In developing new products at Reliv, we research ingredients that have been identified clinically to be effective in promoting good health and combine these ingredients with other nutrients to help people meet their health goals. Supplementers Are in Good Company
●In 2009, about 65 percent of Americans classify themselves as supplement users.
●The prevalence of supplement use is relatively high among health professionals, including doctors, nurses, dietitians and pharmacists.
●Supplement use is strongly associated with increased knowledge about nutrition and health.
●A survey of 4,501 female physicians participating in the Women Physicians’ Health Study found half of them took a multivitamin-mineral supplement.
●72 percent of all physicians personally use dietary supplements.
●73 percent of cardiologists believe a regimen of healthy diet, vitamins and other supplements, and exercise is essential for a healthy heart.
●72 percent of cardiologists recommend dietary supplements to their patients and 57 percent take supplements themselves.
●In 2009, 84 percent of American adults indicated they are confident in the safety, quality and effectiveness of dietary supplements compared to 81 percent last year.
Medical Community Embraces Nutritional Supplements
More people than ever are turning to supplements as part of a healthier lifestyle. And more physicians are also paying attention thanks to clinical and observational studies showing the effectiveness of supplements.
In June, William Cooper, MD, spoke at the Congressional Dietary Supplement Caucus in Washington, DC, about the importance of using dietary supplements as part of a healthy lifestyle. As a heart surgeon, he encouraged a focus on preventative health. “There are simple things that all of us can do every day to better our health,” he said, “and that includes taking dietary supplements.”
Dr. Cooper said he personally takes supplements every day and recommends them to his patients for good heart health. He believes they can make a big difference in overall wellness, along with a healthy diet and exercise.
Stephen Pfeifer, MD, a family practice physician and a member of the Reliv Scientific Advisory Board, agrees with this preventative approach. “An investment in quality nutrition will have a far greater outcome on healthcare costs than using the money on disease treatment. And consumers and doctors alike now have a better understanding of how important nutrition is to overall health. In addition, the clinical studies that support the effectiveness of nutritional supplements are fueling awareness about their benefits.”
Understanding Studies on Supplements
Some clinical trials still try to study individual nutrients just as they do a conventional drug. As a result, a scientist may conclude that a single vitamin is not beneficial for a particular health issue. However, quality supplements such as Reliv products are designed to work synergistically, where multiple nutrients and compounds work together to be effective.
In addition, supplements usually focus on prevention, not disease treatment so it’s harder to measure. However, the Nurses’ Health Study that has been following 100,000 nurses since 1976 has produced many interesting results. For example, the study showed women who took vitamin E for at least two years have a 40 percent lower risk of heart disease.
Scientists are beginning to realize that the typical research approach needs to be adapted to better study dietary supplements.
Clinical Studies Back Reliv Products
Recent clinical studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of Reliv products:
GlucAffect®: An eight-week, placebo-controlled clinical study of overweight individuals with elevated blood glucose levels showed an average fasting blood glucose decrease of 30% and an average weight loss of nearly 16 pounds for those taking four daily servings of GlucAffect.
Reliv Now®/FibRestore®: A clinical study shows Reliv Now and FibRestore may help with lowering risk factors for cardiovascular disease. The products reduced average cholesterol; reduced average LDL; reduced average triglycerides; reduced average uric acid; and produced greater reduction in cholesterol and triglycerides among diabetic and/or overweight individuals.
Cardiosentials®: A 16-week randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study concluded that Cardiosentials significantly decreases bad cholesterol levels, increases good cholesterol levels and lowers blood-glucose levels to protect overall cardiovascular health.
All Eyes Are on Nutritional Supplements
As a result of our careful, well-studied approach, we have earned several patents and many of our products have been proven effective through clinical studies. It’s all part of our commitment to make cutting-edge, top-quality products that make optimum nutrition simple.
Recently, I was humbled to have been elected to the board of directors of the Council for Responsible Nutrition, which is the leading trade organization for the nutritional supplements industry. This honor is a further testament to Reliv’s high standing in the nutrition science industry.
It also gives Reliv a seat at the table alongside the nation’s leading companies. Together, we’re all working to maintain high standards for the nutritional supplements industry and raise its profile as more people — including doctors — recognize the many benefits of supplementing their diets with high-quality nutrition.
I will be proud to represent your interests with the CRN in the coming years.
To Your Health,
Dr. Carl W. Hastings, Reliv Vice Chairman and Chief Scientific Officer