Providing Vitamins For Bones For Their Proper Functioning
When you hear osteoporosis, what do you think of? In this society, we are trained to automatically think of calcium and vitamin D. It’s like a reflex reaction. Well, all that training is quite limited. While these two supplements are indeed important for the bones, it is important to recognize that the bones are made up of over a dozen minerals and use multiple vitamins and nutrients for their proper production and functioning.
Consider, for instance, vitamin K. I like to bring focus to this vitamin for bones because it brings up several key factors that Ayurveda looks at for an integrative approach to bone health and osteoporosis.
You do take in vitamin K through your diet (leafy greens). But an even more resourceful source of vitamin K is your gut flora! Ayurveda has always looked towards the gut as the place where health begins and where health ends. Ayurveda classical texts have also recognized the colon membrane (purisha dhara khala) as intimately connected to the bone membrane (asthi dhara khala).
While this connection perplexed me for the longest time, it really does makes sense. The natural flora of the colon makes vitamin K, amongst other essential nutrients, and this vitamin (usually thought of in terms of preventing excess blood clots) is an essential factor in the production of healthy bones. And that is just one of the functions the colon plays when it comes to bone health. (Ayurveda called it 5,000 years ago!)
So we begin to appreciate osteoporosis as an integral play between proper nutrition and a healthy gut. Ayurveda had it right all along.
Here is how you can support the proper production and absorption of vitamin K for your bones
Make sure you are having a bowel movement every day
If you are not, then that stool is stagnating in your GI tract, causing that toxic substance called ama. Ama then clogs channels so that nutrients cannot be absorbed properly. You won’t get the vitamin K or any other essential minerals and nutrients. To that end, take organic Triphala every night (half a teaspoon steeped in water or two tablets).
Support the natural flora with ghee
Ideally this should be made from organically raised, grass-fed cows. Flora loves ghee! Also take in food sources of flora (probiotics) like homemade, cultured yogurt.
Support a healthy diversity of flora by cutting back on sugar and gluten
Other stressors of our flora to consider include mental and emotional stress, environmental toxins (look at your household cleaners!), and recurrent illnesses because of a poor immune system (and especially if you take antibiotics to recover from them!). Always try to eat organic and make sure your supplements are organic and tested for identify, heavy metals, and pesticides.
Hydrate the colon
Have you ever tried an Ayurvedic, therapeutic enema (basti)? It is always best to work with a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner for these treatments. The general idea, though, is to make a decoction of herbs (for this purpose organic Dashamula and Guduchi are great) by boiling a tablespoon of each in four cups of water down to two cups of water. Let it cool to a warm temperature, mix with a fourth cup of sesame oil, and insert through an enema bag into the rectum. Retain the mixture for ideally thirty minutes to forty-five minutes. Then evacuate. As always, also make sure you hydrate plenty.
Eat your greens
Kale, collard greens, mustard greens, spinach, etc. are all great sources of vitamin K. Support your body’s vitamin K levels with these power foods. Your body has an amazing innate intelligence if you support it properly.