Tahiri M, Tressol JC, Arnaud J, Bornet FR, Bouteloup-Demange C, Feillet-Coudray C, Brandolini M, Ducros V, Pepin D, Brouns F, Roussel AM, Rayssiguier Y, Coudray C.
Centre de Recherche en Nutrition Humaine d'Auvergne, Unite Maladies Metaboliques et Micronutriments, Centre de Recherche INRA Clermont-Ferrand/Theix, Saint Genes Champanelle, France.
BACKGROUND: An enhancing effect of short-chain fructooligosaccharides (scFOSs) on intestinal calcium absorption has been shown in animals and in some short-term human studies. However, the long-term effect of scFOSs on calcium absorption in humans is still unknown. OBJECTIVE: We investigated the long-term effect of a moderate daily dose (10 g) of scFOSs on intestinal calcium absorption in postmenopausal women. DESIGN: In a randomized, double-blind crossover protocol, 12 healthy, postmenopausal women received scFOSs or placebo for 5 wk. The treatments were separated by a 3-wk washout period. Subjects orally received (44)Ca (stable isotope) and a fecal marker. Feces were collected after the isotope intake for 5-7 d to measure unabsorbed isotope. Calcium-status indexes, calciotropic hormones, and bone turnover were also assessed. RESULTS: Mean (+/-SD) intestinal calcium absorption with scFOS treatment was not significantly different from that with placebo treatment (35.63 +/- 9.40% and 36.55 +/- 8.48%, respectively). However, a tendency for calcium absorption to be higher with scFOS treatment than with placebo treatment was observed in women who had been going through menopause for >6 y. CONCLUSIONS: scFOSs do not modify intestinal calcium absorption in postmenopausal women who do not receive hormonal replacement therapy. The results from a subgroup of women who had been going through menopause for >6 y (n = 6) suggest that scFOSs may influence calcium absorption in the late postmenopausal phase. The small number of subjects and the related P value warrant verification and further investigation with women in late menopause only