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WHITE PLAINS, NY — March 2, 2004 — announced today that 78% of consumers recently surveyed report being "extremely" or "very" satisfied with the supplement brands they used. Ratings varied by brand. The highest rating was for Nutrilite (96%), a direct sales brand. The lowest rating was for GNC (58%), a vitamin store brand. Perceived "effectiveness" was found to be the most important determinant of overall satisfaction with brands.

By market segment, the following brands received the highest consumer satisfaction ratings:
  • Brand in Health Food Stores: NOW and Solaray (tie)
  • Catalogue Brand: Puritan's Pride
  • Direct Sales Brand: Nutrilite
  • Mass Market Brand: Schiff
  • Pharmacy Brand: Walgreen's
  • Vitamin Store Brand: The Vitamin Shoppe and Vitamin World (tie)
  • Wholesale Club Brand: Kirkland (Costco)

The survey was based on 6,395 responses from members of's e-Newsletter and was conducted by Hartman Interactive, the online division of The Hartman Group, Inc., a market research and consulting firm specializing in the health and wellness marketplace.

"Often is the bearer of bad news about supplements — so it might surprise some to find that our readers are actually quite satisfied with the supplements they use," said Tod Cooperman, M.D., President of "However, knowing how to select better quality products and avoid problems may help explain the high satisfaction. Less informed consumers might not be as satisfied."

The survey also explored the use of supplements for specific health conditions. Conditions for which supplements were most often taken were "general health" (72% of respondents), "colds" (48%), "energy enhancement" (37%), "osteo-arthritis" (34%), "cholesterol-lowering" (31%), "cancer prevention" (25%), "allergy," (25%), and "weight management" (25%). Forty-three percent of respondents used supplements for six or more conditions.

To help select brands, sixty-seven percent of respondents indicated that they used information from The next most popular sources of information were product labels (38%), magazines (38%), books (35%), other Internet sources (32%), and manufacturer (31%).

Two major reports are available for purchase from the 2004 Survey of Vitamin and Supplement Users. One is the Brand Analysis Report which covers 31 leading brands, ranking them by popularity and by overall satisfaction with the brand, ingredient quality, effectiveness, product availability, and overall value; health conditions for which they are used, information sources used to pick brands; and customer comments about each brand. The second report, Supplement Use in Health Conditions, looks at 31 different medical conditions in terms of why consumers used supplements, use of other modalities (prescription medication, diet, exercise, and surgery), brands of supplements used, information used to pick brands, and a comparison of responses from health care providers vs. consumers. The reports can be purchased separately, together, or in sections focusing on single brands or health conditions. More information is available here. is a leading provider of consumer information and independent evaluations of products that affect health and nutrition. The company is privately held and based in White Plains, New York. It has no ownership from, or interest in, companies that manufacture, distribute, or sell consumer products. Subscription to is available online. For reports, group subscriptions, or product testing contact Lisa Sabin, Vice President for Business Development, at

Copyright, LLC, 2004. All rights reserved.

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