Category Archives: Diet and Nutrition

OPSS: Operation Supplement Safety

opssTaking supplements?  You may want to check out the Operation Supplement Safety site and learn more about those supplements.  OPSS is a joint initiative between the Human Performance Resource Center and the DoD to educate service members and retirees, their family members, leaders, healthcare providers, and DoD civilians about dietary supplements and how to choose supplements wisely.

On the OPSS page you can find out how your supplement rates, find out if your supplement is clean and also ask an expert if you have questions about a supplement.  There is also info sheets, videos and more for the warfighter and also the healthcare provider.



Diet supplements pulled from shelves

By Wallace McBride, Fort Jackson Leader

crazeFORT JACKSON, S.C. — Military installations have pulled the dietary supplement Craze from store shelves, prompted by a new study claiming the product contains a derivative of methamphetamine.

Craze is the second dietary supplement to be pulled from the shelves of military bases in October. Earlier this month, the Marine Corps pulled the dietary supplements OxyElite Pro from stores following concerns that it might have played a role in cases of acute hepatitis and liver failure in Hawaii.

“We received guidance on this a few weeks back,” said Don Sydlik, general manager of the Fort Jackson Exchange. “The Exchange and GNC have not carried any form of OxyELITE containing DMAA in its main stores since December, 2011.”

OxyElite Pro is sold in both powder and pill form and is marketed as a way to reduce body fat. OxyElite Pro was later reintroduced without the controversial DMAA ingredient since the 2011 ban.

“(OxyELITE) was removed from all military GNC locations on Army and Air Force installations as of Oct. 9,” said Scott Nahrwold, Fort Jackson deputy garrison commander.

“The reformulated OxyELITE was never carried in Exchange retail stores and was removed from all military GNC locations on Army and Air Force installations as of Oct. 9,” Sydlik said. “The Exchange has never carried Craze in its main stores, and its GNC concession locations removed Craze from its shelves on Oct. 17. I have personally checked our shelves and we are clean of both products.”

Some supplements can be dangerous and limit the combat effectiveness of Soldiers, predisposing them to heat or other injuries, said Col. Mark Higdon, Moncrief Army Community Hospital commander.

“All Soldiers should investigate dietary or other supplements before taking them,” Higdon said. “The recent news concerning banned substances being discovered in a commercially produced dietary supplement further highlights the fact that the Federal Drug Administration does not regulate or certify supplements.”

Health care providers should be consulted before using any supplements, he said.

DMAA illegal for military members

by Senior Airman Kristina Overton 51st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

dmaaOSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea — The road to staying fit to fight branches off in different directions for military members. For some, a regular workout schedule, or a change in diet may be sufficient to produce desired results. For others, shakes, supplements and vitamins may be included for building muscle or preparation for an increased workout schedule. When buying products, it’s important to know which are off limits.

Dimethylamylamine, also known as DMAA, geranium oil and several other names, is commonly used in products promising weight loss, performance enhancement and muscle building such as Oxy Elite Pro and Jack3D, and is banned by the Food and Drug Administration. Dietary supplements containing this ingredient was placed on medical hold by the Department of Defense due to concerns about related adverse health effects and are currently not for sale on military installations. With the FDA ban, consuming any product that contains DMAA is illegal.

“It’s important to know what’s in your supplements in general,” said Tech. Sgt. Vanessa Arthur, 51st Aerospace Medicine Squadron health promotion flight chief. “These ingredients were causing severe health issues to include elevated blood pressure, and could lead to cardiovascular problems, including heart attack, shortness of breath and tightening of the chest. Illnesses reported include heart problems and nervous system and psychiatric disorders.”

Supplements are often unregulated, meaning that the dosage of an ingredient may not be consistent with each different purchase. The Osan Health and Wellness Center encourages members to pay attention to labels when purchasing items and how often or how long supplements should be taken.

Each supplement may go by a number of different titles as well. In checking labels, it’s important to know the numerous synonyms associated with a product. A list of all the names can be found on

“In most cases you don’t even need a supplement,” Arthur said. “The only time a supplement should be used is when it comes to some kind of extreme workout program, or you have extreme goals like a triathlon or body building competition. For the average military member, in most cases a good multivitamin, a balanced diet and good eating habits will produce results. Regardless, always do your research. You need to also be aware of what effects it may have with any medication you’re taking or what side affects you may be facing.”

In the case of a member being unsure of the safety of a product, the HAWC can assist in researching supplements, and also educate members on how effective the supplement may be with any additional medications.

“The HAWC mentioned in our Monday morning medical brief that several supplements were off limits so I went down to check mine out and get clarification,” said Tech. Sgt. Damon Tatum, 51st Medical Support Squadron resource management office flight chief. “Having the excellent nutritional medicine staff here was really helpful in providing the information and helping to determine what is and isn’t safe. That knowledge is really beneficial and can save lives.”

The Human Performance Resource Center also has a website,, free from any government computer, where members can check the effectiveness of a supplement prior to their purchase. The natural product effectiveness checker tells consumers the level of effectiveness for natural products used for various medical conditions.

For more information about supplements or to learn about good eating habits, contact the HAWC at 784-3208.

Mission Nutrition: Keeping Sailors On Course

By Chief Mass Communication Specialist Monique K. Hilley, Commander, Navy Installations Command Public Affairs

CFL course, NASWI, FitnessWASHINGTON (NNS) — With fitness failure discharges up 40 percent and the Navy continuing to increase its focus on physical readiness, it is more important than ever for a Sailor to ensure they are maintaining their physical condition through a lifestyle of fitness and nutrition.

The times of Sailors being able to get by passing the physical readiness test (PRT) and getting a waiver for the body composition assessment (BCA) are long gone. Also long gone are the visuals of a gaggle of chubby Sailors out running along the waterfront in whatever clothes they threw on that morning, sweating heavily and breathing even more heavily, as they finish their mandatory mile and a half for the second time that year. Read more