Table of Contents > Interactions & Depletions > Corticosteroids Print



Corticosteroids/Nutrient Depletion:
  • CalciumCalcium: Based on human evidence, use of corticosteroids may cause osteoporosis and calcium depletion with short-term administration (6969728). Theoretically, this calcium depletion may create a greater need for both supplemental calcium and vitamin D, which is necessary for calcium absorption.
  • ChromiumChromium: Human evidence suggests that corticosteroids may increase urinary chromium excretion and therefore lead to chromium deficiency or corticosteroid-induced hyperglycemia (10229312).
  • DHEADHEA: Based on human evidence, inhaled budesonide decreased serum dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) concentrations (15132725). Dexamethasone appears to decrease dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) concentrations in both healthy and depressed participants (4278727). Compared to placebo, dexamethasone reduced DHEAS in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (14998946).
  • FolateFolate: Reduced serum folate levels have been noted in people with multiple sclerosis after treatment with methylprednisolone sodium succinate (Solu-Medrol®) (8326337). Clinical significance is currently lacking.
  • IronIron: Based on animal evidence, iron levels were not affected with dexamethasone use (16170222).
  • MagnesiumMagnesium: According to human study, chronic use of corticosteroids increased urinary magnesium excretion in children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (9876475).
  • MelatoninMelatonin: A controlled trial found that a single dose of the synthetic corticosteroid dexamethasone suppressed production of melatonin in healthy volunteers (3404401).
  • PhosphorusPhosphorus: Based on human evidence, corticosteroids may increase urinary phosphorus levels (7963147).
  • PotassiumPotassium: According to secondary sources, oral corticosteroids may increase the urinary loss of potassium. An animal study suggests that mineralocorticoids directly stimulate tubular potassium excretion, while glucocorticoids indirectly stimulate potassium excretion (3921569).
  • SeleniumSelenium: Based on human evidence, high-dose steroid therapy may decrease plasma selenium levels (3437416).
  • StrontiumStrontium:Based on human evidence, patients who use steroids may experience a reduction in strontium absorption (8236070).
  • ZincZinc:Based on animal evidence, zinc levels were not affected by dexamethasone use (16170222).

Copyright © 2011 Natural Standard (

The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.

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