Dietary supplements usage by elite female football players: an exploration of current practices

Catarina B. Oliveira, Mónica Sousa, Rodrigo Abreu, Ângela Ferreira, Pedro Figueiredo, Vincenzo Rago, Vitor Hugo Teixeira, João Brito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The present study aimed to investigate the prevalence of dietary supplements usage (types, reasons for usage, sources of information, purchase venues) among elite female football players, using a self-administered questionnaire. The study participants (n = 103) were recruited through team physicians during an official international tournament. Overall, 82% reported using dietary supplements at least once during the last 12 months. The most common dietary supplements were vitamin D (52%), omega-3 fatty acids (49%), and protein (45%). Primary reasons for dietary supplement use were to stay healthy (66%), to accelerate recovery (58%), and to increase energy/reduce fatigue (54%). Supplement advice came mainly from medical doctors (46%), dietitians/nutritionists (43%), and coaches/fitness coaches (41%). Most dietary supplements were acquired from supplement stores (30%), a sponsor (26%), or drugstores/pharmacies (22%). Elite female football players are frequent dietary supplement users. Further research needs to explore the frequency, dose, and timing of these supplements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-80
JournalScandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports
Issue numberSupl 1
Early online date4 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022


  • omega-3
  • protein
  • soccer
  • sports nutrition
  • vitamin D


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