The role of nutrients in bone health, from A to Z

Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2006;46(8):621-8. doi: 10.1080/10408390500466174.


Osteoporosis is a major public health problem, affecting millions of individuals. Dietary intake is an important modifiable factor for bone health. Inadequate intake of nutrients important to bone increases the risk for bone loss and subsequent osteoporosis. The process of bone formation requires an adequate and constant supply of nutrients, such as calcium, protein, magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin D, potassium, and fluoride. However, there are several other vitamins and minerals needed for metabolic processes related to bone, including manganese, copper, boron, iron, zinc, vitamin A, vitamin K, vitamin C, and the B vitamins. Although the recommended levels of nutrients traditionally related to bone were aimed to promote bone mass and strength, the recommended levels of the other nutrients that also influence bone were set on different parameters, and may not be optimal for bone health, in view of recent epidemiological studies and clinical trials.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bone Density / physiology*
  • Food* / standards
  • Humans
  • National Academy of Sciences, U.S.
  • Nutrition Policy
  • Nutritional Physiological Phenomena / physiology
  • Osteogenesis / physiology
  • Osteoporosis / prevention & control*
  • United States