GUIDE OF MEDICAL COLLEGE & HOSPITAL
K C G Medical College, Berhampur
C B Medical College, Cuttack
S S Medical College, Burla, Sambalpur
Individual take calcium supplements daily to reduce the risk of
osteoporosis and attain the other health benefits of adequate daily
calcium intake. Concerns have occasionally been raised in the media
about the purity of calcium supplements, specifically their lead
important to remember that lead is a naturally occurring mineral that is
found in the soil, water and the air. It is present in fruit, vegetables
and dairy products and is ubiquitous in the environment. The lead
content of foods as well as nutritional supplements like calcium is
regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
trace amounts of lead can be found in calcium supplements, the amount is
very small. Supplements are made from refined calcium, and in fact
contain less lead than many dairy and vegetable food sources.
Additionally, calcium blocks absorption of lead by body. Thus, ensuring
adequate daily calcium intake is also one of the best ways to reduce
absorption of lead.
Standards for Lead Content
for the purity of ingredients used in food products have been
established by the National Academy of Sciencesí Food Chemicals Codex
and the U.S. Pharmacopoeia (USP). The lead tolerance level for calcium
carbonate, the most common form of calcium used in supplements, is three
parts per million (3 ppm).1 This can be illustrated by
imagining a few grains of sand in a sandbox.
most of the lead is excreted from the body, a daily supplement of 1,000
mg of elemental calcium would mean absorption of only about 0.25 mcg of
lead is actually absorbed by the body. Thatís 25
hundred-millionths of a gram. This is minuscule compared to the Food and
Drug Administrationís estimate of acceptable intake for the average
person which is 750.0 mcg.
role in reducing the risk of osteoporosis, providing potential benefits
for the cardiovascular system and maintaining overall health is well
established. As stated earlier, calcium also protects the body from lead
absorption. Calcium and lead are absorbed at the same site in the
intestine, and this site prefers calcium. Thus, the ingested lead passes
though the gastrointestinal tract and is excreted. As more calcium is
consumed, less lead is able to get into the bloodstream.
a Reliable Supplement
allay any concerns about purity and quality, consumers should obtain
their calcium supplements, and their food products, from a reliable
producer or manufacturer. Most calcium supplements from reputable
manufacturers are made with refined, high-quality "pharmaceutical
grade" ingredients with trace levels of lead far below the 3 ppm
federal standard. Consumers should also look for "USP" on the
label, a sign of ingredient quality, and call the manufacturer if they
do not see it.
carbonate is more concentrated than other calcium supplements, so it
contains the most elemental calcium, what the body uses, and is less
expensive than other supplements.