You know that calcium, Vitamin D and magnesium are all outstanding nutraceuticals for healthy bones. But did you know that some herbs are too?
Specifically, Andrographis paniculata (ParActin®) and Tongkat ali (LJ100®) have been shown in studies to protect healthy bone turnover and bone mineral density.
Several studies on ParActin show clear mechanisms of action in preserving bone health. In a murine study, andrographolide (the key active molecule in ParActin®), a natural NF-kB inhibitor, significantly decreased osteoclast formation in the bone marrow through suppressing a complex biochemical known as RANKL, responsible for making osteoclasts. Specifically, the ParActin® group showed a significant increase in bone mass, trabecular thickness and number, and a decrease in trabecular separation compared to controls. The authors concluded that andrographolide inhibits estrogen deficiency-induced bone loss in mice and may have supplemental potential for osteoarthritis.
In another study, andrographolide was shown to induce osteoblast mineralization through COX-2 expression, showing a mineralizing effect on the bones with the increase of calcium deposits.
A current double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, which is ongoing, will assess the effect of ParActin® on bone (and joint) health.
LJ100® Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia) has several published studies also demonstrating value in preserving bone structure,
In one study, researchers found that LJ100®, which is abundant in active quassinoids, helped reduce degenerative changes of trabecular structure by improving bone volume, trabecular number, and separation. A second study showed a significant inhibition of cells differentiation and maturation of osteoclasts as well as a significant down-regulation of RANKL-induced TRAP activity and expression of MMP-9, cathepsin-K, TRAP, NFATc1 and generation of superoxide and enhanced superoxide dismutase activity was observed in E. longifolia-treated cell cultures. Results of another study suggested that LJ100® exhibited superior efficacy in stimulating bone formation via upregulating the expression of various mitogenic proteins. And, in a six-week study, rodents given LJ100® showed restored bone volume in the femora.
Bone is not static, it is very much alive and active. As these studies show, herbs can have positive impacts on preserving healthy bone structure, which can help promote quality of life in elder years.