A recent study published in the January 2007 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, has found that supplementing calcium and vitamin D during a calorie-restricted diet not only enhances weight loss but also improves blood lipoprotein profiles.
In the study, researchers randomly gave 63 healthy, overweight or obese women either a placebo or a supplement containing 600 mg of elemental calcium and 200 IU of vitamin D daily over a 15 week period. All the women selected for the study had a daily consumption of less than 800 mg of elemental calcium per day prior to the study intervention. The women also followed a calorie-restricted diet during the test period.
At the end of the study, those who had received the calcium and vitamin D had significantly greater weight loss, lower LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, improved LDL to HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol ratio, lower total cholesterol and lower triglycerides than those who received the placebo.
The researchers concluded that supplementing both calcium and vitamin D "enhanced the beneficial effect of body weight loss on the lipid and lipoprotein profile in overweight or obese women with usual low daily calcium intake."
Major, GC., F. Alarie, et al. Supplementation with calcium + vitamin D enhances the beneficial effect of weight loss on plasma lipid and lipoprotein concentrations. Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Jan; 85(1): 54-9.