Open Access Short report

Intakes of calcium, vitamin D, and dairy servings and dental plaque in older Danish adults

Amanda RA Adegboye1*, Lisa B Christensen2, Poul Holm-Pedersen3, Kirsten Avlund45, Barbara J Boucher6 and Berit L Heitmann1

Author Affiliations

1 Research Unit for Dietary Studies. Institute of Preventive Medicine, Frederiksberg Hospital, Copenhagen DK-2000, Denmark

2 Department for Community Dentistry. School of Dentistry, Faculty of Health Science, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen DK-2200, Denmark

3 Copenhagen Gerontological Oral Health Research Centre. School of Dentistry, Faculty of Health Science, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen DK-2200, Denmark

4 Department of Public Health, Section of Social Medicine, and Center for Healthy Aging, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen DK-1014, Denmark

5 Danish Aging Research Center, Universities of Aarhus, Southern Denmark and Copenhagen, Aarhus DK-5000, Denmark

6 Centre for Diabetes, Bart’s & The London School of Medicine & Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, London E1 2AT, UK

For all author emails, please log on.

Nutrition Journal 2013, 12:61  doi:10.1186/1475-2891-12-61

Published: 16 May 2013

Abstract

Background

To investigate whether intakes of calcium and dairy-servings within-recommendations were associated with plaque score when allowing for vitamin D intakes.

Methods

In this cross-sectional study, including 606 older Danish adults, total dietary calcium intake (mg/day) was classified as below vs. within-recommendations and dairy intake as <3 vs. ≥3 servings/ d. Dental plaque, defined as the percentage of tooth surfaces exhibiting plaque, was classified as < median vs. ≥median value (9.5%). Analyses were stratified by lower and higher (≥6.8 μg/d) vitamin D intake.

Findings

Intakes of calcium (OR = 0.53; 95% CI = 0.31–0.92) and dairy servings (OR = 0.54; 95% CI = 0.33–0.89) within-recommendations were significantly associated with lower plaque score after adjustments for age, gender, education, intakes of alcohol, sucrose and mineral supplements, smoking, diseases, number of teeth, visits to the dentist, use of dental floss/tooth pick and salivary flow, among those with higher, but not lower, vitamin D intake.

Conclusion

Intakes of calcium dairy-servings within-recommendations were inversely associated with plaque, among those with higher, but not lower, vitamin D intakes. Due to the cross-sectional nature of the study, it is not possible to infer that this association is causal.

Keywords:
Calcium; Dairy-foods; Dental plaque; Older adults; Oral-health; Vitamin D