June 22, 2008
Fewer Bone Breaks With Calcium Supplementation

Since most of us do not drink milk we should consider calcium supplements.

Boosting calcium intake by drinking milk could reduce healthy adults' chances of a debilitating bone break. In a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, healthy men and women supplemented with 1,200 mg of calcium per day - the amount in four glasses of milk - reduced their risk of bone fractures by 72 percent.

An international team of researchers from University Hospital Zurich and Dartmouth Medical School divided 930 healthy men and women ages 27 to 80 into two groups for a four-year intervention study. One group was given a placebo, while the other took a daily calcium supplement containing 1,200 mg of calcium daily - the calcium recommendation for adults over the age of 51.

The researchers found that those receiving an additional 1,200 mg of calcium were significantly less likely to have a bone fracture of any sort during the four-year period, including everyday activity fractures (bone breaks that occurred while walking or standing) and seemingly unavoidable accident-related fractures (bone breaks sustained during falls, running, sports injuries or car accidents). In fact, during the four-year intervention, not a single adult receiving calcium experienced a fracture tied to everyday activities - fractures that researchers call "potentially preventable" and more likely linked to bone health.

To sustain the benefits, researchers found that the adults needed to maintain their calcium intakes. After the four-year supplementation period ended, the bone benefits dissipated, underscoring the need to adopt lifelong habits, like drinking milk, to prevent bone loss.

Don't forget the vitamin D too.

Share |      Randall Parker, 2008 June 22 02:24 PM  Aging Diet Bone Studies

David Nishimura said at June 22, 2008 8:38 PM:

Yet another study based upon calcium supplements, used to promote the consumption of milk -- which may not be at all equivalent in terms of absorbable calcium.

K.A. said at June 29, 2008 3:01 PM:

I was just going to write what David already did. Studies have shown the OPPOSITE about dairy--it may increase bone mineral density (the PHOSPHORUS content, that is), but bone mineral density is not a good marker for fracture resistance, believe it or not. Dairy intake correlates with increased risk of fracture, and I'm not just talking about those questionable national dairy intake charts showing a correlation with osteoporosis. I remember a study proving that premenopausal women who were athletes had a greater BMD AND greater risk of fracture with increasing dairy intake compared to equally athletic controls.

In cultures where there is little dairy consumed, they tend to get calcium from the hard water. The only thing our water has is treatment chemicals and a collective stew of mostly unnecessary pharmaceuticals your neighbors are urinating into the water supply.

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