Calcium Supplements Fail To Provide Benefit To Senior Citizens, Overall Benefits Of Supplements In Doubt

Calcium supplements fail to provide benefit to senior citizens, and the doubts over supplements, particularly vitamins, in have now turned into advice from doctors being they should be avoided altogether. In a Time Magazine article, it was reported by the Annals of Internal Medicine. The authors stated it bluntly.

“We believe that the case is closed — supplementing the diet of well-nourished adults with (most) mineral or vitamin supplements has no clear benefit and might even be harmful.”

Vitamin and mineral supplements have been a part of the health food store staple at least since the 1970s when women began taking pre-natl vitamins in a bid to provide more nourishment to the developing fetus. Nutritionists have warned for years that vitamins cannot replace those lost in the food that we eat and also that such factors as daily allowances mean that excesses are flushed out via the kidneys and none of the supplements are absorbed in the fatty tissue of the body, where it would need to be stored to provide long term benefit. Calcium is one such mineral.

CHICAGO, IL - FEBRUARY 04: In this photo illustration, supplements purchased at Wal-Mart and Walgreens stores are shown on February 4, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. An investigation by the New York State attorney generals office into store-brand supplements being sold at Wal-Mart, Walgreens, GNC and Target found that many did not contain the herbs shown on their labels and some included potential allergens not identified in the ingredients list.
CHICAGO, IL - FEBRUARY 04: Supplements sit in a shopping cart at a Wal-Mart store on February 4, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. An investigation by the New York State attorney generals office into store-brand supplements being sold at Wal-Mart, Walgreens, GNC and Target found that many did not contain the herbs shown on their labels and some included potential allergens not identified in the ingredients list.
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 27: Glass bottles of filtered New York City water with added vitamins and supplements are seen at Molecule Water Cafe in Manhattan's East Village on July 27, 2012 in New York City. The newly opened cafe sells water purified in a $25,000 filtration system and encourages customers to purchase and refill environmentally friendly glass bottles. Extras such as vitamins and electrolytes can be custom added.

Side Effects

While the case is closed as to the non-benefit of these supplements, the dangers are now being uncovered. It turns out that excessive consumption of supplements could be responsible for a variety of health ailments, from everything from arthritis to heart disease. BBC News reported in 2013 when stories were first breaking on research contradicting the health supplements market.

“If you are healthy… taking multi-vitamins and high-dose antioxidants may shorten your life.”

Nevertheless, the culture of the health industry has relied on the unscientific theory of orthomolecularism, which states that nutrients are the same regardless of their source.

Vitamin D and calcium are linked. In order to absorb calcium, the body needs vitamin D and the best source of vitamin D is sunlight on the skin. With Advice to stay out of the sun, total exclusion of being exposed to sunlight leads to more acute problems than skin cancer. In short, sunlight is needed so that we can receive our vitamin D, which is crucial for not only calcium intake, but also the release of endorphins, which are critical for our mood.

The NIH Osteoporosis And Related Bone Disease National Resource Center has the following recommendations for daily intake of Calcium.

Recommended Calcium Intakes
Life-stage group mg/day
Source: Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, 2010.
Infants 0 to 6 months 200
Infants 6 to 12 months 260
1 to 3 years old 700
4 to 8 years old 1,000
9 to 13 years old 1,300
14 to 18 years old 1,300
19 to 30 years old 1,000
31 to 50 years old 1,000
51- to 70-year-old males 1,000
51- to 70-year-old females 1,200
70 years old 1,200
14 to 18 years old, pregnant/lactating 1,300
19 to 50 years old, pregnant/lactating 1,000

[Images by Christopher Furlong, Mario Tama, Scott Olson / Getty Images]