Which Dietary Supplements are Most Popular and Why?

If you walk into nearly any health food store or pharmacy, you will be assaulted with a bewildering array of supplement choices. The United States has the world’s largest supplement industry, and global sales are projected to reach as much as $155 billion by 2020.

Despite the wide variety of choices for sale, there are certain supplements that continually remain popular among consumers. Knowing what they are and why they are popular is key to breaking into this large, competitive market.

Fish oil

Every year, fish oil sits among the top five most popular supplements. Studies found that fish oil with large concentrations of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) is as beneficial to heart health as many prescription drugs. When combined with other heart-healthy options like CoQ10, fish oil is one of the most effective supplements on the market.

Vitamin D

Research linking adequate levels of Vitamin D with overall good health and lowered risks of many different health problems has spurred the continued popularity of this supplement — it’s another regular top five favorite. Human skin naturally produces vitamin D when exposed to sunlight, but skin cancer concerns push many people to try supplements rather than risk too much sun exposure.


Magnesium has made a swift rise in just a few years. The mineral is popular in part due to growing awareness of the important role it plays in sleep and improved insulin sensitivity, as well as its role in protecting against strokes, heart attacks, and hypertension.


Dietary supplement manufacturers have worked hard to produce reliable probiotics in recent years, and probiotics continue to sell consistently well on the supplement market. Probiotics are valued for their role in preserving gut health and aiding in digestion.


Melatonin is a hormone produced naturally by the body as a natural response to darkness. The hormone signals to the body that it is time for sleep, and this simple supplement helps people get the sleep they need without any dangerous addictive qualities or side effects.

Green tea

Green tea in all its forms is popular, and supplements are beginning to include it much more often. Green tea supplements are valued for their antioxidants, which Americans hope will help protect them from cancer, as well as for its role in aiding weight loss.


For years, multivitamins occupied a high spot in rankings, but these all-around useful pills have fallen slightly. While their overall popularity has dropped off a bit, they remain an important supplement. What people want from their multivitamin these days is specific tailoring to their needs: vitamins for energy, hair and skin health, or age support.

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is the product of apples that have been fermented with yeast. The vinegar itself has been used as a home remedy for every malady imaginable for centuries, but in recent years, its popularity has grown so quickly that it is now being dehydrated and sold in pill form, where it occupies a place in the top 15 most popular supplements. It is touted as a weight loss tool and a way to lower cholesterol and blood sugar.


All the B-complex vitamins, and B-12 in particular, regularly score highly among supplement sales. These vitamins are beneficial for pregnant women in particular, and B-12 has become particularly popular for its ability to give people a noticeable energy boost.

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