Calcium supplements do not increase risk of cardiovascular disease.

calciumPrevious studies have provided conflicting information on the role of calcium supplements widely taken by women for bone health. A new study published in the International journal did not find that calcium supplement intake increases the in women. The population group studied consisted of 74,425 women in the Nurses’ and they were followed for 24 years, with Calcium supplement intake assessed every four years, to examine the risk of and stroke. In the 24 years of follow-up, there were 2,709 and 1,856 strokes.

“Our study has several distinct strengths compared to prior studies including the large number of participants, long-term follow-up, large number of cardiovascular events that were confirmed by medical record review, detailed information about diet and other cardiovascular disease risk factors, and repeated assessment of calcium supplement use over the 24-year follow up period,” said Julie Paik, MD, MPH, BWH Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, lead .

In general women who took calcium supplements had a healthier lifestyle, with higher levels of , smoked less and had lower fat trans intake compared to women who did not take calcium supplements.

“Based on our findings, additional prospective cohort studies examining potential cardiovascular disease risk associated with calcium supplement use are needed,” said Paik. “Future randomized trials of calcium supplementation, if conducted, should be designed to optimize assessment of cardiovascular events.”


J. M. Paik, G. C. Curhan, Q. Sun, K. M. Rexrode, J. E. Manson, E. B. Rimm, E. N. Taylor. Calcium supplement intake and in women. International, 2014; DOI: 10.1007/s00198-014-2732-3

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