• Maria Cecilia Pfund, FRHC Nutrition Specialist

Take Care of Fragile Bones

After menopause the risk for osteoporosis is quite high, especially among those who had hysterectomy, eating disorder or have a history of low hormones, have a thyroid condition, take steroid medications regularly, are over 50, have lost 50 pounds or more or have avoided dark green, leafy veggies and dairy foods most of your life; and, if at high risk because any of the above factors getting a DEXA bone scan should be on the “to do list”. For some adults doctors may prescribe Fosamax (alendronate)- medicine that belongs to a class called bisphosphonates, which are supposed to boost bone density by slowing the body’s natural process of bone breakdown- to prevent and treat certain types of bone loss and bone disease; however, this drug is liked to esophageal cancer and chronic irregular heartbeat, among other side effects. Fortunately, there are natural ways to prevent and manage osteoporosis. According to dietitian Valerie Early, some foods that are helpful for these conditions include: green leafy vegetables eaten daily, soy at least every other day (1/3 to cup of raw soy nuts; a soy protein bar; soy milk or a soy shake). Also, it is important to take at least 1,200 to 1,500 mg of calcium citrate, and 800 to 1,000 IU vitamin D3. Take-Home Message If you or a loved one is at high risk of osteoporosis or is already suffering from it, consult with a doctor on how to treat/ prevent it. Remember than in addition to drugs prescribed, food can also be your medicine. Soy and leafy green vegetables are great sources of nutrients and phytochemicals that help manage bone loss.

Reference Drug Watch. (2014, September 29). Fosamax – Age and bone-loss drug with serious side effects.

Retrieved from http://www.drugwatch.com/fosamax/ Mahany, B. (2006, October 1). My fragile fracture. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved from http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2006-10-01/features/0610010405_1_bone-density-building-bone-calcium-and-vitamin/4

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