Hyperparathyroidism and Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis, a condition affecting millions of people worldwide, is characterized by a deficiency of calcium in the bones, which causes them to become weak and brittle. While it is sometimes caused by a diet, which is lacking in calcium, it can also have many other, more complex, causes. One of these is hyperparathyroidism.

Hyperparathyroidism is caused by an unnatural enlargement of the parathyroid glands, or by benign tumors. The parathyroid glands maintain the blood calcium in the normal range using parathyroid hormone (PTH), and when they become abnormally enlarged or with benign tumors, like in hyperparathyroidism, they produce too much of the hormone. A high level of parathyroid hormone in the blood causes both short and long-term damage to the body. First the hormone goes to the bones and removes calcium out of them into the blood stream. Because the kidneys filter the blood, this abnormally high level of calcium in the blood causes them to undergo heavier strain.

In such a way, not only the bones, but also kidneys are under permanent attack, sometimes for many years, while the hyperparathyroidism is undiagnosed or untreated. This can result in low energy levels, depression, frequent headaches, memory loss, kidney stones, aches and pains in the bones, and osteoporosis.

“All patients with hyperparathyroidism will continue to lose calcium from their bones every day that the parathyroid hormone is high. Over time, all parathyroid patients will get osteoporosis.” claims Dr. James Norman, one of world’s foremost experts on parathyroid disease.

This is why it is advised to act on your illness immediately, without letting the process of damage continue. According to Dr. Norman many physicians encourage their patients with slightly elevated PHT and calcium levels to wait and see if the problem develops. However, he claims, their health never improves and the damage to the body continues, although their blood calcium may never reach the high, ‘qualifying for surgery’ level. In this case, Dr. Norman advises the surgical removal of the tumor as ‘the only possible solution”.

However, different branches of natural medicine, like for example Homeopathy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, or Herbal Medicine, claim to be able to help diminish the size of parathyroid glands or to reduce the benign tumors. According to University of Maryland Medical Centre, a change of diet and some life habits may vastly help reduce the symptoms of hyperparathyroidism.

The University of Maryland Medical Centre advises to:

Eliminate all potential food allergens, including dairy, wheat (gluten), soy, corn, preservatives, and food additives. Your health care provider may want to test for food sensitivities.

Eat calcium-rich foods, including beans, almonds, and dark green leafy vegetables (such as spinach and kale).

Avoid refined foods, such as white breads, pastas, and sugar.

Use healthy cooking oils, such as olive oil or coconut oil.

Reduce or eliminate trans-fatty acids, found in commercially baked goods, such as cookies, crackers, cakes, and donuts. They are also found in French fries, onion rings, processed foods, and margarine.

Limit carbonated beverages. They are high in phosphates, which can leach calcium from your bones.

Avoid coffee and other stimulants, alcohol, and tobacco.

Drink 6 to 8 glasses of filtered water daily.

Exercise moderately at least 30 minutes daily, 5 days a week.