Assessing nutritional requirements for preterm infants

Ian J. Griffin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Although the macrominerals calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium are of primary concern in bone health, other minerals, including trace minerals can also play an important role. In this chapter, the role of some of these will be considered. In general, the data supporting and defining the role of the trace minerals in bone health is much less well developed than for the macrominerals. In many cases, studies have used animal models, which are difficult to extrapolate to humans. In others, the relationship between serum levels of minerals and markers of bone health or assessment of bone mineral density are described. These are difficult to interpret, and even if a correlation between low serum copper and low bone mineral density (for example) is demonstrated this does not mean that additional dietary copper would improve bone mineral density. Such relationships are confounded by the other lifestyle and socioeconomic factors that may cause such differences in dietary intakes. In addition, low-quality diets may be deficient in more than one nutrient, making it extremely difficult to ascribe the change to any single nutrient. There are very few well-designed intervention studies in humans that address the importance of trace and ultratrace minerals in human bone metabolism. The one exception appears to be strontium, where there is increasing good-quality data (i.e. randomized controlled studies) suggesting that high-risk adults may benefit from strontium supplementation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationNutrition and Bone Health
PublisherSpringer New York
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)9781493920013, 9781493920006
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Animal studies
  • Boron
  • Copper deficiency
  • Macrominerals
  • Nutritional requirements for preterm infants
  • Silicon
  • Skeletal health
  • Strontium
  • Trace minerals
  • Zinc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


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