Why are calcium and vitamin D important?
Adequate calcium and vitamin D are very important in ensuring bone health as well as other uses. As our bones are constantly breaking themselves down and remaking themselves it is never too late to ensure that we have sufficient intake and levels of calcium and vitamin D. These can both be checked in a blood test by your Doctor.
Anyone who has been diagnosed with osteoporosis or the lesser osteopaenia should make sure that they have enough intake through diet or supplement of calcium and vitamin D. They are also needed when osteoporosis medication is being used to ensure that the medication can work effectively.
Calcium and vitamin D in heart/cardiovascular disease patients
Over the last few years there seemed to be a link between the use of calcium supplements and increased cardiovascular disease.
Just because things occur together does not mean that one causes the other.
What is likely is that there are risk factors for osteoporosis and risk factors for cardiovascular disease that are the same. This means that people who are more likely to get osteoporosis are advised to take calcium and these same people are also more likely to get cardiovascular disease. Therefore just because people being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease may also take calcium does not mean calcium is the cause of this! An analysis of several studies has shown no link between calcium and cardiovascular disease.
Calcium and vitamin D supplementation
The recommended daily intake of calcium is 1000mg for most people but increases to 1200mg in postmenopausal women.
The daily requirement can generally be reached through having three serves of dairy. In those who are unable to do this a supplement can be used to make up the shortfall.
Vitamin D supplements are available if needed to bring levels above the 50nmol/L that is recommended.
Speak with your Doctor to find out your calcium and vitamin D levels
Reference Harvard Health Publishing