Effect of Silicon Supplementation in Diets with Different Calcium Levels on Balance of Calcium, Silicon and Magnesium, and Bone Status in Growing Female Rats


Silicon (Si) is important for the growth and development of bone and connective tissues. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of Si supplementation on the balance of calcium (Ca), Si, magnesium (Mg), and bone status in growing female rats fed diets with different Ca levels. Sixty 6-week-old female Wistar rats were divided into 6 groups and fed diets with different levels of Ca (0.1, 0.5, 1.5%) and Si (5, 500 ppm) for 10 weeks. Experimental groups were as follows: Low-Ca group (LCa; 0.1% Ca), Low-Ca with Si supplementation group (LCaSi), adequate-Ca group (ACa; 0.5% Ca), adequate-Ca with Si supplementation group (ACaSi), high-Ca group (HCa; 1.5% Ca), and high-Ca with Si supplementation group (HCaSi). Si retention significantly increased by Si supplementation and significantly decreased by high-Ca diet (1.5%). Mg retention significantly decreased by high-Ca diet. Serum Ca and Si contents were not significantly different among the 6 groups. Low-Ca diet significantly increased serum osteoclain and C-telopeptide cross-link of type 1 collagen (CTx) levels, and Si supplementation significantly decreased CTx levels in the low-Ca diet group. Bone mineral density was significantly increased along with Ca increase in the diet, but was decreased by Si supplementation in the high-Ca diet. Rats in the adequate-Ca diet group had a significant increase in strength of tibia after Si supplementation. These findings indicate that the effect of Si supplementation on bone metabolism may differ according to the Ca-intake level in growing females. Although further research is needed, when supplementing Si to improve bone health in growing females, Ca-intake level should be considered.

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“This work was supported by the Korea Research Foundation Grant funded by the Korean Government (MOEHRD)” (KRF-2006-331-C00315).

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Correspondence to Mi-Hyun Kim.

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Kim, MH., Choi, MK. Effect of Silicon Supplementation in Diets with Different Calcium Levels on Balance of Calcium, Silicon and Magnesium, and Bone Status in Growing Female Rats. Biol Trace Elem Res 199, 258–266 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12011-020-02147-2

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  • Silicon supplementation
  • Bone mineral density
  • Bone strength
  • Calcium intake
  • Magnesium balance