Study: High doses of calcium can increase risk of death


by KGW Staff

Posted on February 13, 2013 at 4:53 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 13 at 5:23 PM

PORTLAND -- Many doctors recommend calcium supplements in order to get the recommended daily dose, but new research suggests higher doses can increase the risk of death.

Researchers from Uppsala University studied data from more than 61,000 Swedish women, ages 19 and older. They logged their calcium intake from foods, supplements and other sources.

The risk of cardiovascular death doubled in women with a high calcium supplement intake, compared to those who consumed fewer high calcium supplements.

Click to view the findings

One cardiologist told KGW the study doesn’t mean supplements are inherently dangerous, but that people should pay attention to what they’re taking.

"A lot of people are taking supplements and they don't even know what's in them,” said Dr. James Beckerman.

He says try to consume foods that are high in calcium, instead. Dark greens, like spinach and kale are good choices, he said. Cheese, milk, orange juice and even sardines can help you get your daily dose of calcium.

The findings come on the heels of another study warning that labels on vitamin D supplements may not be accurate.

Study: Vitamin D levels vary in supplements


KGW Reporter Erica Heartquist contributed to this report.