The Effects of Diseases and Medications on Bones

Posted in: Aging    Lifestyle counseling    

As mentioned in “Digestion and dem Bones” the ability to absorb minerals, vitamins, and amino acids from food directly affects the strength of your bones.

Afflictions that affect digestion, such as inflammatory bowel conditions, impair nutrient absorption.  And those that cause prolonged inflammation in the body result in weaker bones over time and therefore must be addressed at the root and nipped in the bud.  Nutritional considerations may change based on the underlying disease itself, how it heals or progresses, and the overall nutritional needs of the body.

Be sure to address bone health if you have:  Celiac disease, or an Inflammatory Bowel Disease such as Crohn’s or Ulcerative colitis, Hypochlorhydria (lack of stomach acid), Dysbiosis (bacterial imbalance in gut a.k.a. ANY digestive issues such as bloating, excess gas, abdominal pain or discomfort, variable stool, heartburn), and/or Liver disease.

As mentioned above, diseases that affect the thyroid, parathyroid, or adrenals will also have an effect on your bones.  Therefore, ensure that you are considering your bones if you have Cushing’s syndrome, Diabetes (type 1 or 2), Hyperparathyroidism, Hyperthyroidism, Lupus, Rheumatoid arthritis, or an autoimmune disorder.


A variety of medications will also influence bone density through different pathways.  These medicines may be essential to your overall health and may simply require dietary or lifestyle changes to prevent undue bone loss.  Non-essential medicines should be reviewed periodically anyway so if you’re concerned about bone health now is the time!

The following is a list of medications that are known to affect the strength and integrity of bones.

  • Glucocorticoids
  • Proton pump inhibitors and other antacids
  • Aromatase inhibitors
  • Lithium
  • Depo-Provera®
  • Some anti-seizure drugs
  • SSRIs