~Osteoporosis, Part 3

~Osteoporosis, Part 3
Reprinted with permission of Life Extension®.

Osteoporosis and Men

It is important for men to utilize the same nutritional guidelines as women. Attention to testosterone level is especially important. DHEA and melatonin may be helpful in men as well. In some cases consideration for the use of some progesterone should be made. Lastly, the importance of exercise cannot be overemphasized. Supplemental DHEA is contraindicated in both men and women with certain hormone-related cancers (refer to the DHEA Replacement Therapy protocol and Male Hormone Modulation Therapy protocol for more information).


There is ample evidence that fluoride found in drinking water and toothpaste may contribute to bone destruction (Turner et al. 1992, 1997; Sogaard et al. 1995). The use of properly filtered water and toothpaste without fluoride is recommended.

Suppressing Pro-inflammatory Cytokines

As people age, they often produce excess levels of inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-1b (IL-1b), and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF- a ) (James et al. 1997; Brod 2000). Cytokines are immune system-regulating chemicals. Pro-inflammatory cytokines (such as IL-6) can induce a chronic state of systemic inflammation and damage the bone matrix.

Dietary supplements such as the DHA fraction of fish oil, vitamin K, and DHEA can suppress dangerously high levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines. IL-6, in particular, has been linked to bone loss. Vitamin K, fish oil (Burke et al. 1997), and DHEA have demonstrated efficacy against osteoporosis (Haden et al. 2000). It would appear that these supplements might function via several mechanisms to protect against bone loss.

Conclusions and Recommendations

In summary, there are a variety of solutions to the problem of osteoporosis. Whatever choices you make should be made in consultation with your family doctor or a specialist and may require changes in lifestyle and diet, plus or minus hormone replacement or other supplemental or drug therapy. It is critical to address these issues, however, because osteoporosis is both preventable and treatable.


  1. Proper nutritional supplementation with vitamins and minerals, in particular calcium. Six capsules a day of Bone Assure provide the ideal dosages and forms of calcium, magnesium, zinc, manganese, and vitamin D3, boron and other nutrients to protect bone density.
  2. Weight-bearing exercise may help increase bone density.
  3. Supplemental hormones such as DHEA, 25-50mg a day and melatonin, 300mcg - 3mg each night should be considered by both men and women.
  4. Vitamin K in the dose of 10mg a day facilitates the formation of a bone-building protein and dramatically reduces fracture risk. Do not take vitamin K if you are taking coumadin or some other type of anticoagulant medication. For treatment, take up to 45mg a day under the supervision of a physician who monitors blood coagulation factors.
  5. Soy extract may improve bone density and bone mineral content, 55-110mg of active isoflavones (genistein, daidzein, and glycitein) each day.
  6. Consider bisphosphonate drug therapy if there is any evidence of a loss of bone mineral density as measured by a QCT test.
  7. Application of natural progesterone cream may stabilize or improve bone density. Follow dosage directions in this protocol.
  8. Men should pay particular attention to testosterone replacement therapy (refer to the Male Hormone Modulation protocol for details).
  9. Ipriflavone may suppress bone resorption, 300 mg a day.
  10. Avoid red meat and switch to fish as a protein alternative. Using a supplement with GLA/DHA (provides gamma linolenic acid from borage oil and DHA from fish oil) is the best documented way of suppressing excess levels of proinflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin-6 (IL-6) that break down bone.
  11. Readers are referred to the Female Hormone Replacement Therapy protocol for additional information regarding estrogen and progesterone therapy.

Note: QCT bone density measurements and Pyrilinks-D urine tests should be performed to assess bone density status.

For more information, contact the National Osteoporosis Foundation, (800) 223-9994.

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