Eighteen months of daily consumption of milk containing 250 mg calcium prevented bone mineral density (BMD) loss at the hip and the femoral neck in postmenopausal Chinese women aged 45 to 65.
Introduction: Estrogen-related bone loss in postmenopausal women can be prevented by the consumption of milk with high doses of calcium and soymilk with high doses of isoflavones. However, high doses of calcium and isoflavones may not be necessary to attain a beneficial effect of milk and soymilk on BMD. We hypothesized that BMD will increase in postmenopausal Chinese women who consume daily 250 mg calcium in milk or soymilk. Milk prevented bone loss at the hip and the femoral neck in postmenopausal Chinese women.
Methods: A total of 141 eligible Chinese women without osteoporosis, aged 45-65, and postmenopausal for more than 2 years were randomized into groups receiving for 18 months (A) milk with 250 mg calcium daily, (B) soymilk with 250 mg calcium daily, or (C) neither milk nor soymilk. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry measured the BMD of the spine and hip at 0, 6, 12, and 18 months.
Results: The BMD in the hip (2.52%) and the femoral neck (2.82%) of the women consuming milk was significantly higher (hip, P = 0.01; femoral neck, P < 0.0000001). The women in the control group experienced a reduction in BMD at all sites; the reduction in BMD was only significant at the hip during 12 months (P = 0.008) and at the femoral neck during 18 months (P = 0.005).
Conclusions: Daily consumption of milk containing 250 mg calcium over 18 months prevents BMD loss at the hip and the femoral neck in postmenopausal Chinese women.