Why Do Scientists Think Oestrogen Is The Only Answer For Osteoporosis
Few women, or their doctors, seem to realise that bone building to prevent osteoporosis and help build stronger bones needs both oestrogen and progesterone to be effective.
When there is a perfectly valid and proven treatment for osteoporosis in natural progesterone you do have to wonder why scientists want to pursue a course of treatment that is now widely accepted as having serious side effects? Oestrogen dominance, or excess oestrogen in relation to progesterone, is known to be linked to cancer, strokes and heart disease and although oestrogen is part of the treatment for osteoporosis it is only part while the other essential ingredient, natural progesterone, has been neglected. Bone is a living tissue and, like all living tissues in the body, it is constantly being built up and broken down.
Progesterone and oestrogen are both needed for treatment and for prevention of osteoporosis, however women have sufficient oestrogen naturally produced at or after menopause from the fact cells of the abdomen, hips and thighs without having to supplement. Oestrogen can help retain old bone for longer, but progesterone is needed for actual bone building and renewal. The answer to this neglect sadly is fairly simple; progesterone is a natural hormone and not patentable and therefore not profitable to the major pharmaceutical companies who fund most research with the aim of finding a new treatment. Although some women do indeed need supplementing with oestrogen, but preferably always balanced by progesterone to offset its negative effects in excess.
Swedish Researchers at the Centre for Bone and Arthritis Research at the Sahlgrenska Academy have had their findings reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and to me it makes no sense. On the one hand they do acknowledge that treatment of osteoporosis with oestrogen is associated with serious side effects such as breast cancer and blood clots. Their research was aimed at looking to develop an oestrogen treatment that utilizes the hormone’s favorable effects but not its side effects. To do this they analyzed which parts of the oestrogen receptor are most important in enabling oestrogen to act on bone and other tissues.
Statistically one in two women and one in five men over the age of 50 in the UK will fracture a bone, mainly as a result of osteoporosis. Broken wrists, hips and spinal bones are the most common fractures in people with osteoporosis and it is more widespread as we age. In practice you cannot tell by looking if you have osteoporosis – it can only be diagnosed with a bone scan – and it means that the bone is not as strong as it should be and there is therefore an increased risk of fractures. If you are breaking bones more frequently even on slight impact, and/or you have any family history of the disease, then please ask your Doctor for a scan.
As well as oestrogen supplementation, conventional treatment for osteoporosis has potential health problems with alendronic acid and drugs such as Fosamax. These drugs are not pleasant to take and can lead to digestive problems, oesophageal ulceration and can increase the risk of arterial fibrillation. This means they are often stopped by the patient who can find them too unpleasant to take long-term. Please note that if you are using Fosamax or other such drugs it is not recommended to use progesterone at the same time because of potential interaction between them