Nutrition Link Newsletter December 2011

Nutrition Link Newsletter December 2011
December, 2011
As 2011 draws to a close, we take a look a the brittle bone disease – osteoporosis and challenge some of the long held beliefs about this condition ands why it comes about. We have also got a fabulous Christmas recipe plus a summary of the latest health and nutrition research.

Osteoporosis – Not Only About Calcium!


 Osteoporosis literally means softening of the bones. It is a growing problem with one in 3 women over 50 likely to suffer at some point in their lives and 1 in 5 men. There are a number of well known predisposing factors such as low levels of oestrogen in women caused by early menopause or conditions such as premature ovarian failure. Other causes include genes, race, sex (women more likely to suffer than men), being underweight and certain health conditions such as an overactive thyroid and rheumatoid arthritis. Some medications such as  steroid medications given to treat inflammatory conditions and some drugs used in breast cancer patients may also increase risk. Diets low in the nutrients needed to support bone health are another risk factor and execcesive alcohol consumption, smoking  and inadequate bone building exercise are other contributory factors.
So what can you do to reduce your risk of developing Osteoporosis? 
Firstly it is important to look at all of the risks listed above and see whether any of these relate to you. If you are on steroids for example then you may well need some bone support nutrients – an issue which you can discuss with your GP.
And how important is Calcium? 
Calcium is undeniably one of the key components of bone matrix and this has led to the assumption that increasing
calcium levels in the diet (especially through consumption of dairy foods) must help to improve bone health. However the evidence does not always bear this out. In the journal Pediatrics Amercan researchers reviewed 37 relevant studies of which 27 found no relationship between dietary calcium or dairy product intake and measures of bone health. Of the remaining studies any apparent benefit was small. Another study looking at children hilighted not only the lack of evidence of benefits from calcium, but also dairy products specifically for bone health.
So if it’s not all about Calcium then what other dietary changes can we make to help protect our bones?
Dietary Measures To Decrease Osteoporosis Risk
1. Include Some Calcium – Although the benefits of calcium, including that from dairy foods have been overemphasised, some calcium is needed for bone health. Foods such as green leafy veg, such as kale and broccoli are good sources . Other good sources of calcium include beans, seeds (especially sesame), tinned fish such as sardines and salmon (also good sources of vitamin D) and quinoa. Milk is not the only calcium provider! 
2. Reduce intake of alcohol – as more than 3 drinks a day has been linked to an increased risk of the condition.
3. Include plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet. These have an alkalising effect on body tissues and if eaten in a high enough quantity will prevent the need for calcium to be taken from bones to buffer acidity. Green veg are particularly beneficial

4. Soak wholegrain breakfast cereals overnight. This helps to break down a substance contained within the grains called phytate which binds to the minerals in the food and stops them from being absorbed
5. Limit salt and caffeine as these can both lead to bone loss 
6. Include foods rich in the other nutrients for bone health
(vitamin D, magnesium, manganese, boron, vitamin C, isoflavones, iron, copper, zinc, potassium, phosphorous, vitamin K, flouride, protein) 
7. Ensure intake  of animal protein is not excessive – Animal protein such as meat, fish, eggs and dairy has an acidifying effect on the blood and can lead to bone breakdown. Some protein is however important for bones so it is all about balance
8. Limit intake of soft drinks high in phosphorous- although some phosphorous is needed for healthy bones, the high levels found in carbonated soft drinks is bad news for bones 
9. Avoid wheat and gluten if you are intolerant of if you are a coeliac. The link between gluten and osteoporosis is so strong that in America anyone diagnosed with osteoporosis is automatically screened for coeliac disease
At  The Nutrition Link we can help you to optimise your bone health by helping you to identify and address the underlying causes. For more information or to book an appointment give us a call on 01727 764 832 or email


Recipe – Parsnip, Chestnut & Apple Soup


This recipe is full of warming Christmassy goodness. Packed with fibre from the vegetables, it also contains protein from the chestnuts and is low in fat – enjoy!

1 onion, finely chopped
500g of parsnips, peeled & grated
4 sticks of celery trimmed
400g of cooked, peeled chestnuts (vaccum packed is ideal)
50g of unsaled butter
1.3 litres of chicken stock
2 eating apples, peeled and sliced thinly
Place onion, parsnip and celery into a pan with the butter and fry gently for about 10 minutes until softened and lightly browned.
Add chestnuts and sliced apple and cook for a few more minutes
Pour in chicken stock, add seasoning. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes until tender.
Puree soup in a liquidiser and return to the pan. Heat through and serve.
Well that’s all for this month. We hope that you have enjoyed our health and recipe news. Please feel free to contact us on 01727 764 832 email regarding your health and weight loss issues and don’t forget to check out our wide range of health tests in the ‘shop’ section of our site at . In the meantime, Merry Christmas and talk to you soon!  

New Alcohol Intolerance Test & Special Offer on Nutritional Consultation
New Alcohol Intolerance Test 
Let’s face it, it’s that time of year when most of us like to have a drink or two. However the after effects are not always pleasant and sometimes don’t bear any relationship to how much alcohol we have had. If you are someone who feels terrible after only one or two drinks, it may be that you have an intolerance to one or more of the ingredients in your favourite tipple. Yeast for example is a common allergen and sometimes issues with certain grapes, wheat, hops or additives may be to blame. Unlike UK foods, alcoholic drinks do not require labelling so it is not always clear what you are consuming. Now help is at hand with an IgG finger prick blood test which helps identify the problem ingredients in alcoholic drinks, enabling you to choose to drink beverages which are less likely to affect you. For more info and to purchase your test kit go to our online shop at
£10 Discount on a Nutritional Consultation
Thinking about having an overview of your diet to start the New Year or perhaps there is a specific health issue that you would like help with? For a limited period only we will be helping you to do just that with £10 off a nutritional consultation (normal price £65, but reduced to £55 until the end of Jan). Quote Jan promo to take advantage. Contact us for more details on 01727 764 832.   
Latest Health News


More than 2 takeaways a week are enough to increase the risk of diabetes.
Researchers from the university of Tasmania and two other Australian science institutions studied the diets and lifestyles of 1,896 men and women aged between 26-36. The researchers discovered that those consuming 2 or more takeaways weekly had higher blood sugar levels, higher levels of insulin and scored higher on a test for signs of insulin resistance – a warning sign for diabetes. The research was publishd in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.


Food Intolerance Link to Migraine
A recent study published in the Nutrition Journal showed improvements for migraine sufferers when food intolerances were identified and removed from their diets. In the study 84 participants were put on a diet free of their intolerances while 83 were put on a sham diet. At the end of the four weeks those on the intolerance free diet had a 23%  reduction in migraine symptoms.
For more health news please visit our news blog at




   |   Unsubscribe
{!contact_address} Copyright 2008. All Rights Reserved.

Speak Your Mind


Nutritionist consultations in St Albans and Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire. 01727 764 832