Maintaining Healthy Bones
Holistic Health: With all of the alarming news recently
about the dangerous side effects of antiosteoporosis
drugs like Premarin and Fosamax many shoppers are turning
to natural health pathways as a means of preserving
healthy bones. Indeed, a natural approach to preventing
osteoporosis is one of the single most intelligent and
health-oriented strategies women and, yes, men too can
Fortunately, the health benefits of a natural approach
for preventing bone loss go well beyond your skeleton.
By following our simple guide, you will also reduce
your risk of colon cancer and heart disease, and enjoy
improved sleep and even anti-aging effects.
Maintaining Healthy Bones
A simplified natural approach to preventing bone loss
includes three major areas of concern: diet, supplementation,
and exercise. Adequate calcium intake is critical to
preventing bone loss. The National Academy of Sciences
and the National Osteoporosis Foundation recommend daily
calcium intakes of 1,000 to 1,200 milligrams per day
for adult men and women. Although food is the best source
of calcium (see next page), most Americans do not receive
enough calcium in their diets, according to both groups.
If you are unable to get enough calcium through your
diet, they both recommend calcium supplements. However,
since there are several different types of calcium and
a variety of supplements available, you should know
how to choose the best kind.
One common myth about calcium supplements is that the
body requires only calcium for strong, healthy bones.
As early as 1993, researchers from the University of
California at San Diego reported that not only is calcium
status critical to bone health but so is intake of vitamin
D, magnesium, copper, manganese, and zinc (as well as
traces of naturally occurring fluoride). According to
their research, published in the Journal of the American
College of Nutrition, several clinical studies have
demonstrated the necessity of trace elements for
optimal bone matrix development and bone density sustenance.
Some experts now believe that the best source of calcium
is a whole food source. Most of us have heard
about the major minerals such as calcium, magnesium,
manganese, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, and so on,
notes Dr. James Chappell, a clinical nutritionist, herbalist,
chiropractic and naturopathic doctor. However,
there are dozens of other minerals known as trace minerals
and even more unknown use minerals. These minerals all
have one thing in common: they are synergistically and
Simply put, they have a profound influence over each
other. An example would be calcium. If you just
take a calcium supplement, regardless of the form (carbonate,
citrate, lactate, gluconate or phosphate), you risk
creating a calcium overload or imbalance, says
Chappell. This will eventually drive zinc down
and out of the body. This not only compromises your
immune system, but will cause copper to rise. Although
copper is a very important mineral, if it rises above
acceptable limits, it becomes toxic. Depression, mood
swings, irritability and mental confusion can all be
consequences of a copper overload or imbalance. Because
women are told by their uninformed doctors to take isolated
calcium to either prevent or treat osteoporosis, we
now have thousands of unsuspecting women seeking additional
treatment for the above symptoms. As indicated, these
symptoms may very well be caused by taking isolated
CORAL MINERALS - NATURES WHOLE FOOD CALCIUM SUPPLEMENT
Most bone health supplements today contain primarily
calcium (often with vitamin D for improved absorption),
but Dr. Chappell has found that patients do best when
given a whole food calcium supplement that contains
trace minerals. The best source for whole food calcium
today, he says, is from coral minerals.
The key in effective nutritional supplementation
is consuming concentrated whole foods, says Dr.
Chappell. In order not to cause an imbalance,
whether by deficiency or overload, all known and unknown
minerals must be taken simultaneously. They must be
organic, bio-available, bio-efficient and ionic. In
other words, your body must be able to absorb and utilize
them. After over 32 years of research and clinical application,
I can unequivocally state fossilized stony coral minerals
from above the sea are absolutely the best whole food,
organic, bioavailable, bio-efficient and ionic mineral
complex I have ever seen. I am not talking about marine
harvested from our current polluted oceans. I am talking
about fossilized stony coral, which has been out of
the ocean for thousands if not millions of years and
is virtually void of all ocean contamination.
Stony corals are sea animals, which include the hydroids,
jellyfish and sea anemones. By secreting a highly mineralized
organic limestone, the stony corals build a housing
of protective cups into which the soft polyp animals
can retreat when disturbed. The organic limestone housing
is processed by the stony coral from all the metallic
and organic minerals available in the ocean. However,
because our oceans are currently contaminated with toxic
chemicals and metals, only above the sea fossilized
stony coral is safe to consume, he adds.
In 1997 at the 44th annual meeting of the Japan Dietetics
Society, results of a study conducted by researchers
at the Tokyo University of Agriculture were presented
that compared four kinds of calcium: natural coral,
calcium carbonate, milk calcium, and cowbone calcium.
After four weeks, measurements of calcium concentrations
in key organs and blood serum were taken. Natural coral
calcium was 69.6 percent better absorbed than the other
types, and, whats more, beneficial high-density
lipoprotein levels were also highest. This means that
coral minerals apparently have a unique and positive
impact on HDLs, the good cholesterol, high levels of
which are associated with reduced risk for heart disease.
At the 52nd annual meeting of the Japanese Society
of Nutrition and Food Science in 1998, results of a
clinical trial to measure changes in bone mineral density
among 157 students (ages 19 to 28) were reported. Although
exercise or calcium alone or a combination of the two
improved bone mineral density, the most profound improvements
were found among those students receiving coral minerals
and exercise (a combination of strength training and
walking). The beauty of coral minerals is that the body
readily accepts them as its own, which is why coral
is a favorite material for medical bone grafts since
it is so readily absorbed into endogenous bone. Coral
minerals are so rich in more than 70 trace minerals,
besides having generous amounts of calcium, that they
are gaining greater and greater popularity as a nutritional
supplement for strong, healthy bones.
EXERCISE IS KEY TO HEALTHY BONES: The final key to
healthy bones is exercise. The Japanese study supports
many other studies that show our bones require us to
use them in order to maintain healthy mineral density.
Unfortunately, in our current sedentary society, most
of us dont exercise enough; yet, a combination
of strength training, walking, and other daily physical
activities can actually make the use of anti-osteoporosis
drugs unnecessary. Most researchers agree that weight
bearing exercise is superior to walking. Be sure to
start off light and work up to heavier weights. The
key is consistency.
Only half an hour a day of weight-bearing exercise
can help prevent bone mineral loss. You will find that
a combination of coral minerals and exercise delivers
excellent bone-building results. In addition, studies
also show that exercise reduces risk of cancer and heart
How to Increase Your Dietary Calcium Intake
One way to increase the amount of calcium in your diet
is to eat calcium rich foods like low-fat milk, cheese,
broccoli and others, according to the National Osteoporosis
Foundation. Many foods are fortified with calcium and
are readily available and affordable. Foods like orange
juice, cereals and breakfast bars have calcium added
to them. Another easy and economical way to boost the
calcium content of many meals is to add nonfat powdered
dry milk to puddings, homemade cookies, breads or muffins,
soups, gravy, casseroles, and even a glass of milk.
A single tablespoon of nonfat powdered dry milk adds
52 mg of calcium, and two to four tablespoons can be
added to most recipes.
YOUR GUIDE TO Osteoporosis Medication Side Effects
The most commonly used anti-osteoporosis drugs have
side effects that you should know about.
Here is a quick review of the most popular drugs and
their side effects.
page 38 & 39 the doctors prescription for
- Hormone Replacement Therapy (e.g., Premarin)Prolonged
use of estrogen or estrogen with progestin (synthetic
progesterone) has been shown to increase risk of breast
cancer, blood clots, and heart disease.
- Biphosphonates (e.g., Fosamax, Boniva, Actonel)The
side effects for alendronate, ibandronate and risedronate
include not only gastrointestinal distress but, in
rare instances, necrosis of the jaw.
- Calcitonin (injectable)Side effects include
nausea, increased urination and bowel movements.
Saltman, P.D. & Strause, L.G. The role of
trace minerals in osteoporosis. Journal of the
American College of Nutrition,
DID YOU KNOW
Onions Can Do More Than Flavor Your Meals?
Research from the University of Bern (Switzerland) demonstrates
that adding only a small amount of onions to meals can
help to prevent bone loss.
Click here in
the Brainerd Lakes Country to go to Spirit Spas &
Cabana Hair Salon for your health supplement needs.