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Old 08-12-2005, 10:07 PM
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Harrison Harrison is offline
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I am curious if people have anything to add to these brief excerpts (via quick web search) on calcium. The critical neuro-muscular connection is complex but interesting, as I believe I have neglected this important dietary component. Can any of you pharma members comment? Many thanks.

http://www.medicinenet.com/muscle_cramps/page2.htm
Low Blood Calcium, Magnesium. Low blood levels of either calcium or magnesium directly increase the excitability of both the nerve endings and the muscles they stimulate. This may be a predisposing factor for the spontaneous "true" cramps experienced by many older adults, as well as for those that are commonly noted during pregnancy

http://www.naturalways.com/calciumResearch.htm
There are two types of calcium. One type of calcium is tightly bound within the bone and the other more accessible type of calcium is found on the bone. The skeleton serves as a bank of minerals for the body. The body can borrow from the skeletal stores when blood calcium levels drop and return calcium to bones as needed.
A constant supply of calcium is necessary throughout our lifetime, but is especially important during phases of growth, pregnancy, and lactation (breast feeding). About 10-40% of dietary calcium is absorbed in the small intestine with the help of vitamin D (Somer, 1995; Mahan et al, 1996). The level of calcium absorption from dietary sources drops to 7 in post-menopausal women (Sourer, 1995). The body will absorb more calcium if there is a deficiency. Factors that improve calcium absorption include adequate amounts of protein, magnesium, phosphorous, and vitamin D. Conditions that reduce calcium absorption include high or excessive intakes of oxalates and phytates, found in foods such as spinach and unleavened whole wheat products. Consumption of alcohol, coffee, sugar, or medications such as diuretics, tetracycline, aluminum containing antacids, or stress can reduce absorption of calcium. Lack of exercise can reduce calcium absorption as well as cause an increase in calcium losses. These life habits can immobility lead to calcium deficiency. Calcium deficiency can increase risk of bone disorders such as osteoporosis.

Calcium Functions
(Sourer, 1995; Whitney et al, 1996; Sizer et al, 1997)
� Calcium is responsible for construction, formation and maintenance of bone and teeth. This function helps reduce the occurrence of osteoporosis.
� Calcium is a vital component in blood clotting systems and also helps in wound healing.
� Calcium helps to control blood pressure, nerve transmission, and release of neurotransmitters.
� Calcium is an essential component in the production of enzymes and hormones that regulate digestion, energy, and fat metabolism.
� Calcium helps to transport ions (electrically charged particles) across the membrane.
� Calcium is essential for muscle contraction.
� Calcium assists in maintaining all cells and connective tissues in the body.
� Calcium may be helpful to reduce the incidence of premature heart disease, especially if adequate intakes of magnesium are also maintained.
� Calcium may help to prevent periodontal disease (gum disease).
Calcium Deficiency
(Sourer, 1995, McCarron et al, 1987; McCarron et al, 1991)
� Calcium Deficiency in conjunction with high sodium intake is related to a higher risk of hypertension.
� Calcium Deficiency can lead to loss of calcium from the bone (initially from the jaw and the backbone), which can lead to deformity.
� Calcium Deficiency can cause extreme nerve sensitivity, muscle spasms, and leg cramps (called tetany) at very low levels in the blood.

http://dictionary.reference.com/
cal�ci�um
n. Symbol Ca

A silvery, moderately hard metallic element that constitutes approximately 3 percent of the earth's crust and is a basic component of most animals and plants. It occurs naturally in limestone, gypsum, and fluorite, and its compounds are used to make plaster, quicklime, Portland cement, and metallurgic and electronic materials. A
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Old 08-13-2005, 02:26 AM
spotty14 spotty14 is offline
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Thank you for posting this, it's a good reminder about why the Calcium I'm taking is necessary.
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Old 08-14-2005, 11:28 AM
Mariaa Mariaa is offline
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It's known that women need to increase calcium intake via dietary means and supplements throughout phases of their lives however, I think it's been greatly overlooked that males may be in need of calcium supplementation also as they are susceptible when it comes to developing calcium deficiency as well as osteoporosis.
Males as well as females, esp. before having spine surgery such as fusion or ADR, check with your physician regarding a bone mineral density test~
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Old 08-14-2005, 02:14 PM
ans ans is offline
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I'm unclear how much Ca is safe to use and in what form. One secondary source gives a general max. (doesn't say what type of Ca) up to 2500 mg./day with the caveat that kidney stones are a greater risk. (Get nervous playing with electrolytes/neurotransmitter chemicals).

http://www.wholehealthmd.com/refshel...25,884,00.html
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Old 08-14-2005, 03:37 PM
spotty14 spotty14 is offline
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Ans,
Your calcium level can be checked by a blood/urine test and then you can get a recommendation from your doctor. If your not deficient in Calcium or have major absorption problems then probably a standard dose daily will be recommended. 2500mg daily sounds too high to me. The Forteo I take raises the Calcium level in the blood, keeping it high enough for bones to regrow but not dangerously high to cause side effects. The dietary calcium and supplements I take are figured into the picture and I get blood/urine tests so the level can be adjusted if need be and the Forteo works but I'm not overdoing it with Calcium. It's a delicate balance.
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3/04 updated MRI
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1/2000 Discogram
numerous epidural injections
physical therapy
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Old 08-14-2005, 06:52 PM
ans ans is offline
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Thank you Spotty for this great idea. Best Regards, Allan
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