In this episode, we discuss:

  • The definition of and the difference between osteopenia plus osteoporosis
  • Whether calcium supplements actually work
  • The risks associated with calcium supplements, including heart disease, cancer, kidney stones, and more
  • Which nutrients influence and regulate calcium metabolism, including vitamins D and K2, collagen, magnesium, and silica
  • Other considerations for bone health, which includes inflammation, gluten intolerance, the gut microbiota, weight-bearing exercise, stress, smoking, and excessive drinking
  • How to prevent osteopenia plus osteoporosis and improve bone tissue mineral density naturally

Show notes:

Hey, everyone, Chris Kresser here. Welcome to another episode of Revolution Health Radio . Recent estimates suggest that almost 50 million Americans now suffer [from] osteopenia or mild bone loss. In postmenopausal women, the particular numbers are even higher. About 54 percent of women in that will demographic have osteopenia, plus an additional 30 percent have osteoporosis, which is more significant bone reduction. By age 80, that trend predictably shifts in favor associated with osteoporosis, with 27 percent of girls along with osteopenia and 70 % of ladies with osteoporosis.

Despite this, there are no good treatments for osteopenia or osteoporosis in conventional medicine, and fractures are one of the leading causes of premature death inside seniors. There’s a saying in medication, “break your hip, die of pneumonia. ” This means that will, in the elderly, a fracture can often lead to prolonged time within a hospital bed, where fluid can pool in the lungs, cause pneumonia, and then cause death in people who are susceptible. Making matters worse, there are so many myths plus misconceptions about how to avoid and treat bone loss. For example , you’ve probably heard that taking calcium supplements is important for maintaining healthy bones. It turns out that supplemental calcium mineral not only doesn’t prevent bone fragments loss, [but] it may [also] increase the risk of heart disease, calcium oxalate stone(s), and other problems. Within this podcast, I’m going to set the record straight on what causes osteopenia and osteoporosis and tell you how to prevent bone reduction naturally without drugs. Ready? Let’s dive in.

What Are Osteopenia and Osteoporosis?

Let’s start along with a definition of terms. Osteopenia refers to a decrease in bone mineral denseness below normal reference values, yet not low enough to meet the particular diagnostic criteria for brittle bones. Clinicians assess bone mineral density using a T score, which is a numerical value determined by a bone scan. A T score of negative one to unfavorable 2 . 5 suggests osteopenia, whereas a score below negative 2. 5 indicates osteoporosis. Bone mineral thickness increases from birth plus usually peaks during early adulthood. Women typically reach 95 percent of their maximum bone density by age group 17, and men get to that level by age 21. After age thirty, there’s the gradual plus natural bone tissue mass reduction that takes place over the ensuing decades in later life. In mainstream medicine, scientists recognize that both genetics and lifestyle factors play a role inside determining how fast that will bone mass reduction occurs. But the particular focus seems to overwhelmingly be on the impact of a single nutrient, calcium, rather than acknowledging some other crucial aspects like overall diet quality and nutrient status, hormone balance, weight-bearing exercise, plus body bulk.

I’m likely to start simply by debunking the myth that calcium supplementation is beneficial with regard to preventing age-associated bone loss. Then I’ll talk about additional factors that are important regarding maintaining bone fragments health and even reversing osteopenia and osteoporosis once those processes possess begun. Calcium metabolism is undoubtedly critical. But there’s been too much focus on calcium itself, which has led to high-dose calcium supplementation that’s not just ineffective but harmful. You can check out my article “ Why You Should Think Twice About Taking Calcium Supplements ” for more detailed information. You can Google it, or even I’ll link to it within the show information. But I want to summarize some of the findings.

Do Calcium Dietary supplements Work?

The [2015] analysis found that will consuming the high amount of calcium supplement beyond recommended dietary guidelines, typically through supplementation, provided no benefit for hip or lumbar vertebral bone mineral denseness in older adults. A 2007 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that supplements don’t reduce fracture rates in postmenopausal women and may even increase the rate of hip fractures.

Are Calcium Supplements Safe?

Beyond being ineffective for bone tissue health, standard calcium supplements are associated with some pretty serious health risks. A 2012 study of 24, 000 men plus women aged 35 in order to 64 years, published within the [ British Medical Journal ]( BMJ ), found that all those who used calcium supplements had a nearly 140 % greater danger of heart attack during the particular 11-year research period, while intake associated with calcium from food did not boost the risk. The meta-analysis of studies involving more than 12, 500 people also published in BMJ discovered that calcium supplements supplementation increases the risk of myocardial infarction by 31 percent, stroke by 20 percent, and death through all causes by 9 percent. And finally, an evaluation involving 12, 000 men published in JAMA Internal Medicine found out that intakes of over 1000 milligrams of supplemental calcium per day from multivitamins or individual supplements [were] associated with a 20 percent increase in the danger of dying from cardiovascular disease.

But there are other risks, too. Daily supplements of calcium at 1000 milligrams, that is a typical dose, is related to increased prostate cancer risk and an increase in kidney stones. A recent Swedish study reported a 40 percent higher risk associated with death among women along with high calcium mineral intakes [of] 1400 milligrams and above, and a 157 percent higher risk of death within those women [who] were taking the 500 milligram calcium supplement daily. Those rates were compared to ladies with moderate daily calcium supplement intakes among 600 plus 1000 milligrams.

Nutrients that Influence Bone tissue Health

To really improve our bone health, we have got to look beyond calcium supplements as an isolated chemical. It’s essential to understand that many nutrition influence and regulate calcium metabolism. The most important are vitamin D, vitamin K2, magnesium (mg), silica, plus collagen. Vitamin D raises calcium absorption and supports calcium metabolism. Vitamin K2 ensures the calcium gets into the bones and teeth and stays out associated with soft tissue. Magnesium will be required intended for calcium assimilation and utilization, and magnesium deficiency leads to calcium deficiency and hyperparathyroidism, which furthermore affects calcium mineral levels. Silica is the particular third most abundant trace mineral inside the body after iron and zinc. It assists calcium and magnesium metabolic process. Collagen is usually one of the majority of abundant proteins naturally found in the entire body and provides strength and stability to connective tissues. Collagen production is definitely integral to get healthy skin, hair, nails, and bone fragments.

Both collagen and silica assist new bone formation by stimulating osteoblasts or bone-building cells. Collagen plus silica also prevent bone fragments breakdown by inhibiting osteoclasts, our bone-resorbing cells, which try to break down bone tissue and release minerals required pertaining to strong bone fragments into the rest of the body. One study indicated that daily silica consumption improved bone tissue mineral thickness of participants, with a group who consumed 40 milligrams recording a bone nutrient density that was 10 percent higher compared to participants who consumed 14 milligrams associated with silica regular. Recent research has also suggested a role meant for several B vitamins, especially B2, B6, folate, plus B12, and vitamins C and E in bone fragments health. Tocotrienols , the recently discovered form of vitamin E, are usually especially beneficial. They dampen inflammation and prevent oxidative stress, both of which are primary drivers of bone loss. Medical trials have got shown that will tocotrienols decrease bone resorption and boost bone turnover rate. Tocotrienols also improve osteoblast numbers, bone development, mineral deposition, and bone tissue microarchitecture. It’s worth noting that alpha-tocopherol, the most common form of vitamin Electronic that you typically find in supplements plus multivitamins, may have harmful bone formation effects. So , if you’re going to supplement with supplement E, it should be in the particular tocotrienol form.

Other Factors that Affect Bone fragments Wellness

Nutrients are crucial for bone fragments health, and I would argue probably the most important factor that prevents bone reduction and may reverse it once it’s started. But additional factors beyond diet and nutrition. One is inflammation. Several different inflammatory cytokines have been implicated in the particular development of brittle bones. Certain pro-inflammatory cytokines play critical roles both in the normal bone remodeling process and within the pathogenesis of perimenopausal and late-life osteoporosis. Studies have shown that osteoporosis is much more common in people with chronic inflammatory conditions like Crohn’s disease or even ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and Hashimoto’s [disease]. High levels of C-reactive protein, a good inflammatory marker, are connected with low T scores and poor bone mineral density. Given all associated with this, some scientists have argued that will osteoporosis should be classified as an immunological disorder. In fact, they’ve even coined a term designed for the impact of swelling on the particular aging process, “inflammaging. ” And one of the biggest impacts of inflammation is upon bone nutrient density. So if you’re struggling with osteopenia or osteoporosis, you have to check just for inflammation plus sources of irritation and address that to really make significant progress.

Another factor, speaking of inflammation, can be gluten intolerance. For people who possess an immune response in order to gluten, including those with celiac disease, strictly avoiding gluten is essential for the purpose of preventing osteopenia and osteoporosis. One of the biggest reasons for this is that consuming gluten when you have an intolerance to this triggers inflammation. For people with celiac disease and non-celiac gluten intolerance, every time they eat gluten, they are triggering an immune response that leads to systemic swelling. It should come as no surprise that a decrease in bone density is one of the first symptoms of celiac disease, actually in otherwise asymptomatic patients. In various other words, some patients who have celiac or even non-celiac gluten intolerance will eat gluten and [not] get the telltale gut symptoms that other individuals do. For them, bone tissue loss or a decrease inside bone density is among the 1st predictable symptoms that can be objectively observed. Yet the good news is that those who have reduced bone fragments mineral density from previously undiagnosed plus untreated celiac disease or gluten intolerance can significantly improve their bone power simply by following a gluten-free diet.

Another factor is the gut–bone axis . Studies have shown that there is an association between the gut microbiota and bone wellness. Bone complications are often seen in people with gastrointestinal disorders, as I just mentioned. Gut plus systemic inflammation are also related with increased production associated with cytokines which are key contributors to bone loss. Immune cells that are activated simply by microbes in the gut can migrate to the bone and directly regulate bone remodeling via osteoclast-inducing factor, RANKL, and other bone-active molecules. Increased levels of activated innate defense cells have been shown in order to increase expression from the signaling molecule [tumor necrosis factor alpha] (TNF alpha) within the bone tissue marrow, plus TNF alpha stimulates stem cells in the bone fragments marrow to differentiate into osteoclasts. This particular tips the normal balance of bone resorption information, resulting in higher amounts of bone breakdown and lower bone denseness. Disruption of the gut microbiota can considerably reduce intake of the particular nutrients that are critical for bone health. This is certainly a double whammy effect, where the mechanisms We just described directly decrease bone vitamin density, but then these stomach issues furthermore lead in order to lower amounts of the particular nutrients that will we know contribute to bone wellness. In addition to reducing absorption and metabolism associated with bone-friendly nutrients, microbes themselves also synthesize some of these nutrition, which include thiamine ([vitamin] B1), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), biotin (B7), folate (B9), pyridoxal phosphate (B6), and vitamin K2.

Osteoporosis is a major public health threat for an estimated 44 million People in america, or to get more than half of those age group 50 or even older, making prevention plus treatment an important topic for people of all ages. Learn how you may take a natural approach in order to preventing bone loss as you age in this episode of Revolution Health Radio. #chriskresser #osteoporosis #osteopenia

An additional crucial element for bone tissue health, which usually you’ve probably heard of, will be weight-bearing workout. Doing the right type and amount of physical activity on a regular basis is just as important to keeping healthy our bones as nourishment, reducing irritation, [and] sustaining our belly health. Plus the best type associated with exercise for bone strength, by far, is usually lifting heavy weights. The stress we put on our bone tissues during weightlifting stimulates the bone redesigning process, plus doing weight training a few times the week has been shown to significantly increase bone fragments mineral thickness, especially in postmenopausal females.

Sleep is definitely another essential aspect. It’s not really only important for general health and wellness, but it actually directly impacts bone density through the hormonal effects of melatonin, the particular primary body hormone secreted during sleep. Melatonin affects the actions of osteoblasts and osteoclasts, interacts with other hormones like estrogen to augment bone renovating, and functions as a potent antioxidant, protecting bone tissues from oxidative stress and inflammation.

Speaking of stress, stress ranges can straight impact your own bone wellness. It’s well known that the long-term use of corticosteroid medications, which suppress cortisol levels, cause bone loss and can lead to brittle bones. But high cortisol from stress could also result in similar effects on bone tissue density. Cortisol indirectly acts on bone fragments by blocking calcium absorption, which decreases bone cell growth, and even a short bout associated with elevated cortisol may cause a reduction in bone mass. Several studies suggest that high cortisol may lead to decreased bone mineral density. Since cortisol can be the primary stress junk, the best way to keep cortisol levels inside an appropriate range is to practice regular stress management.

And finally, I’m most likely preaching in order to the choir here, but it is important to remember that each cigarette smoking and excess alcohol consumption have got been linked to reduced bone mineral density. If you are smoking cigarettes or are usually regularly consuming in excess, stopping individuals habits while soon as possible should be the number one priority for keeping your bones healthy.

Preventing and Treating Osteopenia plus Osteoporosis Naturally

Okay, so let’s put all of this together into an approach that you can make use of to normally improve your bone tissue mineral denseness. Step one would be to get because much calcium supplement as a person can through [your] diet plan rather than supplements. A person really have to consider bioavailability here, which is the amount of a given nutrient that will we can actually absorb and utilize. If you look at the quantity of calcium within spinach on paper, it looks pretty great. But all of us only absorb about five percent from the calcium that we consume in spinach because of the presence of the compound called oxalic acidity that inhibits calcium assimilation. Conversely, along with dairy products, the bioavailability of calcium is a little over 30 percent, therefore roughly six times increased than it is in spinach. To get the same amount of bioavailable calcium supplements that you get in an eight ounce glass associated with milk, you’d have in order to consume eight cups of spinach. That’s a huge difference, and it is really something you need to be aware of when it comes to getting calcium from food.

Cruciferous vegetables are good source[s] of calcium, as well as the calcium is fairly bioavailable within those foods because these people don’t have the lot associated with oxalic acid solution. Canned, bone-in fish like sardines or salmon, exactly where the bones are soft and you are able to consume them, are a great source of calcium, as well. That’s possibly one of the main ways our ancestors got calcium mineral in addition to eating meat upon the bone tissues. Dark, leafy greens like spinach, which I just pointed out, are relatively high in calcium on paper, but they contain oxalic acid plus, for that reason, are not great causes of calcium. Seeds, like poppy and sesame, and almonds are decent sources of calcium, yet the bioavailability is lower in these foods compared to it really is with regard to dairy products or even bone-in fish or cruciferous vegetables. But there are other nutrients, as we discussed, that will are important for bone health, like supplement[s] C, D, E, K2, [and] W vitamins, magnesium (mg), collagen, and silica. And the best way to ensure that you’re getting sufficient of these is a nutrient-dense, whole foods diet with plenty of animal products, seafood, fruits plus vegetables, eggs, dairy items if you tolerate them, nuts and seeds, and tubers. Eating the broad variety of those food items will be a good starting place for making sure you’re finding all those some other nutrients. Organ meats, within the category of animal products, are the particular highest resource of many of those nutrients that I just described.

Of course, we also want to focus on our own gut wellness because associated with the gut–bone axis that people discussed. Consuming plenty of fermentable fibers that nourish and feed our stomach microbiota, [eating] fermented meals [that] contain probiotics, drinking bone broth, etc ., are [all] really important steps you can take to enhance your belly health. If you require more support here, check out the website, ChrisKresser. com , [where] we’ve got a free eBook on tum health that can point a person in the right direction.

Another factor is physical exercise, which we all discussed. Lifting weights, in particular, is actually important. I recommend this for all of our patients, men or women, especially as they get old. I think preserving muscle mass and doing weight-bearing exercise, whether that’s weightlifting or some thing else, are usually two of the most important things we can do to make sure that we age well and reduce the particular risk associated with [age-related] diseases, including osteopenia and osteoporosis. Managing stress is critical because of the relationship in between cortisol plus bone health that individuals talked about. The fact is, we live in a very stressful world, and this is the challenge for most of us. If you go to my website or Google Chris Kresser and stress, you’ll find a bunch of articles that possess some really practical suggestions for getting you started [with that].

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And then, getting enough sleep. This is the particular elephant within the room in the modern globe. I’ve come to believe that sleep deprivation is probably the number one cause of a lot of modern chronic illnesses at this point, also in front of diet plan. You may survive regarding pretty long on a poor diet. You won’t feel well [and] you won’t perform optimally, but you can survive. If you’re sleeping fewer than four hours a night intended for an extended period, you’re going in order to fall apart very quickly. I’m concerned about how typical sleep deprivation has become plus the effect that’s having on our wellness, not just with bone reduction, but fairly much each modern persistent condition. So I actually can’t emphasize enough the importance of getting seven to 8 hours associated with sleep [each] night. I’ve written and spoken a lot about this particular elsewhere . You can Search engines Chris Kresser and sleep and get lots of really actionable plus practical tips on how to do that will. But you have got to make it a priority. That’s something that you have to do upon your own. You have to commit to [it] and a person have to commit in order to making time for this. Once you perform, there are a lot of points you can do from a diet, lifestyle, and behavior perspective to improve your rest.

Last but not least is smart supplementation. It’s simply no longer possible to meet all of our source of nourishment [needs] through food, sadly, but supplements can help close the gap. This is the main reason which i created the particular Core Plus bundle from Adapt Naturals . It has numerous benefits for bone fragments health. Bio-Avail Multi , which is certainly our essential multivitamin, multimineral, and phytonutrient blend, meets or exceeds the [Recommended Dietary Allowance] (RDA) in nutrients that will support bone health such as vitamin Chemical, [vitamin] Deb, magnesium, and silica. It has a full spectrum [vitamin] K2 blend with MK-4, MK-6, MK-7, [and] MK-9. It contains a very lower dose of calcium, only 50 milligrams. Therefore , nowhere near those people higher doses of 500 milligrams to 1000 milligrams that cause the issues linked with calcium supplement supplementation. Bio-Avail Organ is a rich source of B vitamins like B2, B6, folate, and B12, [which] we now know are important to bone tissue health. It is a blend of five organs—liver, coronary heart, kidney, pancreas, and spleen—which are 5 of the 10 most nutrient-dense foods that we may eat. It’s also the good supply of collagen. Bio-Avail E+ provides 300 milligrams associated with delta- plus gamma-tocotrienols. I actually talked earlier in the show regarding the exciting benefits of tocotrienols to get bone health. Unlike tocopherols, which are the particular more common form associated with e vitamin that will most people are supplementing along with, tocotrienols are certainly not associated with a higher risk of cancer or even heart problems more than the long term. Bio-Avail Myco contains mushrooms that have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant results. As we discussed, inflammation and oxidative stress are primary motorists of bone fragments health. They’re also a rich supply of beta-glucan, which is an unique soluble fiber with numerous benefits pertaining to gut wellness, and it improves the gut–bone axis. Correctly demonstrated that mushroom extracts through reishi, turkey tail, maitake, and shiitake decrease bone resorption plus improve bone tissue formation. Mushrooms are also a good way to obtain the important nutrients that support bone fragments health. Finally, Bio-Avail Mag has three hundred milligrams associated with buffered magnesium chelate, which usually is the highly bioavailable type of magnesium (mg). This is important due to the fact a recent study recommended that many Americans are usually falling 200 to 300 milligrams per day short of magnesium. So Bio-Avail Magazine can help close this gap, and, as we know, magnesium is critical meant for bone health.

With the Core Plus bundle, you also get the Primary Reset program. This is an app that will certainly help you dial in your diet, physical activity, tension management, plus other way of life factors. They have recipes, meal plans, shopping lists, guided audio and video movement practices, and stress management and meditation methods. It has a 28-day Kickstart Program to help you get almost all this stuff dialed within and make sure that you’re doing all the particular diet and lifestyle items right so that a person can create that solid foundation for good bone wellness. And the great thing about the Core Reset app is that will it’s offered at no additional charge when you order the Primary Plus bundle. You can go to AdaptNaturals. com in order to learn more and obtain began.

I hope you enjoyed this particular show. Osteopenia and osteoporosis are much a lot more preventable than conventional medication would have us believe. And it’s actually important to do that because, as I mentioned [at] the beginning of the particular show, fractures are 1 of the leading causes of age-associated early mortality or early death. This just makes so a lot sense to do everything we can to prevent this because, speaking personally, I want in order to be active and continue to do all the particular things that I enjoy well into the older many years. And maintaining healthy bones and adequate muscle mass are the two most important issues to create that feasible. So We hope this was helpful, and I actually will talk to a person next period.

This episode of Revolution Wellness Radio is sponsored by Paleovalley plus Ava Jane’s Kitchen Colima Salt.

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