Health Team

Study: Calcium supplements can increase heart attack risk

Posted August 2, 2010

Millions of Americans, like 68-year-old Ann Miller, take calcium supplements to maintain healthy bones.

“I'm trying just to manage it so the bone density results are stable,” Miller said.

But new findings published in the British Medical Journal show calcium supplements can lead to a 30 percent increased risk for a heat attack.

“These are two very common illnesses that a lot of people have and so this correlation of heart disease and treatment for osteoporosis affects a lot of individuals,” said Dr. Sharonne Hayes, of the Mayo Clinic.

The latest findings are based on the results of 11 clinical trials involving 12,000 mostly elderly women, many of whom were taking extra calcium to prevent bone loss.

The new research looked only at people taking calcium supplements. Previous studies show that people getting calcium through food didn't have the same risks.

Doctors said it is time to take a closer look at just how beneficial extra calcium can be.

“I think that the days of recommending calcium supplements to every patient with osteoporosis are probably over because there is actually a fairly modest benefit of calcium supplements on fracture rate,” Hayes said.


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  • DaddysAngel27 Aug 9, 2010

    I forgot to mention that I already had two different cardiac conditions and the calcium supplements that I have to take has had no affect on my heart. But with my calcium being low it did. I think they need to further their research to genetics and not vitamin supplements.

  • DaddysAngel27 Aug 9, 2010

    I take calcium for the fact that I have Hypocalcemia due to having Cystic Fibrosis.

  • gotsomesense Aug 6, 2010


    Could it be that the caffeine and carbonation in so much of what we drink is causing the calcium leeching? (Don't answer that, I already know the answer) Naturally grown, grass-fed, free-range meat is actually very good for your body (in moderation). The fact that vitamin B12 can ONLY be found in animal products and the fact that we have four pointed canine-type teeth in our mouths is proof to me that we are indeed supposed to consume animal flesh. It is the factory-farmed, chemical, antibiotic and hormone loaded animal flesh that is eaten in huge quantities at one time that is the problem.

  • JustOneGodLessThanU Aug 5, 2010

    I'm with ya LoveMyLab & pmck. :-)

    Unfortunately, we've got this Tea Party movement that wants to disband not just the FDA, but the EPA, FEMA and others. (I guess they like unsafe food & drugs, dirty air & water, cleaning up pollution by themselves, etc.) And, they're not hiding this fact. Here they are telling Larry King to dump Social Security:

  • LoveMyLab Aug 4, 2010

    Actually if we all got up off our collectively lazy backsides's and moved around more and got more stress type exercise we'd have much stronger bones. Along with eating more naturally that would go a LONG way towards solving quite a few issues healthwise!

  • pmck Aug 4, 2010

    Eating meat is the least of our problems. Eliminate the chemicals and garbage the FDA allows in our food - not to mention the GMO garbage and we'd all be healthier.

  • JustOneGodLessThanU Aug 3, 2010

    This is more proof that eating animals is harmful to humans.

    If we stopped eating so much animal flesh, we wouldn't have osteoporosis (look at Africa and Asia) and there'd be no need to for these unnecessary supplements.

    Animal protein causes humans to excrete (pee) calcium excessively...that's why industrialized countries have a huge problem with bone loss & heart attack and countries who eat correctly, don't have animal-flesh-induced sickness.

    For folks who have never heard this...

    Here's an article showing human biology and how we have evolved as plant-based eaters: Dr. Milton Mills,

    Here's an article about animal protein being harmful to humans:
    Christine Northrup, MD, board-certified ob/gyn

  • Homeward Aug 2, 2010

    And I'm wondering if the calcium found in the supplements is the same as what's added to foods like soy milk and orange juice? My guess is to keep on eating baby spinach and other greens, and not get way too much protein (which can diminish calcium in bones). All things in moderation.

  • ugottabkiddinme Aug 2, 2010

    waking up in the morning gives you a risk of a heart attack

  • mamabearprotectinghercub Aug 2, 2010

    What do people do when they can't eat, there are people that can't eat that good, & they don't get the calcium they need?
    Another Question is could the heart attacks be genetic, what is causing it?