We Are Sunshine

Calcium, vitamin D critical to stopping bone loss

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

A recent article by an Oregon State University associate professor focused on the need for people to get adequate amounts of vitamin D to combat bone loss as we get older.


Sharon Johnson, from the university’s College of Health and Human Sciences, said “we need vitamin and calcium, in combination, to prevent bone loss as we age. Even if we’re on prescription medications for conditions involving our bones (like osteoporosis) we need adequate amounts of vitamin D and calcium for those medications to be effective.”

Johnson said the elderly are at risk because of the dangers of broken hips: “Did you know most health experts say more than 25 percent of older adults die within six months of a hip fracture.”

Johnson cites a University of California Berkeley “Wellness Letter” from August 2007 that said, “there’s growing evidence that vitamin D is not only good for bone health but for muscle strength and prevention of some cancers and other illnesses.”

The professor said that people aged 51 to 70 need 400 IU (International Units) of vitamin D each day and those over 71 need 600 IU per day.

“In this area, most of the time, we get some of our vitamin D from sunlight … but for some people that’s not always possible. Enter the right kind of foods and vitamin D supplement.”