Recently a patient asked me to review all osteoporosis medications for her to consider and choose from. We had already optimized her Calcium intake, 25-hydroxy Vitamin D level, Protein intake, Multiple Vitamins & Minerals, and Exercise program. These had all helped substantially, but not enough for her peace of mind. She feels that she needs osteoporosis medication too. Here they are:
Many patients are taking Vitamin and Mineral Supplements for specific parts of their body. Eyes are the most common body part. Magnesium is the most common extra mineral. Often the dose of particular vitamins and minerals is several times the dose found in official “Multiple Vitamins & Minerals”. Usually the specialty supplements skip many of the trace nutrients found in official MV&M.
How do you know which supplements you need? How do you know how much of each you need? When is it safe to take multiple specialty supplements – often with some nutrients present in several supplements? Which of the 26 standard Vitamins and Minerals is it safe for you to skip entirely because you get enough in your personal diet?
I often hear: “I do not have osteoporosis, but my friend…” How are you certain that you do not have a bone health issue that could be improved upon? By the simple belief of “not me !!!” This I understand all too well after doing the same.
In bone health, the first sign of trouble is often a fracture, possibly a hip fracture, with a 20-30% chance of death. This is not good. In heart health, a rhythm problem, can lead to “V fib”, which often leads to death within minutes, unless you get to a defibrillator. Also not good.
I now have a new 2-lead pacemaker with defibrilator. I was completely unaware that my heart had become a ticking time bomb. I was lucky to have a routine annual heart check-up scheduled. Otherwise, my first warning could have been “V fib” with sudden death. Really not good.
Once I realized I had a problem, I moved quickly to the solution – pacemeker defibrillator. I wasted no time. Now I am able to do all the things I want to – travel, grandchildren, etc.
You do not need to be as clueless as I was. Take Control of your health. Check on your risks for diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and bone health. Then take action to correct problems. Get a Complete Bone Health Evaluation as well as evaluation of the rest of your body.
Jay Ginther, MD
The sky is clear blue. Sun sparkles off the snow covered ground. It is cold – below zero Fahrenheit. This is winter in Iowa.
Humans huddle indoors. Wildlife flourishes around the black oil sunflower seeds, black-niger thistle seeds and suet. We have invaded and displaced their natural habitat. We owe them a little help.
Chickadees are a constant. House finches, juncos, goldfinches, downy woodpeckers, cardinals, and red breasted woodpeckers make their daily appearances. Squirrels and house sparrows are nuisances. I have not seen our hairy woodpeckers, pine siskins, or sharp shinned hawk yet this year.
Nature has a sense of humor. The red-breasted woodpecker industriously take sunflower seeds from the feeder and packs them into hollows in the redbud tree. Minutes later the downey woodpecker steals them.
Take time to enter the Blue Zones of the natural world around you. Life is more than the latest video games.
Jay Ginther, MD