A Functional Medicine Approach To Osteoporosis

Episode 37 34m


We have been led to believe that drinking milk is the key to bone health. Unfortunately, the prevailing myth that drinking milk as children builds up a calcium bank that helps us avoid osteoporosis and fracture later in life is simply not true. Our bone health is determined by a number of things including what we eat, our stress and activity levels, our muscle mass, and other factors that contribute to the delicate balance between bone build-up and bone breakdown. Unfortunately, osteoporosis is a very common and life-threatening problem, it is also highly underdiagnosed. This is part of the reason why prevention is so important when it comes to osteoporosis.

In this episode, Dr. Hyman sits down with Dr. Todd LePine to discuss the Functional Medicine approach to osteoporosis. They get into how chronic inflammation acts as one of the main drivers of osteoporosis, why both bone density and quality are so important, and much more.

Dr. LePine graduated from Dartmouth Medical School and is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, specializing in Integrative Functional Medicine. He is an Institute for Functional Medicine Certified Practitioner. Prior to joining The UltraWellness Center, he worked as a physician at Canyon Ranch in Lenox, MA, for 10 years. Dr. LePine’s focus at The UltraWellness Center is to help his patients achieve optimal health and vitality by restoring the natural balance to both the mind and the body. His areas of interest include optimal aging, bio-detoxification, functional gastrointestinal health, systemic inflammation, autoimmune disorders and the neurobiology of mood and cognitive disorders. Dr. LePine teaches around the world, and has given lectures to doctors and patients at American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM), Age Management Medicine Group (AMMG), the University of Miami Integrative Medicine Conference, The Kripalu Center in Lenox, MA, and is on the faculty for American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M). Dr. LePine is the head of the Scientific Advisory Board for Designs for Health and a consultant for Diagnostic Solutions Laboratory. He enjoys skiing, kayaking, hiking, camping and golfing in the beautiful Berkshires, and is a fitness enthusiast.

In this episode, Dr. Hyman and Dr. LePine discuss:

  • Why drinking milk is not the key to bone health
  • Common causes and risk factors of osteoporosis, including inflammation, diet, stress, and more
  • Why bone density and quality are both important
  • How smoking negatively affects bone health
  • The traditional vs functional medicine approach to diagnosing and treating osteoporosis
  • The benefit of getting your bone density tested at various ages
  • Leaky gut, gluten sensitivity, celiacs disease, and other unexpected precursors to osteoporosis
  • The benefits of resistance exercise for bone health, muscle mass, stability, and balance
  • Bone building foods
  • Lead toxicity and osteoporosis


    This episode is brought to you by Butcher Box, and Dr. Hyman’s Sleep Master Class. The Doctor’s Farmacy podcast works with a select group of sponsors to allow for ongoing production and allow it to be zero-cost to anyone who wishes to listen to and watch the podcast.

    Resources Mentioned

    Host & Guests


    Automatically generated. Please forgive any typos or errors in the following transcript. It was generated by a third party and has not been subsequently reviewed by our team.

    Dr. Todd LePine: Chronic inflammation is one of the big things that's tied in with osteoporosis. And there's a term called inflammation. So, as you age, your body can develop more inflammation. So, chronic low grade inflammation, patients who have colitis, patients have rheumatoid arthritis are at higher risk for osteoporosis. Dr. Mark Hyman: Welcome to the Doctor's Farmacy. I'm Dr. Mark Hyman, that's Farmacy with an F, F-A-R-M-AC-Y, a place for conversations that matter. And if you've ever suffered from osteoporosis, low bone mass, increased fracture risk or multiple fractures or you're worried about getting old and frail man hunchback, you better listen up because today's podcast is a special episode of a house call podcast for Doctor's Farmacy is on osteoporosis and osteopenia, which means low bone mass...

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    Ep. 37 - A Functional Medicine Approach To Osteoporosis