Use of dietary supplements among Brazilian athletes

ABSTRACT Objective: To investigate the prevalence and establish the profile of the consumption of dietary supplements among Brazilian athletes. Methods: A total of 182 athletes of both genders from 20 different sports participated in this study. The athletes answered a questionnaire containing sociodemographic and sports-related questions and were interviewed about the consumption of dietary supplements. Results: Forty seven percent of athletes reported having consumed at least one type of dietary supplement and 38% said they use more than three different types of supplements concurrently. Whey protein was the most commonly consumed supplement, and the most frequently mentioned reason for its consumption was performance improvement. The main source of information was coaches, and individual sport athletes were the greatest consumers and the most likely to seek dietary supplement. Conclusion: Approximately half of the participants used dietary supplements, which on most occasions were recommended by coaches. The consumption profile also revealed multiple supplementation practice and showed that nutrition education is essential for this specific population.