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October 11, 2016

The Supplement ParadoxNegligible Benefits, Robust Consumption

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • 2Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2016;316(14):1453-1454. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.14252

Dietary supplements encompass a wide variety of products from vitamins, minerals, and botanicals to probiotics, protein powders, and fish oils.1 During the past 2 decades, a steady stream of high-quality studies evaluating dietary supplements has yielded predominantly disappointing results about potential health benefits, whereas evidence of harm has continued to accumulate. How consumers have responded to these scientific developments is not known. In this issue of JAMA,2 the report by Kantor and colleagues sheds light on this important question.

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