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August 21, 1987

Dietary Supplements

Author Affiliations

Berkeley, Calif
University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, Calif
University of California, Berkeley

JAMA. 1987;258(7):908-909. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03400070046019

To the Editor.—  The recent report entitled "Vitamin Preparations as Dietary Supplements and as Therapeutic Agents"1 is described as an update of the one published 28 years ago.2 This new version is an important document and undoubtedly will be widely read. We offer our comments with the hope that the report will be updated in the near future. Perhaps future versions could be published first in a preliminary form with an invitation for comments from concerned health professionals at large.In the area of vitamins as dietary supplements, the point is made several times that "healthy adult men and... women consuming a usual, varied diet do not need vitamin supplements." This statement, which appears—unqualified—in the report's abstract, is not sufficient dietary advice. A varied diet is adequate only when "care is exercised in food selection."3 The reason why we have registered dietitians, nutrition educators, school food-service programs,