Wouldn't it be fantastic if we could slow or even stop the progression of osteoporosis? Well the Best Bones ForeverTM web site, under the direction of Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health, is trying to do just that by raising awareness of bone loss in our tween and teenage girls. We know that our young girls achieve approximately 90% of their bone mass by the age of 18, so it's particularly important to motivate, educate, and support this group that is working so hard to spread the word among this age of girls. Secretary Sebelius explains, "we want girls to know that if you're older than nine, now's your time! Building strong bones now will help you stand tall for a lifetime." Let's look at how this campaign started and celebrate their One Year Anniversary!
History and Facts for Best Bones Forever
North Las Vegas, NV (September 01, 2009) /PRNewswire/ - "U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced a new campaign, called Best Bones Forever!, designed to improve bone health and decrease the risk of osteoporosis. Research shows that bone fracture rates are increasing, and few adolescent girls get the recommended amounts of calcium and vitamin D-the building blocks for strong bones." "A recent study showed that 70 percent of kids in the U.S. had below-normal levels of vitamin D, with deficiencies increasing as kids age from childhood to adolescence." This is a startling percentage of D deficient kids, and we need to turn this around now, by getting D and calcium into our children's diets. Vitamin D deficiency is a major risk factor for osteoporosis and osteopenia. You can see why this is an urgent call to action for kids, parents, and educators.
What You Need to Know
Prevention starts with a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, weight bearing and bone-strengthening exercises. Spend time outside with your BFFs and do fun things for exercise that will build strong bones. Look for foods that are high in calcium and D, which can be found on the Best Bones Forever website if you need some ideas. The daily recommendation for calcium intake is 1,300 milligrams per day for adolescent and teens age 9 to18, through a combination of food and supplements and plenty of vitamin D. Guidelines for kids physical activity is 60 minutes per day, and three days of bone-strengthening activity. Parents should start a routine of physical activity with their children to start a lifelong habit of getting daily exercise that will carry through beyond their adult years. Some other things this web site has to offer.
This website provides a great place for girls to talk to one another, give advice, get information, offer help to their friends and ask questions about the best ways to strengthen their bones. Check out Best Bones Forever.
The site also has a section for parents where they can connect with other parents for advice and to discuss what they plan to do with their girls to help foster good bone health.