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Nutr Cancer. 2012;64(7):911-8. doi: 10.1080/01635581.2012.714046. Epub 2012 Oct 4.

The use of daily aspirin, nutritional supplements and alternative medications among Amish and non-Amish living in Ohio Appalachia.

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Division of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio 43201, USA.


The purpose of this study was to assess daily aspirin and supplement use among Amish and non-Amish adults living in Ohio Appalachia to understand their potential contribution to lower cancer incidence rates among the Amish. A cross-sectional study was conducted with random samples of 134 Amish adults and 154 non-Amish adults. Face-to-face interviews about cancer-related behaviors included questions regarding aspirin and supplement use. Amish compared to non-Amish adults reported 1) taking significantly (P < 0.05) more supplements [mean number of daily products by Amish males (3.5 ± 3.7) and females (5.2 ± 4.3) vs. non-Amish males (1.4 ± 1.3) and females (3.0 ± 3.2)]; 2) taking significantly (P < 0.05) more vitamins, minerals, fiber supplements (females only), and enzymes (females only); 3) taking significantly (P < 0.01) more herbal supplements (approximately 55% and 71% of Amish males and females vs. 17% and 23% of non-Amish males and females, respectively); and 4) taking significantly (P < 0.05) less aspirin on a regular basis. Aspirin and supplement use among Amish and non-Amish adults show significant differences characteristic of their social and cultural norms. Future studies that clarify the impact of aspirin and supplement use among the Amish and their impacts upon the risk of certain cancers and other disease processes are warranted.

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