The Save Our Bones Daily Double Challenge: Day #2 - Save Our Bones

Challenge # 1

What: Eat at least one of the alkalizing Foundation Foods that contain magnesium.

Why: While calcium has taken center stage in the non-prescription osteoporosis arsenal, more often than not, magnesium has been all but forgotten. Yet magnesium is crucial to your bone health.

Besides its involvement in over 300 essential body reactions, magnesium acts synergistically with calcium. In fact, no less than 65% of magnesium found in the body is deposited in the bones.

Magnesium also helps regulate the parathyroid gland, which is the primary organ that controls bone mineralization. It also plays a role in the production of stomach acid, necessary for digestion and proper nutrient utilization.

How: The Foundation Foods that contain magnesium are:

  • Spinach
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Almonds
  • Lima Beans
  • Swiss chard
  • Bananas
  • Plantains

Challenge # 2

What: Do six Native Squats, preferably scattered throughout the day.

Why: Native Squats tone just about all the major muscles of your body and mainly the thighs, lower back, and glutei. Plus the Native Squat position is a great way to enhance your flexibility because it stretches the hip muscles, helping prevent hip pain, especially if you spend long hours sitting down. No less important is that practicing this position helps improve your balance.

To sum it up, the Native Squat can strengthen your bones, keep you flexible, and prevent falls.

How: Simply follow the video, and remember to keep your feet flat on the floor and your knees spread apart so the thighs are not parallel to each other.

NOTICE: Please check with your doctor before beginning this or any exercise program.

Important: until you get the hang of it, practice the Native Squat while holding on to a solid structure.

I hope you’ll enjoy this challenge, and let me know how you did.

To your health!

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Comments on this article are closed.

  1. Janice

    Thank you so much Vivian for all the valuable information. I have osteo in my hips and lower spine. I have pain in my hips, what is causing the pain? I am thinking of taking the infusion of Reclast. What is your opinion? I had a reaction to fosamax and evista and had to stop both drugs. I exercise 3-4 times a wk and am trying to eat right. Please help me with the decision I am facing. Thank you.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Janice, I never recommend drugs of any kind, and the Program is structured around drug-free options for osteoporosis. 🙂 That said, the decision of whether or not to take osteoporosis drugs is, as always, a personal one. Do your research, and don’t be afraid to make the decision you feel is right!

  2. Jess

    Hello Vivian,

    Thank you for these daily challenges. My only query is how long should the native squat be done for on each occasion?

    Thanks, Jess

  3. lynn

    suppose you have degenrated severe patella problem and arthritis in knee cap, can thes methods help? My left knee especially hurt every time I sit and stand it takes awhile to get the blood flowing less pain. what can I do to make this better? can I do squats and lunge?

  4. Tammye

    Question for the Community:

    Can anyone recommend a specific brand of organic algae calcium supplement that they personally use?

    I’m still a little confused about when to take the D3 and Chelated Magnesium. A small amount of each, provided in the calcium supplement, and then a larger dose of each, at a later time in the day?

    Many thanks for any responses.


    • Mary E

      You could try AlgaeCal or TrueOsteo.

  5. Bev

    Your squatting exercise with hips going lower than the knees is very hard on the knees. Lowering the hips to the knees is BETTER.

  6. Shula



  7. bonnie wisdorf

    I too would like to know how long to hold the squat?

    Thank you

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Bonnie, see my response to Sylvia, below. 🙂

  8. Jeannette Grant

    Hi Vivian,
    I had not eaten whole rye, barley, or whole wheat for 15 years (figured out that it caused bloating, gas, and discomfort later in the day). However, I could cheat on occasion when eating out as long as the wheat was refined white flour — think San Francisco sourdough bread when dining out — as long as I did not overdo. THEN I read that gluten can cause osteoporosis and elevated liver enzymes (I have had elevated liver enzymes since they were first checked 25 years ago). I went for four months being totally without any gluten and then had a liver enzyme test. They were within the normal range for the first time and much lower than they had been for 25 years. I am hoping that my osteoporosis has also responded. (I do not bother with any more bone density tests. I am not going to take drugs and I do everything that I know to do for that problem. I see no reason to subject myself to the radiation since I will not do anything differently.) I am thinking that others may like to try a gluten-free diet to see if it helps with osteoporosis. Do you have any comments?

  9. Dolores

    I can do the squat but would like to know how long to hold the position?

    • Emily

      Batmanners Posted on Well, well I googled my onlnie username (using the same one since 2000) and found this Interesting how Batman + Ann Landers gave you this. I don’t know what I put together to come up with this, but it stuck and it’s something NOBODY ever has, so I don’t have to be JohnTheMan231 on one site and JohnTheDude294 on another For a second I thought this entire article was about me

    • Phenyo Mekgwe

      I would like to ask for help I have had a back operation some 18 years ago i had a slipped disk i still experience an excruciating pain especially when its cold, I can not bend or do any house chores

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Dolores, see my response to Sylvia, below. 🙂

  10. Nu Ly

    I enjoy the squat exercise, banana or almon
    powder, I eat everyday.

    Thanks for the e-mail.

  11. Carol

    Read news on daily high dosage of vitamin D being linked to prostate cancer. Have you heard anything about this?
    I take 2000 mg per day with calcium tabs

  12. nadine


  13. Mary

    I know I can not do the squat, like shown…I do exercise for my osteo.. I had a flair up with my knee and had to go back on an NSAID…(celebrex) I am taking one every other day now for two weeks, then as needed….I eat as many plant based foods as possible and very little meat… I like yogurt and try to cook healthy meals using olive oil as much as possible…

    I appreciate all the emails and wonderful information.. I loved your remark about putting Fosamax in your laundry to help get the wash clean…it would probably rot your clothes…LOL I don’t understand how they can give those deadly drugs to the public and say that they are good for people and help them????
    The mighty $$$ rules, I guess…Merck sure got rich off of Fosamax and other harmful drugs…I wish they could be taken off the market….


  14. rosemary ferrigno

    Can you recomend a calcium and magnesium product.
    I wad advised to take 2000 mg. calcium and 1000
    mg magnesium. It’s very confusing with so many
    products out there. I recently purchased Jarrow
    formulas Ultra Bone-Up. Would like to have your
    input. Thanks Vivian.

    • Joy

      What was your recommendation?

  15. Carol Reed

    I take five different meds,and I think that they aren’t helping my bones.Can I just stop taking some of these or is there something else I can take thats good for the bones? They are multaq and spironolact for the heart,levothyroxin for low thyoid,pramipexole for restless leg which keeps me awake at night and last I take pravastatin for cholesterol.I do eat right and exercise for the most part,but high cholesterol and heart decease runs in the family.What can I do to get off some of these meds to help my bones? HELP my bones are getting worse!!

  16. Lyn

    Thanks Vivian for the supportive emails such as the Daily Double Challenge. It helps keep me motivated and on track.

  17. mary


    I have been on Prednisolone for 3 yrs. up to 30 mg with bad flares and down to 5mg a lot of that time together with omeprazole which i do not take anymore. Instead I take aloe vera juice for stomach. During this time I have had bone density tests, the last one just over a yr ago and wa told it was OK. But lately – couple of months have been getting a lot of lower back pain, hip area, thighs, legs etc. I am scared all these drugs have eaten into my bones. I need your help & advice. I am worried. I fear the health problems associated with this.

    I read your articles regularly, but i think I need to take some action to avoid any further problems.

    Thank you so much

    • Jess

      Please please Mary stop taking Prednisalone now! My mother took it for asthma for 10 years, then her Dr retired and the new one took her off it. It was too late, she has gone from 5ft 4 & half inch to around 4 foot 6, yes 4 foot 6ins. Prednisalone has melted her bones, I have seen her x-rays, the lower ribs are now missing. Next couple up show much fainter than they should. She has a curvature sideways as well as forwards, she is deformed and in constant pain. The Alendronic Acid they gave her to counteract the osteoporosis caused leg ulcers. Now in an old peoples home, and no longer mobile, I persuaded her current Dr to take her off Alendronic and the ulcers are almost gone. The Consultant had said the ulcers were age related. Not true, Actually Alendronic acid related. Am losing confidence in Dr.s, hers are good people who are trying, but they don’t seem to know the side effects or alternatives let alone nutritional info.
      Thanks Vivian for your info, sorry such a long message

  18. Feona

    I eat a banana every day anyway, so the first challenge this time is easy – but no way can I do those squats! I’m just getting over Hoffa’s syndrome (pinched fat pad under the kneecap, extremely painful). I’m building up my walking time again, but it’s taking months. Any exercises we can do to strengthen our bones that don’t involve our knees Vivian???

  19. Gerri D.

    I just heard a news report that osteoporosis
    medications may not help with bone loss and also may cause cancer. I nearly fell off my chair.

  20. mary carroll

    How does one get into that position????

  21. Irma Moreno

    Thank you Vivian about “The Natine Squat”; I will try to do them at list 2 or 3 a day. I had done the squats in the past, and they gave me lower back pain, for that reason I stoped doing them.
    My Regards,

  22. Marlene Wilson

    Thanks for your reply Vivian. I really appreciate it. I am trying to follow the program but am getting lots of pressure from family and friends to take the drugs.
    Nurse Practitioner gave me free samples of
    Fosavance. Is this a new drug and does it work the same as Fosamax?
    I am interested in taking the AlgaeCal Calcium supplements but you said not to take the ones with Strontium. I could only find the AlgaeCal Plus on the website. Don’t they make the ones without Strontium anymore?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Marlene, the small amount of naturally-occuring strontium in algae-derived calcium supplements is not a problem. What I don’t recommend is taking a separate strontium supplement, which generally contains an excessive amount. For details about my take on strontium, check out this blog post (if you haven’t already):

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Marlene,

      Fosavance is the same as Fosamax. Free samples are great! You can add them to your laundry, since bisphosphonates are excellent water softeners (similar formulas are still used today and are called complexing agents!). Or dissolve one tablet in water and use it to remove rust off almost anything.

      Bisphosphonates were originally discovered for that purpose, so don’t let a good (industrial) pill go to waste.

      And if you haven’t yet, check out my blog post titled “Fosamax: When Good Things Happen to Bad Drugs.”

      Here’s the link to it:

      To answer your question, Algaecal is not the only organic calcium available. There are other brands such as New Chapter and Garden of Life, so I urge you to do a search online and see what’s available or visit your local health food store.

      • Marilyn Pinkerton

        Have read in several places that New Chapter Bone Strength no longer has algae cal. Has substituted a cheaper form of calcium they dredge off the ocean floor. Perhaps they have quietly gone to a cheaper type of calcium.

  23. Pat

    I very much enjoy the exercises and nutritional tips!

  24. Kitty Miller

    In the Challenge day two you have the “video”
    of the squat, but it would be very helpful to
    show getting into and especially out of that
    position. Could wreck someone’s knees without
    a more complete example. Thanks

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Kitty, getting out of the squat is more of a “feel as you go” situation. In other words, you have to do what’s best for you to keep your balance. Keep your core tight and to prevent falling on your backside, it’s best to tilt your weight forward. But let your brain guide your balance, and don’t forget: if you are new at this, always hold on to a fixed structure 🙂



    • Carole

      Hello Virginia,
      You could try this exercise which is safe to do.
      Holding onto the back of a strong chair you can lift one foot at a time sideways, while keeping your body as straight as possible. Just lift one foot about a foot away and lower it slowly, try to build this up to about eight times without touching the floor. You can even do these sideways while holding on with one hand if you feel this is secure enough but if not hold on with both hands and face the back of the chair. Do as many as comfortable. Another one is to hold onto a chair again(firm one) and try to bend your knees a bit while sticking out your bottom and raise yourself back up, building the number of times once more to your own comfort. These help tone the thigh muscles and hips and help with balance.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      God bless you, Virginia! Stay healthy,smart… and with your bones intact 🙂

  26. sylvia

    hi vivian,,, my bones hurt so very much.. i try to eat healthy. i can’t afford to buy your book. i’m at a lose of how to stop this bone pain naturally,, without those medicences.i have trie the actonel,, the boniva & foxmax. they scared me away, when i saw the ingredients. did you finally stop your bone pain? i am 67 years old. i had breast cancer in 1988. with no recurrance so far. if i could heal this bone pain, thank you . sylvia

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Sylvia,

      I’ve arranged for someone from the Save Our Bones Support Team to contact you soon 🙂

    • felicity

      Hi Sylvia,
      So sorry to hear that you are in so much pain. Even if you can’t afford Vivian’s excellent manual there is so much free information out there on the web so you can get started. Look for sites with ACID – ALKALINE and others about FOOD COMBINING and YOU TUBE for osteoporosis exercises. Hope this helps.
      With love

  27. Cheryl Chittenden

    I read information you wrote on the subject of flu vacsinations. However, I don’t remember much of the details. Can you direct me to that information again.


  28. felicity

    Thank you for this programme, I’m feeling much fitter and healthier even in just 7 weeks and I wasn’t really in bad health even before the diagnosis. Just thought I would mention though, that some nuts(especially almonds) and seeds tend to be high in phytates which reduce the ability to absorb the much needed minerals in the mineral-rich nuts and seeds. Chopping, then soaking or soaking and sprouting also de-husking all help to reduce the phytic acid.

  29. Mary Anderson

    Vivian: Thank you for mentioning the food that helps the parathyroid. My doctor thought mine was not functioning properly and wanted it removed but after going through the testing maching (name?), it indicated the parathroid was fine. My problem is there was too much calcium being drawn into my blood and I had horrible arm pains. As a result, I have been taken off calcium and only take VitaminD-1000 daily. I find the squats easy to do. Thank you very much for your advice.

    Mary Anderson

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Great, Mary!

  30. Sylvia Martens

    Hi, I am wondering how long you have to stay in that squat position at one time?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Sylvia, it depends on your comfort level. I do it for just a few seconds…

  31. ken

    While I agree that magnesium (Mg) is essential for building bones, I’m not so sure that chard or spinach are the best sources. Spinach and chard (both of which I like) also contain oxalic acid which chemically combines with Mg as magnesium oxalate making the Mg metabolically unavailable for incorporation into bones.

    • felicity

      Hi Ken,
      Yes, there are so many pros and cons about so many of the foods. I mentioned in my comment about Phytic acid being in nuts and seeds as well as in lots of other foods. However the correct preparation of them and combining them correctly with other foods does help us to get the best from them so we don’t have to miss them out of our diets unless of course they cause other problems. Great to know there are others out there who are prepared to look at foods more closely.

  32. Marlene Wilson

    I did not get a reply the last time I left a comment but I will try again.
    Very frustrated that Can’t do the exercises you
    recommend. I tried the heel toe exercises last week and all that pounding gave me lower back pain for days. I also have plantar fascitis and it makes my foot pain worse.
    As for the Native Squats I am afraid to even try because bending my knee like that makes the arthritis pain worse.
    So, what does a person do for exercise when she has all these problems.
    Please give me an answer this time.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Marlene, you can simply walk, because it’s a very effective weight-bearing activity.

  33. Carol Reed

    My bone dinsity has also gotten worse from the last test.I wonder if it’s from the medicine I take. What more can I do to help my bones?

  34. Jean

    Hmmmm – I must be doing it wrong, because I just did the squat with no trouble, twice! But then, I’m built pretty close to the ground anyway. Had a banana for breakfast, and bought fresh spinach yesterday, so I guess I’m OK for a while.

  35. kathie

    Was shocked when my bone dinsity was worse than 2 yrs before after 2 yrs on program. Could it be omaprazole I am taking for heartburn depleting magnesium? HELP!
    Have benefited from your articles and suggestions.
    I recommend YOGA for balance.

    • Carol

      I was on Prevacid for a few years and was still having problems. I was put on a prescription liquid medication to supplement the Prevacid for a period of time. The gastroenterologist took me back off the second medication but couldn’t help me with my continuing problem even though I was still on Prevacid. I wanted to get off ALL the meds but every time I tried I would have an awful time. I coudn’t find a doctor who knew what to do about my acid reflux except for being on a PPI. I wasn’t successful in getting off the PPI until I started the Saveourbones diet. I was able to wein off Prevacid within a month. I understand I was able to do it faster than many but I was ecstatic to be successful. I have been off PPIs for 2 1/2 years and rarely have acid reflux. I wish you the best in finding alternative relief?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      I’m sorry to hear that, Kathie. It is highly likely that your continuation of the PPI drugs contributed to your bone loss. In the Program I explain how and why the PPIs (proton-pump inhibitors) deplete valuable bone-healthy nutrients by interfering with their absorption.

      Many in the Save Our Bones community (including myself) have weaned ourselves out of these hurtful drugs that offer nothing but a “band-aid” type of relief.

      Please check out Sherry Brescia’s Great Taste No Pain natural and effective solution for practically all digestive problems, including heartburn, so you can stop the drug and start building your bones. Here’s the link:

      And make sure that when you get started with the Great Taste No Pain system you gradually reduce the omeprazole (generic for Prilosec and Losec) instead of stopping it cold turkey.

      I’m confident that if you continue to follow the Osteoporosis Reversal Program and make this change, you’ll see a dramatic increase in your bone density scores.

      All the best,


  36. Rosemary

    Found this at the end of my day,Down Under.Very gratified to see I have eaten three magnesium rich foods today, banana, almonds and chard.As for the Native Squat……….it’s giving me coniptions just thinking about doing it………..maybe tomorrow,Vivian!!!

  37. K M

    5 AM woke up to Vivians recomendation to do 6 Native Squats. did the first native squat. toppled over 3 times.
    will try again later as suggested

    • Carole

      Hi M,
      Try the squats without going so low down, if you rise slowly and in a controlled manner this will strengthen the thigh muscles along with the calf ones. Remember to stick out your bottom and put the weight onto you heels to take the strain off the knees.

  38. Wilda Inkster

    Thanks for the squat and other videos. It’s good to be able to see positions demonstrated. Perhaps someone can help re video on squat. The advice I’ve been given with similar positions is not to put your knees further than the line of your feet – in fact – some have said more in line with your heels, to avoid knee strain. Also, I seem to recall being told not to have one’s behind lower than the knees. I wonder what others feel about the position being shown here?

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Correct, Wilda, that’s why when you do the squat put more weight on your heels than toes. Doing this pushes your knees towards the back 🙂

      • Sandy

        But the video says to have the body weight balanced on the balls of the feet?

  39. Juliette

    I am very thankful that you send me information often ,thank you . Juliette

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      It’s my pleasure, Juliette!

  40. LESLIE

    Hi! Vivian,


    LOVE, MS. L.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You’re very welcome!



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