Increased Consumption of Calcium Rich Dairy Products May Help Prevent Hip Fractures
A new study looked at the levels of dairy consumption and hip fractures in the Netherlands, France, and Sweden. All three countries have different levels of dairy consumption, with the Netherlands having the highest and France the lowest.
It was determined that a substantial number of hip fractures could be avoided and that a large amount of money could be saved in medical costs if people consumed more calcium rich dairy products.
The researchers calculated the Population Attributive Fraction (PAF) for each country. This showed them what percentage of hip fractures were results of low calcium intake and how many of those fractures could have been prevented through more intake.
They found that the French population could avoid 2,023 hip fractures a year, Sweden could avoid 455, and the Netherlands could avoid 135. .
They also calculated that those countries could save $165 million, $44 million, and $7 million, respectively, in health care costs if preventative measures were taken.
Researchers for this study were based at the University Hospital of Geneva. Their findings were published online ahead of print on June 16, 2012, in the journal Osteoporosis International.
Calcium is best known for its effect on bone health, but previous studies suggest it can help with weight loss, skin health, and reducing the risk of colorectal cancer and stroke. Some studies have even suggested that calcium intake is associated with longevity.
Calcium absorption decreases as we age, so it is especially important to make sure you are getting enough of it. Try adding more dairy products or start taking a high quality supplement if you're trying to up your calcium intake.