Printer Friendly

Early calcium intake fights osteoporosis.

Young children may benefit later in life from getting more than the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of calcium in their diets now, report a group of Indiana University School of Medicine researchers. "The study showed that, even when a preadolescent child's normal dietary calcium intake met the RDA (800 mg), additional calcium significantly increased the gain of bone mass," notes C. Conrad Johnston, Jr., the principal investigator. "If the increase in bone mass can be maintained into adult life, we would expect a lower risk of osteoporotic fractures in those with the greater bone mass."

Calcium intake is essential during childhood because more than 90% of bone density develops by age 18. According to researchers, 80% of this is determined genetically. "It is what we can do to maximize our potential with that other 20% that interests us," Johnston indicates.

Forty-five healthy identical twin pairs completed the three-year study. All continued with their normal diet, which, on average, included the RDA of calcium for their age group. However, one child in each pair received an average of 700 milligrams of calcium citrate malate, delivered in tablet form daily. Previous studies have shown it to be absorbed well by children and young adults, and to slow bone loss in older women. Among the 22 preadolescent pairs, the twins who received the extra calcium showed greater bone growth over all and statistically significant greater gains of four to five percent in the forearm and spine. The supplement they took was comparable to slightly more than two additional servings of calcium-rich food such as an eight-ounce glass of milk or calcium-fortified orange juice, or one cup of yogurt.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Society for the Advancement of Education
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:bones
Publication:USA Today (Magazine)
Date:Feb 1, 1993
Previous Article:A hair-raising tale.
Next Article:Preventive surgery for high-risk women.

Related Articles
Don't forget your calcium!
Doctors file complaint over new milk ads.
Diet, exercise, genes strengthen bones.
Strong bones: a sodium connection?
Keeping our bones strong and healthy.
Got carrots? Vegetables may have bone to pick as calcium providers.
Calcium supplements benefit adolescent bone.
Vegan Buddhist nuns in Vietnam.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters