A low calcium intake leads to a higher risk of osteoporosis and hypertension in postmenopausal women, reveals a new study.
In an Italian study of 825 postmenopausal women with hypertension, a significantly increased proportion of women who consumed a lower amount of calcium through intake from dairy sources, had a concurrent diagnosis of both hypertension and osteoporosis, compared with women who consumed a higher amount of calcium.
Further statistical analyses revealed that a lower calcium intake was associated with an increased risk of developing hypertension or osteoporosis over time when compared with controls.
Women who consumed a lower amount of calcium were shown to be most likely to develop both conditions over time compared with women consuming a higher amount of calcium.
"Our study confirms that there may be a link between hypertension and low bone mass and that a low calcium intake could be a risk factor for the development of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women" said Professor Maria Manara, Department of Rheumatology, Gaetano Pini Institute, Milan, Italy, and lead author of the study.
"Our study has also shown that a low calcium intake from dairy foods may be involved in this association and could be considered a risk factor for the development of hypertension and osteoporosis," Manara added.
The research has been presented at EULAR 2010, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism in Rome, Italy.