A wipe-out on my bicycle last week makes this topic timely. I didn’t break any bones but easily could have. A study from the U. of Buffalo published in June looked at the effectiveness of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and supplementation with calcium and vitamin D (CalD) in preventing fractures in post-menopausal women.
The study “Women’s Health Initiative clinical trials: interaction of calcium and vitamin D with hormone therapy” found that HT and CalD together reduced hip fractures by 50% over placebo, and that the combination was more effective than either alone. Curiously bone mineral density was unchanged in the lower fracture group. Personally I suspect that if a better form of calcium than carbonate was used, vitamin D3 was given at 4,000iu instead of 400iu, and vitamin K2 was added, the fracture rate would be much lower and a bone mineral density increase would be measurable, with or without the HRT.
Hormone Replacement Therapy has fallen out of favor since the publication in July 2002 of a study by the Women’s Health Initiative which linked it to increased risk of breast cancer, heart disease and stroke. One year later breast cancer rates, which had been climbing steadily, dropped by 7% overall and by 12% in women over age 50. See Mercola's post on this topic for additional information.
Fortunately there is a safer alternative – bio-identical hormones. Because of patent laws, the hormones used in HRT are synthetic, similar but not exactly like the ones produced in our bodies. Bio-identical hormones are just that – the exact same molecules, so they work better without the side effects. Ideally all of the hormones should be measured and balanced – estrone, estradiol, estriol, progesterone, testosterone and DHEA – not just one or two. It takes all of your hormones, in balance, to keep you healthy. Periodic hormone testing is also important to ensure that your hormones stay in balance. For information on bio-identical hormone therapy, contact Cindy Johns at 306-463-4565.
For more information on this or other natural health topics, stop in and talk to Stan; for medical advice consult your licensed health practitioner.