Osteoporosis is not due to a lack of calcium intake, but a result of too much protein in the diet, especially animal protein. Excessive amounts of protein in the diet causes the kidneys to excrete the excess protein because the body cannot store it. The extra protein is excreted through the urine and it takes calcium with it. Extra proteins cause an acid load in the blood and in order to neutralize this load, calcium is depleted from the bones. This is shown when populations around the world that consume diets loaded with animal protein such as the United States, England, Israel, Finland and Sweeden all have high rates of osteoporosis. The countries that consume low amounts of animal proteins (including dairy foods), such as African and Asian countries show very low rates of osteoporosis.
One example of a population with a high incidence of osteoporosis is the eskimos. They have a daily consumption of 250 to 400 grams of protein from fish, walrus, or whale meats and 2,200 mg of calcium from fish bone. This high protein consumption gives the eskimos the highest rate of osteoporosis in the world.
The best way to avoid osteoporosis is to eat foods low in protein, especially from animal proteins. Also, make sure to include a wide variety of calcium-rich vegetarian foods such as, kale, broccoli, garbonzo beans and tofu, etc. Also, make sure to do daily exercise, especially weight bearing activities. Lastly, some sunshine is necessary for good health. Your best source of vitamin D is sunlight which converts plant sterols to the active vitamin in our skin. Milk is naturally deficient in vitamin D, and only contains this fat-soluble vitamin if added during manufacturing. I wrote a previous article on dairy and it’s negative health implications.
In summary, make sure you eat a wide variety of a whole foods plant-based diet and get plenty of exercise. Also, get at least fifteen minutes of sunlight per day along with avoiding eating a high protein diet. Also limit caffeine intake and avoid smoking. If you follow this easy suggestions you will get plenty of calcium and avoid calcium drain through your urine. This will keep your bones strong for life and avoid osteoporosis.
McDougall, John A., M.D. The McDougall Quick and Easy Cookbook
Lyman, Howard F. Mad Cowboy