Natural Progesterone as the Bone-Building Hormone
As women age from our 30s onwards, we lose 1% of our Bone Mass Density (BDM), because of the shift towards an imbalance of our hormones. This coincides with the onset of anovulatory cycles. In other words, once women stop ovulating, our ovaries no longer produce progesterone and therefore the bone building cells in our body, called the osteoblasts reduce in their activity.
During the menopausal years we lose even more of our bone mass density (BMD). Our BMD decreases by 3% per year -again -due to shifts and changes in both hormones involved, ie. estrogen and progesterone. After menopause we carry on losing 1% of our BMD every year.
Treating osteoporosis must always take into account trying to bring back the balance between estrogen and progesterone. This will thereby achieve a balance between our breaking down of bone activity (by the osteoclast cells -governed by estrogen), and our bone building activity (performed by the osteoblast cells -governed by progesterone).
In the administration of HRT or the Contraceptive Pill and many estrogenic drugs on the market for the treatment of osteoporosis, only osteoclast function is addressed. But by giving natural progesterone, the osteoblast function is stimulated. Furthermore, because progesterone is the precursor to estrogen, the osteoclast function of breaking down bone tissue is slowed down as in synthetic HRT -but without the hazardous side-effects of synthetic estrogens. The result is a balance between these two functions and a reversal of osteoporosis.
Other Natural Solutions to Osteoporosis
Westerners are probably one of the most malnourished populations in the modern world. Our western diet is seriously nutrient deficient, acidic, and out of balance. This above anything else is what is causing weaker bones.
Our food is chemical-rich and nutrient-poor, contain toxins from pesticides, herbacides and fungicides. It is also inorganic and over-processed. Inorganically grown food can have up to 50% less nutrients than organically grown foods. Therefore if opting for inorganically grown foods, supplementing our diet with superfoods, vitamins and minerals is no longer an option but a vital need, and in this case for building strong bones throughout our lives.
The issues of eating an acidic diet are far reaching when it comes to our bone density. Acidic foods are detrimental to our bones as they cause the body to leach calcium from the skeleton in order to alkalise the bloodstream, in its efforts to protect the tissues. Our diets should be at least 70% based on vegetables. We should only occasionally be eating meat which is very acidic.
Other acidic foods are sugar, refined and processed foods (junk foods), and carbonated drinks, which also contain extremely heavy levels of sugar. Other foods to avoid are too much coffee, refined oils (which are carcinogenic), food additives, and alcohol.
Weight-bearing exercise will help substantially to increase various bone building factors, like muscle (which together with the bones, build the structure of the body), and Vit D metabolites, which will re-establish the calcium in the bones.
Poor Lifestyle & Bad Habits
Smoking depletes the body of Vitamin C, which is essential for bone building. Alcohol robs bones because it leads to malabsorbtion and increased excretion of vital bone building nutrients. Dieting and anorexia also accelerate bone loss.
These chemical compounds have horrendous effects on our bones bringing about secondary osteoporosis. These include corticosteroid drugs, thyroid hormones, antidepressants, antibiotics that destroy B vitamins and vitamin K which are all necessary for bone building, diuretics, aluminium containing antacids, etc.
Avoid as many chemicals in the home and garden as possible. Replace these with environmentally friendly products. These include personal care products. Your skin absorbs everything you rub into it. So change your creams and shampoos. Cooking sprays are toxic, and so is Teflon the non-stick material in cooking ware.
Thin plastics like wraps, and aluminium pots should be thrown out too. Detergents contain petro-chemicals, etc. Replace these with non-toxic cleaners. All of these convenient items which mark our modern lives need to be understood as serious endocrine (hormonal) disruptors, and we should not be using them as readily, if at all. Avoid industrial pollution from air and water where possible. Eat organically grown food to avoid extra toxins from pesticides, herbacide sprays etc. Avoid breathing in fumes in traffic, close your vents...
Be pro-active in all these small ways even if it may seem that it’s like 'sneezing against thunder'. Much of the literature today recommends good nutrition and alkalising our diet, the use of natural progesterone, weight bearing exercise, good lifestyle choices, etc. Collectively they create a vital 'seat belt' so we can better enjoy the ride...