|Do you know of anyone taking Fosamax®, Boniva®, Actonel®? These are the most commonly prescribed drugs to treat osteoporosis and prevent fractures.
Concern among doctors and patients has arisen following recent media reports that cite a possible association between unusual and unexpected (atypical) fractures of the upper thigh bone and use of these drugs. While the “judges” are yet to make their final verdict on the future use of these medications, we want to look at the scientifically proven and clinically effective alternative ways to address osteoporosis.
In addition to well-known Calcium and Magnesium supplements that must be used along with Vitamin D3 to prevent osteoporosis, the new evidence suggests the role of another vitamin in supporting bone health – Vitamin K2. Vitamin K2 is found in meat, cheese and the Japanese food natto, to name a few sources.
There are two types of vitamin K: K1 and K2. They are very different in their activity and function. Vitamin K1, found in green leafy vegetables, is a fat-soluble vitamin involved in the production of coagulation factors, which are critical for stopping bleeding. Therefore, when someone has been prescribed a blood thinner such as warfarin, they need to be careful not to take too much vitamin K1, as it will antagonize (reverse) the effect of drug. Vitamin K2, on the other hand, works differently. Vitamin K2 works by activating two important proteins. Without it, the transfer process of calcium from your arteries to your bone cannot occur, which raises your risk of arterial calcification. Vitamin K2 “moves” calcium from arteries to bones, where it needs to be.
Current evidence suggests that there is a strong association between osteoporosis (not having enough calcium in your bones) and an increased risk of heart disease. An increased intake of vitamin K2 could be a means of lowering the risk of osteoporosis, bone fractures and heart disease.
Make sure to optimize the levels of vitamin K2! Next time you are to take calcium/magnesium supplement, don’t forget to pair it with Vitamin D and K2 for best health results.
Questions? Remember to ask your primary care physician, and please feel free to call me to make an appointment to optimize your health.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
High-intensity interval training is defined as any workout that includes intense bursts of activity, alternating with fixed periods of less-intense activity or even complete rest. A good example of H.I.I.T. workout is running as fast as you can for 30 seconds and then walking briskly for 1-2 minutes. Repeat this 1.5 minutes interval seven times for about 10 minutes effective workout.
It sounds really simple to be effective, but recent research demonstrates that it’s all you need (done 3 times a week) to promote fat burning, build muscle and increase production of growth hormone (HGH) responsible for not only weight reduction but anti-aging effect as well! H.I.I.T. is more effective than “jogging” on a treadmill for an hour. It’s efficient and does not require going to the gym!
Any physical activity (biking, jump roping, swimming and running) that gets your heart rate up fast- is all you need. In addition, studies show that H.I.I.T. improves insulin sensitivity and blood sugar control after just 2 weeks training!
See these studies:
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria (sometimes referred to as “friendly germs”) that help maintain the health of the intestinal tract and aid in digestion. They also help keep potentially harmful organisms in the gut (harmful bacteria and yeasts) under control.
Probiotics should not be confused with prebiotics. Prebiotics are complex sugars (such as lactulose, lactitol, a variety of fructo-oligosaccharides, and inulin) that are used as fuel by the healthful bacteria to stimulate their growth and activity while suppressing the growth and activity of harmful organisms.
Probiotics are thought to work by colonizing the small intestine and crowding out disease-causing organisms, thereby restoring proper balance to the intestinal flora. They compete with harmful organisms for nutrients and may also produce substances that inhibit growth of harmful organisms in the gut.
Probiotic bacteria have been found to stimulate the body’s immune system. They may also aid in several gastrointestinal illnesses such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Antibiotic Associated Diarrhea (AAD), Clostridium difficile toxin-induced colitis, infectious diarrhea, hepatic encephalopathy, irritable bowel syndrome, and allergies.
Recent research indicates that gut microbiota influences metabolism in humans. Several studies show that antibiotic use in infancy increases body weight in later childhood, due to misbalance of good/bad bacteria in the gut that occurs after the course of antibiotic treatment.
Probiotics are emerging as a potential therapy for metabolic syndrome. Several human studies and multiple animal studies show promise for probiotics in reducing blood glucose levels or improving insulin sensitivity. It is becoming increasingly recognized that gut microbiota (beneficial bacteria in our gut) plays an important part regulating metabolism in humans. Nearly 100 trillion microbes in human gut coevolve with the human body and significantly influence human health. What’s fascinating is that “manipulation” of gut microbiota through the administration of prebiotics and probiotics could reduce intestinal low grade inflammation and improve gut barrier integrity, thus, ameliorating metabolic balance and promoting weight loss.
by Yuliya Klopouh, Pharm.D.
Here are some thoughts to consider when working toward a healthful diet:
1. Wheat (gluten). Gluten is a naturally-occurring protein compound found in many grain products such as wheat, barley, rye and oats. However, many people have difficulty absorbing it because they are sensitive to the protein. So that inexplicable feeling of tiredness or headache you get might be the result of your body trying to cope with excess gluten. Other people experience cramping, stomach pain, constipation or diarrhea; everyone reacts differently.
Unfortunately, whole wheat products contain gluten and won’t help relieve your symptoms. The good news is that you can buy many gluten-free products and baked goods at health food stores that are just as delicious. While all supermarkets carry corn and brown rice, many have now begun to carry quinoa, amaranth, gluten-free oats and more “exotic” alternatives to wheat.
2. Dairy (lactose, whey and casein). Lactose is found in all animal dairy products: milk and cheese from cows, goats and sheep. A baby needs milk during nursing stage (until 1-1.5 years old), after which time the pancreas can stop producing the lactase enzyme that breaks down lactose. Once this enzyme wanes, dairy products can become an allergen.
Many people who have dairy allergies suffer from gas, belching, constipation, acid reflux and diarrhea. However, casein is also an an allergen and excitotoxin (a chemical that overactivates nerve cells) and can produce anxiety and insomnia in many people. So that glass of milk before bedtime might actually be keeping you awake!
Fortunately, companies have made huge strides in improving the taste and texture of dairy alternatives. Organic, Non-G.M.O. soy and almond milk are both healthful and delicious. Some brands contain more calcium than regular cow milk. Likewise, you can find soy yogurts, cheese (casein-free) and even ice creams that many people enjoy just as much as their dairy alternatives.
3) Meat (animal protein of all kinds)- Limit meat in your diet to no more than 2 servings per week. It includes chicken, turkey and red meat. If possible, substitute it with fish or other sources of protein, such as eggs, tofu or tempeh. The following grains are great source of protein: Chia seeds and Quinoa. Use them in your daily diet and add to juices/smoothies, etc.