WASHINGTON, D.C., July 16, 2012—Inconsistent advice from different government agencies based on virtually the same set of scientific studies does consumers a disservice, said the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), the dietary supplement industry’s leading trade association, in response to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) Draft Recommendations on calcium and vitamin D.¹
According to CRN’s Taylor Wallace, Ph.D., senior director, scientific and regulatory affairs, “Consistent messaging about preventive health strategies and practices, including nutrition, is essential for the success of large educational outreach programs.” The USPSTF’s draft recommendations undermine the traditional cornerstones of nutrition information in the U.S. [the Institute of Medicine’s Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium and Vitamin D and the government’s 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans]. Dr. Wallace stated, as a result of this draft report and the accompanying media coverage, “…consumers and healthcare providers were left to ponder whether to abandon supplementation with vitamin D and calcium entirely, causing a potential public health threat.”
CRN’s nine-page commentary submitted on July 10 additionally provided specific substantive reaction to the four draft recommendations, concluding with a reminder that vitamin D and calcium are essential nutrients for bone health. CRN also reiterated its view that the totality of evidence should play a contributing role in developing public policy recommendations for consumers, particularly when the intake data demonstrates that almost all Americans fail to meet their daily requirements for vitamin D.
“CRN believes the USPSTF should revise its draft recommendation statement to be consistent with the 2010 IOM Food and Nutritional Board report Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium and Vitamin D and the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans for the purpose of accurately reflecting current science and minimizing confusion among consumers.”
CRN expects the task force will review all the comments received and issue a final recommendation statement.