Ladies, Calcium and Bone Health

Men turn 40 and they have to drop their pants for the doctor. Women turn 50 and the fear is we fall and break into a million pieces. Calcium is the go-to supplement but there’s more to bone health than just calcium.

Here’s a video which explains the somewhat dubious relationship between calcium and osteoporosis and what you can do to make any calcium intake more efficient. Ladies, calcium and bone health

Please excuse all the ummms and arghhhs, it was a few minutes of thinking out loud which I hope you find useful.

CALCIUM

A major mineral usually linked to bone health, but it also plays a major role in cell communication aka “Intracellular communication” or how cells talk to one another.  There is calcium inside and outside of the cell and when there is too little outside of the cell, the calcium inside of the cell gets stuck. Calcium to be effective has to be able to move, it has to be transported to tissue and bone.  Taking a calcium supplement is not enough to allow for this transportation and when this mineral gets trapped inside the cell it can lead to some serious issues that we have all heard about.

Hypertension (high blood pressure) – we all know how dangerous this is. Known as the ‘Silent Killer.”  Calcium channel blockers are often prescribed for hypertension. Trapped calcium being a major precursor for this condition

Hardening of the Arteries

Diabetes

Cancer – calcium helps to control cell regeneration. Cells are meant to live and die and when they grow without regulation the risk of cancer can increase.

Inflammation

Soft Tissue Calcium – we know this as arthritis, bursitis, kidney stones, gallstones etc

THE TRANSPORTERS

Calcium needs to be mobilized and for this, we rely on fat soluble vitamins, essential fatty acids, and bile.

VITAMIN D3 – if you are low in vitamin D3 the calcium can get stuck inside of the cell. Sunshine is the most fun way of getting vitamin D, although remember that the skin on your face, neck, and arms is too thin to really absorb too much. So grab a belly shirt and some shorts and get some rays.  Or, you can take a D3 supplement (yes, the shrink shop sells D3).  Prolonged stress can also deplete you of vitamin D3..

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin (the fat soluble vitamins are  D K E A) and it is bile that breaks down fat. If you are low on bile it’s going to be tough to absorb D3 and it stays stuck in the cell. If you have had your gallbladder removed, know you have an issue with bile, have frequent stomach bloating or right shoulder pain, bile might be an issue. D3 (about 10,000 ius per day) will get calcium into the blood but now you need something to drive it into the tissue and bone

K2 – regulates calcium and pushes it into the bone. K2 helps keep the arteries elastic and clears soft tissue calcium. K2 is really good for osteoporosis and calcium really should not be suggested without also suggesting K2. You get K2 from anything grass-fed (not grain fed) or in supplement form (The Shrink Shop does not sell K2 :()  100mcg per day will clean up the calcium in the arteries and deliver it to the tissue.

OMEGA 3 FATTY ACIDS  – The essential fatty acids found in Omega 3 fatty acids aid in the transportation of calcium and so does Apple Cider Vinegar.

We take Apple Cider Vinegar for inflammation, high blood pressure and much more, but how does it work?

When the blood becomes too alkaline it becomes hard to deliver calcium, this is especially problematic for the elderly who might have less stomach acid helping with digestion. Talking a teaspoon or so of apple cider vinegar increases acid available to transport the calcium which means less is stuck in the cell which reduces hypertension, inflammation etc.  Calcium is the piece of the puzzle that makes the whole puzzle make sense but taking calcium by itself is not the answer.

MAGNESIUM – we often pair calcium with magnesium because if we have low magnesium it yet again, keeps calcium from moving outside of the cell. Magnesium is readily available is fruits, vegetables and in supplement form

I’m never going to tell yo not to take your daily calcium supplement but I will suggest that if you do take it on a regular basis you really must take Vitamin D3, Omega 3 fatty acids, K2 and Magnesium. Also, make sure you take the right kind of calcium.  Calcium carbonate is popular and cheap, but don’t take it. Calcium citrate is more expensive and much more bioavailable.  There are a few things worth spending money on,  an upgrade on your long-haul flight, great sheets, and quality supplements.

TOO MUCH CALCIUM?

We are taught to believe that calcium is good for the bones so that more is better. One thing we should know by now is that even if something is good for us, an excess of anything rarely is.

As well as high blood pressure, too much calcium or calcium that cant be mobilized can result in anxiety, insomnia, bone pain (ironic), constipation and those toe cramps you might get at night.

But at least its good for strong bones right?  Not so fast …

The RDA for Calcium in the US is 1200mg but most of the world gets less than 500mg and most of the world doesnt drink cows milk.  If you go back to a simpler time when we all did manual labor and ate off the land osteoporosis was pretty much unheard of.  We know that resistance training, be it with weights, bodyweight or good ol manual labor, strengthens bones and prevents osteoporosis and that should be the very first recommendation for ladies hitting the midpoint of life. Before you pop a pill or guzzle a pint of milk that your stomach may not thank you for, get out for a hike, pick up a weight, carry your groceries – stay active and strong.

In a video by Dr Jason Fung its entertaining to hear him say that of the 5676 mammals on this planet, only one species drinks milk past weaning and that same species is the one that suffers from osteoporosis. Yes, that would be superior (?) human race.

To continue this illustration …

Japanese women get less than 400 mg of calcium a day and have 2.5 times lower the rate of osteoporotic fractures.

African Banu ladies get less than 350 mg of calcium per day and have on average 10 babies each and it’s rare to see any of them suffering from weak bones.

We think that milk is the best source of calcium but in Hong Kong when the daily intake of milk doubled, the following decade the rate of osteoporosis tripled, Virtually the same thing happened in Greece

And then you have the native Eskimos who outdo us all with an average daily calcium consumption of 2000 mg and yet they have the highest rate of osteoporosis.

 

IT MIGHT BE THE SOURCE

Milk would score top if the Jeopardy question were to ask the best source of calcium, but that is not the case and it might indeed be the problem.

For 100 calories of milk, you will get 190mg of calcium

100 calories of watercress will give you 800 mg, arugula 1300 mg! Spinach 450mg and broccoli still comes in at over double with 387 mg

After being breastfed we move on to cows milk and cows milk has 3x the protein of breast milk. There is a very strong argument that calcium from animal protein may be the issue and it might even be the problem because it can cause an excess to be excreted in the urine. Cows milk is intended to make a calve gain a lot of weight in a short space of time and once it’s grown the young cow doesnt drink milk again.

I drink milk and I love cream and I’m not giving them up anytime soon. I’m very fortunate that I can enjoy all dairy with no issue, but if its calcium I seek I’m going to reach for the blender to make a nasty green shake.

 

WHAT TO DO?

Studies show us time and again that supplementing calcium alone is not the answer for bone health, so what can we do?

  1. Men and women alike, we have to stay active and we have to stay strong.  Unlike the generation past, now it is fashionable to be strong and have muscles past your shoulders but if lifting weight isn’t your thing then get some active lifestyle habits. Fire your gardener, bathe your own dog and load your own groceries,  To get strong bones get strong lifestyle habits.
  2. Calcium citrate, not the cheap calcium carbonate
  3. Eat, drink, inhale you green veggies
  4. Take daily Vitamin D3, Omega 3 Fatty acids, Magnesium, and K2 – you must provide the transporters to mobilize the calcium.
  5. If you have bile issues or have had your gallbladder removed, talk to your doctor about supplementing with bile. Bile breaks down the transporters so that they can be used to move calcium
  6. Take apple cider vinegar, especially for the elderly or those with poor stomach acid production
  7. Try to reduce stress, probably the hardest of all to do but cortisol (stress hormone) can deplete Vitamin D and compromise stomach acid production

AS we enter and deal with middle age and beyond I feel we become more proactive and more responsible for our own health, but often our best intentions can take us on the wrong path. I do hope this helps to explain calcium and its relationship to bone health and how simply pounding some pills won’t give us the benefits we hope for.

My next blog is going to discuss another way our best intentions may be moving us backward not forwards.  As we get older, building muscle becomes more difficult and gaining fat becomes a lot easier. The way we time our carbohydrate intake is crucial if we want to gain muscle and lose fat. We’re told that to achieve both at the same time is impossible, I’m here to tell you that it is not and that I have done it with clients dozens of times.  Subscribe for the next blog post on how to build muscle and lose fat after 40. I will post it within the week.

If you have any questions you can contact me at joanneleecornish@gmail.com

I train people at my private gym in Boise Idaho and I work with people online all over the world via Whatsapp, FB, and Skype   www.theshrinkshop.com

Vitamin D3, and Omega 3 fatty acids available on Amazon CLICK HERE

Joanne Lee Cornish

 

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Continue reading “Ladies, Calcium and Bone Health”

B12 Who Needs It Most?

B12 is a water-soluble vitamin and a popular choice of supplement when our energy is low. But what is B12 and who needs it most?

B12 is found ONLY in animal protein. It’s in our fish, meat, poultry, milk, and eggs. Organ meats are especially good sources of B12.

The RDA is 2.4-2.6 mcg and even a small amount of animal protein can supply us with all the B12 we need on a daily basis

WHO NEEDS IT MOST?

  1. The elderly. B12 is bound to its food source and needs to be broken down to become available. Older people may have poor digestion and/or reduced stomach acid activity. This will greatly alter the amount of B12 they get from their food. B12 deficiency can show up with the same symptoms as Alzeihmers and may even be misdiagnosed as this life crippling disease.
  2. Vegans, vegetarians and anyone that does not consume much animal protein. Thankfully many kinds of cereal are fortified with B12 and the supplement form is synthetic and can be used without conflict to any personal belief or choice.
  3. Pregnant ladies. B12 travels across the placenta to the unborn baby so if a lady is not eating animal protein and not taking a B12 supplement this can cause the baby to be born with a deficiency and may cause neural damage. Ladies if you are concerned please run this subject by your doctor.
  4. People with compromised gut health, leaky gut, digestive issues. If you aren’t properly digesting your food then it’s going to be difficult for B12 to remove itself from its host food.
  5. Any type of intestinal/stomach or lap band surgery. If the surface area of digestion is reduced or damaged it would be wise to take a B12 supplement daily.
  6. If you are taking any medication that reduces stomach acid. It might be a medication for heartburn or acid reflux. Metformin, the popular diabetes drug may also affect B12 absorption

HOW DO I KNOW IF I NEED B12?

  1. Low energy
  2. Muscle weakness
  3. Overall fatigue
  4. Routine blood test

Long-term deficiency can lead to brain shrinkage so it really is better to be safe than sorry.  Thankfully B12 is water soluble so you don’t have to worry about taking too much of it as its potential to be toxic is very low. The good news is that the liver can store 5 years worth of B12 so if you gut issues are recent or if you just stopped eating animal protein, your liver has your back – for a while.

I EAT A LOT OF PROTEIN SO I MUST BE OK?

Not so fast. If you eat a lot of protein but your digestion is not good then there lies a problem. This is very common with those who eat poor quality or processed meat.

Animal protein contains an amino acid Methionine which is converted to homocysteine. Homocysteine can build up and be very toxic. B12 and B6 neutralize the toxicity of homocysteine but if you’re deficient then all that protein your eating can end up being toxic.

IN SUMMARY

An essential vitamin that is found in animal protein but sometimes hard to access.  A daily supplement will provide you with the active form of B12  and so avoids the pitfalls of any digestive issue you may have.

You don’t need a shot if you take enough  B12 daily, although the elderly or those who have been diagnosed as being deficient may benefit from a shot in the behind.

Long-term lack of B12 will absolutely affect memory and brain function, put your parents on auto-ship and then put yourself on a daily dose.

 

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How Dandelion Works For Water Retention

DANDELION FOR WATER RETENTION

We focus so much on body fat but water weight feels worse and can cause our body to fluctuate in weight by as much as 8%

I weigh about 145 so that’s an extra 11 lb I can add quite easily to my frame. A gallon of water weighs 7lb and you can visualize how large a gallon of water is.

Excess sodium, lack of sleep, stress, medications, digestion, processed and high sodium foods can all add instant inches but so too can our changing hormones.

Excess fluid can lead to high blood pressure and prescription diuretics are often used to eliminate the excess water.  If you think of your blood like water going through a garden hose, if you suddenly have a lot more blood there is going to be more pressure placed on the hose. For higher pressure, we need stronger more rigid hoses and that’s one of the issues with high blood pressure, our arterial walls change.

DANDELION

I know I’ve been using dandelion for over 20 years because I remember using it for one of my Ms Olympia outings back in 1995 or 1996. It works by increasing the volume of your urine and by expelling excess sodium. Getting rid of that sodium was key the few days before competition because sodium holds water under the skin (and in the blood)

Dandelion leaf is mainly used for is diuretic effect and dandelion root for its mild laxative effect, I use both but I only ever use the teas. Dandelion also comes in pill form but I find the teas revolting to taste, but they work far better than the pill form.

In this video I am going to explain a little more about dandelion and a couple of other natural diuretics.

One word of caution. Dandelion can shorten the time a medication stays in your body so if you are taking any medication you must consult with your doctor before using this tea. People often think of natural solutions as weaker but this is no the case and some studies have show dandelion to be as effective as lasix for edema and general fluid retention

 

 

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Menopause sleep aid. Amazons Choice!

Fluctuating and then declining hormones can cause major sleep issues for ladies as they enter perimenopause and menopause. Many sleep aids just knock you out without really addressing the cause of the problem. This is the cause of grogginess the next day, your mind and body weren’t lulled into a state of sleep it was just KO and the next day you feel so bad, it’s hardly worth the extra sleep you got !

Menopause and perimenopause can cause those dreadful night sweats and a whole new level of anxiety. The body and mind struggle with these changes and it makes it very difficult to get to sleep and to stay asleep.  If you’re not sleeping it becomes a real challenge to lose weight. Sleep deprivation increases appetite and our taste for anything sweet.

This is the original reason I designed our Sleep Formula. Nutrition clients were not losing weight because they were not sleeping.

Guys this goes for you too.

You can imagine how happy we are to see that our Sleep Formula is the #1 sleep aid for Menopause and has been awarded the “Amazon Choice” badge.

Please don’t compare Sleep Formula to a single supplement like Melatonin or Gaba. Sleep Formula has both those ingredients and 10 other all-natural compounds that address every reason for your inability to get to sleep or to stay asleep. Because we address the cause of the problem you will get the sleep you need without a next day hangover.

Thank you, Amazon for recognizing us, watch out for our all natural energy supplement coming soon

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Calcium – a natural relaxant that promotes a feeling of calm

B6 – normalizes our sleep/wake patterns and is required to make serotonin. Serotonin is the neurotransmitter that controls mood, appetite, sensitivity to pain and … sleep.

Magnesium – relaxes physical tension and tight muscles.

Melatonin – a hormone released from the pineal gland in the brain.  The Pineal gland is inactive during day time but is triggered into action by the darkness of night.  Once released melatonin enters the blood and you start to feel less alert and more ready for sleep.  Melatonin is found naturally in small doses in meats, grains and vegetables.

The brain associates light with day and dark with night and melatonin rather than being a sleep supplement it is rather a darkness simulator.  For those who travel in different time zones melatonin can really help with their circadian cycle (light/dark pattern) although you don’t need to travel to have this problem.  Our smartphones, computers, televisions, even our alarm clocks are confusing our natural cycle and causing sleep problems, we are seeing this especially with the young.  In 2012 Time/Qualcom polled 4700 people in 7 different countries (including the US) and found that young people were more likely to say that they “don’t sleep well because I am connected to technology all the time”

What’s the last thing you look at before sleep?

The Sleep Formula supplement goes even further using a blend of well recognized herbs to promote quality sleep.

GABA (an amino acid) is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that dampens nerve activity in the Central Nervous System leading to a feeling of calm and relaxation.

Valerian Root a popular herb for sleep actually increases GABA

Hops Flower is similar to Valerian in being a sedative and hypnotic herb.  Made from the female flower of the hops plant Hops Flower is a popular herb often used in combination with Valerian Root. Both are well tolerated and have been used for centuries.

Skullcap is a muscle relaxant and used for headaches, especially tension headaches.

Chamomile is used for nervous energy and mental anxiety

Passionflower a fabulous addition as it’s the herb that helps keep you asleep! Often used on its own for this one reason.

L Taurine also increases GABA and vegetarians are at risk for being deficient as it is found naturally in

Inositol a sugar found in citrus fruits (negligible calories) that activates pathways to stop your mind from racing.  Inositol quietens that mental chatter that seemingly gets louder when we try to sleep.  Inositol activates serotonin and promotes the calmness needed for sleep

The Sleep Formula supplement will trigger your natural sleep pattern, it will relax your body, quieten your mind, ease anxiety and promote calmness.  It will activate your own neurotransmitters and relieve tension.  It will prepare you for sleep and it will keep you asleep – naturally.

To answer the biggest question of all.  Because The Sleep Formula works with your own regulators to allow for quality sleep it will not leave you with the dreadful hangover of a prescription pill.

Suggested use 1 capsule at night