Forget structure/function claims. The new messaging speaks of the ineffable yet potent.

Todd Runestad, Content Director,, Sr. Supplements Editor

October 12, 2021

5 Slides

Regulations exist for communicating the health benefits of dietary supplements, per the landmark 1994 Dietary Supplements Health and Education Act (DSHEA). The legislation makes it verboten to make any drug-disease claims—so a vitamin C supplement, for example, cannot claim to “cure the common cold.” Instead, it leaves room for structure/function claims—a nutritional bioactive can influence the health of a body organ structure or the function of a part of the body thereof. So, a vitamin C product can claim to “help support a healthy immune system.”

Marketers have long danced around the spirit and letter of the law in order to give a hint to consumers about what they might be able to expect of a supplement.

But there’s a new type of supplement that is a whole ’nother animal. Check out the names of the products. Are your customers in?

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About the Author(s)

Todd Runestad

Content Director,, Sr. Supplements Editor, Natural Products Insider

I've been writing on nutrition science news since 1997. I'm The content director for NaturalProductsInsidercom and digital magazines. Other incarnations: supplements editor for, Delicious Living and Natural Foods Merchandiser. Former editor-in-chief of Functional Ingredients magazine and still cover raw material innovations and ingredient science.

Connect with me here

My daily vitamin regime includes a morning smoothie with a range of powders including protein, collagen and spirulina; a quality multi, B complex, C with bioflavonoids, >2,000IU vitamin D, E, magnesium, high-selenium yeast, PQQ, choline, alpha-lipoic acid with carnitine, coQ10, fish oil concentrate, probiotics and some adaptogenic herbs. 

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