Bone Up

Osteoporosis and osteopaenia are defined as a decrease in bone density with osteopaenia being the early stage of osteoporosis.

Conventional treatment addresses these conditions with drugs to drive calcium into the bone, thereby increasing bone density. What may be overlooked is the fact that our skeleton is actually used by the body as a reserve for a variety of minerals such as magnesium, phosphorus, germanium, selenium etc. Poor bone density may actually be an indicator of low concentrations of these minerals in the blood. This may arise from any of a number of different scenarios.

When we have an excess of these minerals in our blood, our bodies will store them in the bone for use at a later date when there may be a deficiency or higher demand. Decreased bone density is a sign that the body has detected a deficiency of these minerals in the blood and has pulled from the reserves in the bone to compensate. Our body needs these minerals for the completion of a myriad of chemical reactions, the blood is constantly monitored and adjusted to meet the demands of various physiological functions. Low mineral levels will result in an adjustment of absorption from the diet and decrease in excretion through the urine and/or a pulling of reserves from the bone. High blood mineral content will have the opposite effect with a degree of banking of minerals within the bone, thereby resulting in increased density.

Low blood mineral levels may be an indicator of poor diet, poor absorption of nutrients from the gut into the blood, chronic stress or illness. Any regime to correct bone density must consider the underlying cause. Always ensure that problems such as bowel disease, anxiety, depression, hypertension, poor appetite and hormonal imbalances are addressed while taking any treatment to increase bone density. There are a number of herbs that may be used to benefit skeletal health. The Chinese pharmacy offers Liu Wei Di Huan wan to address chronic stress, Tian Wang Bu Xin Dan for anxiety or Ma Zi Ren wan for chronic constipation. Western herbs may include Ribies nigrum or Tilia tomentosa for support of adrenal function and stress, Cratagus oxycantha for hypertension or Vaccinum vitis idaea to improve intestinal absorption of nutrients from the diet. A high quality natural source of minerals should also be incorporated into any regime. An excellent source of easily absorbed minerals is Algae calcareous.