Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Osteoporosis Awareness Month

November is Osteoporosis Awareness Month.


Before I was diagnosed with the disease at age 25, I believed Osteo was only an "older woman's" condition. However, bone loss can occur anytime in life (it's occasionally called "a paediatric disease with geriatric consequences"). One in three women and one in five men will suffer from an osteoporotic fracture during their lifetime - and in the case of hip fractures, 28% of women and 37% of men die within the following year.

Osteoporosis is often known as “the silent thief” because bone loss occurs without symptoms. The common risk factors are age (50+), sex (women), past vertebral compression fractures, a fragility fracture after age 40, parents with past hip fracture and glucocorticoid drugs. Many other medical conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s, colitis, celiac disease, hypogonadism, kidney  or liver disease, diabetes, COPD, hyperthyroidism and neurological disorders can all be contributing factors.

However, good nutrition throughout your life - a varied diet of whole foods rich in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, vitamins C, D, K, and B complex, has shown to be an important key to preventing the destruction of bone. Here are just some sources of these vital micronutrients:

Calcium - Tofu, figs, sardines, sesame seeds, dairy products, dark leafy greens
Phosphorus - Scallops, sardines, tuna, soy products, pumpkin seeds, lentils
Magnesium - Pumpkin, sesame and sunflower seeds, spinach, quinoa, black, navy and soy beans
Potassium - Dark leafy greens, sweet potatoes, lima and soy beans, avocado
Vitamin C - Papaya, bell peppers, potatoes, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, kiwi
Vitamin D - Oily fish (salmon, mackerel), mushrooms, fortified milk, eggs
Vitamin K - Dark leafy greens, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kiwi, parsley
B-Complex Vitamins - Meat, eggs, dairy, whole grains, mushrooms

About Me

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I started my "working life" as a holistic and allopathic nutritional consultant with a love of cooking. Teaching the value of wholesome meal choices to families became close to my heart after I battled a long history of struggles with weight and health, and the passion for teaching led me into where I am now. My blog, which focuses on "bringing good taste to healthier food" through creative use of whole grains, fresh produce and acknowledging the importance of the occasional treat, also features a wealth of "specialty diet" friendly recipes for gluten-, egg-, dairy- and sugar- tree nut-free items that everyone can enjoy without alienating those who need them.

Overall, I want to bring back the desire for good quality, homemade, (mostly) healthy food into the hearts and kitchens of families so that the next generation will be less box-reliant than mine. I firmly believe that any “homemade” food, even when labelled as "naughty", is a more wholesome treat than pre-packaged, cookie-cutter junk. With the knowledge of good food (and how to cook good food) as a base, a healthy lifestyle can follow, and then anything is possible!

Today, my love for teaching is branching out even further - I'm in Montessori training to solidify my love for the system and working with children and families!