Approximately 3 million people in the UK have osteoporosis. A study called "The diagnosis of osteoporosis", estimated that 15% of women will have osteoporosis by the age of 50, 30% at the age of 70 and 40% at the age of 80. Below are the three most important nutrients for protection against this condition: 1. Calcium. One of the many roles of calcium is to build and maintain healthy bones and teeth. We need approximately 500-1000mg daily and good food sources are cheese, milk, tinned fish, nuts and pulses. Deficiency in calcium can lead directly to osteoporosis. Early symptoms include bone pain, muscle weakness and slow healing of bone fractures. 2) Phosphorus. Phosphorus is the other key mineral needed for healthy bones and teeth. We need approximately 1.5-2g per day and it is found in so many basic foods (yeast, milk, fish, cheese, cereals) that deficiency is unlikely. However, phosphorus does need Vitamin D in order to be absorbed by the body. So, if any deficiency symptoms of phosphorus arise (these include weakness, bone pain, joint stiffness, irritability, tremor, mental confusion), it may well be that Vitamin D deficiency is the real problem and that this has impaired the absorption of phosphorus.
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