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As a service to the Bay Area community, FORE is proud to offer a wonderful group of osteoporosis education speakers... more
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News & Resources
FORE is proud to report that there is more discussion about osteoporosis than ever before - among physicians, our local community, and in the media. Check back here often to learn about the most recent developments through FORE's newsletter, press releases, and media coverage
It can be difficult to find quality guidance on osteoporosis, which is why FORE created a central place to learn more. Over the coming months you will find an increasing number of educational materials available, all reviewed by FORE's Medical Advisory Board. If you live in the Bay Area, our Speakers Bureau Program is designed for you! Our friendly speakers present dozens of basic osteoporosis presentations in senior centers, women's clubs, and schools each year.
Calcium and Vitamin D Supplements
The current daily recommendations for calcium are between 1000 and 1300 mg. Vitamin D intake should be maintained at 1000 IU daily. For those whose diets do not contain enough daily foods to reach the calcium recommendation (about 2-3 dairy portions a day), then supplements of calcium can be added with meals, once or twice a day. Vitamin D may also been obtained in milk (100 IU/glass) or in a multivitamin (400 IU) to reach the recommended daily intake.
Results of the Women's Health Initiative (WHI) Dietary Modification trial were published in the New England Journal of Medicine on February 15, 2006. This study randomly assigned 36,282 healthy postmenopausal women to calcium and vitamin D supplements or placebo. The study found, overall, that calcium and vitamin D did not protect the group taking supplements from fractures, including hip and spine fractures.
However, there were trends toward some fracture protection in women over age 60 years and those who started out with low calcium intakes. Also, those who were very consistent in taking their medication (more than 80% of the time) showed a 29% reduction in hip fractures compared to those who took the placebo regularly.
Some previous studies have shown fracture reductions, generally with higher dosages of vitamin D (700-800 IU daily) and generally in older individuals (both men and women).
What lessons have we learned from this new study? First, the effects of calcium and vitamin D are rather modest in protecting against fracture. Second, the benefit is strongly related to age and is greater in those with low intakes of calcium and vitamin D.