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To examine the effect of community-based nutrition education intervention on calcium intake and bone mass in Vietnamese postmenopausal women.
A controlled trial was conducted in two groups as intervention and control. The intervention group was given nutrition education during 18 months to improve calcium intake, while the control subjects had the usual diet. Calcium intake and bone mass were evaluated every 6 months. Bone mass was assessed by speed of sound (SOS) at calcaneus, referred to as quantitative ultrasound measurement. Anthropometric indices and serum parathyroid hormone (PTH) were determined at baseline and at the end of intervention.
Two rural communes of Hai Duong province located in the Red River Delta in Vietnam.
A total of 140 women aged 55–65 years, who were more than 5 years postmenopausal and with low calcium intake (<400 mg/d), were recruited. After 18 months of intervention, 108 women completed the study.
Calcium intake in the intervention group had increased significantly (P < 0·01) while it had no significant changes in controls. SOS values were not changed significantly in the intervention subjects while it decreased significantly by 0·5 % in the controls (P < 0·01). The intervention led to a decrease in serum PTH by 12 % (P < 0·01). In the controls, there was an increase in serum PTH by 32 % (P < 0·001).
Nutrition education intervention was effective in improving calcium intake and retarding bone loss in the studied subjects.
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