Washington, D.C.—A recent study commissioned by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) found that dietary supplement use for adults ages 18 and over is on the rise. Compared to 66% of adults in the U.S. in 2010, supplement usage is now at 69%.

The most popular categories for supplements included: vitamin or mineral supplements (67%), specialty supplements (35%) and herbal or botanical supplements (17%). Multivitamin use still remains by far the most popular with 71% of supplement users taking a multivitamin, and 49% of the adult population in its entirety. The survey also recorded the top three specialty supplements: omega-3 supplements with an increase from 21% in 2010 to 23% in 2011, glucosamine or chondroitin and fiber. The supplementation of vitamins D, C and B/B-complex all increased as well.

Females were more likely to take supplements than males and supplement use tends to increase as the population ages, says CRN. The most common reason cited for consuming supplements was for “overall health/wellness benefits” with the reason of to “fill nutritional gaps” coming in second. CRN also concluded that adults who do consume supplements are more health conscious. The survey found that regular supplement users are more likely to exercise regularly, eat a balanced diet, go to the doctor’s regularly, get enough sleep and maintain a healthier weight than adults who do not take supplements.

The 2011 CRN Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements was carried out by Ipsos Public Affairs from August 25-29. The survey included 2,015 adults ages 18 and older, was conducted online and is completed annually.

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, May 2012