Objective: To describe supplement use practices among non-pregnant, non-lactating Mexican women (12-49 y) and estimate their impact on the proportion of women with intakes below the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) and above the Upper Limit (UL) using data from a national probabilistic nutrition survey in Mexico (1999).
Methods: Information was collected by questionnaire on the frequency and duration of supplement use in the previous 6 months (n = 17,794). Dietary intakes by 24-hour recall were determined in a representative sub-sample (n = 2,599). Frequency of use and available information on the nutrient content of supplements was used to estimate daily equivalent intakes.
Results: 17.6% of women reported to have used supplements. The majority of these took supplements once daily (71%) and for ≤2 months (75%). While nutrient intakes from diet alone did not differ between users and non-users, the proportion with intakes of Vitamins A, B6, B12, and C, folate, iron, and zinc UL was greater among supplement users than non-users for iron, folate and Vitamin B6.
Conclusion: Supplement use contributes to the adequacy of nutrient intakes but may also increase the possible risk of toxic intakes of some nutrients among Mexican women.
Mejía-Rodríguez, F.; Sotres-Alvarez, D.; Neufeld, L.M.; García-Guerra, A.; Hotz, C. Use of nutritional supplements among Mexican women and the estimated impact on dietary intakes below the EAR and above the UL . Journal of the American College of Nutrition (2007) 26 (1) 16-23.