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Calcium Supplements Side Effects

Calcium supplements side effects are generally described as mild. They can vary based on the type of calcium used in a product. For example calcium carbonate can cause stomach gas.  Clinical Calcium-Supplements-Side-Effects | Review Articlestudies typically report patient very low drop-outs from calcium supplements side effects, especially when compared to many pharmaceutical products.

The Food & Drug Administration’s (FDA) benchmark for food safety is GRAS.  GRAS stands for Generally Regarded as Safe.  According to the FDA website (http://vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/eafus.html) the following calcium types qualify as GRAS affirmed: 

Calcium acetate, alginate, ascorbate, carbonate, chloride, citrate, diacetate, glycerophosphate, gluconate, hexametaphosphate, hydroxide, lactate, oxide, panothenate, phosphate, phytate, propionate, pyrophosphate, silicate, sorbate and sulfate.  

Here is a typical GRAS application, reporting the exposure impact and possible calcium or calcium supplements side effects for AquaMin®: 

  1. Inhalation: Mild Irritation.  Remove from exposure. If recovery is not rapid or complete seek medical attention.
  2. Skin Contact: Mild Irritation.  Drench skin with water. If imitation persists seek medical attention.
  3. Eye Contact: Irritation.  Irrigate thoroughly with water for at least 15 minutes. If irritation persists seek  medical attention.
  4. Ingestion: Mild Irritation. Wash out mouth with water. If patient feels unwell seek medical attention.

Most calcium supplements side effects are similar in nature.  Medline Plus reports the following cautions for calcium carbonate brands:

“Calcium carbonate may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
•    upset stomach
•    vomiting
•    stomach pain
•    belching
•    constipation
•    dry mouth
•    increased urination
•    loss of appetite
•    metallic taste”
 

WebMD.com reports the following possible concerns for calcium citrate. Many of these can be applied to other calcium supplements side effects, including AdvaCAL:

Constipation or stomach upset may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: nausea/vomiting, loss of appetite, unusual weight loss, mental/mood changes, change in the amount of urine, bone/muscle pain, headache, increased thirst, increased urination, weakness, tiredness, fast/pounding heartbeat.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms…including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
Before using, tell your doctor if you have any allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems.

Before using, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: high calcium/vitamin D levels (hypercalcemia/hypervitaminosis D), difficulty absorbing nutrition from food (malabsorption syndrome).

Tell your doctor or pharmacist of: heart/blood vessel disease, kidney stones, kidney disease, certain immune system disorder (sarcoidosis), liver disease, certain bowel diseases (Crohn's disease, Whipple's disease), little or no stomach acid (achlorhydria), and low levels of bile, untreated phosphate imbalance.

Chewable tablets may contain sugar or aspartame. Caution is advised if you have diabetes, phenylketonuria (PKU), or any other condition that requires you to limit/avoid these substances in your diet.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant before using this medication. During pregnancy, doses of vitamin D greater than the recommended dietary allowance should be used only when clearly needed.”

Calcium-Supplements-Side-Effects | Review ArticleSeveral types of calcium, including those in AdvaCAL have been affirmed as GRAS by the FDA as safe.  When using GRAS products, you should be aware but not overly concerned about possible calcium supplements side effects.