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Dietary silicon intake in post-menopausal women

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 March 2007

S. A. McNaughton
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Elsie Widdowson Laboratory, Fulbourn Road, Cambridge CB1 9NL, UK
C. Bolton-Smith
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Elsie Widdowson Laboratory, Fulbourn Road, Cambridge CB1 9NL, UK
G. D. Mishra
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Elsie Widdowson Laboratory, Fulbourn Road, Cambridge CB1 9NL, UK
R. Jugdaohsingh
Gastrointestinal Laboratory, Rayne Institute, St Thomas's Hospital, London SE1 7EH, UK
J. J. Powell*
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Elsie Widdowson Laboratory, Fulbourn Road, Cambridge CB1 9NL, UK Gastrointestinal Laboratory, Rayne Institute, St Thomas's Hospital, London SE1 7EH, UK
*Corresponding author: Dr Jonathan Powell, MRC Human Nutrition Research, fax +44 (0)1223 437515, email
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Si has been suggested as an essential element, and may be important in optimal bone, skin and cardiovascular health. However, there are few estimates of dietary Si intakes in man, especially in a UK population. Following the development of a UK food composition database for Si, the aim of the present study was to investigate dietary intakes of Si amongst healthy women aged over 60 years and to identify important food sources of Si in their diet. Healthy, post-menopausal female subjects (>60 years of age; n 209) were recruited from the general population around Dundee, Scotland as part of an unrelated randomised controlled intervention study where dietary intake was assessed using a self-administered, semi-quantitative food-frequency questionnaire at five time-points over a 2-year period. Food composition data on the Si content of UK foods was used to determine the Si content of food items on the food-frequency questionnaire. Mean Si intake was 18·6 (sd 4·6) mg and did not vary significantly across the 2 years of investigation. Cereals provided the greatest amount of Si in the diet (about 30%), followed by fruit, beverages (hot, cold and alcoholic beverages combined) and vegetables; together these foods provided over 75% about Si intake. Si intakes in the UK appear consistent with those reported previously for elderly women in Western populations, but lower than those reported for younger women or for men.

Research Article
Copyright © The Nutrition Society 2005


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