The effects of the high intake of Maillard reaction products (MRP) on calcium availability in adolescents and across Caco-2 cell monolayers were examined. In a 2 week randomized two-period crossover trial, 18 male adolescents consumed two diets, named white diet (WD) and brown diet (BD), which were poor and rich in MRP, respectively. A 3 day balance was performed at the end of each period, and fasting blood samples were collected. Calcium solubility and absorption across Caco-2 cells were studied after the in vitro digestion of the diets. The in vitro assay showed similar solubility after the in vitro digestion and similar transport across Caco-2 cells. In accordance, calcium bioavailability in adolescents did not vary between the diets (%WD = 40.4 +/- 5.1, %BD = 38.2 +/- 3.6). Serum and urine biochemical parameters related to calcium status and bone metabolism remained unaltered. Only deoxypyridinoline values were significantly lower after consumption of the BD (13.0 +/- 1.1 compared to 18.3 +/- 2.1 nM/Mm Cr in the WD), possibly indicative of less efficient bone turnover during this period. As calcium acquired during adolescence is essential to maximize peak bone mass and to prevent osteoporosis, possible long-term effects of excessive MRP intake during this period warrant attention.