Calcium citrate is the calcium salt from citric acid. It is a supplement that is used to prevent and to treat calcium deficiencies, promote healthy teeth and bones and may assist with weight loss. It is the most easily absorbed form of calcium, as it is water soluble. There are a number of warnings, side effects and contraindications for calcium citrate.
Benefits of Calcium Citrate
Calcium has a number of vital functions in the body aside from being responsible for the development and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth. It is also vital for the transmission of nerve communication, promoting health heart muscle functions, as well as activating a number of digestive enzymes. Major food sources of calcium include dairy products and eggs, but in some cases a calcium citrate supplement is recommended.
Minor Side-Effects of Calcium Citrate
Though many people believe that natural supplements are free of side-effects or complications this is not actually the case, though some side effects are minor, while others are more serious. Less problematic side-effects of taking a calcium citrate supplement include bloating, flatulence (gas), constipation and belching.
Before taking a calcium citrate supplement, consult your doctor if you have any allergies or medical conditions, if you have high calcium or vitamin D levels, if you suffer from malabsorption syndrome, immune system disorder, Crohn’s disease, Whipple's disease or phosphate imbalance. You should also consult your doctor if you are pregnant or breast feeding.
More Serious Effetcs of Calcium Citrate
If you experience constipation, nausea, vomiting, dry mouth or decreased appetite, stop taking calcium citrate immediately and contact your physician.
Though rare, there are also more serious side-effects of calcium citrate consumption. If you experience these stop taking calcium citrate and seek immediate emergency medical attention: difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing, bone or muscle pain, serious weight loss, infrequent urination, constant thirst, irregular heartbeat and weakness. You can report side effects to the FDA at (800) FDA-1088.
There are a number of prescribed medications that will have an adverse effect if taken with calcium citrate. These include tetracycline antibiotics, including but not limited to Dynacin, Achromycin V, Sumycin, Terramycin, Doxy, Vibramycin and Monodox, vitamin D supplements, antacids that contain aluminum or calcium, other calcium supplements and digoxin.