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Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine

Editor-in-Chief: Lui, Edmund

Ed. by Ko, Robert / Leung, Kelvin Sze-Yin / Saunders, Paul / Suntres, PH. D., Zacharias

CiteScore 2017: 1.41

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.472
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.564

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Herbal and dietary supplement use in Bangkok: a survey

Mayuree Tangkiatkumjai
  • Corresponding author
  • Division of Primary Care, School of Medicine, University of Nottingham, QMC, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK
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/ Helen Boardman
  • Division of Social Research in Medicines and Health, School of Pharmacy, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK
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/ Dawn-Marie Walker
  • Division of Primary Care, School of Medicine, University of Nottingham, QMC, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK
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Published Online: 2014-06-07 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jcim-2013-0016


Background: People living in Asian countries including Thailand are likely to use herbal and dietary supplements (HDS). However, there is limited evidence of their usage in Thailand. The objectives of this study were to determine (1) the prevalence of HDS usage amongst a general population in Bangkok; (2) patterns of HDS use; (3) reasons why Bangkok residents use HDS.

Methods: This cross-sectional survey recruited 400 Thai people aged 15 years or over at busy bus stops in Bangkok, Thailand, using convenience sampling. Data were collected via an interview regarding demographics, HDS usage and reasons of using HDS. Descriptive statistics, such as frequencies and percentages, were used to analyse the prevalence and the patterns of HDS use.

Results: The prevalence of HDS usage in the previous 6 months was 52%. The majority of people who took herbs used them to treat illnesses (58%), whereas the majority of people who took dietary supplements used them to promote well-being (65%). Respondents reported using HDS due to their efficacy (28%), wanting to try them (26%) and safety concerns with conventional medicines (15%).

Conclusions: Health care providers should be aware of HDS use amongst Thai residents in Bangkok. Policy makers should educate people about appropriate HDS use.

Keywords: dietary supplements; herbal medicine; prevalence; Thailand


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About the article

Received: 2013-05-05

Accepted: 2014-04-10

Published Online: 2014-06-07

Published in Print: 2014-09-01

Citation Information: Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, Volume 11, Issue 3, Pages 203–211, ISSN (Online) 1553-3840, ISSN (Print) 2194-6329, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jcim-2013-0016.

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