What does calcium really do? Do you really need 1500mg a day for strong bones? What about all the other nutrients that are needed for strong bones to make calcium absorb? Why have we forgot about the human matrix in the process of suggesting supplementation of obviously missing nutrients? All good questions that commonly get overlooked. It is much easier to tell people to take a few calcium supplements in a 15 minute appointment than to look over why they might need to take something else to absorb the calcium that is already in their system. Generally if someone is post menopause, high dose calcium is suggested. Most women give their husbands the same supplements that they take believing if they need it their husband likely does too. This is not true. Men rarely need supplemental calcium. The questions to ask is do you need calcium. What do your numbers look like? How are your liver/ kidneys processing? Too much calcium can add to artery sludge, buildup on the artery walls, high blood pressure, increased body pain, stiffness, and stone formation. While calcium might be needed, it needs to absorb in order to make strong bones not solid waste material. Bone health has been declining rapidly in Americans. Likely from many things including diet and excessive pharmaceuticals like steroids that deplete bones. Taking more calcium might not do a lot in shoring up bones, and for some it might be a bad thing. Ask your practitioner to check your vitamin D level which is key for calcium absorption. Proper zinc is key to bone support, too much zinc is detrimental to bone/immune health. Boron, Vitamin C, Silica are also strong support nutrients for the bone matrix. The secret part of bone health is the hormone structure. If it is not correctly balanced or only balanced to keep hormonal symptoms at bay or strictly to support fatigue or sex drive the bone structure becomes key in buffering the body of all that hormonal overdose. The same is true of high blood sugar, Even if someone is not a diabetic by medical definition, over consumption of fat, carb and processed foods causes the body to use up the bones to buffer the foods to be used for energy. Which brings us to the other issue. It is clear that the more acid blocking products that a person takes the weaker their bone health will be. Calcium must have acid to break apart and be usable in the digestive process. That high carb, high fat diet that causes reflux in a large part of American population also creates an environment that taxes the gallbladder, liver, kidney function and the bones. That food has to get out of the body and not burn the cells. Calcium from the bones offers that buffering. Keep track of your blood work. Ask your practitioner to explain how it all goes together. Take notes and ask for your records so you can see trends in health. Most chronic ill health is picked up in trends. The human body can absorb about 500-600mg of calcium at a time so taking 1500mg does not really work out as expected from an absorption standpoint. Taking a supplement does not guarantee absorption. That 500mg pill that might be taken, only about 15mg-40mg of calcium is actually absorbed depending upon digestion, binding and delivery of the pill itself and the health of the person that takes it.
always make choices that matter..
Diane Pinazza RRT,ND