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frec

Reversing Osteoporosis Without Fosamax

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Hooray! I just got some good news. I am 51 and got diagnosed with osteoporosis this summer. I also started menopause. I did not want to try any of the lovely pharmaceuticals because I have had lots of dental problems and jaw surgery twice. My naturopath put me on masses of supplements (vitamin K, 5,000 IU vitamin D3, calcium apatite, and a GI repair supplement) and a bioidentical, individualized hormone cream in August. According to a blood test and two urine tests it is working! The most important test is NTx (N-teleopepetides, cross-linked) which shows whether your body is metabolizing the calcium properly. Mine is now 38; it was 58. (Lower is better, range from 5 to 68) I hope this might help any of you dealing with the hormone question or with the Fosamax question.

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How much protein do you consume? If you have a lot, particularly animal protein with its higher amounts of sulfur-containing amino acids, calcium comes out of your bones to neutralize it. http://www.drmcdougall.com/med_osteo.html Also calcium leaching -- sodium, caffeine, phosphoric acid (some sodas), tobacco and, if I'm remembering right, alcohol. You've probably heard this already, right?

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another important part of the equation - particularly for celiacs - is magnesium. your naturopath may have included it, but if not, a 2:1 calcium:magnesium ratio is important for uptake of calcium, and most people have difficulty getting a full supply of magnesium (even with a healthy diet, it can be a challenge), and it's all the harder with the villi damage of celiac disease).

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How much protein do you consume? If you have a lot, particularly animal protein with its higher amounts of sulfur-containing amino acids, calcium comes out of your bones to neutralize it. http://www.drmcdougall.com/med_osteo.html Also calcium leaching -- sodium, caffeine, phosphoric acid (some sodas), tobacco and, if I'm remembering right, alcohol. You've probably heard this already, right?

I've heard of all this before but not so sure how much it really affects bone loss. Most Americans eat tons of meat and drink alcohol and I doubt everyone has soft bones. I think moderation is the key and a good diet is probably the best defense, along with all the other things frec mentioned.

I drink some wine and coffee and eat animal protein, which is pretty much unavoidable if you are Celiac. If you give up meat, that again cuts down on what is available for a Celiac to eat. I have already given up gluten and butts and I am not giving up anything else! :lol:

I am following a very similar plan to frec's but have not been re-tested yet. I am just so very happy she has shown improvement because I am also post menopausal and was wondering if it was possible to re-build bone. The pharmaceuticals are just not an option for me.....they don't rebuild bone the way doctor's make out they do.

What I find weird is that I have never broken a bone in my life and I have activities that could accomplish this, while many people I know who are not Celiac and don't have bone problems have fallen and badly broken their bones....go figure!

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Sex hormones are protective of bone health, which is why problems develop after hormone levels go down. Soft bones are fairly common in our country among menopausal women.

The epidemiological and laboratory studies show what they show. Cross-country statistics show a direct correlation between rates of osteoporosis and consumption of animal protein. Those societies consuming little have essentially no osteoporosis. Anyone can run the same search on PubMed as I did and find the studies that show negative calcium balance at protein levels below the average US consumption (which is twice the RDA for protein). For instance:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?D..._RVAbstractPlus

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?D..._RVAbstractPlus

http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/reprint/59/6/1356 (notice that the moderate protein diet here is 95 grams, less than the US average and shows calcium loss; none of the diets in this study avoided animal protein)

If there are contradictory studies I didn't see them. Of course, I will look at them if proffered. My mom has osteoporosis and my sister, osteopenia. I'm past menopause now. So this is definitely a topic of interest to me, one that I've researched and one which I'm willing to read more about if there is some other science I'm unaware of.

The suggestion of magnesium is a good one. I ran across a study where newly diagnosed celiacs were divided into two groups. One got a magnesium supplement and one didn't. The former ended up with stronger bones.

http://www.springerlink.com/content/k75337l87v680p22/

Edit: Animal protein is not "pretty much unavoidable" if one is celiac or gluten intolerant. When I cut out gluten, I didn't have to change my diet that much. I merely had to sub in with nongluten grains. There are plenty of us out there than manage quite well. I have more recipes than I can ever hope to try. If you want to eat animal protein, fine. But realize that this is your choice, not something imposed on you by celiac.

It is possible to eat animal protein and not reach the intake level where you go into negative calcium balance, of course. One of those studies above indicates that. The "low" protein intake in that study was closer to the RDA. So just cutting back can be beneficial.

Of course, there are a variety of factors involved in whether one gets osteoporosis or not. The lack of weight-bearing exercise is another big factor, for instance.

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Edit: Animal protein is not "pretty much unavoidable" if one is celiac or gluten intolerant. When I cut out gluten, I didn't have to change my diet that much. I merely had to sub in with nongluten grains. There are plenty of us out there than manage quite well. I have more recipes than I can ever hope to try. If you want to eat animal protein, fine. But realize that this is your choice, not something imposed on you by celiac.

I am assuming that you are a vegetarian because they usually refer to meat as "animal protein"....which it is but most meat eaters refer to it as meat. If you are not I stand corrected. I would probably have difficulty in believing that a non-meat eating culture would all have strong bones due to that one factor alone. Meat, like anything else, must be eaten in moderation and not in the amounts traditionally eaten by many Americans. It offers many nutrients and I would never have gotten my iron levels back to normal had I not eaten red meat after diagnosis. My soft bones were caused by 20 years of malabsorption and not because I eat red meat a couple of times a month. I'm also sure there are probably many vegetarians who eventually will develop osteopenia or osteoporosis.

As far as eating meat being pretty much unavoidable with a Celiac diagnosis, to me it is if you want variety in your diet. Many vegetarians do not do the diet correctly and end up with deficiencies. I'm not saying all do but I know quite a few who did. I love vegetables and eat them in many ways but having to cut out gluten does limit your choices more than the general population. I also feel man was designed to be carnivores for a reason and there are nutrients that come with meat that some feel important to have. I have no problems if a person chooses to be a vegetarian but I've had too many personal experiences with fervent vegetarians who think meat is the root of all evil and I definitely don't agree with that.

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My diet these days does not contain potatoes or GMO corn or sunflower oil or cucumbers or gluten or non organic starches or sodium nitrates or sulfite's or many legumes or . . . the list goes on. Every one thing that I CAN EAT is a triumph for me. I relish each thing I can still eat that does not give me gas, a rash, diarrhea, make me itch or keep me in the bathroom for a good part of the day.

I drink milk and eat cheese. I eat eggs. I consume white sugar. I relish chocolate. I eat meat. I drink coffee. And when I can find an alcoholic beverage that doesn't contain gluten or sulfite's I drink it. None of those things cause my body distress. What my body likes and doesn't like determines what I eat. All the studies in the world don't mean anything to me anymore. My body decides from now on. My body is the ultimate authority on what is good for me.

I've had to alter my diet on what seems to be almost a weekly basis for the last year since being diagnosed. I hope those that haven't had their dietary world turned upside down by Celiac Disease realize how lucky they are.

Violet

Edit: Animal protein is not "pretty much unavoidable" if one is celiac or gluten intolerant. When I cut out gluten, I didn't have to change my diet that much. I merely had to sub in with nongluten grains. There are plenty of us out there than manage quite well. I have more recipes than I can ever hope to try. If you want to eat animal protein, fine. But realize that this is your choice, not something imposed on you by celiac.

I am assuming that you are a vegetarian because they usually refer to meat as "animal protein"....which it is but most meat eaters refer to it as meat. If you are not I stand corrected. I would probably have difficulty in believing that a non-meat eating culture would all have strong bones due to that one factor alone. Meat, like anything else, must be eaten in moderation and not in the amounts traditionally eaten by many Americans. It offers many nutrients and I would never have gotten my iron levels back to normal had I not eaten red meat after diagnosis. My soft bones were caused by 20 years of malabsorption and not because I eat red meat a couple of times a month. I'm also sure there are probably many vegetarians who eventually will develop osteopenia or osteoporosis.

As far as eating meat being pretty much unavoidable with a Celiac diagnosis, to me it is if you want variety in your diet. Many vegetarians do not do the diet correctly and end up with deficiencies. I'm not saying all do but I know quite a few who did. I love vegetables and eat them in many ways but having to cut out gluten does limit your choices more than the general population. I also feel man was designed to be carnivores for a reason and there are nutrients that come with meat that some feel important to have. I have no problems if a person chooses to be a vegetarian but I've had too many personal experiences with fervent vegetarians who think meat is the root of all evil and I definitely don't agree with that.

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No need to "assume" I am a vegetarian, because my signature makes the point. I wasn't hiding anything. I said "animal protein" because that is what I meant. The category includes dairy and eggs, not just meat. If I were being "fervent," I would have said animal flesh and secretions :rolleyes:

I didn't intend to get into an argument about vegetarianism. I just shared the research results I've seen about osteoporosis that I thought might be of interest to others on this board. If they are not of interest to someone for whatever reason, that person is free to disregard them. I even pointed out that it is possible to consume animal protein in lower quantities, apparently, and not get into negative calcium balance. It seems to me I was bending over backwards to be fair and not, heaven forbid, "fervent."

There are no studies I've seen that show vegetarians, and especially vegans, are sicker or more prone to any diseases, disorders or deficiencies than the regular population. The evidence that I have seen is to the contrary. Indeed that is why I chose a vegan diet (animal rights had no bearing in my decision at all). There is nothing beneficial in animal products that can't be found elsewhere and plenty (my decades of reading about nutrition indicate) that one should avoid, or at least limit.

Of course, it is possible to be a junk food vegan. Good health entails more than simply avoiding one thing.

I don't believe that man was designed to be a carnivore for a number of reasons, but see no reason to go into that here. The issue is osteoporosis and what factors affect the strength of your bones. I don't want to hijack this thread.

I can cite further evidence for what I've said here and in previous posts, but think it unnecessary. What evidence I've cited so far has been ignored (or disbelieved for no articulated reason and certainly without proof) and stands unrefuted.

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There are no studies I've seen that show vegetarians, and especially vegans, are sicker or more prone to any diseases, disorders or deficiencies than the regular population. The evidence that I have seen is to the contrary. Indeed that is why I chose a vegan diet (animal rights had no bearing in my decision at all). There is nothing beneficial in animal products that can't be found elsewhere and plenty (my decades of reading about nutrition indicate) that one should avoid, or at least limit.

Of course, it is possible to be a junk food vegan. Good health entails more than simply avoiding one thing.

I have to agree with this, when the diet is of course done correctly. I recently saw an article that stated that when done properly vegan diets are very healthy and generally contribute to added years in the life span. The one downside these researchers found was that the vegans they researched tend to be quite thin. :D

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Amen, Violet! Really, there are only so many food parameters I can keep track of. Then there are the ethical considerations--plastic packaging, free range eggs, local produce, etc.--and price!? I've kind of given up looking at the price, since there is usually only one product with the right combination of ingredients.

I appreciate the advice about the magnesium and the protein though. I don't eat much meat unless I am travelling, in which case I usually have to live on chicken breast.

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I've heard of all this before but not so sure how much it really affects bone loss. Most Americans eat tons of meat and drink alcohol and I doubt everyone has soft bones. I think moderation is the key and a good diet is probably the best defense, along with all the other things frec mentioned.

What I find weird is that I have never broken a bone in my life and I have activities that could accomplish this, while many people I know who are not Celiac and don't have bone problems have fallen and badly broken their bones....go figure!

I read that as the consumption of cow milk increases, so does the incidence of osteoporosis. That doesn't mean that if you drink cow milk, you will have osteoporosis, but it was a statistically significant study. I *think* I read it in the book "Guns, Germs, and Steel" - a very long read, but full of interesting stuff about how agriculture and cities began.

Many of my doctors have commented that broken bones are more common in people who are not as flexible. If a non-flexible person plants a leg, the stress often breaks the bone. When a flexible person plants a leg, the ligaments/tendons in the nearest joint are able to stretch and take most of the stress. Of course, this means the ligaments can stretch too far and snap. In my family my dad is not at all flexible and has had 20+ broken bones; I am very flexible and have injured nearly every joint in my body. There are many exceptions, of course, and the circumstances around each injury are different, but as a general rule I've found this to be true.

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I was just dx'd with severe osteoporosis and from what I understood it was due to Vitamin D deficiency, because without vitamin D you cannot absorb the calcium. I also have a severe Vitamin D deficiency. I had a hysterectomy about 4 yrs ago, but I was told I had osteoporosis in 1989 when I was 33 yrs old. Obviously they didn't check my Vitamin D levels back then. This fact just validates, to me, that it is a Vitamin D problem. But I do wonder why osteoporosis "seems" to increase after menopause. I wonder if it just wasn't there all along for all women, just like in my case, and they only check for it around menopause. I just wonder.....

The idea about maintaining flexibility is a good one. I had never thought about that. I fell from a 4 ft deck and landed on my back onto the edge of the stair and I didn't break anything that I'm aware of.

I would think a low fat diet is a really risky kind of diet and fat is not the evil villain it was made out to be. My brother died of cancer and the thing he said he craved more than anything was a good ol' steak and that's what he ate before he died.

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I was just dx'd with severe osteoporosis and from what I understood it was due to Vitamin D deficiency, because without vitamin D you cannot absorb the calcium. I also have a severe Vitamin D deficiency. I had a hysterectomy about 4 yrs ago, but I was told I had osteoporosis in 1989 when I was 33 yrs old. Obviously they didn't check my Vitamin D levels back then. This fact just validates, to me, that it is a Vitamin D problem. But I do wonder why osteoporosis "seems" to increase after menopause. I wonder if it just wasn't there all along for all women, just like in my case, and they only check for it around menopause. I just wonder.....

The idea about maintaining flexibility is a good one. I had never thought about that. I fell from a 4 ft deck and landed on my back onto the edge of the stair and I didn't break anything that I'm aware of.

I would think a low fat diet is a really risky kind of diet and fat is not the evil villain it was made out to be. My brother died of cancer and the thing he said he craved more than anything was a good ol' steak and that's what he ate before he died.

The reason that osteoporosis increases dramatically after menopause is the lack of hormones a women now has. Hormones play a role in healthy bone formation. This can be offset with the use of bioidentical hormones that are compounded from plant sources.

The Vitamin D issue is also important and I've found you can take quite a large dose when trying to elevate and maintain your levels. Personally, I wonder if as many women who are told they have soft bones really do. Doctors are all too anxious to put people on meds for that and I don't think it's always necessary. They aren't even told about Vitamin D and magnesium. I pretty much take the supplements, eat a healthy diet and stay active and don't worry too much about the bone issue. I'm confidant it can be improved.

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And there's the lovely thing about research. I've read research that says Vitamin D from a pill is virtually worthless because the body can't process it in that form. That piece of research claimed that the body gets only limited benefits from Vitamin D pills.

But I don't accept that one piece of research as fact, nor do I base my life on it. Research and opinions vary on just about every health science issue out there. I could find you research that makes a case for grass fed beef over grain and vice versa when it comes to how healthy it is for the average human to eat - it's all about who did the research, what they wanted to prove and their methodology.

The Vitamin D issue is also important and I've found you can take quite a large dose when trying to elevate and maintain your levels. Personally, I wonder if as many women who are told they have soft bones really do. Doctors are all too anxious to put people on meds for that and I don't think it's always necessary. They aren't even told about Vitamin D and magnesium. I pretty much take the supplements, eat a healthy diet and stay active and don't worry too much about the bone issue. I'm confidant it can be improved.

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Maybe we could sum up what we have so far:

-magnesium

-vitamin D, including making sure you get enough sunlight

-moderate on meat if you're a meat eater

-ditto on cow's milk

-weight bearing exercise

Did I forget anything?

I think if one would take care of the above the chances should be pretty good of keeping bones strong, don't you think?

Pauliina

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Don't forget vitamin K.

Also, I saw my endo yesterday and told them I was already taking Vitamin D in my multivitamin and he laughed and said that's not enough. I have read that the RDA is way too low. Also some multivitamins have D2 and not D3. So I'm not sure if my vitamin D was low because of the wrong type of vitamin D or if I just wasn't getting enough because of malabsorption or what. I bought a sublingual D3 with vitamin K, just in case.

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Maybe we could sum up what we have so far:

-magnesium

-vitamin D, including making sure you get enough sunlight

-moderate on meat if you're a meat eater

-ditto on cow's milk

-weight bearing exercise

Did I forget anything?

I think if one would take care of the above the chances should be pretty good of keeping bones strong, don't you think?

Pauliina

I was looking just now for a site that tries to sum up everything, the strength of the evidence, and so on. This is what I found:

http://www.digitalnaturopath.com/cond/C169497.html

As you can see, there are a few other factors than the ones you list. Calcium can be lost from the bones due to excess sodium, caffeine, alcohol, phosphoric acid, and preformed vitamin A, smoking, as well as certain medications.

There's a lot there and I haven't studied it in depth. I might not agree with it all myself. B) Each of these factors can be researched by anyone interested to see if you read the research the same way. But I thought it was worth sharing. Even if it inexplicably doesn't list celiac as a risk factor <_<

Edit: it DOES list celiac after all. I missed it on the first go round. I was just skimming briefly and saw Crohn's mentioned in one place under autoimmune, but not celiac. Sorry about that ;)

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    Oh yes, it could, although to be honest I never got myself so wet with sweat that it would have been a serious situation.  However, I can remember one time when I got caught in a cloudburst while going to my car in a large parking lot, though, and got soaked to the skin, and of course had to wear those soaking-wet clothes while I drove the 45 minutes it took me to get home --- I will NEVER forgot the misery and agony of that drive!  I could just barely keep the car under control, in fact.
    Thanks for your response, Squirmingitch, but I have to almost laugh, as at this point I am not really stressing over these questions at all --- just curious.  I have always been an insatiable question-asker, so please don't take my frequent questions as a sign of my obsessing over celiac disease or DH.  Yeah, admittedly I was rather stressed out for a couple of days two weeks  ago or so, but I am significantly settled down now, even while negotiating the nutritional maze of trying to manage two
Water?! That's… unreasonably inconvenient. Did it happen with sweat?
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