Herbal Treatment For Bone Health and Connective Tissue
While I continue to study herbal medicine, I’ve devoted the last few months to reading, researching and investigating the wonderful properties of herbs for bone health.
Bone loss begins in our 30’s but is hastened through lower oestrogen levels after menopause. Bone is a living tissue and undergoes a constant cycle of being broken down and being rebuilt in order to repair damaged and worn out bone.
If you think of the analogy of a bank account, where you make “deposits” of nutrients for a new healthy bone and “withdrawals” of bone that need replacing. As we age, more bone is naturally broken down than is replaced. This is a natural process of declining bone strength. Obviously calcium is important to bone health but it isn’t how much calcium you take in to prevent bone loss, it’s how much you lose.
Various nutrients are required to build new and healthy bone cells and contributing factors such as poor digestion and absorption, lack of calcium and other important nutrients including essential fatty acids, vitamin D, magnesium and boron, along with smoking, lack of exercise, cancer and hyperthyroidism also play a part.
The number of Irish people over the age of 50 who suffer with Osteoporosis:
- 1 in 3 women (increases to 1 in 2 women over 65)
- 1 in 5 men
The high levels of plant silica in horsetail helps to maintain the level of calcium in the bone. Silica is cubical for translating physical weight or physical stress, fro running for example, into electrical messages which direct the biochemistry to make new bone. It strenghtnens blood vessels to prevent them from getting weak and rupturing. Horsetail is also rich in calcium and other trace minerals, which are needed for collagen and also acts synergistically to support the metabolism of calcium.
Alfalfa (Medicago sativa)
Alfalfa is a nourishing herbal tonic containing vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K, as well as beta-carotene and chlorophyll. It is also rich in minerals including calcium, potassium, iron, and phosphorus.
Burdock root (Arctium lappa)
Burdock offers most of the nutritional minerals required for strengthening bone including, potassium, magnesium, calcium as well as manganese. Burdock offers most of this nutrition.
Oat Straw (Avena sativa)
Avena sativa has many benefits including soothing to the nervous system, relieving menstrual cramps and promoting bone health. It also has a high mineral and calcium content, which helps to promote bone strength and is one of the best anti-osteoporosis herbs. It’s rich in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B complex, vitamins A and C, iron, magnesium, calcium, silica, alkaloids, and flavonoids.
Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica)
Stinging Nettle has many benefits. It’s an excellent source of vitamins A, D, E, and K for flexible bones, a healthy heart, thick hair, beautiful skin, and lots of energy. It contains silicon which works to increase bone density and all the nutrients our body needs to digest and use calcium as well as a host of other nutrients needed for healthy bone growth. It’s also an anti-inflammatory which is commonly used for inflamed joints and especially good for gout.
Herbs can transform not only your cooking, but also your health. And as you can see, many are also good for your bones!
Consult a professional Herbalist before taking any of these herbs to prevent bone loss or stimulate bone formation.