Sunday, January 10, 2016

A Cautionary Calcium Story

The following is a story taken straight from my client files. Even though it is not about skin care specifically, I think it provides important information that you will want to know.

Robyn, like many people, is prone to the blues from time to time. She read a magazine article that said high doses of calcium could help curb depression. She was also concerned about calcium loss and osteoporosis. Robyn already drank a normal amount of milk (not excessive), but thought taking calcium supplements might help her on several levels (bone loss as well as occasional depression). So she purchased Caltrate®, an over the counter calcium supplement, and started taking about 4-5 tablets per day.

Unbeknownst to Robyn, she couldn’t process this synthetic calcium quickly enough and it was beginning to collect in her kidneys, eventually (and painfully) creating kidney stones less than a year after starting to take the calcium supplements. Unfortunately this condition would prove to be hard to diagnosis at first.

Robyn had to go through the painful process of having the stones removed surgically. To add insult to injury, literally, the surgeon found one of the stones had such a sharp edge to it, it had gotten stuck in the lining of her ureter. The surgery was successful, and after a lengthy recuperation, Robyn had a full recovery. She doesn’t, however, take calcium supplements anymore! She now relies on calcium-rich foods to supply her body with adequate natural calcium.

As a side note, Robyn recently moved to a new city and says she no longer experiences even occasional depression. Environment really can adversely affect our lives—or enhance it.

I wanted to tell you this story just in case you are taking a lot of calcium supplements. Although calcium is important to support healthy bones and shouldn’t be ignored as an important part of your daily intake of nutrients, be aware of any changes in your body and keep your physician apprised of any supplements you are taking or choosing to not take.

Many vitamins, minerals, and other supplements get their turn at having notoriety and public acclaim. I would read up on any and all supplements you decide to take. Also remember that the body is a machine and works in a particular balance with everything it is given to work with, whether that be food or supplements or both.

Cow’s milk, by the way, is acidic (acid-forming) on the pH scale. When your body has too much acid, it has to be stored somewhere, and sometimes stones form. Sometimes in the kidneys, sometimes the gall bladder; regardless where they form they can and do show up with an over acid system.

For more information, see: