MAY 1, 2012
Most days I open my eyes, roll out of bed and head to the kitchen to begin my day without giving my health a second thought. Although I've had my share of health episodes over the years, overall, I've always believed I'm in good health.
I take my vitamins and supplements daily. I make sure I keep an eye on my hormone levels to manage menopause since I've been living without ovaries for almost 14 years.
I get my eyes checked once a year and my teeth cleaned and checked and my skin examined twice a year.
Usually, though, its not in the doctor's office that I'm reminded that I'm aging. It's when I go for my regular haircut and color appointment that I'm faced with my graying hair which reminds me of my aching joints. Aging bones!
In this month's newsletter, we are discussing osteoporosis and bone health!
Here's to healthy bones for you!
Build Your Bones
MAY 1, 2012
If you are in menopause, approaching menopause you should be concerned about your bone health. Did you know that there are sure ways you can stop bone loss within your control?
Make sure you are eating a diet consisting of veggies, fruit and low fat meats. While you can make sure you have calcium in your diet, adding Vitamin D and K to your supplements and vitamin list are sure ways to use nutrition to build your bones.
Preserve and Build your Muscles
If you have spent much of your adult life being sedatary, it's time to exercise! Whether you walk 30 minutes a day or exercise aerobically 3 times a week for 30 minutes, your bones are growing happily with exercise. Get to it!
Balance those Hormones
During menopause hormone levels are likely to change and can have a negative effect on bone health. This means you can work with your doctor to balance your hormones during menopause or if you can't take HRT, you can find supplements to help your body adjust. The important thing is to support your choice with a healthy lifestyle to encourage healthy bones.
Watch Your Weight
As you approach menopause, if you want or need to lose weight, you should do so in a carefully planned way that targets improved health overall. You don't want to lose bone density along with your weight! Nutritional support during your weight loss is key. Make sure you eat a healthy diet along with appropriate nutritional supplements. It would, also, be helpful to include the input of your personal doctor to help you monitor your bone health during your weight loss.
Decrease inflammation and improve digestion
There are useful ways to lower your inflammation that can definitely serve your bones. Solving gastrointestinal problems is a good place to start, since soothing an irritated GI tract could help reverse inflammation throughout the body. Pay close attention to how you feel after each of your meals and see if any particular foods evoke a negative response. Sugar, caffeine, and refined carbohydrates tend to increase inflammation (and blood acidity), and foods like wheat, dairy, soy, nuts, and eggs also are common irritants. Daily omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to decrease inflammation, as has an alkaline diet. Turmeric and ginger have also historically been used to calm the immune system.
Reduce physical and emotional stress
Worry is a danger to your bone health. Many women find ways to destress through yoga, prayer or spa treatments. Stress can stem from unresolved emotion issues or may come from a poor dier or food allergies or prescription medication. Don't ignore the stress in your life. Learn to manage your stress and worry in a healthy way. Your bones wll thank you!
Buildling strong bones is within your grasp and can be adjusted radically with a lifestyle change. This is the good news. The work begins with you, making those changes.
Make No Bones About It—PMO Prevention Is Important to Menopause Health
May 1, 2012
Bone loss is a major health concern for women going through menopause. In fact, women can lose up to 20% of their spine bone density in the early postmenopausal years. Fortunately, there are ways to help prevent postmenopausal osteoporosis (PMO) before it leads to a serious concern.
If the ovaries are also removed during a hysterectomy (bilateral oophorectomy), estrogen levels in your body immediately drop and bone loss speeds up rapidly for the next five to seven years. For some women, this bone loss will lead to PMO. However, people with osteoporosis cannot feel their bones getting weaker, and many women don't find out they have PMO until it results in a broken bone.
One step in PMO prevention is to talk to your doctor about a bone mineral density (BMD) test. A BMD test uses an enhanced form of x-ray that can measure bone loss. It doesn't take long, it's noninvasive, and it can help determine if you are at risk for—or already have—PMO.
If your doctor decides that PMO prevention is important for your health, he or she may suggest estrogen therapy.
In addition to using hormone replacement therapy, here are some other ways to help prevent PMO:
- Talk to your doctor about a healthy and well-balanced diet
- Make sure to get enough calcium and vitamin D
- Make time for regular, weight-bearing exercise
- Avoid cigarette smoking
- Limit alcohol intake
5 Myths About Osteoporosis
MAY 1, 2012
Information about osteoporosis can be so confusing. What you hear may differ from doctor to doctor and source to source. Here are 8 myths about bone loss:
Myth 1: Osteoporosis is a result of normal aging.
Actually, it is true that bone loss happens as we age but osteoporosis is bone loss that goes beyond that of normal aging. It is a condition in which bone becomes excessively fragile due to a loss of both mineral and protein matrix. Factors that may contribut to osteoporosis include poor nutrition, lack of sunlight exposure and low vitamin D levels, drinking too much caffeine, little to no exercise, inflammation, an acid-forming diet, the use of various prescription medications, and chronic stress. Remove one or more of these factors can make a difference in your bone health!
Myth 2: Osteoporosis is a disorder of the elderly.
More and more young people, both men and women, are being diagnoses with osteoporosis. Poor overall health (including the list of risk factures above) can cause enough bone loss which results in a diagnosis of osteoporosis.
No matter your age, take care of your health!
Myth 3: Osteoporosis is caused by low estrogen.
Yes, estrogen does play an important role in keeping our bones strong and healthy and may be a great reason to take hormone replacement therapy as we approach menopause. However, the lack of estrogen alone, is not considered a culprit by itself. Taking care to stay healthy during menopause is just as vital to your bones. Exercise, plenty of nutrition, vitamin D, cutting back on caffeine and stress-free living are a few of the important factors.
Myth 4: Osteoporosis is caused by low calcium intake.
Increasing calcium is definitely one way to add strength to your bones but by itself. The question so often asked is, how much calcium is adequate? The data indicates there is not one standard to determine the amount needed because other factors determine how much.
These factors include digestive health; intake of other bone-building nutrients; the use of some drugs, alcohol and tobacco; consumption of excess protein, salt, fat, and sugar; environmental toxins and stress; the level of physical activity; exposure to sunlight; ovary and uterus removal; and many other factors that limit the absortion of calcium.
When in doubt, ask your doctor for a recommendation on how much calcium and be sure and add all the other factors to your lifestyle: Exercise. Limited caffeine. Less stress. Vitamin D.
Myth 5: Once bone loss occurs, it is impossible to rebuild bone.
This is some of the best news ever - bone loss can be stopped and bone density can be rebuilt. Yes, it may take effort and a change in lifestyle, but it can be accomplished - often without medication.
Bone is a growing tissue that constantly repairs itself. With the proper environment - much of which we can control - we can affect our bone health!
Be willing to adjust your lifestyle as you work towards healthy bones for the rest of your life.
Partner Up With Your Doc
MAY 1, 2012
During your annual check-up with your personal doctor, ask about your bone density. The is especially important if you are managing other menopause symptoms and/or you have other women in your family with oestioporosis. Once you have been diagnosed, your doctor is your best partner to manage your bone health.
- Ask if your bone loss is associated with menopause.
- Ask if your bone loss could be influenced by your weight, diet, a lack of exercise, or medication history.
- Ask your doctor to explain why you personally need this drug (if offered a prescription)
- Be willing to change your lifestyle to improve your bone health. This will involve your diet, adding exercise and eliminating smoking. This may also include taking necessary supplements and spending safe time in the sun.
The US Surgeon General’s osteoporosis pyramid encourages doctors to work with bone health patients on diet and lifestyle modifications first. Changing your lifestyle can have a huge impact on your bone health and can keep you off bone medications that can have side effects. Do your homework and understand your choices. And keep an open dialogue with your personal doctor as your partner for good bone health.
From the HysterSisters Forums
MAY 1, 2012
I need a really good vitamin that will give me energy and everything I need in one pill. I asked my doctor and he said just take a one-a-day. I am going to take a look at prenatal vitamins and compare them to the menopausal vitamins. I saw one multi for menopausal women but it has black cohosh as one of the ingredients but black cohosh is not recommended if you have/had endometriosis. What about osteoporosis?
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More Discussions to join about bone health:
Joint and Bone Pain
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MAY 1, 2012
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