Saturday, September 19, 2009

Strengthen your bones

Many people pay no attention to their bones .Studies show that many women don’t take supplements since twice as many women as men are affected by bone loss.. We know that stress depletes the nutrients our bodies need to heal and grow so women today who are stressed juggling work and family can be drastically affected. Studies have shown that 70% of bone mass is genetically determined, while 30% is based on environment.
From childhood to age 35 bones are building, but after 35 bone mass begins to decrease. Here are 8 building blocks to help you build stronger bones and halt bone loss.

1. Do Eliminate
Don’t eat foods that pull calcium and nutrients out of bones: avoid sugar, alcohol, caffeine and high protein (red meat) diets encourage mineral loss, usually in the urine. Low calorie weight loss diets, antacids and digestive disturbances lead to trace mineral malabsorption. Foods high in phosphorus such as carbonated soft drinks promote bone loss.

2. Do modify your diet
Bones are living tissue and need a healthy diet to grow. Eating raw veggies, especially leafy greens like kale, collards and lettuce, fresh fruit, raw nuts and seeds; tofu, fresh water fish (sardines and salmon with the bones) and low fat dairy products provide a wealth of vitamins and minerals for a strong foundation. .

3. Do exercise
Nothing replaces weight bearing exercise. Unless bones are challenged, no amount of calcium or remedy can change bone density. Exercising 20-60 minutes, three times per week with a brisk walk, aerobics, jogging, bouncing on a mini- trampoline or racquet sports will help strengthen bones. Consult a chiropractor, physiotherapist or personal trainer for other beneficial exercises..

4. Do take calcium with magnesium
Calcium needs to be replaced daily. Take an absorbable microcrystalline calcium supplement such as hydroxyapatite (MCHA) or calcium citrate, bound with magnesium in a 2:1 ratio. Taking calcium alone can result in kidney and/or gall stones.

5. Do include other important nutrients
Bone health depends on many interactive nutrients. Minerals such as zinc, boron, chromium, silica from horsetail extract or silicon and vanadium are important additions to your daily multi-vitamin and mineral supplement. Vitamin D is necessary for absorption, it draws calcium from the blood into the bones. Cold water fish (salmon, tuna, halibut), eggs, fortified dairy, soy products and sunlight are excellent sources. Vitamin C enhances calcium assimilation into the body. Vitamin K is important for bone metabolism to prevent bone loss. It’s found in dark green leafy vegetables: broccoli, kale and organic Tanabata Japanese Green Tea. A combination of Vitamin B6, folic acid and Vitamin B12 protects the body against homocysteine build up known to interfere with collagen formation an integral part of bone development.

6. Do balance hormones
Dr. John Lee found that natural progesterone helped his patients increase bone density by an average of 15.4%. Some alternative options to hormone replacement therapy are to eat phyto-estrogenic foods such as soya, brown rice, legumes, whole grains, papaya, clover, alfalfa. Try herbal remedies such as panax ginseng, black cohosh, or ipriflavone (an isoflavone-bioflavinoid derived from soy) for naturally occurring estrogen. Topically applied natural progesterone cream (3%) has been shown to balance hormones to achieve positive bone mass increase. Discuss the pros and cons with a health practitioner.

7. Do aid digestion
Adequate levels of stomach acid (HCL) are critical for mineral absorption, and is often low in women. Supplementing with betaine HCL, the bitter herb gentian or plant enzymes taken with meals, can improve intestinal absorption of all nutrients.

8. Do get advice
Consult a knowledgeable expert for correct dosages for your body, ask questions and get the information you need. It can mean the difference between bones and teeth that are supportive, or a crumbling foundation. Start early, it’s never too late to halt or reverse bone loss. The choice is yours. Support your body NOW and it will support you the rest of your life.

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