Dietary supplements are ubiquitous in the military. Approximately 75% of all U.S. service members self-report using at least one dietary supplement on a weekly basis. Service members report using dietary supplements for performance enhancement and for optimizing mission success. Unfortunately not all dietary supplements are health-promoting, and some may pose unintended risks of harm, threatening military readiness and, ultimately, one's career.
Recently, the Department of Defense has issued a formal instruction on the use of dietary supplements. The instruction mandates education for all service members and providers, ensures adverse event reporting by providers, establishes a list of prohibited ingredients and formally establishes Operation Supplement Safety as the Department Defense's "go-to" educational authority on dietary supplements. Operation Supplement Safety works closely with federal partners and community partners to identify gaps in resources, and develops evidence-based educational solutions. Learn how all RDNs/NDTRs can benefit from the research and progress in this important area.
CPE Level: Level 2 (intermediate knowledge/experience)
- 7.1.4 Measures, analyzes and reports data to monitor adverse events, errors and accidents.
- 8.3.6 Evaluates sport/dietary supplements (safety, legality, efficacy, quality, application to sport) and considers evidence-based reviews and testing by reputable third parties before recommending sports/dietary supplements.
- 9.3.5 Uses a variety of strategies to deliver education.
- Explain how dietary supplements pose a threat to military readiness.
- Identify effective of public/private partnerships to improve dietary supplement safety.
- Examine targeted solutions for closing educational gaps on dietary supplements.
- Andrea Lindsey
- Jonathan Scott