Prevalence of Dietary Supplements Use among College Students in Iraq


Dietary supplements (DS) are products that are intended to be consumed orally and serve the purpose of supplementing one's diet. Although, these products are very popular, their usage among undergraduate students in Iraq is still obscure. Aim: To evaluate the pattern, type, and reasons for supplement usage among Iraqi undergraduate students and to detect the source of information about dietary supplements. Methods: A sample of 442 students at different colleges in Baghdad were surveyed through a questionnaire composed of 13 questions and divided into four sections: socio-demographic, dietary supplement (DS) knowledge, DS intake, and reasons behind their usage. Descriptive statistics were conducted to determine the frequency and percentages of respondents for each variable. Results: A total of 442 participants were included in the study; 160 (36.2%) were males and 282 (63.8%) were females. Out of the total number of the participants, 329 (74%) were dietary supplement users, 139 (42.25%) were males, and 190 (57.75%) were females. Most of the participants (72%) used vit. D3 supplement, and the mean reason for using DS was to overcome nutritional deficiency. Conclusion: Most of the participants are dietary supplement users, with a higher percentage of females. The main reasons for both genders' resorting to dietary supplement use are to improve their health and improve their immunity.