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Korean Journal of Epidemiology 1999;21(2): 119-130.
The Relationships between Calcium Intake and Bone Mineral Density in Korean Postmenopausal Women.
Young Sik Kim, Soo Ho Lee, Seoung Oh Yang, Ji Yun Lee, Moon Chan Kim
1Department of Family Medicine, University of Ulsan Collegeof Medicine.
2Department of Orthopedic Surgery, University of UlsanCollege of Medicine.
3Department of Nuclear Medicine, University of Ulsan Collegeof Medicine.
4Department of Food and Nutrition, Sungshin Women'sUniversity.
5Department of Family Medicine, Wonju Medical Center.
BACKGROUND: The evidence for a protective effect of calcium on bone mineral density is controversial. Despite this conflicting evidence an assessment of dietary calcium is often included in the clinical evaluation of osteoporosis risk. The purpose of this study was to assess the relationships between calcium intake and bone mineral density(BMD) in postmenopausal women.
The subjects consisted of 143 postmenopausal women over 40 years old who visited the Department of Family Medicine and Orthopedic Surgery in Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea from June 1997 to September 1998. They were divided into three groups such as osteoporosis, osteopenia and control groups according to the level of BMD. The BMD of the lumbar was measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Dietary assessment was performed by semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire.
Total calcium intakes were directly proportional to the BMD among three groups : they were 385.5+/-298.8mg/d, 438.3+/-216.5mg/d and 548.3+/-405.3mg/d in osteoporosis, osteopenia and control groups, respectively. Multivariate analysis, which was adjusted for age, place of residence in teenage, education, body mass index, exercise, muscular strength and energy intake, was performed between osteoporosis and control groups. As a result, the odds ratio of the highest 25% vs the bottom 25% of calcium distribution by milk consumption was 0.037(95% CI 0.002~0.891). In comparison of milk consumption at least once per day with that of less than 1 time per week, the odds ratio was 0.081(95% CI 0.008~0.793).
Levels of BMD in postmenopausal women are associated with amount and frequency of milk consumption. Therefore, more than 100mg/d of calcium intake - that is, at least a half glass of milk a day - should be recommended in postmenopausal women in order to prevent osteoporosis.
Keywords: Osteoporosis; Calcium intake; Milk; Postmenopausal women


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