Most people think that osteoporosis is the lack of calcium in bone, but no; that’s osteomalacia.  Osteoporosis is the degeneration of the protein matrix in bone, and the calcium loss takes place secondarily to that. Osteoporosis starts with a loss of protein in the bones.

But, how can bones lack protein when most people, in countries such as the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Australia eat plenty of animal protein?

Well, you know that muscle wasting happens to people in those countries as they age. I get queries from people in their 30s asking why their once firm toned butt is now flat and saggy. Did I mention that they’re in their 30s?

The fact is that muscle protein retention peaks about age 25 and then it starts going down. Naturally, if you do heavy exercise, you may be able to counter it. But, when you reach your 40s, muscle atrophy accelerates and with each passing decade. And it’s insidious because if you replace muscle with fat, your weight may not go down. It could even go up, even though you are shrinking where it counts.

And it’s true of everything: your brain shrinks; your organs shrink. Women are well aware that their breasts tend to shrivel up with age. Guess what else can shrivel up, guys?

Age-related atrophy is a natural tendency, and it occurs in nature in wild animals. In a herd of elephants, the older males look shriveled compared to the younger ones.

That’s what osteopenia is about. It is the age-related degeneration of bone, the whole bone, and it corresponds to sarcopenia, the age-related degeneration of muscle. And as with muscle, it starts with the loss of the protein matrix.. And there is a lot of protein in bone.

The point is that downing a lot of calcium as a strategy to treat or prevent osteoporosis is not going to work. It requires a comprehensive program that addresses total nutrition and not just calcium. It requires exercise, of course, and also Vitamin D3, and you are never going to make enough from the sun alone. Forget about it.

Getting enough sleep is extremely important because lack of sleep hinders anabolic processes, and that’s what we’re talking about.

Maintaining optimal hormone levels is also very important. I take 25 mgs DHEA every morning, and I have for years, for decades, and I believe it has contributed a lot to maintaining my bone and muscle. I have my blood level of DHEA Sulphate tested every year when I do my blood tests in April.

Osteoporosis is a curse, and it’s a waterfall that we are all heading for. The prevention of it pertains to preventing the wasting processes of aging, in general. Throwing calcium at it will never suffice.