Calcium retention estimated from indicators of skeletal status in adolescent girls and young women

Connie M. Weaver, Munro Peacock, Berdine R. Martin, Karen L. Plawecki, George P. McCabe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


To determine clinically useful predictors of calcium retention during postpubertal growth, calcium balance, biochemical markers of bone turnover, and anthropometric variables were determined in 14 girls aged 11-14 y and in 11 young women aged 19-30 y. Subjects participated in a 3-wk calcium-balance study with a calcium intake of 1332 mg/d. Biochemical markers of bone turnover (serum osteocalcin, total alkaline phosphatase, bone alkaline phosphatase, tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase, and urinary cross-linked N- teleopeptides of type I collagen and hydroxyproline as the creatinine ratios) were measured in fasting samples. Total-body bone mineral density and total- body calcium content were significantly higher in adults than in adolescents (1.17 compared with 1.05 g/cm2 and 1019 compared with 791 g, respectively). At the observed retention of 326 mg/d, adolescents would require 2 y to reach the total bone calcium of the young adults. All biomarkers of bone turnover were strikingly higher in adolescents than in adults and were strongly correlated with calcium retention. A multiple-regression model using a biochemical marker of bone turnover (serum osteocalcin) and postmenarcheal age (a measure of sexual maturation) described 75% of the variability in calcium retention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-70
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1996


  • Calcium retention
  • adolescent females
  • bone biomarkers
  • calcium balance
  • calcium requirements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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