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Is excess calcium harmful to health?

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Version 2 2024-06-03, 08:13
Version 1 2014-10-28, 09:20
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-03, 08:13 authored by Robin DalyRobin Daly, PR Ebeling
Most current guidelines recommend that older adults and the elderly strive for a total calcium intake (diet and supplements) of 1,000 to 1,300 mg/day to prevent osteoporosis and fractures. Traditionally, calcium supplements have been considered safe, effective and well tolerated, but their safety has recently been questioned due to potential adverse effects on vascular disease which may increase mortality. For example, the findings from a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (currently published in abstract form only) revealed that the use of calcium supplements was associated with an ~30% increased risk of myocardial infarction. If high levels of calcium are harmful to health, this may alter current public health recommendations with regard to the use of calcium supplements for preventing osteoporosis. In this review, we provide an overview of the latest information from human observational and prospective studies, randomized controlled trials and meta-analyses related to the effects of calcium supplementation on vascular disease and related risk factors, including blood pressure, lipid and lipoprotein levels and vascular calcification.

History

Journal

Nutrients

Volume

2

Pagination

505-522

Location

Basel, Switzerland

Open access

  • Yes

ISSN

2072-6643

Language

eng

Notes

Daly, Robin M Ebeling, Peter R eng Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't Review Switzerland 2010/05/01 00:00 Nutrients. 2010 May;2(5):505-22. doi: 10.3390/nu2050505. Epub 2010 May 17. Most current guidelines recommend that older adults and the elderly strive for a total calcium intake (diet and supplements) of 1,000 to 1,300 mg/day to prevent osteoporosis and fractures. Traditionally, calcium supplements have been considered safe, effective and well tolerated, but their safety has recently been questioned due to potential adverse effects on vascular disease which may increase mortality. For example, the findings from a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (currently published in abstract form only) revealed that the use of calcium supplements was associated with an ~30% increased risk of myocardial infarction. If high levels of calcium are harmful to health, this may alter current public health recommendations with regard to the use of calcium supplements for preventing osteoporosis. In this review, we provide an overview of the latest information from human observational and prospective studies, randomized controlled trials and meta-analyses related to the effects of calcium supplementation on vascular disease and related risk factors, including blood pressure, lipid and lipoprotein levels and vascular calcification.

Publication classification

C2.1 Other contribution to refereed journal

Copyright notice

2010, MDPI