Why are so many of us taking vitamins, minerals and supplements?
DO THEY REALLY WORK?
According to research, they are a waste of time and DO NOT WORK
“By and large, the marketing of supplements is done very cleverly but it is not backed up by evidence.
Most people buying supplements are giving themselves expensive urine.
They are wasting their time and getting false reassurance of protection from these supplements, when what they need is help to look at improving their lifestyles…”
Professor Naveed Sattar – Metabolic Medicine, University of Glasgow (1)
The Association of UK Dieticians say – Supplements can be expensive and a lot of them have no proven benefits at all. They may claim to delay ageing, boost your metabolism or make you slimmer but in fact there is little or no evidence to back up many of these claims. (2)
IS THIS NEWS TO US OR DO WE ALREADY KNOW?
What If1 we just stop here and consider what this is telling us all?
What is it about us that accepts things and avoids the questioning?
Do we like the thought of ‘doing our bit’ which is taking the vitamins but not really asking any more Questions?
Why on earth would we have clever marketing to hook us in?
Are we being Fooled or does it suit us on some level to be duped?
Joking aside, are we being told our urine gets the so called benefits?
Why do we need the false assurance of protection from supplements?
If the dieticians are telling us that we are spending a lot of money on something that has no proven benefits, would it be wise to at least take note and ponder on what is being said here?
Do we like the thought of the quick fix, want to get slim now picture in our mind that we all know is a waste of time and money?
Are we really crazy to even think pills are going to delay our ageing?
WHY do we want to avoid the Responsibility of improving our lifestyle by making sensible choices that actually support our body?
WHY are we acting like we don’t know, when in fact we do know the Truth?
Have we ever studied all the different kinds of vitamins and minerals and what they do for the body?
Could it be possible that our body has a precision and an Intelligence that we have not quite worked out yet?
In other words, our body knows what it needs and what it does not, but we are way off the mark in noticing that fact?
What if2 this simple equation below is telling us something?
TRASH THE BODY + TAKING VITAMINS = NO POINT
What if the sensible and wise choice would be live in a way where the body is not depleted and at the same time get the tests to find out where we need additional support, then take the vitamins and minerals?
In other words, look after the body first and foremost and then go for extra support by finding out the detail of exactly what we need.
For example, we may need some extra zinc as our diet is not giving us the amount our body requires and the blood tests confirm this. So we tune in and get the right amount and bingo we start to feel even more healthier because of the extra support.
So a quick look at what Vitamins are –
Vitamins are organic compounds that are needed in small quantities to sustain life.
Most vitamins need to come from food.
This is because the human body either does not produce enough of them or it does not produce any at all.
If we do not take enough of any kind of vitamin, certain medical conditions can result. (3)
To summarise, vitamins are necessary for our normal growth and function because we cannot make them within our bodies – so we obtain them from our foods. (4)
Minerals are inorganic substances required by the body in small amounts for a variety of different functions.
Minerals are involved in the formation of bones and teeth | normal nerve function | essential constituents of body fluids and tissues | components of enzyme systems
Some minerals are needed in larger amounts
Others required in smaller quantities are known as trace minerals
Despite being required in smaller amounts, trace minerals are important
Minerals are often absorbed more efficiently by the body if supplied in foods instead of supplements.
Eating a varied diet will help ensure an adequate supply of most minerals for healthy people. (5)
Dictionary Definition of Supplements
English Oxford Living Dictionaries
A thing added to something else in order to complete or enhance it
A substance taken to remedy the deficiencies in a person’s diet (6)
A medicine that contains substances that you need to stay healthy in addition to what you get in your food. (7)
Dietary supplements include vitamins | minerals | botanicals | enzymes | amino acids | other dietary ingredients
Products are taken by mouth in pill | capsule | tablet | liquid (8)
Dietary supplements also come in forms of energy bars and drinks
2016 – vitamin was the largest ingredient segment in the dietary supplement market owing to their ability to be readily excreted by kidneys.
Botanical extracts are expected to grow fast in coming years due to the rising prominence of herbs for the prevention of physical as well as mental disorders in the human body. (9)
$106.2 billion in 2017
size of vitamin mineral and supplement market worldwide
$57.2 billion in 2007 (10)
$50 billion – vitamin supplements market revenue in 2015
$278 billion – global dietary supplements market expected by 2024
Rising obesity rates in developed economies including the U.S. and Germany as a result of fluctuating dieting patterns and hectic work style among adults is expected to prompt the spending on nutritional supplements.
Past few years – high adoption rate of Fast Foods and sedentary lifestyle in emerging economies like China and India has led to the increase in prevalence of Cardiovascular Disorders | Diabetes | Obesity
As a result, the individuals among high socio-economic and upper-middle class income groups are expected to perceive the nutraceuticals including dietary supplements as the alternatives to prescribed drugs.
Rising application of sports-related supplements for old-aged groups coupled with targeting the supplements against muscle wastage and maintenance of healthy joints is expected to have a strong impact on vitamin ingredient category in the near future. (11)
The word nutraceutical is combined from the words – nutrition and pharmaceutical.
Nutraceutical product is a food or fortified food product that supplements the diet and assists in treating or preventing disease (apart from anaemia), so provides medical benefits.
Fish oils are an example of nutraceuticals
Nutraceuticals are not tested and regulated to the extent of pharmaceutical drugs (12)
$100 billion – multivitamin tablets revenue by 2025
$12.5 billion – pregnant women segment revenue in 2015
Rise in importance of folic acid based nutraceuticals for foetal development during the initial stage of pregnancy is projected to be a key market trend. (11)
2016 – largest market for dietary supplements
Leading market for vitamin supplement products
Consumer awareness of dietary supplements benefits | extensive product availability | disposable income | increase in awareness for proactive personal healthcare – all driving the market growth
$3,291 million – revenue in vitamins and minerals revenue in 2018
2016 – one of the leading markets for dietary supplement products
Rising ageing population | increasing lifestyle disease | growing healthcare costs are significant factors driving the growth of dietary supplements in this region (9)
£457 million – sales values expected in 2021
Ageing population | rise in lifestyle related diseases | engagement among men within Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements (VMS) category
The debate over the use of VMS as part of a healthy lifestyle continues
Critics argue that individuals should get all of the nutrients they need from a healthy balanced diet.
Emerging Trends in Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements
The Purchasing Decision
Consumers purchase VMS for reasons often driven by their age
Rise in health technology – younger consumers turning to VMS to self-treat symptoms or meet certain fitness requirements.
Older generations often using VMS to avoid sickness and development of chronic health conditions.
Majority of products targeted at men have a clear focus on sports nutrition
Increased Accessibility to VMS a Priority
More consumers want to buy VMS products whilst doing weekly food shopping
31% of sales for products sold in chemists
26% of sales in supermarkets 2nd largest
Increase number of online distributors offering online consultations
This is driving more consumer visits and purchasing
Fun and Innovative Formats
New product development has led to an increase in innovative delivery formats
Powders | chews | transdermal creams | sprays
Powder based VMS products which can be added to food and drink to improve nutritional content are often perceived by consumers as more ‘natural’ and as such are a key focus area for many brands.
2016 – own label brands account for over third of sales
They remain heavily focused on launching conventional pill methods which are regularly seen to be the most convenient format.
Food and VMS
The growing convergence between food and well-being sees business pioneering innovative products meeting the dual needs of today’s health conscious consumer. This has led to more businesses launching functional food ranges, which include organic oils, butters and seeds.
Products such as cereal toppers and additives are also growing in popularity (13)
HFMA Health of the Nation Survey
30 million adults now take food supplements
10,000 adults research study
67% take supplements for general health and well-being
54% said they do not get all vitamins and minerals needed in daily diet
46% take multivitamin supplements regularly
45% taking supplements take them 5 or more times per week
26% unaware whether they get right amount vitamins, minerals through diet
17% take them for a vitamin deficiency
£400 million UK consumers spend on food supplements each year
£500 million estimated sales of food supplements by 2022 (14)
$2.4 billion – online sales for vitamins, minerals and supplements (VMS) 2017 (15)
So here we have it Dear World – a snapshot of what we are choosing to spend our bucks on and we are not sure if it actually works
This is a BIG multi billion dollar industry and we are the ones who demand it and the suppliers keep producing, simply because we want it
We cannot Blame the clever marketing that keeps us hooked in, because we know we all have a choice about anything and everything
When are we going to admit that we like to jump on the bandwagon and not discern for ourselves if something is true or not
WHY does our mind override the common sense we have inside us that tells us SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT
Would it be wise to have a look at our Priority in life
What if we spent more time actually Focusing on what matters
What if we get Sick because of the way we are choosing to live
Is it time to ask some serious Questions about vitamins and supplements
Can we cut the Hot Talk we get from the ads and read articles like this
Would it help us as a world to get to the Truth of this huge industry
What would happen to our body if we simply just Plug in and Connect
If we just Get on with life, could we work out ourselves what our body needs
What if there is something in these words – We Are What We Eat
What if our Stress levels stop us absorbing the vitamins and minerals
What if our lack of Sleep really affects how much nutrients we can absorb
Could it be that Simple?
(1) Matthews-King A. (2018, November 10). Omega 3 and Vitamin D Fail to Protect Against Heart Attacks or Cancer in Major Trial Which Show Supplements a ‘Waste of Time’. Independent. Retrieved November 22, 2018 from
(2) (2016, March). Supplements. The Association of UK Dietitians (BDA). Retrieved November 22, 2018 from
(3) Nordqvist, C. (2017, September 26). Vitamins: What They Are and What Do They Do? Medical News Today. Retrieved November 22, 2018 from
(4) (n.d). English Oxford Living Dictionaries. Retrieved November 22, 2018 from
(5) (n.d). Minerals and Trace Elements. British Nutrition Foundation. Retrieved November 22, 2018 from
(6) (n.d). English Oxford Living Dictionaries. Retrieved November 23, 2018 from
(7) (n.d). Cambridge Dictionary. Retrieved November 23, 2018 from
(8) (n.d). FAQs About Dietary Supplements. WebMD. Retrieved November 27, 2018 from
(9) (2018, April 12). Global Dietary Supplements Market Size Will Grow USD 220.3 Billion by 2022. Zion Market Research. Retrieved November 24, 2018 from
(10) Size of the Vitamin, Mineral and Supplement Market Worldwide from 2007 to 2017 (in Billion U.S. Dollars). Statista. Retrieved November 27, 2018 from
(11) (2018, February). Dietary Supplements Market Size Worth $278.02 Billion by 2024. Grand View Research. Retrieved November 23, 2018 from
(12) Nutraceutical Products. Drugs.com. Retrieved November 27, 2018 from
(13) (2017, February 3). Five Emerging Trend in Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements. Grant Thornton. Retrieved November 24, 2018 from
(14) (n.d). Industry Facts. HFMA. Retrieved November 24, 2018 from
(15) (2017, July 24). Online Sales of Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements Surge 20% in $13.5 Billion U.S. Market. Nutraceuticals World. Retrieved November 25, 2018 from