Increased prevalence of reduced bone mineral density (BMD) is well documented in HIV, hepatitis C virus (HCV), and co-infected HIV/HCV patients. We have previously showed that unlike HIV, HCV-related decreased BMD does not appear to be mediated by increased bone turnover. This study’s purpose was to determine if an association exists between dietary calcium intake and BMD in these patients.
This cross-sectional study included 436 males with virologically suppressed HIV or untreated HCV mono-infections, HIV/HCV co-infection, and non-infected controls. Calcium intake was accessed with the Hertzler-Frary dietary calcium questionnaire. Lumbar spine, total hip, and femoral neck BMD was measured by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry. χ2 test assessed the relationship between BMD and infection status. One-way analysis of covariance compared calcium intake data to the prevalence of normal BMD and osteoporosis among infection groups. Adjustments were made for race, age, body mass index, and smoking status. Spearman’s correlation identified relationships between calcium intake from specific foods/beverages and BMD.
Osteoporosis and osteopenia were prevalent in the HIV, HCV, and HIV/HCV groups, but there was no association between infection group and BMD result (χ2(6) = 6.813, P=0.339). Median calcium intake did not differ between HIV and HIV/HCV patients with normal BMD and osteoporosis. HCV patients with osteoporosis had lower calcium intake compared to normal BMD patients (mean difference of 409 (95% CI, 35 to 784) mg, P=0.027). Milk, yogurt, almonds, and spinach intake were positively correlated with BMD (P<0.05).
In populations with HIV, decreased dietary calcium intake does not appear to be associated with reduced BMD. Consumption of milk and yogurt along with a healthy diet might be protective of bone health in HCV.
R. Bedimo, None