Can supplemental nutrition drinks give you a happiness boost?

"Be up for life,” say ads for Boost High Protein drink, which is made by Nestlé. “What I do count on is staying happy and healthy,” declares the vibrant older woman.

But an experimental Boost-like supplement drink didn’t boost mood or curb symptoms of depression in a study partly funded by Nestlé.

Researchers randomly assigned 149 older people with low vitamin D levels to consume a daily 30-calorie placebo drink or a 150-calorie drink with 20 grams of protein, 800 IU of vitamin D, and a mix of other vitamins and minerals. All the volunteers also participated in an exercise program two to three times a week.

After six months, both groups scored better on scales of depression and emotional well-being than they did when they entered the study, but the supplement drinkers didn’t improve more than the placebo drinkers.

What to do

Stay active...and ignore ads suggesting that you need Boost, Ensure, or similar drinks to stay happy and healthy.