Introduction: During the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the public may seek a non-pharmacological approach, such as dietary supplements, to prevent or manage COVID-19. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate the use of dietary supplements during the COVID-19 pandemic among adults in Kota Kinabalu. Methods: This cross-sectional study recruited 213 adults living in Kota Kinabalu through convenient sampling from October 2021 to March 2022. A validated questionnaire was used to evaluate their perception on the use of dietary supplements, and the types of dietary supplements consumed before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results: One-hundred sixty-one (75.6%) adults reported that they were told to consume dietary supplements during the COVID-19 pandemic, primarily from close family members (64.0%) and social media (58.4%). One-hundred and thirty-two (62%) adults were consuming dietary supplements and 46 (34.8%) of them only started taking them during the COVID-19 pandemic. The reasons for taking dietary supplements during the COVID-19 pandemic included enhancing the immune system (83.6%) and for prevention of COVID-19 infection (64.4%). The most common dietary supplements consumed during the COVID-19 pandemic were vitamin C (90.2%), followed by multi-vitamin and mineral (32.6%), and fish oil (25.8%). After adjusting for age, sex, education level, and income level, KadazanDusun adults were most likely to consume dietary supplements (adjusted odds ratio = 2.369, 95% CI: 1.070 - 5.248, p=0.034). Conclusion: There was an increase in the number of adults consuming dietary supplements during the COVID-19 pandemic, which was likely driven by information sharing via family members and social media.

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