, , ,

Bone Health a Deep Dive

Bone health and the related supplements are a subject I like to review regularly.  It gives me the opportunity to take a deep dive into the most current research that may be helpful in the prevention and treatment of osteopenia and osteoporosis. 

Common Questions

  • Why are my supplements not reversing my osteoporosis?
  • I am following my doctors recommendations and I am still getting small fractures in the hands, feet or spine.
  • I can’t take the medication my doctor recommended is there a natural approach to healthy aging and healthy bones?

My goal with this blog is to delve deeper in to the triggers and treatments for maintaining and recovering bone health.

Where to Start

Osteopenia and Osteoporosis is now considered a health risk for both men and women.  Understanding the cause may be our best prevention. Here are a few of the common triggers to bone loss.

What to Identify

  • Genetics: We cannot avoid our family genetics.  Clues that you have osteoporosis in your family tree might include: family members susceptible to fracture, changes in the spine or a diagnosis of osteoporosis.  I cannot emphasize enough, Osteoporosis affects both men and women.
  • Protonix: Any medication that alkalizes the stomach to treat heart burn, GERD, or ulcers.  Long term use of these types medications can lead to a reduced absorption of the nutrients necessary to build bone.  Over the counter medications for treatment of heart burn will have the same outcome.  Years of using TUMS as a source of calcium and for heart burn relief can compromise your body’s ability to absorb calcium.
  • Hormone Issues:  Hormone replacement therapy served to offset the symptoms of menopause and help to prevent osteoporosis.   With our more current understanding of the side affects of HRT, this approach is being abandoned. For women and men normal hormonal changes that occur as a part of aging contributes to bone loss and a reduction of bone repair.  Hormonal changes that occur with metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and cancer treatments will also contribute to bone loss.
  • Chronic Auto-immune Health conditions: such as asthma, lupus, cancer, and a whole host of disorders that necessitate the use of steroidal anti-inflammatory medications may also contribute to bone loss.  Men are equally susceptible to bone loss with the use of steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Exercise:  Working at a computer 8 hours a day, injuries, and health issues that reduce or prohibit normal weight bearing exercise will contribute to bone health changes.

What you need to know if you have Osteopenia or Osteoporosis

As I mentioned earlier, rebuilding bone requires a strategy designed to address the underlying cause of your bone loss.  Whether you are self treating or deciding to go with professional help in creating a plan here are the 5 need to know components.

  1.  Good Quality Supplements are vital. This is one area where the quality of a supplement matters.  Taking Calcium, magnesium and the co-factors necessary to build bone in the forms your body can USE will mean better results.
  2. Exercise and Bone health Studies show that bone density is related to exercise.  Types and frequency does matter.  Any type of exercise will improve bone density but resistance training has shown better results in re-mineralizing the bone.
  3. Hormones:  Our hormones contribute to bone health.  Estrogen helps the bone building cells, Progesterone slows the break down of bone cells, Thyroxine also supports the bone building cells, hypothyroid manages the calcium in the blood and bone. 
  4. Blood Sugar: Blood sugar impacts our hormonal balance, therefore having healthy balanced blood sugar will support healthy hormones and finally healthy bones.
  5. Reducing or eliminating medications that contribute to osteoporosis.  That isn’t possible? Address all of the other components you have control over.

More on Monitoring

  • Monitoring:  Dexa Scans are great when the bone loss becomes significant enough to measure. They do not capture the beginning of the process.  Remember that we are losing and building bone daily.  Bone is our bodies primary storage unit for calcium. Calcium and magnesium are necessary for our muscles function, (when out of balance we get cramping).  Any predisposing health condition, medications, or dietary insufficiency can create the environment where the calcium is not returned to the matrix of the bone.
  • Whether preventing osteoporosis or rebuilding bone there is testing available that is not invasive and inexpensive allowing you to monitor your bone turn over.  With the measurement of bone turnover we are able to verify that our diet, nutrition, and exercise are all working together in building healthy bones.
  • See my video on the bone turnover technology by following the link below.
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ue2ni8B6zbc

Information on Bone Health Vitamins

Calcium

Best source: Calcium citrate, malate, galactate  Microcrystaline hydroxyapatite creates the hardness or the bone structure.

Vitamin D

Needed for calcium absorption

Vitamin K

Supports bone mineralization; may have synergistic effect with vitamin D

Magnesium

Structural component of bone, necessary for calcium absorption.

Fluoride

Structural component of bone

Omega-3 fatty acids

Reduces inflammation that may interfere with osteoblast function

In Closing

Success will be determined by doing all of the following as a part of a program.

  1. Knowing your genetics.
  2. Identifying health issues and medication that may trigger loss of bone.
  3. Eat healthy, manage your blood sugar, and maintain healthy hormonal balance for your age.
  4. Choose the best quality vitamins you can afford.
  5. Hiking and weights are great, but walking, swimming, yoga and your favorite activity will make a difference.

Need help with a program, testing or the best calcium to buy?  contact me today for an appointment.