Osteoporosis and You ~ Nanaimo Chiropractor
Is more calcium the secret to treating osteoporosis?
One thing that I’ve noticed in my years of practice as a Nanaimo Chiropractor is the confusion about osteoporosis. How about you? Would you like to know more? Are you unsure what the difference between osteoporosis and osteoarthritis is? Well, read on to learn more.
Firstly, what is osteoporosis? Osteoporosis is a condition where the minerals get removed from the skeleton, leaving the bones more brittle. Osteoporosis is a painless condition. Lack of bone density itself does not feel like anything at all. Of course, your bones are more easily broken, and that can hurt a lot! Osteoporosis is often confused with osteoarthritis, which is when your joints degenerate. You can have osteoporosis without osteoarthritis, and you can have osteoarthritis without osteoporosis. Yes, you can even get both conditions at the same time (many do). Just to confuse things a little further, there is the term osteopenia, which is a milder amount of mineral loss.
Who gets it? Anybody. It’s a common misconception that this a problem that only women need to be concerned with. Not so. Yes women are more likely to get osteoporosis. This is partially because their bones are smaller and less sturdy to begin with. On top of this, a woman’s estrogen levels drop with menopause. Estrogen provides protection against osteoporosis, so when it decreases your risk of osteoporosis increases.
So, do I need more calcium?
Often times, people assume that they need to increase their calcium consumption to prevent osteoporosis. The truth is, most people have enough calcium in their diets already. It might surprise you to know
that some of the biggest dairy consuming countries, such as the USA, UK and Australia, have much higher rates of osteoporosis than low dairy consuming countries
, such as Japan, China, Gambia and Kuwait. So clearly, it’s not an issue of calcium. You will find some less-than-credible websites that will say high dairy consuming nations also eat too much protein, and that this protein acidified the body and weakens the bones. Those people have a very poor concept of how the body works. You body has buffer systems that keep your acidity levels within a very narrow range.
Are drugs the answer?
Not necessarily. Osteoporosis drugs, such as Fosamax, are only given after the disease has developed. They can slow the bone loss and possibly make moderate bone gains. They are also known to lead to esophagitis and esophageal cancer. Ironically, they have recently been shown
to put people at increased risk of fractures. Talk to your physician about the risks and benefits to make an informed decision.
So, how do you prevent osteoporosis? The secret lays in the what countries see higher osteoporosis. One thing those nations have in common is theat they are more sedentary, they don’t move enough. Your body follows the adage, use it or lose it. Don’t use a muscle? It shrinks? Don’t use your brain enough? It atrophies and is more prone to dementia. Don’t use your bones enough? You get osteoporosis. We have to use our bones for weight bearing activity to stave off osteoporosis. This could be weight lifting, walking, running, gardening, etc. This is the true key to preventing osteoposis.
So, can someone with osteoporosis see a chiropractor? Absolutely! We see people in our Nanaimo chiropractic clinic all the time with osteoporosis. We don’t treat them with the same methods that we would the VI Raiders Football team, but we can treat them. If you have osteoporosis and are looking for a Nanaimo Chiropractor who can help you, give Pure Chiropractic a call today on 250-585-8866.