in the South
78% of adults who live in the West

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