Purpose: This study was to determine the effects of calcium intake on bone mineral density (BMD) in pre and post menopause women and to provide basic data for enhancing bone health of middle aged women. Methods: A total of 700 middle-aged women living in Seoul and Geonggi Province were interviewed during the period from June 2003 through January 2004 to investigate their social. demographic and physiological characteristics, health and daily activity performance, and their dietary patterns, and bone mineral density was measured. The survey of dietary intake was 24 hour recalls, and the individual calcium intake was calculated using food frequency. Data of 618 subjects was used for the analysis. Of the calcium intake levels, BMD values of the subjects of 20% of high level. 60% of middle level and 20% of low level were analyzed and compared. Results: The level of calcium intake according to general characteristics of the subjects was significantly related to age (p=0.001), education levels (p=.003) and marital status (p=.001). The BMD of the lumbar vertebrae and femur of the subjects taking a high level of calcium showed significantly higher than that of the subjects taking a middle level and low level of calcium. Femoral T-score was also significantly higher in subjects taking a high level of calcium than that of those taking a middle level and lower levels of calcium. Lumber spine T-score was higher in the high level group than that of the middle level group. Conclusion: The study revealed that women taking a high level of calcium had better bone health. Therefore. calcium intake is extremely important in daily dietary intake so that the intake of calcium-rich foods is highly recommended.
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