Why Trace Minerals Are Crucial For Bone Health

Calcium / Nutrition / Nutrition / December 16, 2014

Lara Pizzorno is the author of “Your Bones: How You Can Prevent Osteoporosis and Have Strong Bones for Life – Naturally” and a member of the American Medical Writers Association with 29 years of experience specializing in bone health.

Recently we asked Lara if she would help us provide a series of short, ongoing videos to help you (our customers and readers) stay up to date on the latest facts and science related to bone health and overcoming osteoporosis naturally.

In this latest video, Lara talks about the other vitamins and minerals that are crucial to bone health. Watch the video below (or read the transcript provided) and let us know what you think in the comments.

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Hello, I’m Lara Pizzorno the author of “Your Bones” and I’m here today to share some information with you that I hope will help you have healthier bones.

In the last couple of videos we’ve discussed three research studies in which AlgaeCal was shown to significantly outperform any other form of supplemental calcium. Calcium carbonate or calcium citrate or even these forms of calcium when given with vitamin D. Why is this? What’s so different about about AlgaeCal?

Well, it’s a plant source of pre-digested by the marine algae, Lithothamnion superpositum (or Algas Calcareas as the locals call it) which is what it’s named for calcium and it contains, not just calcium. The mineral matrix supplied by AlgaeCal is only 28-38% calcium and that calcium is derived from 4 different types of bioavailable calcium. Calcium hydroxide, calcium chloride, calcium sulfate and calcium carbonate. So AlgaeCal is not just calcium carbonate. AlgaeCal also contains naturally 2-4% magnesium plus other pre-digested trace minerals and the pH of this calcium rich minerals in this AlgaeCal is approximately 9.5. In other words, it’s alkaline, so anything greater than 7 is alkaline. And we’ll talk about the importance for your bones of  maintaining an alkaline balance in your body in another video.  It’s extremely important that you are not in an acidic state. So, bottom line here, AlgaeCal contains a lot more than just calcium, it provides all the trace minerals utilized by the sea algae to build its bony structure.

And these are trace minerals that we humans also require for optimal bone building and we’re not getting them anymore from the Standard American Western Diet.

In “Your Bones” in the section on diet, I discuss the studies showing on the phosphate fertilizers that we now use to produce conventionally grown foods have resulted in our plant foods have much lower levels of many minerals. So even if we are eating a healthy diet that is high in fruits and vegetables, we may not be getting the amounts of minerals that our bones actually require to be healthy. Also, in the second edition of “Your Bones” I added a section in which I discuss a number of trace minerals and the research showing the very important roles that each of them plays in building bone.

AlgaeCal supplies these trace minerals in perfect natural proportions in which they were combined to help form the bony structure of the marine algae, Lithothamnion superpositum (or Algas Calcareas as the locals call it).

Then, AlgaeCal Plus adds to this mix of trace minerals, the vitamins that we know are essential for healthy bones. Vitamin D, vitamin K-7 in the version of vitamin K2 – I will discuss these nutrients later in separate videos. And vitamin C. Plus AlgaeCal adds additional magnesium and boron to ensure that these key minerals are present in optimal amounts. To sum it up, is a plant sourced calcium that supplies our bones with so much more than calcium or even calcium or vitamin D.

So the next time someone tells you that AlgaeCal is just an expensive kind of calcium carbonate, suggest they read the studies, all of which are free access or listen to this video. All the references for the studies are provided along with it. Thanks for tuning in.


Your Bones: How You Can Prevent Osteoporosis & Have Strong Bones for Life Naturally

Comparative effects of a novel plant-based calcium supplement with two common calcium salts on proliferation and mineralization in human osteoblast cells

Changes in Total Body Bone Mineral Density Following a Common Bone Health Plan With Two Versions of a Bone Health Supplement: Comparative Effectiveness Research Study

Author: Lara Pizzorno, MDIV, MA, LMT

Ann Ferro
Ann Ferro

Very grateful to have found these products. Took myself off Foxomax! Does the algaecal plus meet all the dosages I will need from vitamin D, K, etc. or will I need to supplement these?

Jenna AlgaeCal
Jenna AlgaeCal

Hi Ann,

So wonderful to hear you are choosing the natural approach to strengthening your bones!

This is a great question! For those who are not deficient in vitamin D, AlgaeCal Plus provides sufficient D3 for maintenance of their healthy levels. That being said, the majority of people are deficient in D3, and therefore it is important to determine these levels with your doctor, or by checking recent blood work. Although most doctors will say anywhere from 30-100ng/ml is ‘normal,’ both we and the vitamin D council see 50-80ng/ml as the ideal range, which will help with bone density increase. So, until you reach this optimum level, we recommend supplementing with additional vitamin D3 on top of the AlgaeCal Plus formulation. There is more reading available on this here.

Vitamin D3 helps with calcium absorption, but it is vitamin K2 which helps to direct that calcium absorption to the bones. Therefore, for any additional D3, we usually recommend it in the form of a D3 + K2 supplement. AlgaeCal Plus provides the correct ratio for most people, however, for those supplementing with additional D3, further K2 is typically advised. For every 1000-5000iu of additional D3, the recommendation is 120mcg of K2. We recommend you consult with your doctor about the revised dosage – as they will be able to advise you on your body’s individual needs better.

Vitamin K2 is found in fermented or cultured products like kimchi, sauerkraut, natto, and in some hard cheeses like edam. You can also find it in small quantities in things like kombucha and kefir. Pastured egg yolks contain approx. 30mcg per yolk, and organic chicken breasts a similar amount. So, you could try to incorporate the additional K2 from your diet, but for many people this is difficult, and a combination D3 + K2 supplement is easier. It is a good idea to discuss these changes with a doctor/naturopath/trusted nutritionist.

We hope this is helpful, Ann! Please let us know if you have any questions. You can also call our Bone Health Consultants at 1-800-820-0184 🙂 We’re here to help.

– Jenna @ AlgaeCal

*Important: Vitamin K2 is contraindicated in those taking certain prescription anticoagulant medications. If you are taking any of these medications, our AlgaeCal Basic, is a great option for your needs. Please phone to discuss this with one of our friendly bone health consultants if you need any clarification!

Kim Cavanagh
Kim Cavanagh

Why does Algaecal plus have magnesium oxide in it? I have read that the oxide form of magnesium is the least effective and absorbable form of magnesium.


Hi Kim,

Good question. There are in fact no significant studies that have proven any one form of magnesium is better than the others. The magnesium we use in AlgaeCal Plus is magnesium oxide combined with magnesium carbonate. Because magnesium must be bound with another substance to be absorbed adequately, we chose these forms because their molecular mass is higher.

– Monica @ AlgaeCal

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