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Never undermine the importance of calcium and Vitamin D

We all think we know a lot about vitamins, minerals and supplements. The problem is that contradictory recent studies have created confusion regarding their importance; a simple fact that should // be kept in mind always is that “Vitamins and other nutrients, including calcium and vitamin D, are necessary to our health and wellbeing.”

Stressing the point is Dr. Joseph C. Maroon, a world-renowned neurosurgeon and GNC Corporation's national medical consultant "Human beings require these essential nutrients to grow and thrive and to reduce the risk of chronic health problems. Vitamin D and calcium are essential in maintaining healthy bones and teeth. This fact is not disputable, and a large number of studies over many decades have shown vitamin D and calcium supplementation to be effective in building and maintaining healthy bones. I will continue to recommend these critical supplements to my patients because I continue to believe in their effectiveness." Supporting this stand are various studies and citing a recent meta-analysis of double blind, randomized controlled trials, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, a 26% risk reduction in hip fractures in elderly consuming vitamin D at doses above 700 IU was noted.

In order to clear the mist of confusion one must always remember some basic facts like:-

1. Calcium and vitamin D are both recognized by the Institute of Medicine as essential nutrients that must be consumed by all people to maintain health.

2. Dietary intake surveys repeatedly demonstrate that most Americans are not consuming recommended intakes of calcium and vitamin D.

3 The National Osteoporosis Foundation, which recommends calcium and vitamin D supplementation, has said it has no plans to revise its guidelines in light of recent studies.

4. Decades of research in animals and humans confirm the contribution of calcium and vitamin D in building and preserving bone mass across all age groups.

Therefore it is important that adequate attention is paid to these two nutrients and they are taken in the diet. This would help improve the general health of the individual as well as the community.

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