News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

Role of vitamin D and calcium indisputable for bone health

Role of vitamin D, in combination with calcium, indisputable for bone health

January 27, 2014 – Despite the current debate surrounding vitamin D, its role in maintaining good bone health and protecting against osteoporosis, in combination with calcium, is indisputable.

While evidence of the potential role vitamin D may play in non-skeletal conditions mounts, the New Zealand Self Medication Industry (SMI) agrees with recent editorial comments in The Lancet that large clinical studies would help to properly assess the effects of vitamin D for health conditions such as heart diseases, diabetes, cancer, dementia and inflammatory diseases.

According to SMI executive director, Tim Roper, vitamins and supplements are not a panacea for preventing chronic disease, however, they do have a legitimate place in the wider health system and remain important for many people.

“SMI recognises that robust evidence is essential if we want to demonstrate vitamin D’s role in preventing a range of non-skeletal conditions. In the meantime, we don’t want to see people with brittle bones, as well as those at high-risk, cutting vitamin D out of their supplement routine and making themselves vulnerable to future fractures.”

Mr Roper added that for people who aren’t obtaining adequate calcium or vitamin D from natural sources, supplementation is known to be a highly effective way to fill the gap and to reduce fracture risk by up to 24 per cent.

SMI’s recommendation is for people who are at risk of osteoporosis to speak to a qualified healthcare professional. If they are found to be calcium or vitamin D deficient, supplementation may be recommended as preventative action.

At-risk populations include:
• People with naturally very dark skin
• People with little or no sun exposure – e.g. people who are hospitalised, living in an aged care facility or working jobs that prevent sun exposure such as shift workers, miners, or even office workers working particularly long hours
• People who cover up with long robes/head coverings because of religious or cultural reasons
• People with a malabsorption conditions
• Older adults who, due to age, cannot synthesise vitamin D as efficiently
• People who are overweight or obese.

Osteoporosis is one of New Zealand’s most debilitating and costly health problems. The condition affects one in every two women over the age of 60 and nearly one third of all men in New Zealand. For people who aren’t obtaining adequate calcium or vitamin D from natural sources, supplementation is known to be a highly effective way to fill the gap.

In New Zealand, the recommended daily intake of calcium is between 1000 and 1300 mg per day for adults. For vitamin D, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) consider that doses of up to 80 mcg are safe.5 Most supplements that are available in New Zealand are 25 mcg or less.

Mr Roper added that SMI, alongside several other healthcare stakeholders, is awaiting feedback on the current MBS review into vitamin D testing.

“SMI looks forward to the outcome of the MBS review into vitamin D testing. In our view, testing for vitamin D deficiency provides an opportunity for informed discussion on treatment options – that is, appropriate sun exposure versus supplementation, and their respective risks and benefits,” Mr Roper said.

About SMI
The New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association Inc (SMI) is the national trade association representing manufacturers, marketers and distributors of a wide range of products, generally available "over-the-counter" (OTC) and mainly for use in self-medication by New Zealand consumers. SMI’s mission is to promote better health through responsible self-care. This means ensuring that safe and effective self-care products are readily available to all New Zealanders at a reasonable cost. SMI works to encourage responsible use by consumers and an increasing role for cost-effective self-medication products as part of the broad national health strategy.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>


Howard Davis: Benjamin Ree's The Painter and The Thief

The Norwegian filmmaker had long been fascinated by art thieves who commit high-stakes crimes with a delicate touch when a chance Google search in 2015 uncovered a botched heist in Oslo. More>>


Howard Davis: Anna Coddington Beams

Anna Coddington's thin, wispy vocals fit her songs beautifully, providing a wonderful lilting quality that pervades her latest album, producing instant ear worms. More>>


Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>

Howard Davis: Byrneing Down the House - Spike Lee's American Utopia

Lee does an admirable job capturing Byrne's stunning live performance of his latest album, but the real star of the show is the staging. More>>


Howard Davis: The Phoenix Foundation Friend Ship Tour Docks in Wellington

A sense of local pride was certainly running high at the Opera House on Saturday night, as the lads ran through a tasty little set drawn mostly from their latest album Friend Ship (splash out for Xmas on the shocking pink extra-thick vinyl edition). More>>


Howard Davis: Avantdale Bowling Club

Auckland rapper and MC Tom Scott brought his stunning jazz-infused Taite Music Prize-winning project Avantdale Bowling Club to the Opera House headlining Wellington's 2020 Jazz Festival. More>>

Howard Davis: Troy Kingi Rules The San Fran

The award-winning Northland musician performed songs from his new record The Ghost of Freddie Cesar, the fourth installment in his 10/10/10 series - ten albums in ten years in ten genres. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland