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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BHNRC) » Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center » Methods and Application of Food Composition Laboratory » Research » Research Project #440359

Research Project: USDA Dietary Supplement Ingredients Program-2

Location: Methods and Application of Food Composition Laboratory

Project Number: 8040-10700-004-010-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Jun 1, 2021
End Date: Sep 30, 2025

Vitamin and mineral dietary supplements are highly processed products. The Dietary Supplement Ingredient Database (DSID) ( project evaluates the analytical content of dietary supplements (DS) providing vitamins, minerals and other bioactive constituents to the diet of U.S. citizens. The DSID provides nationally representative composition data for popular categories of DS, based on chemical analysis. The USDA identifies and purchases DS products for analysis and manages contracted, collaborative and in-house labs for analysis of nutrients and other bioactive ingredients. This project has expanded to include the analysis of the constituents in botanical DS and to evaluate the performance quality of capsule and tablet dosage forms, which affect the availability of the nutrients and other constituents to the body. The objectives of this project are to determine, evaluate, and expand knowledge about the composition of frequently consumed dietary supplements in the U.S. by collecting and compiling data and information on essential nutrients and emerging components of public health importance. This includes developing methods for sampling new dietary supplement product types, statistically evaluating analytical results to portray representative estimates, and improving the value of the Dietary Supplement Ingredient Database by utilizing new technologies to generate novel datasets.

Several types of studies are planned for the DS project. ARS will design and carry out research to analytically determine the ingredient composition of representative dietary supplements, identify samples for analysis and experienced laboratories for sample analysis, and then monitor the quality of the laboratory data. Results will be statistically evaluated and made publicly available through the DSID. On-going and planned DSID Studies: 1) Calcium and magnesium in non-prescription antacids: In this nationally representative study of non-prescription antacids (a major source of supplemental calcium intake in the U.S.), products will be assessed for their calcium and magnesium content. Products will also be tested for disintegration and dissolution using current USP specifications. 2) Folic acid, 5-methyl tetrahydrofolate and other folate forms in DS: new forms of folate are replacing folic acid in some categories of DS, especially prenatal DS. DS containing these new forms of folate will be identified, purchased and tested for their content. 3) Over-the-counter antacid products will be analyzed for their mineral content and will be tested for disintegration and dissolution, as appropriate. 4) Multiple forms and matrices of ginger dietary supplements, a popular botanical, will be analyzed for their gingerols, gingerdiols, gingerdiones and shogaols content. Analysis will include products with label claims and those without any claim for phytochemical concentration. The patterns seen will be compared to results for the other botanicals studied (green tea and turmeric DS).