The AI (adequate intake) of the DRI (dietary reference intake) for calcium ingestion ranges from 210mgs for an infant to 6 months old (what an infant will receive from its mother’s milk) to 1200 mgs per day for people over 51 years of age. A large number of Americans are following this protocol in daily calcium supplementation over and above whatever calcium they may be obtaining in their daily diets. And yet today, Americans exhibit the highest levels of osteoporosis and osteoarthritis among all developed countries. When compared to all other countries, the percentages are even higher.
On the other side of the equation, there is no recommended intake level for the element silicon and we get very little silicon in the current SAD (Standard American Diet). The link between these two minerals is significant and adequate dietary levels of silicon are essential to reverse the increasing rates of both osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. It is the lack of silicon in our diet that is the cause of this problem, not the lack of calcium.
HISTORICAL DIETARY CONSUMPTION OF CALCIUM AND SILICA
100 years ago, modern refrigeration was in its infancy and most Americans did not consume dairy products daily if at all. Dairy was only available on the farm when a farmer had a pregnant cow with no calf to feed. When consumed, milk and other dairy products were taken fresh and raw. Obviously, this lack of supply precluded those consumers who did not have a cow from access to the currently most recognized source of dietary calcium. Interestingly, there are no historical references at the time to calcium deficiency as a result of a lack of access to dairy products. At the same time, calcium supplementation was unheard of and up until the 1980’s, was not a prevalently supplemented mineral. Also, while osteoporosis had been identified as a bone disease in the 1830’s by Jean Georges Lobstein, a French pathologist, it did not become defined as a widespread and growing disease until the 1980’s. Could it be that osteoporosis’s identification as a prevalent and growing disease has been more related to our ability to image bone mineral density than actual fracture rates?
Read more: Download The Calcium-Silicon Link in Nutritional Protocols. This White Paper on Silica vs. Calcium discusses a rational approach when dealing with degenerative diseases of osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, arteriosclerosis and gastrointestinal tract disorders.
By Rick Wagner, M.S., C.N.