Taking care of dem bones?
Recently a customer who follows a vegan diet mentioned that her doctor had put her on Fosomax, an expensive and difficult-to-take medication with possible disagreeable side-effects, because she was showing signs of osteoporosis. We had a discussion about the merits of milk products, (which she avoids because of personal dietary convictions,) and how to get enough calcium. I mentioned my idea that the further south and east your ancestors came from in the Old World (Mediterranean, Africa, the Orient), the less likely you are able to tolerate milk products. (This is a totally unscientific, fanciful idea, nothing more.) Of course, many people who aren't allergic to milk are lactose-intolerant, a very different problem, and one that can be solved either by using fermented milk products (cheeses, yogurt) or by taking enzyme pills (such as Lactaid, for instance) which are designed to help digest the milk's lactose.
I'm very aware of osteoporosis. Fortunately I don't yet have a problem. But friends and neighbors my age are getting shorter; I can see the parts in their hair for the first time. Some are developing a pronounced "dowagers hump". Scary! A couple of business associates found they had already lost considerable bone mass, and my mother-in-law fractured her hip just getting up out of a chair.
In Women's Clinic, Dr. Holly Atkinson states:
Third Age states, based on a Perdue University study:
Connie Weaver, head of Purdue's Department of Foods and Nutrition, states that many vegetables contain substances that block absorption of calcium while one would have to eat impossible amounts to get enough:
She further warns:
As to vegetables, the amount of calcium they contain may not tell the whole story. See "Block Bone Loss".
Dr. Weil holds a strong opinion that adults should, in general, stay away from milk and milk products. He believes milk is unhealthy. In fact, he reports on a Harvard Nurse's study which shows milk does not help the bones, although admitting that the conclusions are controversial.
Personally, I'm addicted to cheese although I try to control it, anhd drink coconut milk and use it in cooking- it has more calcium than milk, no lactose and is vegan. I also eat a lot of yogurt.
Osteoporosis robs many elderly of mobility, independence, comfort and overall health. It can destroy their quality of life. Don't let it happen to you. It's vital to take steps now to protect that ole skeleton inside. Later may well be too late!