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The Calcium Question
by Jon Barron
(The Best Years in Life) Certainly, some of the most frequent questions I get concern calcium.
Insufficient magnesium in the diet is probably more of a factor than insufficient calcium. A study in the Journal of Nutritional Medicine, 1991; 2:165-178, for example, showed that after nine months, women on magnesium supplements increased bone density by some 11%.
Increasing the amount of gamma linolenic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in the diet helps increase bone density.
Avoiding fluoride in your drinking water is vital. Fluoride collects in the bones, and although it “technically” increases bone mass and density, the evidence is very strong that fluoride intake can actually double the incidence of hip fractures.
But all of the above factors pale in comparison to the problem of a high acid diet. If you have not already done so, I suggest you read Chapter 13 of Lessons from the Miracle Doctors to better understand how a high acid diet (meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy, cooked grains, and refined sugars) leeches calcium from the body. The brief explanation is that when you consume a high acid diet, your body is forced to use calcium from your bones to buffer the high acid content so that your blood pH remains constant and you don't die. The problem with dairy is that it actually takes more calcium to buffer its acid content then you actually receive from the dairy – thus the high incidence of osteoporosis in countries that consume a lot of dairy.
Now do not misunderstand. I am not saying that dairy is the biggest culprit. Actually, all of the other acid foods are worse – particularly high-sugar soda pop. I just single dairy out because it's always identified as building strong bones, when the opposite is true.
However, it is very effective at neutralizing excess acid. So it is helpful at reducing the rate of bone loss. Just for fun, if you have some coral calcium in your house, pour a capsule into a can of sugared soda pop and watch what happens.
At present, the most absorbable calcium that I know of is AdvaCAL – available all over the Internet, on television, and in health food stores. It's a good supplement. But keep in mind, no matter how good it is, it cannot make up for a high acid diet. It is merely a finger in the dike. Consider the fact that the traditional Eskimo diet contains over 2,000 mg of calcium a day, but because their diet is so acidic (virtually 100% from animal sources), It produces the highest hip fracture rate in the world. The bottom line is that calcium supplementation will not save your from the consequences of a bad diet.
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