As prescription medications and other healthcare costs soar, more Americans are looking to alternatives to and seeking ways to promote health rather than treat ailments.
The Council for Responsible Nutrition Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements recently revealed the highest overall dietary supplement usage to date. Underscoring the vital role supplementation plays in the lives of most Americans, the survey found that 77% of Americans report they consume dietary supplements. Despite the health benefits, most people pay out-of-pocket.
Congressman Buddy Carter (R-GA) and other lawmakers recently asked Internal Revenue Services (IRS) Commissioner Charles P. Rettig to allow selected categories of nutritional supplements to be considered “medical expenses” under Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs).
Additional members of Congress who signed the letter include: Rep. Glenn Grothman, (R-WI), Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA), Rep. Brian Mast (R-FL), Rep. Bill Posey (R-FL), Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE), Rep. Christopher Smith (R-NJ) and Rep Mark Walker (R-NC).
A defining moment
The senators said allowing nutritional and dietary supplements to be considered “medical expenses” would promote consumer choice, better health and modernize Publication 502, the document which defines medical and dental expenses consumers pay for.
The IRS hasn’t changed the definition of “medical care” since 1954. The senators cite the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act as well as DSHEA as a means of updating the definition of “medical care” to include dietary supplements.