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Yes, there is a natural treatment for osteoporosis. Osteoporosis and menopause often go together, because lower estrogen and progesterone levels can contribute to bone loss. The good news is that using a natural treatment for osteoporosis has been proven to work.
Osteoporosis, a term that literally means porous bones, is a disease of the bones characterized by reduction in bone mass (also called bone thinning) as well as in bone density.
The deterioration of the bone tissue can lead to fragile bones that are highly prone to fractures, especially in the hip, spine and wrist regions.
However, bone mass does not necessarily correlate with broken bones. Fluoridated water is suspected to increase bone mass, but you end up with weaker bones.
Osteoporosis is a disease of the 60+ age group and is more common among women. People with inadequate bone mass development during adolescence combined with accelerated bone loss during the 60s are at an increased risk of osteoporosis. Both these processes, i.e., bone mass development and bone loss, are regulated by a number of factors such as:
Gluten intolerance may also increase the risk of osteoporosis.
Why Natural Treatment for Osteoporosis?
The conventional method of osteoporosis treatment involves hormone replacement therapy combined with drugs like biphosphonates, besides vitamin D and calcium supplements.
Though both these treatments are effective in curtailing bone loss, bone fracture, and other symptoms of osteoporosis, they are associated with serious side-effects in the long run.
For example, it is well known that hormone replacement therapy increases your risk of heart attack, stroke and breast cancer.
Similarly, biphosphonates when used for a long time may cause osteonecrosis of the jaw bone and other potentially serious conditions. Thus, the long-term benefits versus risks of these treatments are debatable.
That is the reason for you to look for an alternative treatment for osteoporosis that is not only effective but also safe.
Since nutritional factors contribute significantly in the development of osteoporosis, natural osteoporosis treatment can begin first with nutritional therapy, which can be a preventive, and also a corrective, measure.
Good nutrition is just one part of a natural treatment for osteoporosis. The other remedy with the most potential is exercise.
Studies have shown that women who exercise, even just an hour a week, can significantly reduce their risk for osteoporosis. For some ideas on how to get more exercise, see osteoporosis exercises.
Natural Treatment for Osteoporosis: Nutritional Therapy-What to Avoid
Nutritional therapy involves shunning some bad foods in order to curb bone loss and including some good ones in order to promote bone strength. Food items that you must strictly avoid, or at least restrict to a minimum, if you are suffering from osteoporosis are:
Natural Treatment for Osteoporosis: Nutrition for Osteoporosis
A whole foods diet is critical for prevention of osteoporosis. There are many nutrients involved in the formulation of bone, including calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, boron, and vitamins A, D, and E, and K.
In addition, you need a healthy thyroid and digestive system to produce bone supportive nutrients.
These nutrients are best eaten in food. In order to get your daily dose of calcium, you need to eat calcium-rich foods: whole dairy products, such as milk, yogurt and cheese.
Yogurt is especially helpful if it has probiotics in it, because that will help your digestive system as well.
Vitamin D will most likely need to be supplemented, because it is difficult to get enough from sunlight. If you take any of these vitamins in supplement form, you must be sure that they are not synthetic.
D3 is the natural form, and it is the only one that will create health. This also goes for vitamins A and E: use the natural forms only.
To get enough calcium, you need to take in about 1200 milligrams daily. Here are some foods with high amounts of calcium:
For more food sources of calcium, see the Office of Dietary Supplements website.
And these foods have essential vitamins and minerals for osteoporosis nutrition
You can also use herbs to get some of your nutrition. Nettles, red clover, and oatstraw are very high in nutrients, especially calcium.
Nettles and red clover are also high in magnesium and potassium, and oatstraw is high in phosphorus and potassium.
Make an infusion and drink daily. See natural remedies for menopause for more about these herbs and how to prepare them.
Or, watch renowned herbalist Susun Weed prepare a nettles infusion, here.
For more about diet and osteoporosis, be sure to read vitamin A and osteoporosis.
More Alternative Treatments for Osteoporosis
The Indian Ayurvedic system of medicine recommends, in addition to nutritional therapy, Panchakarma treatment for detoxification and rejuvenation of the body, followed by oral herbal preparations.
Traditional Chinese treatment includes acupuncture coupled with herbal preparations containing dong quai.
And, if you eat right, get regular exercise, and cut back on alcohol, caffeine, fluoridated water, sodas and other junk foods, you should not have to worry about broken bones.
Fallon, S. & Enig, M. Dem Bones: Do High Protein Diets Cause Bone Loss? Retrieved October 23, 2011 from http://www.westonaprice.org/osteoporosis/dem-bones
Weed, S. (2002). New Menopausal Years. Ash Tree Publishing. Woodstock:NY