Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: July 30, 1996
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Dietary guidance or intake recommendations for calcium and magnesium presently do not seem to be based on essentiality or deficiency paradigms. In other words, dietary recommendations for calcium often are not based on the prevention of classical signs and symptoms of calcium deficiency, but on the basis that high, perhaps supranutritional, intakes may help prevent t calcium loss that can lead to osteoporosis. Dietary recommendations for magnesium are made on the basis of short term, questionable metabolic balance studies because functional deficits caused by a dietary lack of only magnesium have not been described for humans consuming conventional Western-type diets. These recommendations apparently ignore, or reflect an unawareness of, recent findings which indicate that the response to a dietary deprivation or the dietary need of calcium and magnesium can be markedly affected by other nutrients, especially some trace elements. Thus, if one assures that these nutrients are adequate in the diet, calcium balance can be maintained on daily intakes of 600 to 700 mg. Furthermore, responses to magnesium deprivation are likely if the intakes of certain trace elements are marginal or deficient. In other words, recent findings showing the interactions between specific trace elements and calcium or magnesium need to be addressed when dietary reference standards are set for these elements. Most importantly, after standards are set, it should be pointed out if the standard has been set high (sometimes to point of requiring supplementation) in order to overcome inefficient metabolism or poor utilization caused by the lack of other essential nutrients, or if the standard has been set with the idea that other nutrients are adequate in the diet.