Sunday, September 27, 2009

Got Veggies?

Typically women reach for calcium supplements or dairy foods to help fight osteoporosis, but proponents of a low-acid diet suggest fruits and vegetables can be more effective in fighting the disease.

A diet high in protein can change the alkaline/acid balance in the blood, which causes the body to eliminate needed minerals including potassium and calcium, experts say.

“The primary virtue of a low-acid diet may be its emphasis on fruits, vegetables and whole grains,” says Joan Salge-Blake, a nutrition professor at Boston University and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Assn. "A plant-based diet is not only good for bones, it's good for a lot of other things too, including lowering the risk of hypertension, stroke and heart disease.”

Some studies suggest following a low-acid diet could reduce the risk of fractures in old age by as much as 30 percent.

Additional research is required, but if proven, the low-acid diet theory could change the way doctors counsel women over 40 years old regarding calcium intake and bone loss due to aging.


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