Being 75 or older should not decrease the likelihood of bone density testing and treatment. In fact, more people in this age group should take steps to prevent broken bones and their potential disabling effects. This includes bone density testing and treatment when necessary. With people living into their 90's and beyond, preventing hip fractures and therefore maintaining a good quality of life, it's even more important.View Thread
If you don't get enough calcium from foods, you may need to take a calcium supplement. Many people ask which calcium supplement they should take. The best supplement is the one that meets your individual needs. Calcium supplements are available without a prescription in a variety of types such as tablets, capsules, chewables and liquids. They are also available in different amounts and doses.
The body easily absorbs most brand name calcium products. Calcium supplements need to dissolve in the stomach for calcium to absorb. Chewable and liquid supplements dissolve well because they break down before entering the stomach. Calcium, whether from diet or supplements, is best absorbed when taken in amounts of 500 — 600 mg or less. Taking your calcium all at once, however, is better than not taking it at all.
Try to get your calcium-rich foods and/or supplements in smaller amounts throughout the day, preferably with a meal. Most calcium supplements should be taken with food. Eating food produces stomach acid that helps your body absorb calcium. Calcium citrate supplements, on the other hand, absorb well when taken with or without food.
Side effects, such as gas or constipation, may occur from calcium supplements. If increasing fluids and fiber in your diet does not solve the problem, try another type or brand of calcium. It is important to drink plenty of water (six 8 oz glasses) throughout the day when you are taking calcium supplements. It may require trial and error, but fortunately there are many choices. When you take a new calcium supplement, start with smaller amounts. For example, start with 200-300 mg of calcium a day for a week, and drink an extra 6-8 ounces of water with it. Then gradually add more calcium each week.
Look carefully at calcium supplement labels for the serving size. Often the amount of calcium shown on the label is the amount you receive in more than 1 tablet or unit. For example, the label may show "Calcium, 630 mg," but if you look at serving size, it may show "2 tablets". Choose a calcium supplement with vitamin D added to help you reach the daily intake of Vitamin D recommended by your healthcare professional.
And finally, unless otherwise advised by your health care professional, avoid consuming more than 2,500 mg of calcium (food plus supplements) per day.View Thread
Unfortunately, there are no "natural" or alternative treatments available at this time with enough research to demonstrate the safety and effectiveness to reduce the risk of broken bones in people with osteoporosis. Preventing broken bones in a person with osteoporosis requires a comprehensive approach that incorporates the following four critical components: 1) a prescribed osteoporosis medication; 2) calcium, 3) vitamin D; and 4) exercise. Calcium, vitamin D and exercise alone are insufficient for preventing fractures in people with significant bone loss (osteoporosis).
In addition to calcium and vitamin D, there are other vitamins and minerals that are important for bone health. For example magnesium and vitamin K are often added to "natural" supplements for bone health. Research studies, however, show that the amount of magnesium and vitamin K that is necessary for bone health can be obtained from a well-balanced healthy diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables.
There are many supplements on the market that claim to treat osteoporosis naturally. It's important to be cautious as many such products lack sufficient evidence to show that they positively impact bone health, reduce the risk of fractures and are safe. Here are some helpful resources about natural and alternative medicine from the National Institute of Health, National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine:
While we are unable to recommend the best osteoporosis treatment for you, an osteoporosis specialist may be the best person to help you determine the right medication for your personal medical history and individual needs. A specialist can also make sure you have been evaluated for any underlying medical conditions that may be causing bone loss. I previously posted tips for finding a specialist here: http://forums.webmd.com/3/osteoporosis-exchange/forum/302?@guest @. I hope this is helpful to you.View Thread
Saint Barnabas Ambulatory Care Center in Livingston, NJ is celebrating National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month with the following activities:
*Our Saint Barnabas/NOF Osteoporosis Support Group meeting is featuring a presentation "Nutrition and its Impact on Bone Health" by Abby Blaustein, RD. This event will take place May 13, 11:30 am - 12 noon, SB Ambulatory Care Center. Register for this FREE event by calling: 973-322-7830.
*We're having a special presentation for the community "You Know Your T-score, But What About Your FRAX?" by Dr. Marjorie Luckey, Mecical Director of the Saint Barnabas Osteoporosis Center. This event will take place May 27, 6 - 7:30 pm, in the SB Ambulatory Care Center, Register for this FREE event by calling: 1-888-7247-123, prompt #4.
*We are having an Osteoporosis Month exhibit table with free educational information in the lobby of the Saint Barnabas Ambulatory Care Center.
*All patients who have a bone density test during the month of May will receive a Gerbera daisy.
Did you know that May is National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month? In recognition of this observance, the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) is launching its new Healthy Bones, Build Them For Life® campaign. The campaign is featuring television Public Service Announcements (PSAs) about osteoporosis on ABC 7/WJLA-TV in the Washington, DC area, a live patient education webinar, special events, grassroots outreach and more. To read more about the campaign and to download the PSA, please visit http://www.nof.org/noapm/ .
Now is a great time to take advantage of the many osteoporosis programs and resources available to you! Here are some ways you can learn more and help us raise awareness about the importance of bone health:
1. Register for How Strong Are Your Bones Webinar. You are invited to listen to and view a free live presentation led by bone health expert Felicia Cosman, MD. This is the first in a series of webinars for patients and the general public covering a variety of osteoporosis-related topics. To learn more or to register, visit http://www.nof.org/noapm/ .
2. Request NOF's free Osteoporosis Education Toolkit. During the month of May, you can receive one free copy of each of the following brochures: Boning Up on Osteoporosis: A Guide to Prevention and Treatment, How Strong Are Your Bones and A Guide to Osteoporosis Medicines. Follow the steps below, to request this free education toolkit:
a. Visit http://www.nof.org/response_form/contacts.asp and complete the online form. b. Accept the terms of the disclaimer/privacy statement at the top of the page. c. Select "Health Information and Education Requests" in the Question Dept. menu at the bottom of the page. d. Type "Free Osteoporosis Education Toolkit" in the Question field. Please allow 2-3 weeks for processing. Offer expires May 31, 2010.
3. Walk, Jog or Run Your Way to Healthier Bones. Steps for Strong Bones® is a fundraising and walking program that runs May through October. Join for free and ask your friends and family to support you in your quest for healthy bones with a donation to NOF. It's easy through your online personal fundraising page! Track your daily activities, monitor your progress and receive recipes and bone health tips along the way. Register at www.nof.org/steps and start walking your way to healthy bones for life!
4. Join the Healthy Bones Advocacy Network. NOF's Healthy Bones Advocacy Network is made up of volunteer advocates who reach out to policy makers to highlight the importance of osteoporosis and bone health and help advance NOF's public policy goals. Our advocates are a dynamic group of volunteers who are making a difference and using the power of activism to bring about change! To learn more about Advocacy at NOF or to become an advocate, visit www.nof.org/advocacy .View Thread
Some people are concerned that the caffeine in coffee, tea and soft drinks, especially colas, may be harmful to bones. Caffeine is found naturally in coffee and tea. It is often added to colas and other soft drinks. Caffeine appears to decrease calcium absorption by a small amount. One study suggests that drinking 330 mg of caffeine, or about four cups of coffee, every day increases the risk of broken bones. In addition to coffee, preliminary research suggests that drinking tea may even positively affect bone. More studies are needed to better understand the relationship between tea and bone health.
If you enjoy drinks that have caffeine, you can make up for any calcium loss by getting enough calcium to meet your body's needs. Since you are 63 years old, you should aim for 1,200 milligrams of calcium and 800-1,000 international units of vitamin D every day.View Thread
Spinach is a nutritious food with many vitamins and minerals including magnesium, potassium and vitamin K. In addition to calcium and vitamin D, these vitamins and minerals are also important for bone health. While spinach also contains calcium, the calcium is not absorbed well by the body. This is because spinach contains oxalates which interfere with calcium absorption. Some examples of other foods that contain oxalates are beet greens and rhubarb. So while you can't count spinach as a good source of calcium, it's still nutritious and a good part of a healthy well-balanced diet.View Thread
Your doctor is an endocrinologist who has special training in this area of metabolism. I would suggest that you follow his/her recommendations. It often takes several months for the Vitamin D level to reach the goal range.