Product Profiles: Membrell

Building Strong Bones Requires More than Just Calcium

Written By:
WholeFoods Magazine Staff
View more articles in:

According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, more than 10 million Americans have osteoporosis and another 34 million have low bone mass. Osteoporosis is a progressive disease in which a person’s bones gradually become weaker, ultimately making them very susceptible to fractures. Some of these fractures, particularly hip fractures, can lead to permanent disability and even an increased risk of death (1). Well-known nutrients such as calcium, magnesium and vitamin D are key building blocks for strong bones. Recent research, however, has revealed additional nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin K and zinc are also essential for optimal bone health. That was the basis for NEW Membrell BONEhealth™ Plus Vitamins D3 & K2.

Calcium: An all-natural ultra-pure source of calcium is ideal for supplementation. Eggshell calcium (ESC®) is all that and more. ESC® is one of the most absorbable forms of calcium as a result of naturally occurring transport proteins in the eggshell. Human studies have demonstrated that eggshell calcium increases bone mineral density (2–4) in as little as one year in healthy women (4). BONEhealth™ Plus includes the full daily value of 1,000 mg of calcium.

Magnesium: In clinical studies, individuals with osteoporosis have been shown to have low magnesium levels (5). Magnesium is also a critical enzyme co-factor in the conversion of cholecalciferol (vitamin D3) to the active form of vitamin D in the body. BONEhealth™ Plus is formulated with a 2:1 ratio of calcium-to-magnesium to maximize calcium utilization in the body.

Vitamin D: Vitamin D is absolutely essential for the absorption of calcium in the gut. Low serum vitamin D levels increase the risk of fracture by 71% (6). A recent study (7) found that vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) is almost twice as potent as vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) in raising blood levels of Vitamin D. BONEhealth™ Plus is formulated with 133% of the newly revised daily value for Vitamin D and includes the most effective form as vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol).

Vitamin C: Vitamin C is best known for its antioxidant properties and potential beneficial role in immunity, but it may also help preserve bone density. Vitamin C is essential for making collagen (i.e., the fibrous protein part of bone), and a recent study (8) found that patients with the highest vitamin C intake maintained bone density, whereas those with the lowest intake lost bone density. BONEhealth™ Plus includes 100% of the daily value of vitamin C.

Vitamin K: Vitamin K has been shown to increase mineralization of the bone matrix (9) and low intake of vitamin K is associated with a three-fold increased risk of fracture (10). A recent human study (11) demonstrated that natural vitamin K2 (menaquinone-7) had better absorption, much longer bioavailability and higher efficacy levels in the body than vitamin K1 (phylloquinone). It also promoted and activated markers of bone building. BONEhealth™ Plus includes one of the most bioactive forms of vitamin K (K2, menaquinone-7).

Zinc: In clinical studies, individuals with osteopenia and osteoporosis have been shown to have about 20% and 40% lower serum zinc levels, respectively (5). Zinc is also a critical enzyme co-factor in bone matrix synthesis. BONEhealth™ Plus includes 50% of the daily value of zinc to ensure adequate intake.
Like Membrell’s original BONEhealth™ formula, BONEhealth™ Plus blends all-natural, ultra-pure ESC® (eggshell calcium) with vitamin D3 and magnesium to ensure maximum utilization of the calcium. But,  BONEhealth™ Plus goes a step further by including 33% more vitamin D3 along with vitamin C, vitamin K2, and zinc for even greater bone-building strength. Make the change to Membrell BONEhealth™ Plus Vitamins D3 & K2 today!

1. C.A. Brauer, et al., “Incidence and Mortality of Hip Fractures in the United States,” J. Am. Med. Assoc. 302 (14), 1573–1579 (2009).
2. J. Rovensky, et al., “Eggshell Calcium in the Prevention and Treatment of Osteoporosis,” Int. J. Clin. Pharmacol. Res.  23 (2–3), 83–92 (2003).
3. A. Schaafsma and I. Pakan, “Short-Term Effects of a Chicken Egg Shell Powder Enriched Dairy-Based Products on Bone Mineral Density in Persons with Osteoporosis or Osteopenia,” Bratisl Lek Listy 100 (12), 651–656 (1999).
4.A. Schaafsma, et al., “Positive Effects of a Chicken Eggshell Powder-Enriched Vitamin-Mineral Supplement on Femoral Neck Bone Mineral Density in Healthy Late Post-Menopausal Dutch Women,” Br. J. Nutr. 87 (3), 267–275 (2002).
5.M. Mutlu, et al., “Magnesium, Zinc and Copper Status in Osteoporotic, Osteopenic and Normal Post-Menopausal Women,” J. Int. Med. Res. 35 (5), 692–695 (2007).
6. J.A. Caule, et al., “Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Concentrations and Risk for Hip Fractures,” Ann. Intern. Med. 149 (4), 242–250 (2008).
7. E. Romagnoli, et al., “Short and Long-Term Variations in Serum Calciotropic Hormones after a Single Very Large Dose of Ergocalciferol (Vitamin D2) or Cholecalciferol (Vitamin D3) in the Elderly,” J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 93 (8), 3015–3020 (2008).
8. M. Ruiz-Ramos, et al., “Supplementation of Ascorbic Acid and Alpha-Tocopherol Is Useful to Preventing Bone Loss Linked to Oxidative Stress in Elderly,” J. Nutr. Health Aging 14 (6), 467–472 (2010).
9. J. Adams and J. Pepping, “Vitamin K in the treatment and Prevention of Osteoporosis and Arterial Calcification,” Am. J. Health-Syst. Pharm. 62 (15), 1574–1581 (2005).
10. H. Luukinen, et al., “Strong Prediction of Fractures Among Older Adults by the Ratio of Carboxylated to Total Serum Osteocalcin,” J. Bone Miner. Res. 15 (12), 2473–2478 (2000).
11. L.J. Schurgers, et al., “Vitamin K–Containing Dietary supplements—Comparison of Synthetic Vitamin K1 and Natto-Derived Menaquinone-7,” Blood 109 (8), 3279–3283 (2007).

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, February 2011