Tricalcium phosphate: benefits, side effects, dosage and interactions (2023)

What is tricalcium phosphate?

Tricalcium phosphateis a supplementary form ofcalciumphosphate used to treat or prevent calcium deficiency. It is also used as a release agent in powdered foods and as an additive in some processed foods to increase calcium levels.

Various forms of calcium supplements are available. Calcium carbonate and calcium acetate are the most common, but tricalcium phosphate is another option. Tricalcium phosphate offers no advantage over other forms of calcium.

Tricalcium phosphate is considered safe as a food additive and dietary supplement. Still, there are some people for whom it has contraindications, and interactions and side effects may occur. This article provides an overview of tricalcium phosphate as a calcium supplement, its potential uses, and its side effects.

Dietary supplements are not regulated like drugs in the United States, meaning the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not approve them for safety and effectiveness before the products are marketed. Whenever possible, choose a supplement that has been tested by a trusted third party such as USP, ConsumerLabs, or NSF.
But even if supplements are third-party tested, that doesn't mean they're safe for everyone or generally effective. Therefore, it's important to talk to your doctor about any supplements you're considering taking and to learn about possible interactions with other supplements or medications.

add facts

  • active ingredients): calcium
  • Alternative(r) Name(n): Tribasisches Calciumphosphat, Kalkknochenphosphat, Calciumphosphat
  • Recommended dose: See Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA); do not exceed more than 500 milligrams (mg) at any one dose
  • safety aspects: No need to take more than the RDA; Avoid exceeding the Tolerable Upper Limit (TLU). Avoid this form of calcium if you have kidney disease.

Use of tricalcium phosphate

The use of dietary supplements should be individualized and reviewed by a healthcare professional, such as a registered dietitian, pharmacist, or healthcare provider. No dietary supplement is intended to treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Tricalcium phosphate is one of many forms of calcium supplements available. Some people take calcium supplements when they aren't getting enough calcium from their diet alone. Calcium supplements have also been shown to help maintain and prevent bone densityosteoporosis.

Tricalcium phosphate is also used as a release agent in powdered foods and as an additive in some processed foods to increase calcium levels.

Tricalcium phosphate: benefits, side effects, dosage and interactions (1)

calcium deficiency

Calcium deficiency can be asymptomatic, but over the years it can lead to reduced bone strength, leading to osteomalacia, or osteoporosis.

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Other signs of calcium deficiency can include:

  • muscle cramps and spasms
  • Tingling in hands and feet
  • memory difficulties
  • Brittle nails and bones

More serious signs of calcium deficiency are:

  • Kidney or brain calcification
  • Depression
  • Cataract
  • heart failure
  • seizures
  • Come

What causes a calcium deficiency?

Calcium deficiency can be caused by too little calcium in the diet or increased calcium loss.

People who don't get enough calcium in their diet are at an increased risk of developing a deficiency. Postmenopausal women are also at higher risk of developing calcium deficiency. That's becauseMenopausedecreasesEstrogenproduction, reducing the amount of calcium the body absorbs and increasing calcium loss.

hypocalcemia(low blood calcium levels) may be related to:

  • Vitamin D or magnesium deficiency
  • Hypoparathyreoidismus
  • Impaired absorption of calcium
  • critical illness
  • Use of medications such as bisphosphonates, cisplatin, and proton pump inhibitors

How do I know if I have a calcium deficiency?

Calcium levels can be measured in the blood. In healthy people, the normal calcium level is between 8.8 and 10.4 milligrams/deciliter (mg/dL).Calcium is bound to albumin. So when the blood albumin level is depleted, the calcium level can falsely appear as depleted.

In some cases, ionized calcium levels are preferred.

Dual X-ray Absorptiometry (DEXA)is a test that assesses bone mineral density, but it can also provide information about a person's calcium status throughout their lifetime.

What are the side effects of tricalcium phosphate?

Tricalcium phosphate supplementation is generally considered safe, but there are some risks and precautions. Sometimes tricalcium phosphate can cause certain side effects, such as:

  • nauseaor vomiting
  • constipation
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Decreased appetite


Pregnant or breastfeeding people and people with certain health problems, such asKidney stonesorparathyroidgland disease, should Talk to your doctor before taking tricalcium phosphate.

people withkidney diseaseshould not use tricalcium phosphate to supplement calcium. They may have trouble getting rid of the extra phosphorus, leading to high levels of phosphorus in the blood (hyperphosphataemia).

Tricalcium phosphate can make it harder for your body to absorb other medications. If you currently take prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) medications, discuss with your doctor how they may interact with tricalcium phosphate.

Dosage: how much tricalcium phosphate should I take?

Calcium is abundant in many common foods, such as dairy products and leafy green vegetables. Most people get enough calcium from a balanced diet.

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The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), or average daily intake needed to meet your nutritional needs for calcium, is expressed in milligrams (mg) per day. It varies by age and whether someone is postmenopausal:

  • Infants (0 to 6 months) need 200 milligrams/day
  • Infants (7 to 12 months) need 260 milligrams/day
  • Infants (1 to 3 years) need 700 milligrams/day
  • Children (4 to 8 years) need 1,000 milligrams/day
  • Children and adolescents (9 to 18 years) need 1,300 milligrams/day
  • Adults (19 to 50 years) need 1,000 milligrams/day
  • Adults (51 to 70 years) need 1,200 milligrams/day
  • Adults over the age of 70 require 1,200 milligrams/day

Your body adjusts the amount of calcium it absorbs based on the amount ingested. For example, if you eat 200 milligrams of calcium, your body absorbs about 45%. However, if you consume 2,000 milligrams of calcium, absorption can drop to 15% because the amount is more than you need.

Your body cannot absorb more than 500 milligrams of calcium at a time.Therefore, you should not take more than this amount at a time. You can spread your dosage amounts throughout the day.

If you are considering supplementing with tricalcium phosphate, remember that you are still getting calcium from the foods you are already consuming. You may want to speak to your doctor or pharmacist to determine what dosage is right for you.

What happens if I take too much tricalcium phosphate?

If you take too much calcium in supplement form, you may experience side effects such as gas, bloating, or constipation.

Taking too much tricalcium phosphate can lead to hypercalcemia or increase your risk of developing kidney stones or possibly a cardiovascular event like a heart attack.


Calcium supplements have the potential to interact with some medications, making it harder for your body to absorb the calcium or medication you are taking. You should take your supplements separately from these medications.

If you currently take prescription or over-the-counter medications, discuss with your doctor how they may interact with tricalcium phosphate.

Some medications that may interact with tricalcium phosphate include:

  • Certain diuretics, such as loop diuretics (eg, furosemide) and thiazide diuretics (eg, hydrochlorothiazide)
  • Antacids: Some popular OTC antacids are calcium carbonate and should be counted towards your total calcium intake. For example, TUMS and Rolaids provide calcium.
  • Quinolone antibiotics such as Cipro (ciprofloxacin): It is recommended that you take the antibiotic two hours before or after your calcium supplement.
  • Synthroid (Levothyroxin)
  • Tivicay (dolutegravir)
  • Lithobid (Lithium)

How to store tricalcium phosphate

All dietary supplements should be kept out of the reach of children and pets to prevent accidental consumption. Tricalcium phosphate should also be stored at room temperature (between 68 F and 77 F) and away from heat and moisture.

Similar additions

calcium carbonate and calcium acetate areother forms of calcium supplements. Other forms include calcium sulfate, ascorbate, microcrystalline hydroxyapatite, gluconate, and lactate.

These forms differ in the amount of elemental calcium they contain. In general, tricalcium phosphate offers no advantages over the other forms of calcium.

Tricalcium phosphate is sometimes referred to as tribasic calcium phosphate, calcareous bone phosphate, or calcium phosphate.

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frequently asked Questions

  • Is Tricalcium Phosphate Bad For You?

    Tricalcium phosphate is a common food additive and is also used as a dietary supplement. It is considered safe for human consumption.

    Individuals considering the use of tricalcium phosphate should discuss it with their doctor. Certain diseases are contraindicated. For example, if you have kidney stones or kidney disease or parathyroid disease, you may not be able to take tricalcium phosphate.

    Some medications and dietary supplements should not be taken with tricalcium phosphate. For example, antacids, diuretics, and certain antibiotics can interact with calcium supplements.

  • How does tricalcium phosphate compare to other calcium supplements?

    Elemental calcium is the amount of calcium that is released during digestion and becomes available for absorption. Calcium phosphate and calcium carbonate have the highest concentration of elemental calcium at 40%. This is followed by calcium citrate at 21%, calcium lactate at 13% and calcium gluconate at 9%.

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    It is best to consult with your doctor to determine which form of calcium supplementation is right for you. Discuss your diet, existing health conditions, and medications when evaluating tricalcium phosphate. The best way to get enough calcium is to eat foods that contain calcium.

Sources of tricalcium phosphate and what to look for

Calcium is abundant in dairy products. Tricalcium phosphate is also found in calcium-fortified foods and household products like baby powder and toothpaste. Antacids also contain calcium. Tricalcium phosphate is also available as a dietary supplement.

If you need calcium supplementation, discuss with your doctor the type of supplement and dosage that is right for you.

food sources

Calcium-rich foods include:

  • Dairy products such as milk, cheese, cottage cheese, cream cheese and yogurt
  • Orange juice fortified with calcium
  • Soy products such as soy milk and tofu
  • Fish, like salmon and sardines
  • Green vegetables like broccoli, kale, spinach, and turnip greens

Additionally, tricalcium phosphate is a food additive used to prevent powdered foods (like powdered milk or non-dairy cream) from clumping.It can also be found in baby powder, toothpaste, and antacids. As an additive, it is odorless and tasteless.

Tricalcium Phosphate Supplements

Calcium phosphate is generally considered safe when manufactured using good manufacturing practices.

Tricalcium phosphate supplements are best taken with food and a full glass of water.

Some calcium supplements are combined with other vitamins and minerals. They are often combined with vitamin D or magnesium. Be sure to read labels carefully to see if the supplement you are considering contains other nutrients.

Tricalcium phosphate is vegan unless derived from dolomite, oyster shells, or bone meal. Aside from not being vegan, supplements made from these ingredients can contain high levels of lead and other metals.Finding supplements that are third-party tested can help avoid supplements that may be contaminated with other metals.

Read the label carefully, especially if you have allergies or sensitivities, to determine the source of the ingredients and to determine if the supplement you are considering is allergen-free. In addition, the supplement label should list the amount of elemental calcium.

Be wary of supplements that make unsubstantiated claims. No nutritional supplement should claim to treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


Tricalcium phosphate is just one of many forms of calcium supplements available. It is commonly used as a food additive, but can also be taken as a dietary supplement. Supplementation is necessary for some people who cannot get enough calcium from their diet. In general, however, it's best to get your calcium through your diet.

if you needCalcium Supplements, discuss with your doctor which form and dosage is best for you.

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