Question

What's the scoop on OPSS?

OPSS Answer

OPSS is the Department of Defense (DoD) educational campaign to inform leaders, providers, Warfighters, and their families about potential health risks and what steps to take before deciding to use dietary supplements. This campaign—Operation Supplement Safety, or “OPSS”—will focus on all service members and their families through various media.

If you’ve ever followed a weight-loss, performance-enhancement, or strength-training regimen—if you’ve ever needed a boost to get through a long day or a hard workout—or if you’ve ever skipped a meal—you’re probably familiar with the world of dietary supplements in all its guises: megavitamins, protein powders, energy drinks, gels, chews, and sports bars, to name a few.

The fact is: Dietary supplement use among military service members is high. Although many supplements—calcium, folate, omega-3s, vitamin D, and other essential vitamins and minerals—are beneficial, others such as those promoted for bodybuilding, weight loss, and performance enhancement may be risky and could contribute to serious adverse effects—even death. It’s impossible to list and describe all of the possible hazardous ingredients, but there are ways you can determine if a dietary supplement product is relatively safe or not.

Last reviewed 17 April 2014

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