20 May One Thing You May Be Missing
Mary Smith, 50, Founder of OSTEGO [and SecondActWomen Insider]
Did you know your skeleton is an organ and that it’s constantly changing? As you get older, this process becomes more unbalanced and can possibly result in osteoporosis.
We spend a lot of time on some of the systems of our bodies – we eat right for energy and cardiovascular health and we use sunscreen to make sure our skin is protected but have you ever considered what’s happening to your skeleton? Seriously. Have you? Bone health is critically important to women in their 40s and 50s as estrogen significantly affects the rate of bone loss. That’s the reason osteoporosis is most common in postmenopausal women. Estrogen helps regulate our bone remodeling process but as women go through menopause, our levels decline and this impacts the balance of bone-removing cells and bone-building cells.
I started OSTEGO after seeing my parents suffer from osteoporosis disease and learned the true opportunity to begin fighting it begins much earlier – in our 40s and 50s – and must be combined with a mindset of self-advocacy and overall awareness. And so the opportunity to be proactive instead of reactive starts today, ladies. After all, good bone health is the one thing we’re missing in our self-care routines.
Hundreds of millions of people have osteoporosis and the numbers have grown dramatically over the past decades and yet it still doesn’t get a lot of attention. Why? Because it’s viewed as an ‘old person’s disease and it’s frequently not diagnosed until after you’ve already broken a bone. How many of us know someone who has broken a hip? How many of us worry about an “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” scenario for a friend or parent? The bad news is that once you’re ‘old’ it’s more difficult to make natural, holistic changes to prevent it and the good news is that we can take steps to improve our bone health that is easy, cheap, and feel great. And the time is now to start.
- Information. Education is key. Ask your parents whether your family has a history of osteoporosis or breaking bones. Ask your OBGYN or your General Practitioner whether you have any other risk factors (History of steroid prescriptions? Thyroid issues?) and whether they can prescribe a baseline bone mineral density (BMD) test or DEXA scan.
- Nutrition. Obviously, a healthy diet is critically important for our bodies to function properly. But bone growth is a long process so make sure you have enough Calcium and Vitamin D and other nutrients that can’t be left to chance. Supplement even your healthy diet with these essentials starting today.
- Exercise. Perhaps the MOST critical opportunity is weight-bearing exercise. It doesn’t matter how fit you look; in order to activate the ‘osteoblasts’ that create new bone cells you have to trigger them by pushing your body. We’ve created a program anyone can do at home to progressively improve their bone health in just 10 minutes a day. Taking the time now means you will have the time to do what you want to do well into your future. No one wants to avoid activities because of fear of falling or injury and no one wants to be an eventual burden on friends or family so we’ve created free classes to follow that help you take control of your bones.
- Community. We need to talk about bone health and other issues associated with aging. Let’s have real discussions about the causes and benefits of what is changing in our bodies. Let’s anticipate the pitfalls and help each other adapt. Bone health, menopause, sexual health, mental acuity – these are all topics that are truly essential to us as women and as humans.
Preventative measures aren’t that sexy. But think of the time and money we all spend to avoid wrinkles! A lot! So let’s give our bones a little love. Besides – we aren’t alone.
Click here to learn which celebrities have osteoporosis or osteopenia and what they are doing about it. – See? We’re just like them!
Founder at Ostego
Experienced Founder with a demonstrated history of working in the consumer services industry. Skilled in Team Building, Fundraising, Management, Start-ups and advising Nonprofit Organizations. Strong business development professional.