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September 2022

Am J Clin Nutr. 1983 Mar; 37(3): 453-6.

Bone mineral mass in adult lacto-ovo-vegetarian and omnivorous males.

Marsh AG, Sanchez TV, Chaffee FL, Mayor GH, Mickelsen O.

Past studies indicate postmenopausal women who eat meat may experience greater bone mineral loss than lacto-ovo-vegetarian women. The present study extends those findings by comparing bone mineral in adult lacto-ovo-vegetarian and omnivorous males. Bone mineral mass was determined by direct photon absorptiometry in 320 lacto-ovo-vegetarian and 320 omnivorous males 20 to 79 yr old. Lacto-ovo-vegetarians were Seventh-day Adventists committed to their diet for at least 20 yr. Measurements were made at a cortical site along the radius. No statistical differences were identified between bone mineral mass in the lacto-ovo-vegetarian and omnivorous males in any decade examined. When contrasted against significant differences between bone mineral mass in postmenopausal omnivores and lacto-ovo-vegetarians, the data presented here may be interpreted as indicating that some factor associated with meat consumption is increasing bone mineral losses in postmenopausal females while having no observable effect in males.

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