Dietary Supplements

S S Percival, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL,

© 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

In 2004, global sales of dietary supplements represented a significant business. Worldwide sales have been estimated at $70-250 billion. The demand for herbal products worldwide increased at an annual rate of 8% from 1994 to 2001, although this growth has slowed in recent years.

Issues and controversies in the dietary supplement market are related to defining exactly what is a dietary supplement, understanding how sales and

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marketing data are derived, defining the regulatory environment, safety issues, product quality issues, labeling and health claim issues, and scientific evidence for benefit. This article describes some of these controversies and provides examples to illustrate these issues.

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