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Calcium is an integral component of bones, since it provides strength and thickness to the bones. As one ages, hormonal changes occurring within the body, tend to reduce the absorption and deposition of calcium and other vital minerals in the bones. This makes bones thinner, more porous, lighter, and brittle, thus, increasing the probability of developing fractures and injuries.
The human growth hormone plays an important role in sustaining good bone density up to the age of 30 years. After the age of 30 years, HGH levels in the body drop considerably, and this affects bone mineralization to a huge extent. Bone density is healthy up to the age of 30 years, after which, it tends to reduce, and the condition is called ‘Osteoporosis’. In such conditions, supplementation with calcium and Vitamin D becomes very essential. There are several factors other than age that contribute to a fall in the bone density, these include - genetics (i.e. race and family history), Nutritional factors (i.e. lack of a wholesome, balanced diet), lack of exercise, hormonal changes (i.e. in women approaching menopause, osteoporosis is very common due to alterations in the hormonal profile).
Role of HGH in maintaining healthy bones
Several research studies have been conducted to evaluate the relationship between the Human Growth Hormone and bone density. One of the most prominent studies was published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (JCEM) which found that, ending hormone therapy treatment in elderly women resulted in a reduction in the bone mineral density. The study was conducted on 500 women belonging to the age group of 65 to 77 years, for an interval of three years. It was a double blind, placebo controlled, randomized clinical trial. Similarly, there were two other studies published in the same journal, which demonstrated the positive effects of the use of recombinant Human Growth Hormone (HGH) for the treatment of osteoporosis in men and Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) in the management of osteoporosis in young women. Following this, it was concluded by the researchers that, discontinuation of hormone replacement treatment for two years or more resulted in rapid bone loss. It was also observed that the maximum amount of bone loss occurred in the first year after the treatment was stopped. Also a drop in the calcium absorption and an increase in serum PTH levels was observed after the treatment was discontinued.
HGH Increases Bone Density
Human Growth Hormone is released by the pituitary gland, directly into the blood stream. This hormone then stimulates the liver to produce a factor called the IGF-1 (insulin like growth factor-1), which regulates metabolism in the body. IGF-1 tends to increase protein synthesis in the cells of the body. As a result, the body now requires a larger quantity of protein and other nutrients, which are absorbed through the gastro intestinal system.
Recent studies have demonstrated that a high protein diet helps increase the bone mass density. This is attributed to the ability of proteins to regulate absorption of calcium into the blood stream. A diet rich in proteins enhances the absorption of calcium, which in turn, increases the calcium deposition in the bones, thereby, making the bone stronger. Overall, HGH increases the bodies demand for protein and thus, hastens the absorption of calcium.
Osteoporosis is a major medical condition, especially, among the elderly, which makes the bones lighter, brittle and prone to fractures. Fractures are painful and interfere with the individuals’ ability to perform his daily activities. Furthermore, major fractures of the joints are life threatening. Fracture of hip, common in elderly, can damage the femoral artery (i.e. the main artery supplying blood to the lower extremity) and can result in death due to hemorrhage.
Thus, supplementing the body’s HGH levels will benefit the bones tremendously. An increase in the level of the growth hormone will promote an increase in bone mineralization, and consequently, improve the density. This reduces bone fragility and susceptibility to fractures.