Dairy, Calcium, and Weight Management in Adults and Children

Also see:
High-fat cheese: the secret to a healthy life?
Cheese: the secret to a longer life and faster metabolism?
The Full-Fat Paradox: Whole Milk May Keep Us Lean
Calcium Paradox
Source of Dietary Calcium: Chicken Egg Shell Powder
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Blood Pressure Management with Calcium & Dairy
Hypertension and Calcium Deficiency
Excess Dietary Phosphorus Lowers Vitamin D Levels
Fatty Acid Synthase (FAS), Vitamin D, and Cancer
Phosphate, activation, and aging
Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and bone health
Preparing Powdered Eggshells for Calcium
Milk and dairy products: good or bad for human health? An assessment of the totality of scientific evidence.

Quotes by Ray Peat, PhD:
“The ratio of calcium to phosphate is very important; that’s why milk and cheese are so valuable for weight loss, or for preventing weight gain. For people who aren’t very active, low fat milk and cheese are better, because the extra fat calories aren’t needed.”

“Two other ideas that sometimes cause people to avoid drinking milk and eating cheese are that they are “fattening foods,” and that the high calcium content could contribute to hardening of the arteries.

When I traveled around Europe in 1968, I noticed that milk and cheese were hard to find in the Slavic countries, and that many people were fat. When I crossed from Russia into Finland, I noticed there were many stores selling a variety of cheeses, and the people were generally slender. When I lived in Mexico in the 1960s, good milk was hard to find in the cities and towns, and most women had fat hips and short legs. Twenty years later, when good milk was available in all the cites, there were many more slender women, and the young people on average had much longer legs. The changes I noticed there reminded me of the differences I had seen between Moscow and Helsinki, and I suspect that the differences in calcium intake were partly responsible for the changes of physique.

In recent years there have been studies showing that regular milk drinkers are less fat than people who don’t drink it. Although the high quality protein and saturated fat undoubtedly contribute to milk’s anti-obesity effect, the high calcium content is probably the main factor.”

“One of the reasons a lot of people give, if they have overcome the idea that milk forms mucous, or is a risk for diseases and so on; one of their arguments is that it makes them fat. But, all the research on animals, and as far as it goes, human research, shows that milk is probably the best reducing foods there is. The mechanisms for that are now known. Not only the anti-stress effects of casein, and a good balance of saturated fats and so on, but the calcium alone is very important metabolic regulator, that it happens to inhibit the fat-forming enzymes fatty acid synthase, and incidentally that’s a characteristic enzyme that goes wild in cancer. But calcium and milk inhibit that fatty acid synthase, reducing the formation of fats and at the same time it activates the uncoupling proteins in the mitochondria, which are associated with increased longevity. Because they, by increasing the metabolic rate, the uncoupling proteins burn calories faster but they protect against free-radical oxidation. That they pull the fuel through the oxidation process so fast in effect, that none of it goes astray in random oxidation, where if you inhibit your energy producing enzymes you tend to get random, stray oxidation that damage the mitochondria. So the uncoupling proteins burn calories faster, at the same time that your reducing fat synthesis and milk is, as far as I know, they only food does both of those things simultaneously.”

Low dairy intake in early childhood predicts excess body fat gain.
Suboptimal dairy intakes during preschool in this cohort were associated with greater gains in body fat throughout childhood.

Dairy Intake Is Associated with Lower Body Fat and Soda Intake with Greater Weight in Adolescent Girls
Nondairy calcium was not associated with weight or iliac skinfold thickness. Soda intake was significantly positively associated with weight in both models (P = 0.01, both models). Decreasing soda and increasing dairy consumption among Asians may help maintain body fat and weight during adolescence.

Dairy Intake and Anthropometric Measures of Body Fat among Children and Adolescents in NHANES
Among adolescents, suboptimal dairy intake was associated with higher anthropometric measures of body fat.

Dairy food consumption and body weight and fatness studied longitudinally over the adolescent period
Avoidance of dairy foods due to a possible association with relative body weight is not supported by these findings. We find no evidence that dairy food consumption is associated with BMI z-score or %BF during adolescence, but further research specifically designed to address this question is needed.

Dairy calcium intake, serum vitamin D, and successful weight loss
Our study suggests that both higher dairy calcium intake and increased serum vitamin D are related to greater diet-induced weight loss.

Skim milk compared with a fruit drink acutely reduces appetite and energy intake in overweight men and women.
Consumption of skim milk, in comparison with a fruit drink, leads to increased perceptions of satiety and to decreased energy intake at a subsequent meal.

Effect of 1-year dairy product intervention on fat mass in young women: 6-month follow-up.
Dietary calcium intake over 18 months predicted a negative change in body fat mass. Thus, increased dietary calcium intakes through dairy products may prevent fat mass accumulation in young, healthy, normal-weight women.

Fat oxidation and its relation to serum parathyroid hormone in young women enrolled in a 1-y dairy calcium intervention

The results suggest that a chronic diet high in dairy calcium increases whole-body fat oxidation from a meal, and increases in fasting serum PTH relate to decreases in postprandial whole-body fat oxidation.

Increased consumption of dairy foods and protein during diet- and exercise-induced weight loss promotes fat mass loss and lean mass gain in overweight and obese premenopausal women.
The reduction in visceral adipose tissu in all groups was correlated with intakes of calcium (r = 0.40; P < 0.05) and protein (r = 0.32; P < 0.05). Therefore, diet- and exercise-induced weight loss with higher protein and increased dairy product intakes promotes more favorable body composition changes in women characterized by greater total and visceral fat loss and lean mass gain.

The role of dairy foods in weight management.
These data indicate an important role for dairy products in both the ability to maintain a healthy weight and the management of overweight and obesity.

Role of calcium and dairy products in energy partitioning and weight management.
These concepts are confirmed by epidemiologic data and recent clinical trials, which indicate that diets that include > or =3 daily servings of dairy products result in significant reductions in adipose tissue mass in obese humans in the absence of caloric restriction and markedly accelerate weight and body fat loss secondary to caloric restriction compared with diets low in dairy products. These data indicate an important role for dairy products in both the prevention and treatment of obesity.

Role of dietary calcium and dairy products in modulating adiposity.

Further, low-calcium diets impede body fat loss, whereas high-calcium diets markedly accelerate fat loss in transgenic mice subjected to caloric restriction. Dairy sources of calcium exert markedly greater effects in attenuating weight and fat gain and accelerating fat loss. This augmented effect of dairy products is likely due to additional bioactive compounds in dairy that act synergistically with calcium to attenuate adiposity. These concepts are confirmed by both epidemiological and clinical data, which demonstrate that increasing dietary calcium results in significant reductions in adipose tissue mass in obese humans in the absence of caloric restriction and markedly accelerates the weight and body fat loss secondary to caloric restriction, whereas dairy products exert significantly greater effects. These data indicate an important role for dairy products in both the prevention and treatment of obesity.

Calcium and dairy products inhibit weight and fat regain during ad libitum consumption following energy restriction in Ap2-agouti transgenic mice.

All 3 high-calcium diets produced significant increases in lipolysis, decreases in fatty acid synthase expression and activity, and reduced fat regain (P < 0.03), but the 2 dairy-containing high-calcium diets exerted significantly greater effects on regain (P < 0.01). Thus, high-Ca diets elicit a shift in energy partitioning and reduction of weight gain during refeeding, with dairy Ca sources exerting markedly greater effects.

Effects of dietary calcium on adipocyte lipid metabolism and body weight regulation in energy-restricted aP2-agouti transgenic mice.
Adipocyte [Ca2+]i was unaffected by Kcal restriction but was reduced markedly by all three high Ca diets (290 vs. 130 nM, p2+]i and thereby reduce energy storage and increase thermogenesis during Kcal restriction.

Normalizing Calcium Intake: Projected Population Effects for Body Weight
Although calcium intake explains only a small fraction of the variability in weight or weight gain, shifting the mean of the distributions downward by increasing calcium intake can be estimated to reduce the prevalence of overweight and obesity by perhaps as much as 60–80%.

Calcium and Weight: Clinical Studies
Analysis reveals a consistent effect of higher calcium intakes, expressed as lower body fat and/or body weight, and reduced weight gain at midlife. Similarly, studies relating nutrient intake to body composition report negative associations between calcium intake and body weight at midlife and between calcium and body fat accumulation during childhood. There is a fairly consistent effect size, with each 300 mg increment in regular calcium intake associated with ∼1 kg less body fat in children and 2.5–3.0 kg lower body weight in adults. Taken together these data suggest that increasing calcium intake by the equivalent of two dairy servings per day could reduce the risk of overweight substantially, perhaps by as much as 70 percent.

Regulation of Adiposity and Obesity Risk By Dietary Calcium: Mechanisms and Implications
Further, low calcium diets impede body fat loss, while high calcium diets markedly accelerate fat loss in transgenic mice subjected to caloric restriction. These findings are further supported by clinical and epidemiological data demonstrating a profound reduction in the odds of being obese associated with increasing dietary calcium intake. Notably, dairy sources of calcium exert a significantly greater anti-obesity effect than supplemental sources in each of these studies, possibly due to the effects of other bioactive compounds, such as the angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor found in milk, on adipocyte metabolism, indicating an important role for dairy products in the control of obesity.

Dairy Product Components and Weight Regulation: Symposium Overview

However, data suggest that both calcium and other dairy product components may contribute to alterations in metabolic partitioning of dietary energy, resulting in modulation of body weight, body fat and the insulin-resistance syndrome.

Human Obesity: Is Insufficient Calcium/Dairy Intake Part of the Problem?
Taken together, these observations suggest that insufficient calcium intake can be part of the obesity problem in some individuals and that an increase in calcium/dairy intake is part of the solution.

Dietary and Total Calcium Intakes Are Associated with Lower Percentage Total Body and Truncal Fat in Young, Healthy Adults
Our findings support a relationship, even after adjusting for physical activity, between higher dietary and total calcium intakes and lower total body and truncal fat in young adults. Results suggest an intake of approximately 1500 mg/d calcium could aid in the management of body and truncal fat. We recommend that young adults be encouraged to increase their total calcium intakes to at least the recommended daily allowance of 1000 mg/d for reasons extending beyond bone health.

Regulation of adiposity by dietary calcium.
Weight gain and fat pad mass were reduced by 26-39% by the three high calcium diets (P<0.001). The high calcium diets exerted a corresponding 51% inhibition of adipocyte fatty acid synthase expression and activity (P<0.002) and stimulation of lipolysis by 3. 4- to 5.2-fold (P<0.015). This concept of calcium modulation of adiposity was further evaluated epidemiologically in the NHANES III data set. After controlling for energy intake, relative risk of being in the highest quartile of body fat was set to 1.00 for the lowest quartile of Ca intake and was reduced to 0.75, 0.40, and 0.16 for the second, third, and fourth quartiles, respectively, of calcium intake for women (n=380;P<0.0009); a similar inverse relationship was also noted in men (n=7114; P<0.0006). Thus, increasing dietary calcium suppresses adipocyte intracellular Ca(2+) and thereby modulates energy metabolism and attenuates obesity risk.

Association between obesity and calcium:phosphorus ratio in the habitual diets of adults in a city of Northeastern Brazil: an epidemiological study
Values above the median for the Ca:P ratio found in the habitual diet were negatively associated with central obesity based on WHtR. In addition, calcium and dairy consumption were negatively associated with central obesity based on WHtR. Therefore, higher Ca:P ratios contributed to a lower prevalence of central obesity.

de Oliveira EP, Diegoli AC, Corrente JE, McLellan KC, Burini RC
This study evaluated which was the main nutritional change associated with weight reduction of overweight adult participants of a lifestyle change program. It was hypothesized that increases in dairy intake could be an important nutrition intervention in a lifestyle change program. 117 individuals, male (19.5%) and female (80.5%), with a minimum age of 36 years (54.2 ± 10.4). All study participants were enrolled in a lifestyle change program consisting of nutritional counseling and physical activity during 20 weeks. All participants were grouped in three groups according to Body Mass Index (BMI) delta median (-0.87 kg/m2) of individuals that showed weight loss: G1 – lost more than 0.87 kg/m2 of BMI (n = 38); G2 – lost 0 to 0.87 kg/m2 of BMI (n = 36); and G3 – increased BMI (n = 43). G1 increased dairy, fruit and vegetables intake and after forward stepwise multiple regression analysis, it was noted that an increase in dairy product intake of 0.40 servings per day had an impact of 9.6% on the loss of one kg/m2 of BMI. In conclusion, an increase in dairy product intake was the main dietary factor associated with reductions in body weight in overweight adults after 20 weeks of lifestyle change program.

Calcium and Obesity:
Mol. Nutr. Food Res., 58: 1342–1348. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201300503
High vitamin D and calcium intakes reduce diet-induced obesity in mice by increasing adipose tissue apoptosis
Igor N. Sergeev and Qingming Song
Modulation of apoptosis is emerging as a promising antiobesity strategy because removal of adipocytes through this process will result in reducing body fat. Effects of vitamin D on apoptosis are mediated via multiple signaling pathways that involve common regulators and effectors converging on cellular Ca2+. We have previously shown that 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 induces the Ca2+ signal associated with activation of Ca2+-dependent apoptotic proteases in mature adipocytes. In this study, a diet-induced obesity (DIO) mouse model was used to evaluate the role of vitamin D and calcium in adiposity.
Methods and results
DIO mice fed high vitamin D3, high Ca, and high D3 plus high Ca diets demonstrated a decreased body and fat weight gain, improved markers of adiposity and vitamin D status (plasma concentrations of glucose, insulin, adiponectin, 25-hydroxyvitamin D, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, parathyroid hormone (PTH)), but an increased plasma Ca2+. High D3 and Ca intakes were associated with induction of apoptosis and activation of Ca2+-dependent apoptotic proteases, calpain and caspase-12, in adipose tissue of DIO mice. The combination of D3 plus Ca was more effective than D3 or Ca alone in decreasing adiposity.
The results imply that high vitamin D and Ca intakes activate the Ca2+-mediated apoptotic pathway in adipose tissue. Targeting this pathway with vitamin D and Ca supplementation could contribute to the prevention and treatment of obesity. However, this potentially effective and affordable approach needs to be evaluated from a safety point of view.

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