January 14, 2010
In an article published online January 12, 2010, in the British Medical Journal (www.bmj.com/), researchers reviewed data from over 68,500 people aged 70 or older who took part in seven studies that looked at the effect of taking vitamin D alone versus Vitamin D and calcium on fracture risk.
Although vitamin D is touted as being an important dietary component to prevent fractures, these study results indicate that vitamin D alone (at doses of 10-20 micrograms, or 400-800 International Units [IU]) didn’t prevent fractures. However, taking calcium with vitamin D every day did reduce the risk of fracture in men and women of all ages, even if they previously suffered a fracture. Taking calcium and vitamin D together reduced the risk of hip fractures, total fractures, and possibly vertebral fractures.
The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for Calcium is 1,000 milligrams for adults; for vitamin D it’s between 200 IU and 400 IU. However, the minimum requirements for vitamin D may soon be changing. For now, it’s best to consider taking 500 milligrams of calcium, along with 200 IU of vitamin D twice daily.
Source: BMJ 2010;340:b5463
Written by Melissa Ohlson, MS, RD, LD, Preventive Cardiology and Rehabilitation.
Get more information on nutrition strategies. To make an appointment with a registered dietitian, call the Cleveland Clinic Preventive Cardiology - 216.444.9353 or 800.223.2273 ext. 9353. Or, get a nutrition consultation online with our private and secure MyConsult Nutrition Consultation.
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