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'Calcium-filled carrot could lowers risk of osteoporosis'

'Calcium-filled carrot could lowers risk of osteoporosis'
16th January 2008

Scientists have created a genetically-engineered carrot which provides extra calcium.

The team from the Baylor College of Medicine in Texas are hoping that adding the vegetable to a normal diet could help reduce the risk of osteoporosis.

By altering a gene within the vegetable, researchers have enabled calcium to cross more easily over the plant membranes.

They have suggested that the new carrot provides 41 per cent more calcium than a regular one.

On its own the carrot would not meet the daily requirement of 1,000mg of calcium.

However, if other vegetables are similarly altered than intake could be significantly increased.

"We believe that if this technology is applied to a large number of different fruits and vegetables, that would have an even greater impact on preventing osteoporosis," stated Dr Jay Morris, the study's lead researcher.

Co-researcher Dr Kendal Hirschi added that more research needs to be conducted before the carrot can be made available to consumers.

According to the Osteoporosis Society, one in two women and one in five men aged over 50 and living in the UK will break a bone because of osteoporosis.

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