Although it is current practice to prescribe vitamin D and calcium together, particularly in post menopausal women, a six year study shows that the added calcium has no value.
The women were all over the age of 65 and had osteopenia. This is the stage before osteoporosis. 1,994 women were randomised to take zolendronic acid or placebo. Bone mineral density was measured at the spin, total hip, femoral neck and total body three times at intervals.
The baseline BMD was unrelated to dietary calcium after controlling for age, height, weight, physical activity, alcohol intake, smoking and past HRT use when a cross section of women were studied.
Loss of BMD over the next six years was not related to the amount of dietary calcium ingested.
Bristow SM et al. Dietary Calcium intake and bone loss over six years in osteopenic post menopausal women. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2019 Mar 21.
My comment: Maybe time to ditch the calcium?
And while we are on the subject of bones, I’m pleased to say that another study has shown that high dose vitamin D supplementation does NOT increase kidney stone risk.
Over just over 3 years of taking 100,000 iu of vitamin D3 each month did not increase excess calcium in the blood or the onset of kidney stones in adults aged between 50 and 84 years.
This dose is equivalent to 3300 iu vit D3 a day, similar to what many of us in the know take.
158 people took part in the randomised trial. The number of people developing kidney stones was similar in each group and no one in the intervention group developed hypercalcaemia. The groups self reported stones. No ultrasound was done which the authors say could have been more accurate.
Malihi Z et al. Monthly high dose vitamin D supplementation does not increase kidney stone risk or serum calcium: results from a randomised controlled trial. Am J Clin. Nutr. 2019 Apr 21