[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 21-Dec-2005
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Contact: Sharon Agsalda
medicalnews@bos.blackwellpublishing.net
781-388-8507
Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Magnesium in your diet could lead to stronger bones

Intake of magnesium through diet and supplements is positively associated with bone density throughout the whole body, particularly in older white adults, according to research published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Researchers say the effects are similar to that of calcium.

Over 2,000 black and white men and women ages 70-79 years old were asked to complete a questionnaire to determine how much magnesium they were receiving from food and various supplements. Additionally, researchers performed bone mineral density tests on the participants.

The study revealed that those who ingested more magnesium had significantly higher bone density than those who got the least amount of magnesium. For every 100 milligram per day increase in magnesium intake, data showed a 1% increase in bone density.

However, this link was only true for the older white men and women. Previous research has demonstrated that black men and women may process vitamin D and other calcium regulating hormones differently than whites, thus possibly explaining the lack of association between magnesium and bone density among them in this study.

"Although this [1% increase] seems small, increases across a population may have large public health impact," states lead researcher Kathryn M. Ryder.

The recommended daily allowance of magnesium is 320 mg/day for women and 420/mg day for men in this age group. Most people in this age group get far less than this daily amount.

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This study is published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. For more information on this topic and to read additional patient-friendly summaries of articles in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, please visit http://www.healthinaging.org/agingintheknow/research.asp.

Media who would like to receive a PDF of the study please contact medicalnews@bos.blackwellpublishing.net.

Lead researcher Kathryn M. Ryder, MD, MS is available for questions and interviews and can be reached at kryder@utmem.edu. She is currently affiliated with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Departments of Medicine and Preventive Medicine. Dr. Ryder is currently running a study of 75 men and women over the age of 55 which will be the largest randomized double-blind placebo controlled study of the impact of magnesium on bone formation and loss.

About the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society
The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society publishes articles that are relevant in the broadest terms to the clinical care of older persons. Such articles may span a variety of disciplines and fields and may be of immediate, intermediate, or long-term potential benefit to clinical practice.

About the American Geriatrics Society
The American Geriatrics Society (AGS) is the premier professional organization of health care providers dedicated to improving the health and well-being of all older adults. With an active membership of over 6,000 health care professionals, the AGS has a long history of effecting change in the provision of health care for older adults. In the last decade, the Society has become a pivotal force in shaping attitudes, policies and practices regarding health care for older people. Visit www.americangeriatrics.org for more information.

About Blackwell Publishing
Blackwell Publishing is the world's leading society publisher, partnering with more than 600 academic and professional societies. Blackwell publishes over 750 journals annually and, to date has published close to 6,000 text and reference books, across a wide range of academic, medical, and professional subjects.



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