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Hello Everyone,

Welcome to The Quest, a newsletter intended to inspire and inform those interested in experiencing optimal well being in body, mind and spirit.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * June 2003
In this issue of The Quest:

1. The Quest Quote
2. The Quest Question - Osteoporosis
3. Did you know? Calcium-rich foods
4. Calling All Teens ~ Express Yourself! Be part of a new book by, for and about teens. Click ‘teens’ at www.iambeautiful.com for more information.

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1. Quote:
Fifty years ago people finished a day’s work and needed rest. Today they need exercise. ~ Anon.

Exercise is a great form of relaxation. Many people exercise as their main method of reducing stress. In the long run it definitely beats hitting the couch with a bag of potato chips! If you feel wound up or upset, put yourself back in a good mood with a brisk walk, a good run, or a half-hour of lifting weights. In addition to exercising, add practices such as breathing, meditating, visualization, and yoga to your relaxation plan.

2. Question:
My mother was just diagnosed with osteoporosis. What can I do now to protect myself from developing this disease too? I am 35 years old and walk daily.

Answer:
Osteoporosis is a bone weakening condition that affects both men and women. It is often called the ‘silent disease’ because bone loss occurs without symptoms and is usually not diagnosed until the bones are already so weak that a sudden strain, bump or fall causes a hip to fracture or a vertebra to collapse. There are many factors that contribute to the development of osteoporosis, and although some are out of your control, you can have a profound effect on your bone health by following a few simple, healthy steps.

Risk factors that you can change:

Diet:
A healthy diet rich in important nutrients such as calcium, vitamin D and magnesium are needed for strong bones. The National Institute of Health recommends that the average adult between the ages 19-50 should consume 1,000 mg of calcium each day. For both pregnant and nursing women, up it to 1200-1500 mgs. If you don’t eat the calcium-rich foods listed below, look into a calcium supplement. I like the chewable kind called Viactiv.

Lifestyle:
Regular physical activity has shown to help maintain and even increase bone density and can protect against age-related bone loss in maturing adults. So get out for a walk or a game of tennis. Plus, strong muscles need to attach to strong bones. Weight lifting can improve bone health. Smoking has been shown to have a negative effect on bone density.

Hormone Level:
Abnormal hormone levels such as the absence of menstrual periods, low estrogen levels or low testosterone levels in men can impact your risk of developing osteoporosis. See your doctor to discuss these issues.

Risk factors that you cannot change:

Gender: Women have a much greater risk of developing osteoporosis because they have less bone tissue and lose bone more rapidly then men.

Age: As you age, your bones become less dense. In the first few years after menopause, your bone loss is most rapid; therefore, the older you are the greater your risk of developing the disease.

Frame size: Small, thin-boned women are at greater risk.

Ethnicity: Asian and Caucasian women are at higher risk than African-American or Latino women.
If you would like to learn more about your current bone density or feel that you may be at risk based on the above factors, ask your doctor about the possibility of having a Bone Density test done.

3. Did you know? Calcium-rich foods

Overall, milk products tend to score the highest, followed by certain types of fish and fortified foods. For a full list of calcium sources in your food go to: dialadietitian.org

Food, portion and mg per serving

Milk, whole, 2%, 1%, skim

1 cup

300

Cheese, brick or cheddar

1 oz

205

Cottage cheese

1 cup

140

Cheese, Swiss

1 oz

240

Processed cheese slices, cheddar

1 oz

170

Processed cheese spread

3 Tbsp

250

Ice cream

1/2 cup

85

Yogurt, low fat, plain

3/4 cup

300

Fortified orange juice, soy or rice beverage

1 cup

300

Chinese broccoli

1/2 cup

135

Kale, cooked

1/2 cup

100

Sardines

8 med

370

Salmon, canned with bones

3 oz

190

 
4. Teens- Submit your essay! Click ‘teens’ at www.iambeautiful.com for more information.

Water feedback~ Thanks Ruth, a reader who submitted additional information regarding last month’s dehydration statistics. The information was taken from Your Body's Many Cries for Water. The one statistic in question: 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated has not been proven scientifically. The bottom line? Be aware of your thirst; drink fluid when you are thirsty, after exercising and in warm weather, but like all healthy endeavors, don’t try to force the standard 8 glasses a day. You may be perfectly healthy with 4 cups of fluid a day and yet your friend may need 12 cups for optimal health. Always listen to your body, even when it comes to drinking water!

Please submit your comments or questions by replying to this email at deborah@deborahlow.com. I look forward to your feedback. 

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The Quest for Peace, Love & a 24-Inch Waist
www.deborahlow.com