This is from the book by the late psychiatrist Frederic Flach. It's titled Resilience: Discovering a New Strength in Times of Stress. |
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.
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!!!!!!!!