Dataset Information


Motivations for Botanical Use by Socioeconomically Diverse, Urban Adults: Does Evidence Support Motivation?



The study objectives were to characterize botanical dietary supplement (BDS) use and to compare the motivations for botanical supplement (BS) use to the efficacy of the botanical in a socioeconomically and racially diverse urban adult population.


Subjects were from the Healthy Aging in Neighborhoods of Diversity across the Life Span (HANDLS) study, a 20-year prospective health disparities study with African American and white adults from Baltimore, Maryland. All study participants completed two dietary recalls and a dietary supplement (DS) questionnaire in Wave 3 (n?=?2140). Diet quality was evaluated by the Healthy Eating Index-2010 and the Mean Adequacy Ratio for 17 micronutrients. A comparison of reported motivations to efficacy reported in the literature of single BS was conducted.


Approximately 50% (1062/2140) of participants took DS. Of these, 8% (n?=?178) reported taking either BS or BDS. It was found that BDS users had better diet quality than DS users as well as nonusers of DS. The top three motivations for BDS users were to improve overall health, to maintain health, and to supplement the diet. There is limited evidence for the efficacy of most BS. Review of the efficacy of the 15 BS reported by ?5% of the study population revealed beneficial health roles for only fiber, gingko biloba extract EGb 761, and hawthorn berry.


To the authors' knowledge, this study is the first to report a better quality diet with BDS use for a racially diverse urban population. Yet, improvement in diet is needed because overall quality did not achieve current recommendations. To improve overall health, it may be beneficial for this population to focus on dietary modifications to reduce the risks associated with chronic diseases. In general, the reported motivations for BS use were not supported by clinical evidence.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5655417 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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