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Calcium citrate and acidosis

  1. May 21, 2017 #1
    I read that calcium citrate can be used to treat acidosis, thus when the blood pH shifts just a bit too much to the left.

    a) calcium citrate is the salt of citric acid. It doesn't seem to work as an antacid. Why does it work to raise pH in the blood then if it's not a base as such?
    b) is calcium citrate powder absorbed through the small intestines or the mucous membrane in the mouth into the blood, or would intravenous calcium be needed to treat acidosis?

    Thanks a lot.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 22, 2017 #2

    jim mcnamara

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    Staff: Mentor

    Your idea that a calcium supplement will change blood plasma pH is wrong literally. Calcium citrate can alter urine pH. If your blood pH were to change beyond a very small range, the consequences can be really awful. Normal pH range (very slightly alkaline) is very tight: 7.35 - 7.45. It is hard to change in normal humans.

    I am pretty sure that any links I can provide for this could be hard to read, so there are two links to source I think are better, down below.

    If your blood plasma is truly out of that range, get medical help. Now. Urine and saliva in humans do not reflect pH of blood plasma at all except in some few very ill people.

    Several points:
    1. Acidosis (acidemia) is not trivial. It is also a sort of a dumping ground for alternative heath care folks, like homeopathic practitioners. If you have been diagnosed by a physician, great. Do as indicated. Otherwise: Homeopaths will sometimes prescribe the 'alkaline diet' which is simply vegetarian, and is pretty much harmless, probably a good choice, but not curative of true acidemia.

    2. Calcium citrate is a good source of calcium, especially for older populations who are at risk for osteoporosis and otherwise have crummy diets. Calcium increases risk for other problems in healthy people with good diets.

    3. Excess calcium from supplements or oddball diets is implicated in both atherosclerotic build ups and very painful kidney stones. The citrate salt of calcium has less of these problems. Calcium salts also act as an anti-nutrient (e.g., blocks zinc absorption) and interfere with absorption of some prescription medications.

    To answer your question calcium is absorbed mostly in the small intestine and large intestine. Glucose is an example of something that can be absorbed in the mouth. Calcium, no.

    Because this is both a potential medical issue and based on misinformation, the thread is locked.
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