Prevalence and characteristics of vitamin or dietary supplement users in Lausanne, Switzerland: the CoLaus study.Eur J Clin Nutr. 2009 Feb; 63(2):273-81.EJ
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES
Vitamin+mineral supplement (VMS) and dietary supplement (DS) use is widespread in the general population, but the motivations for such use are poorly known. The prevalence and characteristics of VMS and DS users in Lausanne, Switzerland, were thus assessed.
Cross-sectional study was performed including 3249 women and 2937 men (CoLaus study). VMS were defined as single or multivitamin-multimineral preparations. DS included omega-3 or omega-6 fatty acids, herbal teas, plant or animal extracts and bacterial (Lactobacillus) preparations. Calcium and iron supplements were assessed separately.
Twenty-six percent of the subjects reported using VMS or DS. VMS were the most frequently consumed item (16.8%), followed by DS (10%), calcium (6.6%) and iron (1.8%). Women reported a higher consumption than men. In women, VMS, DS and calcium use increased and iron use decreased with age, whereas in men only VMS and calcium intake increased with age. Multivariate analysis showed female gender, being born in Switzerland, increased age, higher education and increased physical activity to be positively related with VMS and DS. On bivariate analysis, VMS and DS users presented more frequently with arthritis, anxiety, depression and osteoporosis, but on multivariate analysis only positive relationships between DS use and anxiety/depression (odds ratio (OR)=1.40; 95% confidence interval (CI): [1.16-1.70]) and calcium and osteoporosis (OR=10.6; 95% CI [7.77-14.4]) were found.
VMS and DS use is common in the population of Lausanne and associated with a better health profile. Calcium supplements are taken to prevent osteoporosis, whereas the rationale for taking other VMS and DS is unclear.