The importance of building better bones
Our skeleton is formed of more than 206 fused and individual bones. It constitutes a rigid, living structure that provides anchor points for muscles, tendons and ligaments and enable us to move. Bones also provide support and protection for organs such as the brain, lungs and heart. Some, such as the skull and ribs, protect vital organs. They also make our blood cells, store minerals such as calcium and release them when necessary, and store lipids, which are an energy reserve.
Bone is primarily formed of calcium and collagen, as well as phosphorus, magnesium and trace minerals.
One very important function of bone is to send calcium into the bloodstream when the body needs it. Calcium is a vital chemical in our bodies. It’s necessary for muscle contraction, blood clotting, nerve conduction, and other functions. It also provides strength to bones and teeth.
Bone is continually made and remodeled as we grow and age.
In a process known as resorption, specialized cells called osteoclasts break down bone to free the calcium, other minerals and proteins into the bloodstream.
Cells known as osteoblasts deposit calcium into bone, remaking it. The process of replacing old bone with new bone is known as remodeling. Remodeling is a process which occurs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and involves the continuous breakdown and re-formation of bone.
Estrogen in females and testosterone in males help to maintain bone strength. Other hormones that have an influence on bone mass are growth hormone, which is made by the pituitary gland, and cortisol, which is made by the adrenal gland. Growth hormone increases bone mass while excess cortisol decreases it.
Osteoporosis is defined as low bone mass and deterioration of bone tissue. This leads to increased bone fragility and a higher risk of bone fracture in the spine, wrist, hips or ribs.
A 2007 major meta-analysis, published in The Lancet, found that calcium supplements, either alone or in combination with vitamin D, are an effective preventive treatment for osteoporosis in older adults. Treatment effects were greater when supplementation was at least 1,200 mg of calcium and 800 IU of vitamin D (Calcium with vitamin D).
It is also very important to balance calcium intake with another critical mineral, magnesium (Calcium Magnesium Zinc). In a review from the University of Southern California (USC), Los Angeles, researchers noted studies have demonstrated magnesium deficiency results in bone loss and abnormal mineralization of bones, contributing to skeletal fragility.
Our bones keep on resorbing during our entire life and resorb more and more as we age. Therefore, supplementation with Calcium, Vitamin D and Calcium Magnesium Zinc is needed for building better and stronger bones.