The rise of dietary supplements: Necessary or Not?


Ragesoss via Wikipedia

Dietary supplements have become a staple in the lives of millions of Americans.

Carson Knebel, Student Life Editor

Dietary and herbal supplements have quickly become a staple in the diets of millions of Americans. According to the CDC, 57.6% of American adults take a dietary supplement daily. Along with this, 24.9% of U.S. citizens ages 60 and over said they take four or more dietary supplements daily. 

So what is the reason for so many Americans adding vitamins and supplements into their diets? 

Jeffrey Milstein, a physician at Penn Internal Med, said, “Whether in pill, powder or liquid form, the goal of dietary supplements is often the same: to supplement your diet to get enough nutrients and enhance health.”

Whether it is melatonin to promote sleep, Vitamin D to support bone health or fish oil to keep the heart healthy, millions of people across the nation are using dietary supplements to help them live a healthy lifestyle.

Sophomore Jackson Peer believes dietary supplements have helped his health tremendously. “Every night I take melatonin and it helps me sleep so much better. I also take vitamin D tablets because I don’t get enough in my diet. It makes it a lot easier being able to take a tablet every morning instead of completely changing my diet.” said Peer.

Dietary supplements are not only helpful for just general health, though. Junior Jackson Daly takes a variety of supplements to help him perform better in athletics. “I take creatine, turkesterone and ashwagandha,” said Daly. “Creatine helps draw water into my muscles to help produce energy during workouts. Ashwagandha relieves stress and in turn will increase testosterone levels. Turkesterone is a natural supplement that’s extracted from thistle plants that helps increase protein muscle synthesis.” 

“Since I started taking these supplements, I’ve seen huge jumps in my lifting numbers and have felt so much better in the gym,” he continued.

No matter the reason for taking dietary supplements, it is clear that they can assist people in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It is very important to make sure you are consuming the correct amount of a supplement when taking it. Not all dietary supplements are necessary, and you should talk to your doctor or a dietician about them before you start using them.