I'm so happy that my fellow expert on this site has written about osteopenia and osteoporosis, and enlightened me about the drugs being touted. Sandy Greenquist's post from 1/12 shows how words from an ad agency can mislead doctors, clinicians and smart women like you and me.
I worry about osteoporosis, since I have been diagnosed with its precursor, osteopenia. It's a silent disease; you simply cannot know if you have it or if you are making it better or worse. I have confessed here before that I don't like to take pills, but I really try to take my calcium supplements. But I also know that's not enough.
So in 15 degree weather yesterday, I went showshoeing. I spent about 2 hours hiking in the woods, and it was wonderful. Hiking is a great way to help your bones, it's weight-bearing exercise that helps bring calcium and other minerals into your bones. I also am a rock climber, outside during warm weather and inside at a gym during the winter. That's REALLY weight-bearing, especially with every pound I gain! It isn't for everyone, but I see more middle-aged women at the climbing gym than I used to. Whatever your choice, as Sandy says, get out and do it! Don't let the weather -- or anything else -- stop you!
A note about bones and calcium: I've read different opinions about the type of calcium supplements you should take. Calcium citrate is usually recommended versus calcium carbonate, because it is more "bioavalable." That means it is absorbed more readily, about 2.5 times better. It is also usually more expensive. I haven't done a thorough cost comparison, but at CVS, they were about the same price. If you figure you can take half as many pills and get the same effect, calcium citrate is worth considering.
We all lose bone mass as we age. You can't see it, but it's happening all the same. There are things you can do-do them! You're not 25 anymore. This time, build your beauty from the inside.
Published On: January 20, 2009