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My mom found out around Christmastime that she had osteoporosis. I know very little about the disease. I wonder if it is hereditary. I have heard about its connection with milk : some say it is good and others say that it is bad. Does anyone know ways to prevent the disease?
 

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Eat a healthy varied diet, include lots of green vegetables, like brocolli. Drink soy milk, not cow milk and get plenty of fresh air and exercise. It needs to be weight bearing exercise.
 

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There are many scientific studies that have proven that a high protein diet leads to a calcium loss. The excess protein cannot be used by the body, and it is eliminated through your urine, taking out calcium with it. This leads to a shortage of calcium in the body, which compensates by drawing calcium out of your bones, making them weak and brittle. Cow milk has traditionally been suggested to replace this calcium, but cow milk and other dairy and animal products have alot of protein, and makes this a serious problem. Its ironic that cowmilk is pushed on us to prevent osteoporosis, yet it seems to be a leading cause for it.<br><br><br><br>
This protein issue has lead to a very high calcium intake recommendation. People who don't eat excess protein don't lose their calcium, thus can get away with eating half the recommended calcium, such as 400mg instead of 1000mg.<br><br><br><br>
In addition, cow milk calcium is not easily absorbed, making the problem worse. Other high calcium sources like leafy greens don't have as much calcium, but their calcium absorption rates make them a great source of calcium.<br><br><br><br>
I'd suggest having her switch to soymilk.<br><br><br><br>
Bones are constantly breaking down and building up. At the age of 30-40, people's bones don't grow like they used to. So people need to do all they can to prevent this. Don't eat excess protein, cut salt intake, cut out caffeine, don't smoke, get Vitamin D, start walking or other weight bearing exercise, get your calcium from high absorption sources.<br><br><br><br>
Here's some links I looked up on Google for evidence, by doing a search on "milk" and "osteoporosis". I bet you could find similar evidence by searching on "protein" and "osteoporosis".<br><br><a href="http://www.strongbones.org/" target="_blank">http://www.strongbones.org/</a><br><br><a href="http://www.pcrm.org/health/Preventive_Medicine/strong_bones.html" target="_blank">http://www.pcrm.org/health/Preventiv...ong_bones.html</a><br><br><a href="http://www.newcenturynutrition.com/public_html/webzine/archives/can_osteopo.shtml" target="_blank">http://www.newcenturynutrition.com/p..._osteopo.shtml</a><br><br><a href="http://www.milksucks.com/osteo.html" target="_blank">http://www.milksucks.com/osteo.html</a><br><br><a href="http://www.greaterthings.com/Editorial/Milk_Osteoporosis.htm" target="_blank">http://www.greaterthings.com/Editori...teoporosis.htm</a><br><br><a href="http://www.cyberparent.com/nutrition/osteoporosiscalciumprotein.htm" target="_blank">http://www.cyberparent.com/nutrition...iumprotein.htm</a><br><br><a href="http://www.newcenturynutrition.com/public_html/webzine/archives/whatif.shtml" target="_blank">http://www.newcenturynutrition.com/p...s/whatif.shtml</a><br><br><a href="http://milk.elehost.com/html/osteoporosis.html" target="_blank">http://milk.elehost.com/html/osteoporosis.html</a><br><br><a href="http://milk.elehost.com/html/why_does_calcuim_leave_the_bon.html" target="_blank">http://milk.elehost.com/html/why_doe...e_the_bon.html</a><br><br><br><br><br><br>
This is a start, I encourage you to explore this topic, it's very interesting and relevant to us all! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br>
Hope this helps you and your mom!
 

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If you decide to take a supplement: calcium citrate is most easily absorbed, followed by calcium carbonate. Don't take more than 600 mg at a time (this includes the calcium in food you take with the supplements) bc it won't all be absorbed. Try to find a calcium supplement that contains half as much Magnesium as calcium (eg- 300mg Ca++ and 150 mg Magnesium). If you can, find a supplement that also has vitamin D. Both of magnesium and Vit D are great for helping you to absorb the Calcium. If you plan on switching to soy milk, read the label to see how much calcium is in there. It is not in there naturally, it has to be fortified.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
But most of all, weight bearing exercise (walking, jogging, weight lifting, aerobics, etc.) are essential for bone health.
 

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Also, if she decides to supplement with calcium, it should be in liquid or powder form. There is no telling whether her body would be able to break down a capsule and especially a tablet. I have however heard that softgels (not that I would ever use them-unless it's veg) are preferred over all others because the supplement inside is oil soluble, not to mention that it dissolves in good time.
 

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On osteoporoses:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.vegansociety.com/html/info/info12.html" target="_blank">http://www.vegansociety.com/html/info/info12.html</a><br><br><br><br>
On calcium:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.vegansociety.com/html/info/info09.html" target="_blank">http://www.vegansociety.com/html/info/info09.html</a>
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by yarnblossom</i><br><br><b>I should have added, avoid coffee and soda caffeine leaches calcium from your bones and contributes to bone loss.</b></div>
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I think the problem with caffeine is that it prevents absorbtion of calcium (and iron). Soda is even worse bc it also contains phosphorous (sp?) which does definitely leech calcium, so even if it is caffeine free it is still harmful.
 

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Black tea is also not helping the absorption of calcium.<br><br>
And you (and I) should try to limit your salt intake.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by Herself</i><br><br><b>Also, if she decides to supplement with calcium, it should be in liquid or powder form. There is no telling whether her body would be able to break down a capsule and especially a tablet. I have however heard that softgels (not that I would ever use them-unless it's veg) are preferred over all others because the supplement inside is oil soluble, not to mention that it dissolves in good time.</b></div>
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Here is a tip from prevention magazine to test the disintegration of a particular brand of pills.<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">To see if your multi disintegrates quickly, says Dr. Hoag, drop it into 1/2-cup of vinegar. Stir gently every now and then. In 20 minutes, your vitamin should be completely separated into tiny pieces. If not, choose another brand.</div>
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Oh, also I know that as you get older your body doesn't produce enzymes as well as it used to so it would be harder to break down a tablet. Does the vinegar test apply to people with healthy digestion and healthy enzyme production? It might not apply to people with digestion problems.
 

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If you take supplements with vitamin D make sure it's D2 and not D3. Vitamin D3 isn't vegetarian.
 

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weight-bearing excercises, does that include stretches, yoga, pushups, leg raises etc?<br><br><br><br>
my grandmother had osteoperosis so i'm trying to be more careful
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have always that weight bearing exercises included walking, aerobics, leg thrusts as well as doing a work out with weights.
 

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I've read that milk doesn't cause osteoporosis. There is some calcium loss because of the protein in milk but the calcium in the milk more than makes up for it.<br><br><br><br>
A person could say the same thing about tofu. Firm tofu has quite a bit of protein that causes calcium loss. But at the same time if you get tofu set with calcium sulfate it has a lot of calcium so there is a net calcium gain.<br><br><br><br>
I think the best approach is just looking at the overall protein consumption and limiting it to a reasonable value. On one hand consuming more protein causes more calcium loss but on the other hand it's important to get enough protein (and protein is important for the bones).<br><br><br><br>
For sure people don't have to consume milk, there are other ways to get calcium.<br><br><br><br>
I don't see it mentioned very much but consuming too much salt also causes calcium loss.
 

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Kyo, the only articles I've seen lately that say milk is good for bones were either sponsored by the dairy industry or the author got his/her nutritional education in the 60s.<br><br><br><br>
As others mentioned excercise, and (leafy) greens, broccoli will give you more than needed. Don't forget that in societies that don't consume milk (and other animal protein is limited as well) osteoporosis is virtually unknown. But they also eat a lot less calcium than we do. This suggests that it's not our calcium intake that is the primary problem, but our calcium loss.<br><br><br><br>
If you go the fortified way, I haven't seen calcium fortified orange juice mentioned which is also a good source.<br><br><br><br>
I've read in several articles (e.g. the PCRM link dotnetdiva posted above) that the calcium loss argument applies more to animal protein than plant protein.
 

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Oatmeal;<br><br>
Here are a couple quotes from "Becoming Vegan" by Brenda Davis, R.D. & Vesanto Melina, M.S., R.D.<br><br>
Both authors are registered dieticians; Brenda Davis is a long-term vegetarian and Vesanto Melina is a long-term vegan. The book is recent; it was published in 2000 C.E.<br><br><br><br>
p. 93-94<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Proteins's negative impact on calcium balance is created by sulfur-containing amino acids. They are present in amounts that vary from one protein to another and have an acidfying effect on the blood. Part of the body's response to more acidic blood is to restore pH balance by drawing calcium from the bones. Calcium acts as a base, so it can effectively neutralize this acid. For every gram of protein in the diet, approximately 1 mg of calcium is lost in the urine. Meat is considered to have an exceptionally strong negative impact on calcium balance because it is a concentrated source of protein and of the sulfur-containing amino acids. However, all protein, including plant protein, which tends to be less concentrated in sulfur amino acids, contributes to urinary calcium losses. Thus high intakes of protein powders, particularly soy protein, could contribute to losses. While protein is essential for building body tissues, including bone, excessive amounts can have significant drawbacks.</div>
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p. 34-35<br><br><br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Propaganda from the dairy industry has led people to believe that osteoporosis is a dairy deficiency disease. When one examines the worldwide incidence of osteoporosis, it becomes clear that this simply is not true. In many regions (e.g., Africa) where diets are predominantly plant based and low in calcium and dairy, osteoporosis rates are low, while in many affluent Western countries where diets are high in both calcium and dairy foods, osteoporosis is much more prevelent. This fact has given rise to a theory among some vegetarians that milk actually causes osteoporosis and that eliminating milk offers protection agaist this devastating condition. Proponents claim that milk protein causes so much urinary calcium loss that any potential benefit is negated. This theory is equally untrue. Milk is neither a cause or a cure for osteoporosis. The calcium losses introduced by milk protein are miniscule in comparison to the total calcium content of milk. The protein in a cup of milk induces a urinary calcium loss of 8-10 mg; it contains 300 mg calcium, about a third of which is absorbed.</div>
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Interesting, thanks.<br><br><br><br>
Here's the PCRM link with the "animal protein is more likely to leach calcium" bit:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.pcrm.org/health/Preventive_Medicine/strong_bones.html" target="_blank">http://www.pcrm.org/health/Preventiv...ong_bones.html</a><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Nevertheless the quotes (I think) confirm what my point is: there is not much literature out there anymore that says "drink milk for health", apart from those payed for by the Dairy Council.<br><br><br><br>
If you eliminate the protein and vitamin D myths, there is not much left that milk is offering, apart from cholesterol and saturated fat.
 
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