The Good News and The Bad News about Osteoporosis

What do you want to hear first?

Let’s start with the bad news. The International Osteoporosis Foundation states that “Worldwide, osteoporosis causes more than 8.9 million fractures annually, resulting in an osteoporotic fracture every 3 seconds.” In addition, “Osteoporosis is estimated to affect 200 million women worldwide – approximately one-tenth of women aged 60, one-fifth of women aged 70, two-fifths of women aged 80 and two-thirds of women aged 90.”

Yikes. Bone loss is scary!  And so are the increasing risks of falling, bone fractures, chronic pain and the loss of mobility and independence.

So, what is the good news about osteoperosis?

You can prevent and slow down the disease through nutritional changes.

You should avoid eating foods that force your body to extract calcium and other bone-building vitamins, minerals and hormones from the bones to neutralize acidity caused by these foods. As well as, foods that create an imbalance in your gut leading to malabsorption of minerals. These foods may look like the familiar culprits in all sort of diseases:

  • Processed food because they contain lots of sodium and other artificial ingredients
  • Sodas which have been shown to rust off batteries because they are so acidic
  • Refined sugars create an imbalance in your gut
  • Some Grains which release phytic acid
  • Some vegetables which contain high levels of oxalic acid (small amounts of these vegetables are fine)

Ok, so those are the food don’ts, how about the food do’s?

Here are some recommendations for what you can do to help build your bones and prevent further bone loss:

  • Add in foods that contain calcium, Vitamin D and Vitamin K. (I do not recommend cow’s milk for most people because of the lactose and the type of protein in our common cow’s milk here)
  • Kefir, Greek yogurt without sugar
  • Nuts, including Brazil nuts and almonds
  • Green leafy vegetables (mustard greens are an excellent source)
  • Sea Vegetables, including Arame, Kombu, Wakame, Dulse, Agar, Kelp

In addition to adjusting your diet, you can further support your bones by taking a few supplements. Take a high-quality Vitamin D/Vitamin K supplement. Vitamin K helps your body use the Vitamin D.  Many people are already on Calcium supplements, but may not be on a Magnesium supplement which is equally important for bone health. Approximately 80% of the U.S. population tested has been shown to be deficient in magnesium.  

It is important to work with a nutritional counselor when selecting the right vitamins for you.  Andrea Trank is available through FYZICAL’s Metro Office to assist patients. You can email her at ATrank@FyzicalSWFL.com, or simply fill out a FYZICAL First form!