Dietary Calcium Intakes of Urban Children at Risk of Lead Poisoning

Kay Bruening, Francis W. Kemp, Nicole Simone, Yvette Holding, Donald B. Louria, John D. Bogden
1999 Environmental Health Perspectives  
Dietary calcium is well known to decrease gastrointestinal lead absorption and thereby reduce the risk for lead poisoning. Because children in economically deprived urban centers are especially likely to have excessive lead exposure, we surveyed dietary calcium intakes of 314 children from the greater Newark, New Jersey, area. The areas of Newark and adjacent communities studied had been previously identified as containing significant sources of environmental lead by geographic information
more » ... ic information systems technology. An abbreviated National Cancer Institute Health Habits and History Questionnaire, modified to focus on foods high in calcium, was used to determine dietary calcium. Calcium intakes were then compared to the new Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) guidelines. The respondents were primarily the parents of African-American and Hispanic children ranging in age from 1 to 8 years, with a mean age of 3.5 years. The most recent blood lead concentration was 11.4 * 0.8 pg/dL (mean ± standard error), and 48.6% had concentrations at or above the current guideline of 10 p/dL. Quintiles of calcium intake were: 221 t 13; 488 * 9; 720 ± 6; 885 ± 6; and 1,389 ± 49 mg/day. Fifty-five of 175 (31.4%) children
doi:10.2307/3434623 fatcat:pn77xvhxhbaodmlccni4ua2tza