British Journal of Nutrition

Review Article

A systematic review of the effects of calcium supplementation on body weight

Rebecca Trowmana1, Jo C. Dumvillea1 c1, Seokyung Hahna2 and David J. Torgersona1

a1 University of York Seebohm Rowntree Building Department of Health Sciences York YO10 5DD UK

a2 Medical Research Collaborating Center, Seoul National University College of Medicine Seoul National University Hospital Seoul 110-744 Korea


Animal studies and epidemiological studies have suggested that Ca supplementation (with Ca supplements or dairy products) may be associated with weight loss in human adults. We aimed toassess whether any association was present by reviewing relevant randomized controlled trials in human subjects. The study was a systematic review and subsequent meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials that used Ca supplementation as an intervention in persons 18 or more years of age, and that reported body weight as a final outcome. A total of thirteen randomized controlled trials were included in the meta-analysis. There was no association between the increased consumption of either Ca supplements or dairy products and weight loss after adjusting fordifferences in baseline weights between the control and intervention groups (P=0·19 and 0·85, respectively). We therefore concluded that Ca supplementation has no statistically significant association with a reduction in body weight.

(Received June 28 2005)

(Revised December 08 2005)

(Accepted December 13 2005)


c1 *Corresponding author: Dr Jo Dumville, fax +44 1904 321387, Email