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BTD Forums  /  Nonnie Clubhouse  /  Calcium, Psychological Resilience, and Nonnie-hood
Posted by: 521 (Guest), Tuesday, November 27, 2007, 10:03am
I've been reading this book by the late psychiatrist Frederic Flach.  It's titled Resilience: Discovering a New Strength in Times of Stress, and I like it very much.

I found something particularly interesting in his chapter on "Biological Resilience", with regard to the role of calcium metabolism on psychological functioning, and it seems to me to pertain very much to nonnies due to their greatly decreased ability to absorb calcium from the diet.  So here's the excerpt, which I'm completely typing out for you:

Quoted Text
Stress Reactions and Calcium Metabolism

During the 1950's and 1960's, some of my other studies demonstrated that depressed patients lost calcium from the body while depressed and retained it during and after their recovery.  It was not clear whether the calcium shifts were of central importance in depression or primarily a reflection of other biochemical events within the body, part of a more general psychological reaction to stress.  In either case, calcium shifts could be very important, since calcium is a major regulator of central nervous system activity.  Fluctuations in the amount of calcium at the cell membranes affect the flow of substances in and out of the cell; for example, the influx and efflux of sodium ions.  In addition, calcium is a nervous system "sedative": it reduces the excitability of the brain.  Calcium metabolism is partly regulated by messages delivered via hormones.  Reduced hormone production by the parathyroid gland leads to low blood levels of calcium; this, in turn, can induce hyperexcitability of the nervous system which, if severe enough, can result in convulsions.  Abnormally high parathyroid hormone production can elevate calcium levels to such a degree that mental confusion, coma, and even death may ensue.

Calcium metabolism is also influenced by stress hormones such as cortisol.  Hens Selye, in his description of stress responses, pointed out the importance of calcium when he stated that stress accelerates the aging process by activating the removal of calcium from bone and its deposition in soft tissues (where it does not belong).  In fact, my subsequent studies showed that the calcium that was being retained in the bodies of patients recovering from episodes of depression (the process of reintegration) was going back to bone... by means of radioactive isotope calcium-47 we could track its movement.  In the continual interchanges of calcium that take place within bone, and betweeen bone and the rest of the body, the recovering patients revealed a decrease in the amount of calcium leaving bone and an increase in the amount of calcium being deposited in bone.  At the same time, there seemed to be a slight decrease in the amount of calcium circulating in the bloodstream.  Many people have come to believe that vitamins, such as the vitamin B complex and especially vitamin B, and minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, and zinc make a positive contribution toward the body's ability to cope with stress.

My reason for posting this excerpt from Flach's book is that I thought all the nonnies here might appreciate the role that poor absorption of calcium might play in mood disorders in nonnies.
Posted by: Amazone I., Tuesday, November 27, 2007, 10:58am; Reply: 1
(clap)(clap)(dance)and as mentioned...magnesium is also very important & zink & all the B-vits !!!  :D thanx Ron for sharing  ;D
Posted by: Curious, Wednesday, November 28, 2007, 4:44am; Reply: 2
That is very interesting information - thanks for typing it out. It could also explain the link between osteoporosis and stress.
Posted by: Mitchie, Wednesday, November 28, 2007, 10:55am; Reply: 3
Wow Ron, that has type A nonnie written all over it.  Depression is something I'm always trying to keep at bay.  Seems like some research into depression and calcium is in order.

Thanks so much for your post! (sunny)
Posted by: OSuzanna, Wednesday, November 28, 2007, 1:02pm; Reply: 4
Oh, wow, thanks, Ron!!!
It may very well explain partially my battles with depression and flunking my bone density test a few weeks ago.
Thanks a million for the heads-up.
Posted by: 521 (Guest), Thursday, November 29, 2007, 9:34am; Reply: 5
Yeah, no problem...
Posted by: 2247 (Guest), Saturday, January 5, 2008, 10:38pm; Reply: 6
I've just started this forum, as I am a Type O-noni.  I've been doing and learning the type O for the last five years and just recently learned I'm a non-secretor.  Yuch! except for the coconut oil and the avocado.  I'm not sure how to do these letters things but I'm going to try.  I've had a bad time lately cause I took a multivitiam from the health food store where I work.  It had Betaine Hydrocloride in it which I didn't see at first(didn't have the glasses on)!  Really messed my system all up, even to the point of thinkig I'd had a heart attack, so watch the Betaine Hydro. Now I'm doing Dr. D'adamo multi.  Bonnie Blue
Posted by: 12 (Guest), Saturday, January 5, 2008, 11:56pm; Reply: 7
Calcium is known as "Nature's Valium."
Posted by: shells, Sunday, January 6, 2008, 2:53am; Reply: 8
Thanks for that info Ron.  Very interesting.....we have mood disorders in the family.  Maybe the link with depression and exercise also plays a role with reintegration of calcium.  

Posted by: Becky, Tuesday, February 19, 2008, 6:01pm; Reply: 9
[b][/b]Thank you Ron!!

I am so glad I found my way back to the forum!!!

I have been fighting depression again for about 4 months now, but only figured that out about a week ago.  

I am going to up my B vitamins and calcium, and hopefully avoid having to take medication again.
Posted by: Lola, Wednesday, February 20, 2008, 4:06am; Reply: 10
Bonnie Blue,
just happened to see your last post!
hope you come back and participate!

Click on 'Member Center' at the top of this page, then on 'Avatar Settings' on the left, to select an avatar, to share your blood type with us.

Add information below your avatar setting, in the 'Profile Information' section, typing in the 'Personal Message box': (Rh+/-, secretor status; subtype A1 or A2, MN blood typing information)

Create a Signature that will appear at the bottom of every message you post.

Indicate your gender, age, and location in the 'Personal Information' section.
read the threads in the Reference Section.
Posted by: Lola, Wednesday, February 20, 2008, 4:09am; Reply: 11
glad to have you back!
have you tried rhodiola?
Posted by: Ellie, Thursday, February 21, 2008, 12:25am; Reply: 12
Thanks Ron, I hadn't realised nonnies had more difficulty with calcium, I have always taken as a B (as per Dr D)that I am good at absorbing calcium but not so good at magnesium.

Interestingly I was off dairy for a while & was more depressed, I never thought there might be a link with calcium - i was certainly under a lot of stress over a long time.(although I eventually figured out other foods affected my mood).

Fascinating article & how interesting that the body can & does recover even at bone level, if given a chance.

Sounds like a fascinating book. :)

Higher Nature here in the Uk do a calcium/magnesium powder which they say is calming, unfortunately I find the taste too horrible to drink (even when in herbal tea)!
Posted by: RHTeacher, Saturday, February 23, 2008, 11:49pm; Reply: 13
If you can have applesauce (or pear sauce) the powder can be hidden in it fairly well.
Posted by: podiecat, Sunday, February 24, 2008, 7:31am; Reply: 14
Thanks so much for typing that out for us, Ron.  I don't know yet about my secreter status, but this article sure does have my name on it.

For three years I've been dealing with severe biological depression. Two years ago I had a baseline DEXA and was shocked to find out that I already had severe osteoporosis - even though I had done major weight-bearing work and play my whole life before, plus eating well. I refused the so-called magic bullet biphosphonates and for two years have done all of the right things to build my bones (appropriate fine supplements, exercise, trying to get a handle on the depression, eating well). I just had my two year DEXA and my scores are quite a bit worse!!!

Is it the egg before the chick or the chick before the egg?????
How do I break the cycle?

My magnesium levels are lower than they should be although I take plenty. My phosphorus levels are higher than they should be  even though I have not eaten meat in over twenty-five years and don't drink soda, etc. My manganese levels are too high (no idea why). And my boron was so low that it did not show up in the blood test.

Hopefully Dr D can sort this out because seeing -4.0 on a DEXA certainly does not relieve depression!

Anyone else out there with this picture?
Posted by: Lola, Sunday, February 24, 2008, 7:49am; Reply: 15
follow Dr D s advice to the T!
glad you are on your way! ;)
Posted by: podiecat, Sunday, February 24, 2008, 2:43pm; Reply: 16

More on Osteoporosis and Depression:

This is the first article I've read to mention the relevance of thinner bone in the femoral neck (ward's triangle) and lumbar spine found in depressed women compared to non-depressed women. So that is why those areas have the worst scores for me!!!
Posted by: Lola, Sunday, February 24, 2008, 8:34pm; Reply: 17
there you go!!!
read my pm carefully PC......
that what I mentioned has to do a lot with that area you talk about......the parasympathetic nervous system is localized right there!!
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