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Micronutrients: Calcium. major component of bones, teeth Required for many physiological processes Roles of parathyroid hormone, calcitonin bone loss begins to increase during young adulthood (>35 years) Estrogen and menopause designer estrogen called Evista

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Micronutrients calcium l.jpg

Micronutrients: Calcium

  • major component of bones, teeth

  • Required for many physiological processes

  • Roles of parathyroid hormone, calcitonin

  • bone loss begins to increase during young adulthood (>35 years)

  • Estrogen and menopause

  • designer estrogen called Evista

  • lack of calcium > porous bones (osteoporosis)


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Calcium, cont’d.

  • daily requirements:

    • adolescence = 1200 mg/day

    • non-pregnant, non-lactating women = 800 mg/day

    • after menopause = 1500 mg/day

  • typical intake of post-men. women = 500 mg/day

  • food sources of calcium: dairy products, green leafy vegetables

  • http://www.lowfatweekly.com/calcium_content_in_foods.htm

  • absorption requires vitamin D


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Osteoporosis

  • 80% of osteoporotic individuals are female

  • 8 million women, 2 million men in U.S. currently suffer from osteoporosis

  • 1 out of 2 women will be affected after age 50 years

  • $38 million / day spent on treatment

  • Risk factors:

    • gender, age, smoking, family history, calcium intake, sedentary lifestyle, drinking


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Osteoporosis

  • Bones most often affected:

    vertebrae,hips, wrists


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Osteoporosis


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Iron

  • part of hemoglobin

  • deficiency: fewer red blood cells, decreased oxygen availability

  • low levels result in “iron deficiency anemia”

  • women susceptible due to monthly blood loss

  • daily requirements:

    • premenopause: 50-70 mg/day

    • postmenopause: 30 mg/day

  • foods rich in iron: red meat, liver, rice, beans, eggs, dried fruit

  • http://www.dialadietitian.org/resources/handouts/fe-food.html


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Folic acid

  • form of vitamin B (folate)

  • foods rich in folic acid:

    • green leafy veggies, lentils, asparagus, broccoli, orange juice, fortified cereals, liver

  • important during childbearing years

  • may also protect against heart disease, cancer, psychiatric disorders

  • important for regulating blood homocysteine levels


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Homocysteine

  • metabolite of the amino acid methionine

  • can be “recycled” to form methionine or can be degraded into cysteine and excereted

  • B vitamins (Vit B12, folate, Vit B6) are required for these processes

  • Vit B12 and folate participate in “recycling” of homocysteine into methionine

  • Vit B6 required for degradation into cysteine

  • High levels of homocysteine can adversely affect many tissues


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Dangers of high homocysteine levels

  • Correlation between high hcy levels and cardiovascular disease:

    • Increased activation of clotting factors

    • Increased atherosclerosis

  • Correlation between low folate, high hcy and neural tube defects during pregnancy

  • Correlation between high hcy levels and schizophrenia

  • Genetic defects in metabolic enzymes can also contribute


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Phytoestrogens

  • Plant compounds that are structurally similar to estrogen

  • Are “weak” estrogens or antiestrogens

  • Isoflavones, lignans, coumestans

  • Present in soy foods, oilseeds (e.g., flaxseed), and whole grain cereals

  • Cultures in which soy is a regular part of daily diet (~200 mg/day) have:

    • Decreased rates of breast, ovarian cancer

    • Decreased menopausal symptoms (<25% vs. 80%)

    • Decreased cardiovascular disease


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Isoflavone content of various foods

  • Roasted soybeans:162.5 mg

  • Textured vegetable protein:138.2 mg

  • Green soybean:135.4 mg

  • Tofu:33.7 mg

  • Soy hot dog:15 mg


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