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Br J Nutr. 2013 Sep 28;110(6):1079-88. doi: 10.1017/S0007114513000111. Epub 2013 Feb 15.

Dietary calcium intake is associated with adiposity, metabolic profile, inflammatory state and blood pressure, but not with erythrocyte intracellular calcium and endothelial function in healthy pre-menopausal women.

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  • 1Discipline of Clinical and Experimental Pathophysiology, Rio de Janeiro State University, Avenida 28 de Setembro, 87 - Rooms 363 and 361, Vila Isabel, Rio de Janeiro, CEP 20551-030, Brazil.


Recent studies have suggested that dietary Ca may have beneficial effects on adiposity, insulin resistance, dyslipidaemia and blood pressure (BP). One potential mechanism underlying these benefits involves modifications in intracellular Ca concentration ([Ca2+]i). The present study aimed to evaluate the associations of dietary Ca with adiposity, erythrocyte [Ca2+]i, metabolic profile, BP, inflammatory state and endothelial function in healthy pre-menopausal women. In the present cross-sectional study, seventy-six women aged 18–50 years were submitted to the evaluation of dietary intake, anthropometric parameters, body composition, erythrocyte [Ca2+]i, biochemical variables, endothelial function and BP. A FFQ was used to assess usual dietary intake. Endothelial function was evaluated by serum concentrations of adhesion molecules and by the peripheral arterial tonometry (PAT) method, using Endo-PAT 2000®. Participants were allocated into two groups according to Ca intake: low-Ca group (LCG; n 32; < 600 mg/d) and high-Ca group (HCG; n 44; ≥ 600 mg/d). Women in the LCG compared with those in the HCG exhibited, after adjustments for potential confounders, higher values of BMI, waist circumference, waist:height ratio, percentage of body fat, insulin, homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance, leptin, diastolic and mean BP; and lower levels of HDL-cholesterol, adiponectin and vascular cell adhesion molecule 1. Endothelial function assessed by PAT and [Ca2+]i was similar in both groups. Subjects in the HCG had lower OR for prevalent overweight, obesity, abdominal obesity, insulin resistance, HDL-cholesterol < 600 mg/l and systolic BP >120 mmHg. The findings of the present study suggest that high Ca intake is inversely associated with some cardiovascular risk factors.

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