Location: Healthy Body Weight ResearchTitle: Dietary supplements are an important nutrient source for older Americans- what does this mean for dietary guidance?
Submitted to: The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/25/2023
Publication Date: 7/3/2023
Citation: Hess, J.M. 2023. Dietary supplements are an important nutrient source for older Americans- what does this mean for dietary guidance?. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 118(1):3-4. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajcnut.2023.04.028.
Interpretive Summary: Food insecurity rates among older adults have been steadily increasing since the early 2000s. However, before the Qin et al. manuscript, no researchers had investigated nutrition differences between older adults who do and those who do not use food assistance benefits. While Qin et al. did not find differences in the dietary intakes of these groups, they did observe that dietary supplements constituted an important role in nutrient intake, especially with vitamin D. While nutrition research largely separates food and dietary pattern research from supplement research, this study illustrates the importance of considering foods, beverages, and supplements when evaluating dietary intake.
Technical Abstract: Often, nutrition science research does not consider supplement use alongside foods. Qin et al.'s research indicates that this view may be shortsighted in terms of public health relevance. Qin et al.’s incorporation of dietary supplements into their estimates of current intake and usual intake are a signal that future research on dietary patterns in the U.S. would benefit from considering supplement usage in addition to food intake to gain a clearer understanding of actual intake and shortfalls of the American diet.