Less than three generations ago, the demographics of the U.S. population were vastly different. As well, the prevalence and urgency of health conditions were also very dissimilar to those faced today. With the advent of clinical, scientific, and popular interest in alleviating common acute and chronic conditions, American ingenuity has resulted in a greater understanding of human physiology, metabolism, and disease states. Today, the most prevalent health challenges in the U.S. are no longer infectious agents or trauma; instead, they are (direct or indirect) consequences of lifestyle and behavior.
Physical health was once taken for granted as manual labor, physical recreation, and practical food availability prevented the adverse effects of sedentary habits and excess energy intake. Sleep habits were supported by social incentives and the absence of late-night entertainment via television and the internet. Disease states that are now widespread were once uncommon, often present only in families with predispositions. Dyslipidemia, obesity, type 2 diabetes, depression, endocrine dysfunction, and sleep disorders are nearly on par with health in people over 40. Even children are seeing a rapid increase in obesity and other disorders.
Though controversial among academic circles, there is strong public and professional interest in staving off the decrements of mental and physical function associated with aging. In part, this is compounded by the very successes derived from surgical, medical, and pharmaceutical advances. The average life span of U.S. adults has been extended, but often with the expense of chronic pharmaceutical treatment and frequent medical intervention, resulting in considerable cost and burden to the health care system.
Promoting self-awareness of health maintenance and lifestyle-associated disease prevention is essential to providing for individual and public health needs. Government at all levels attempts to provide incentives, education, and opportunities for individuals to eat in a healthy manner, as well as incorporating physical activity into the daily routine. Unfortunately, the vast majority do not heed these messages. For those who do, there is a strong personal desire to optimize the response and adaptation to exercise, and support proper metabolic and physiologic responses to the efforts and barriers faced individually.
Thankfully, food shortages are not a current issue for most in the U.S. Instead, the hurdle is food selection, portion control, and micronutrient intake. The U.S. RDI has established recommended levels of intake for a variety of common macro- and micro-nutrients. However, there is strong evidence in for many specific food-based chemicals in promoting health or preventing disease. Further, for some micronutrients with established RDI, beneficial health effects may be seen when consumed in quantities several-fold above the RDI. There are also chemicals that have not been recognized as having an RDI that can be supplemented to provide physiologic benefits. An example that has long been available on the “nutritional supplement” market is creatine. Trivially considered to be a muscle-builder for athletes or “bodybuilders,” there is strong evidence that creatine affects a number of tissues positively, including some that are relevant to the growing health care crisis. For example, improving bone density, decreasing fraility, and improving neurologic health.
While there have been abuses by unscrupulous manufacturers, such as adulterating products with pharmaceutical compounds, the impact of “supplement” consumption has been benign to beneficial for the public.
The greatest concern, and the roles in which the vast resources of the government could be best put to use would be in: avoiding harm, rather than limiting access or choice; identifying compounds that may have adverse effects; screening for adulterated products; promoting scientific conferences; providing incentives for domestic research and production; and monitoring false claims.
Restricting nutritional products to RDI standards, or those of the Codex Alilmentarius, would sequester the ability for consumers to manage their personal health care. Providing the information necessary to make an informed decision, and allowing the public to responsibly decide upon the role nutritional supplements, along with other lifestyle decisions, can empower individuals concurrent with reducing public burden.
I hope this will be openly received, and inspire those in authority to reconsider how they may best apply their powers to best serve the public.
The FDA intends to drastically limit nutrients in Nutritional Supplements unless strong opposition is relayed to http://www.regulations.gov before June 2!
This current threat warrant’s great exposure to as many people who have an interest in maintaining available therapeutic levels of nutritional supplements for our free-choice to use!
Be aware and TAKE ACTION of the current fight the government is trying to impose on us by drastically decreasing levels of nutrients in supplements. The FDA is harmonizing our vitamin-and-mineral levels down to the same ridiculously low levels of Codex Alimentarius that the National Health Federation has fought at Codex for more than a decade.
Strong opposition must be relayed to http://www.regulations.gov before June 2!
Big Pharmaceutical companies are purportedly paying medical doctors to give input to comment for this ruling. Citizens desiring freedom to use therapeutic doses of supplements of their own choosing MUST act by overwhelming the FDA with comments of our opposition to this! The threat occurred back in 1994, which was won due to grassroots support resulting in The Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (“DSHEA”). This current battle must be won or access to therapeutic levels of nutritional supplements in the United States will be vastly more costly to you and I, or be made unavailable!
1. Strong opposition must be relayed to http://www.regulations.gov before June 2!
2. Relay this information to take action on all your social media, websites, blogs, newsletters, YouTube videos, tweets, etc., repeatedly before June 2nd, 2014!
About the Author
Daniel Gwartney, M.D. took the path less traveled and combined his passion for health, fitness, and bodybuilding with the knowledge and experience learned during his medical training. A former world-ranked natural bodybuilder, appearing on the covers of Muscle Media 2000 and Ironman Magazine, and a regular contributor to several of the top bodybuilding and fitness magazines, he provides unique insight into the application of fitness into medicine and medicine into fitness.