Osteoporosis International

, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 333–340

Increased Incidence of Fractures in Middle-aged and Elderly Men with Low Intakes of Phosphorus and Zinc


  • S. Elmståhl
    • Department of Community Medicine, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden
  • B. Gullberg
    • Department of Community Medicine, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden
  • L. Janzon
    • Department of Community Medicine, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden
  • O. Johnell
    • Department of Orthopaedics, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden
  • B. Elmståhl
    • Department ofDiagnostic Radiology, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s001980050072

Cite this article as:
Elmståhl, S., Gullberg, B., Janzon, L. et al. Osteoporos Int (1998) 8: 333. doi:10.1007/s001980050072


The aim of the study was to determine dietary risk factors for fracture in men aged 46–68 years. Six thousand five hundred and seventy-six men were randomly invited using the Municipal Registry to a diet and health study. The diet was assessed using a combined 7-day menu book for hot meals, beverages and dietary supplements and a quantitative food frequency questionnaire for other foods. The fracture incidence was 103/10000 person-years during a mean follow-up of 2.4 years. Zinc and phosphorus intake were associated with fracture risk and showed a threshold effect. The zinc intake in the lowest decentile, 10 mg daily, was associated with almost a doubled risk of fracture compared with the fourth and fifth quintiles (RR = 0.47; 95% confidence interval, 27–82) of zinc intake adjusted for energy, previous fractures, lifestyle factors and co-morbidity. Energy-adjusted phosporus intake in the lowest quintile, mean level 1357 mg, was associated with an increased fracture risk compared with subjects in the second quintile. Smoking, martial status and physical activity were independently associated with fracture risk. Calcium, retinol and vitamin D showed no associations with fracture risk. We conclude that inadequate intakes of zinc and phosporus are important risk factors for fracture.

Key words:Epidemiology – Fracture – Incidence – Phosphorus – Zinc

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1998