Building strong and healthy bones requires an adequate dietary intake of calcium beginning in childhood and adolescence for both sexes. Most importantly, however, a high dietary calcium intake or taking calcium supplements alone is not sufficient in treating osteoporosis and should not be viewed as an alternative to or substituted for more potent prescription medications for osteoporosis. In the first several years after menopause, rapid bone loss may occur even if calcium supplements are taken.
The following calcium intake has been recommended by the National Institutes of Health Consensus Conference on Osteoporosis for all people, with or without osteoporosis:
800 mg/day for children 1-10 years of age
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