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Strontium
Overview
Strontium is a common element in soils and drinking water. It exists in trace amounts in all bone. It is in the same chemical family as magnesium and calcium, being next to them in the periodic table. Many studies, including those by the Navy, the Mayo Clinic and McGill University, have proven substantial benefits deriving from this element. Strontium supplements cannot be taken by children because of the possibility it can deform bones still in formation.

People used to obtain the strontium mineral by the foods we ate and the water we drank since it is naturally present in soils. Sadly, due to the mass commercialization of agriculture, minerals in our soil have become severely depleted over the last few decades, and now, it is very difficult to get these much needed minerals from our water and food.

Strontium has been studied since the early 1900's for its effect on bone density. Strontium and calcium have been shown to be superior to calcium alone for rebuilding bone.

A Mayo Clinic study conducted in 1959 looked at 22 individuals with severe (and painful) osteoporosis. Part of the group took 1,700 milligrams of strontium daily. Another group took the same amount of strontium with estrogen and testosterone. In the "hormones plus strontium" group, 9 of 10 people experienced marked improvement of their symptoms, and the other one had moderate improvement. In the strontium-only group, 18 of 22 had marked improvement and the other four had moderate improvement. Bottom line: every person in this study had moderated to marked improvement using strontium.
Studies are taken place as regards to the role this vitamin has on ones health.

A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine is summarized as follows: 1,649 post-menopausal women with osteoporosis were randomly given either a strontium supplement formula (and also calcium and vitamin D) or a placebo for three years.
At the end of this study, the women who took strontium (with calcium and vitamin D) over the three year time frame noticed an increase in bone density and were far less likely to have vertebral fractures after the study. The other group showed no improvements.

What is Strontium ?
Strontium is a common element which is naturally found in your bones. Studies show supplementation with Strontium in its various forms is well tolerated and completely safe. Strontium lies directly below calcium on the periodic table of elements and that makes calcium, strontium and magnesium all in the same chemical family. They are all naturally occurring metals found in the soil, in foods, and in your body.

As an alkaline earth element, strontium is similar to calcium in its absorption in the gut, incorporation in bone, and elimination from the body through the kidneys. Strontium is naturally present in trace amounts with around 100 micrograms in every gram of bone, so when you supplement with strontium you are simply making more of this element available for incorporation into your bone.

Where it is found
Dairy
Milk and dairy products contain strontium. Cows' digestive processes reduce the strontium/calcium ratio. Pasteurized milk contains an average value of 0.86 milligrams of strontium per liter. Strontium levels in North American milk range from 0.43 mg/liter to 1.51 mg/liter, according to a study by Georgia L. Rehnberg, et al., published in the February 1969 issue of Environmental Science & Technology. Cream has half the amount of strontium of whole milk, while skim milk has slightly higher amounts of strontium than whole milk. Cheddar cheese is even higher in strontium than whole milk.

Vegetables
The amount of strontium in vegetables varies according to the region they were grown. Lettuce from California is a rich source of strontium. Stable strontium levels in vegetables are high. Vegetables with the highest amounts of strontium include spinach, lettuce, carrots, peas, beans, potatoes and celery.

Grains
Grains are another food source rich in strontium. The level of strontium in the soil affects the amount of strontium in grains. Wheat, barley and other grains used to make bread have significant levels of strontium. Flour, grains and breads average 2 mmc/kg of strontium-90 and 2,150 mg per gram of stable strontium.

Seafood
Oysters, mollusks, fish and other seafood are rich sources of strontium. Shellfish tend to have higher levels of strontium because they are filter feeders.
Product related PDF file
Strontium Breakthrough in Osteoporis

Benefits / uses
Reverses Osteoporosis
Strontium builds bone. It assists in the fusing of calcium in bone and hence serves as a catalyst. Several studies, led by an early 1959 study by the Mayo Clinic as well as more recent studies at McGill University, showed conclusively that strontium increases bone density -- in one case by 8.1 percent in patients who were losing bone before taking the supplements. This element not only builds bone like calcium can, but it also inhibits the re-absorption of bone matter into the system. Therefore, it doubles the rate by which bone disorders such as osteoporosis can be reversed.

Treats Arthritis
Strontium also can build cartilage in the joints. In a Belgian study carried out by the Bone and Cartilage Metabolism Research Unit, strong evidence was uncovered that this element can assist in the stimulation of cartilage production and hence help reverse arthritis.

Prevents Cavities
The U.S. Navy undertook a study to show strontium could prevent cavities. The Navy investigated a small town--Rossburg, Ohio--that had a large amount of this element in its drinking water. The surprising lack of cavities in the town strongly suggested that this bone strengthener can assist in the prevention of cavities by strengthening the bone structure of teeth.

Treats Cancer in Bone
Cancers can spread into the bone. This becomes a severe problem since it quickly can destroy bone, leaving it brittle and weak. Even if the cancer is eventually cured, the damage to the bone is difficult to fix and can leave substantial deformations in the bone structure that cause severe pain and deformities later on. In a McGill University study, strontium was shown to strengthen cancer-riddled bones and fill in the holes that cancer leaves. Though it cannot cure bone cancer, it can deal with its effects by strengthening bones and leading to a speedier and less painful recovery.

Reduces Fracture Risk
Given strontium's ability to strengthen bone more effectively than calcium, this element has also been found to reduce the risk of bone fractures, specifically in cases of bone weakness brought on by cancer or osteoporosis.

Doses
INTRAVENOUS:
Healthcare providers administer strontium by IV for bone pain due to advanced cancer.

Possible Side effects / Precautions / Possible Interactions:
The forms of prescription strontium are safe when used under the supervision of a healthcare provider. Strontium ranelate might cause side effects such as stomach pain, diarrhea, and headache in some people.

Toothpastes that contain strontium have received safety approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). There is some concern that very high doses of strontium might damage the bones.

Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Strontium in toothpaste seems to be safe during pregnancy and breast-feeding. However, strontium supplements should be avoided, because not enough is known about their safety. Strontium-89 is UNSAFE during pregnancy and breast-feeding. It is a radioactive material that might harm the fetus. It may also pass into breast milk and could harm a nursing infant.Children: Strontium supplements might not be safe for children.Paget's disease (a bone disease): The bones of people with Paget's disease seem to take up more strontium than normal. It's not known how important this finding is for health.
Kidney problems: Strontium is eliminated by the kidneys and can build up in people with poor kidney function. Use strontium supplements with caution if you have kidney disease. Strontium ranelate should not be used if kidney disease is advanced.
Blood clotting disorders: Strontium ranelate is associated with a small increased risk of blood clots. There is some concern that strontium might be more likely to cause blot clots in people with blood clotting disorders. It's best not to use strontium if you have a clotting disorder.


When To Take/Types To Take
Strontium supplements are best to be taken with meals.

Research studies / References
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McCaslin FE Jr, Janes JM. The effect of strontium lactate in the treatment of osteoporosis. Proc Staff Meetings Mayo Clin. 1959;34:329-334.



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Marie PJ, Skoryna SC, Pivon RJ, et al. Histomorphometry of bone changes in stable strontium therapy. In: Trace substances in environmental health XIX, edited by D.D. Hemphill, University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri, 1985, 193-208.



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Marie PJ, Hott M. Short-term effects of fluoride and strontium on bone formation and resorption in the mouse. Metabolism. 1986, 35:547-551



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Meunier PJ, Slosman DO, Delmas PD, et al. Strontium ranelate: dose-dependent effects in established postmenopausal vertebral osteoporosis: a 2-year randomized placebo controlled trial. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2002;87(5):2060-2066.



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Meunier PJ, Roux C, Seeman E, et al. The effects of strontium ranelate on the risk of vertebral fracture in women with postmenopausal osteoporosis. N Engl J Med. 2004;350:459-468.



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Reginster JY, et al. Strontium ranelate reduces fractures in osteoporotic women. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2005; 90(5):2816-2822.



arw Nutr Rev 1983; 41:342-4