Save Our Bones https://saveourbones.com Mon, 26 Jun 2017 19:27:08 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 6 Surprising Signs That You Are Out Of Shape [Plus Free Gift] https://saveourbones.com/6-surprising-signs-that-you-are-out-of-shape/ https://saveourbones.com/6-surprising-signs-that-you-are-out-of-shape/#comments Sun, 25 Jun 2017 22:06:14 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24434 Click to continue →]]>

For many of us, our days consist of running to work, taking care of our families, and if we are lucky, spending time with friends. In our busy lives, our constant running around may falsely lead us to believe that we are doing enough to stay in shape.

Savers are well aware of the importance of regular exercise for strengthening bones, as well the many health benefits that go along with being fit. While maintaining a healthy weight is important, it is not always an accurate indicator of how in shape you are.

Today we are examining six unexpected signs that you may not be in as excellent of shape as you had previously believed. If you find that a few items in this list describe you, read on for some bone-saving tips to help you get back into shape!

1. Difficulty Sleeping

Your sleep habits are an excellent sign of your fitness level. If you are having difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep at night, it may indicate that you are not exercising enough during the day. There is plenty of research available illustrating that exercise improves sleep.1

Sleep is critical for building healthy bones and a healthy body. Lack of sleep has many ramifications on our emotional and physical health. Sleep loss, defined as less than 7 hours of sleep per night, has a proven link to obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, anxiety, depression, and alcohol use.2 In fact, a recent study found that chronic sleep disturbance significantly reduced blood levels of an important bone formation marker, serum type 1 pro collagen also known as C1NP or P1NP.3

Sleep is critical to your bone health. If you begin an exercise regime and still are experiencing sleep difficulty, you may want to try adding these foods to your diet that are proven to enhance sleep. Just remember the timing of your exercise does matter! While morning workouts can enhance the sleep experience, evening workouts may disrupt your sleep cycle.

2. Feeling Blue

Feeling sad or depressed is an entirely appropriate reaction to a challenging time in your life. However, if you are feeling down on a regular basis without any identifiable cause, lack of exercise may be a contributing factor.

Regular exercise releases feel-good chemicals in the brain called endorphins. Endorphins are structurally similar to the drug morphine and can bring about feelings of euphoria and happiness. At the same time, exercise decreases the bone-injuring hormone, cortisol.

While many studies have shown the efficacy of exercise in reducing the symptoms of depression, not all agree on the specifics. One study examined the relationship between depression and exercise and suggested that the focus should be on the frequency of exercise, rather than duration or intensity.4

Science has proven that depression and stress are linked to low bone density.5 While there are many natural ways to help boost our brain’s feel-good chemicals, exercise is the precursor to feeling great.

3. Lack Of Energy In The Bedroom

Your sex life (or lack thereof) may be an indication of your fitness level as well. Sex is a fulfilling part of life, and if you are feeling too exhausted at the end of the day or find yourself searching for excuses to put sex off, you might want to turn up the exercise.

A plethora of evidence exists illustrating the link between exercise and a satisfying sex life. In addition to increasing genital blood flow, exercise increases the levels of testosterone in males and females.6 Higher testosterone levels contribute to increased muscle and bone density, heightened sexual arousal, and increased sexual urges.

A 2010 study from the University of Texas examined the link between sexual arousal and exercise. The study measured women’s physical reactions to erotic films following exercise on the treadmill. Researchers found that women who exercised on a treadmill had an increased genital response to watching erotic films.7

Exercise also helps boost self-confidence8, which in turn stimulates sexual drive.

4. Reliance On Caffeine

When your body is tired, and out of shape, it searches for a source of energy. For many of us, that source of energy is found in our morning (or afternoon) cup of joe. While there is nothing wrong with the occasional cup of coffee, heavy reliance on it might suggest that you are chemically addicted to caffeine.

The aroma and taste of coffee is extremely pleasing to many. There are many benefits to coffee, including bone-healthy polyphenols. Regardless, excess consumption can be unhealthy. Savers know that coffee is acidifying, which accelerates bone loss. If you rely on large amounts of caffeine to get through your day, you’ll be glad to know that there are ways to enjoy java and tea while still protecting your bones, by simply balancing their acidifying effect with alkalizing foods.

If you decide to give up caffeine, there are delicious bone-healthy snacks that can provide you with as much energy as coffee! Also, there are several bone healthy teas that can also serve as an energizing alternative.

5. A Set Of Stairs Does You In

Even the fittest athletes will feel their heart rate go up a bit when climbing a set of stairs. However, if you find that you are extremely winded after walking up a set of stairs, you may be more out of shape than you realize.

From a very basic perspective, breathing heavily is a signal that your body needs more oxygen. Oxygen fuels your body, and when it needs more, it signals your lungs to inhale and exhale more frequently in an effort to gain more oxygen. Studies have shown that increased physical activity slows the decline of lung function.9

When you are tired and quickly winded, it is often a sign that your mitochondria are not as plentiful as they should be.10 Lack of exercise and age causes a decrease in these important structures that provide you with energy.

The good news is that increasing your activity can increase the production of these wonderful, life-giving organelles.

6. Sugar Cravings That Just Won’t Quit

Many of us have experienced a food binge. After eating a sugar-laden treat to the point of feeling full, we suddenly realize a mere hour later that we are hungry again. The body has not received the nutrition that it needs, and as such, is signaling to eat again to find those nutrients.

There are many different kinds of sugar, all of which are carbohydrates. When you consume sugar, your body either uses it as energy or converts it to glycogen, which is stored in your liver or muscles for later use.

Once you eat sugar, your pancreas works to release the hormone, insulin. Insulin gets to work by allowing the cells to utilize the glucose in your blood. As a result of insulin’s hard work, your blood sugar levels stabilize. This process is what occurs when you feel a rush of energy after consuming sugar, which is immediately followed by a drop in energy, or a sugar crash. If this cycle continues to occur, your cells can become resistant to the effects of insulin. Your pancreas then must work harder to release more insulin, as your body continues to become more exhausted.

The consumption of refined sugar has several negative health implications. One such problem with sugar is that it depletes your bones of essential nutrients, such as calcium11, magnesium12, and copper13.

Exercise can have an impact on the food that you crave. Increasing evidence suggests that physical activity decreases cravings. In fact, a recent study shows that even a brisk walk helps to reduce the urge to eat sugar-filled food.14

There are many ways to overcome the sugar cravings, as well as delicious, bone-smart alternatives to refined sugar.

What To Do About It?

If after reading this article you are feeling a bit defeated, don’t fret! We all have experienced exercise slumps in our lives. If committed, it does not take long to turn things around.

Motivation can be hard to come by, and we want to help you with that! As our gift to you, we include this report:

Free Download: Get Motivated – 7 Savvy Tricks To Get You to Exercise

Get Motivated will provide with you with tips that will help you get motivated and stay motivated. We all know that a body in motion stays in motion but the first steps are always the hardest. Our free gift will help you take those first few steps. Before you know it, you will be on your way!

Download

“But I Don’t Have The Time To Spend Hours At The Gym Each Week!”

Not to worry, not many people have hours to spare each week! You don’t need hours. “But I don’t have the money for costly equipment or a gym membership,” you say. Again, not many people have excess money to burn on expensive gym memberships or equipment.

If you can find 15 minutes a day, three times a week, there’s a solution for you.

The Densercise™ Epidensity Training System is an easy program specifically created to enhance bone density. This four-week proven program incorporates weight bearing, resistance, and postural exercises to help optimize your health.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

In as little as four weeks, you will alleviate some of these unwelcomed signs that you are not in the shape that you would like to be. In four short weeks, you will strengthen your health, your bones, your energy, and your life!

Till next time,

References:

1 Loprinzi,P.D., Cardinal, B.J. “Association between objectively-measured activity and sleep.” Mental Health and Physical Activity. 2011 Dec; 4(2): 65-69. Web: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1755296611000317

2 Colton, H.R., Altevogt, B.M. Sleep Disorders and Sleep Deprivation: An Unmet Public Health Problem. Institute of Medicine Committee on Sleep Medicine and Research. 2006. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK19960/

3 Christina Swanson, et. al. “Lower Bone Formation after 3 Weeks of Sleep Restriction with Circadian Disruption: A Mechanism for Sleep-Related Bone Loss.” Endo 2017. Web: https://plan.core-apps.com/tristar_endo17/abstract/9f6300891abea35983bbd25dffe1bc58

4 Lynette L Craft, Frank Pema. “The Benefits of Exercise for the Clinically Depressed.” Primary Care Companion Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. 2004 6(3): 104-111. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC474733/

5 Osella, Giangiacomo, et al. “Cortisol secretion, bone health, and bone loss: a cross-sectional and prospective study in normal nonosteoporotic women in the early postmenopausal period.” European Journal of Endocrinology. 2012. Vo. 166, pages 855-860. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22312036

6 Layne, J.E., Nelson, M.E. “Effects of progressive resistance training on bone density: a review.” Medicine and Science in Sports Exercise. 1999. 31(1): 25-30. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9927006

7 Hamilton, L.D., Fogle, E.A., Meston, C.M. “The roles of testosterone and alpha-amylase in exercise-induced sexual arousal in women.” Journal Sexual Medicine. 2010. 7(11):3803. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18221285

8 RF Baumeister, et al. “Does High Self-Esteem Cause Better Performance, Interpersonal Success, Happiness, or Healthier Lifestyles?” American Psycholgoical Society. 2003 4(1). 1-44. Web: http://people.uncw.edu/kozloffm/selfesteembaumeister.pdf

9 J Garcia-Aymerich, et. al. “Regular Physical Activity Modifies Smoking-related Lung Function Decline and Reduces Risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.” American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. 2007. 175(5). Web: http://www.atsjournals.org/doi/full/10.1164/rccm.200607-896OC#.Vpgp91MrJTY

10 Filler, K, et. al. “Association of mitochondrial dysfunction and fatigue: A review of the literature.” BBA Clinical. 2014 (!). 12-23. Web: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S221464741400004X

11 Lawoyin, S., et al. “Bone mineral content in patients with calcium urolithiasis.” Metabolism 28:1250-1254.1979.

12 Swaminathan, R. “Magnesium Metabolism and its Disorders.” The Clinical Biochemist Reviews. 2003 May; 24(2): 47-66. Web. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1855626/

13 Wapnir, RA and Devas, G. “Copper deficiency: interaction with high-fructose and high-fat diets in rats.” The American Society for Clinical Nutrition, Inc. January 1995. Vol. 61 no. 1; 105-110. Web. http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/61/1/105.abstract

14 Ledochowski, L., et al. “Acute effects of brisk walking on sugary snack cravings in overweight people, affect and responses to a manipulated stress situation and to a sugary snack cue: a crossover study.” PLoS One. 2015. 10(3). Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25760042.

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Weekend Challenge: Plyometric Hip, Core, And Leg Toner https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-plyometric-hip-core-and-leg-toner/ https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-plyometric-hip-core-and-leg-toner/#comments Sat, 24 Jun 2017 08:19:27 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24419 Click to continue →]]>

This weekend’s challenge is a dynamic plyometric exercise that’s highly effective at building bones and muscles in the pelvis, core, and legs. It’s also a lot of fun – it practically begs for upbeat music to accompany it!

Along with giving you all the details of the Plyometric Hip, Core, And Leg Toner, we’re going to take an in-depth look at what plyometric exercise is all about, including an informative study that underscores how it benefits the bones and joints of the legs and pelvis (including the hips), protecting against fracture.

Why:

While avoiding all fractures is at the heart of the Save Our Bones Program, hip fractures are of particular concern because recovery is slow, and can be very painful. So it’s is highly recommended to pay attention to strengthening this area of the body.

There are multiple factors involved in building your hip bones to resist breakage, especially balance, joint mobility, and tensile strength. This weekend’s exercise addresses all these factors, and recent research confirms that plyometric exercise is just what you need to accomplish these goals.

Plyometric Exercise: What It Is And What It Does

Plyometrics are all about packing the most force and motion into the least time. In fact, the term “plyometric” is a a combination of two Greek words, plio and metric, meaning “more” and “to measure,” respectively.

Plyometric exercises cause the muscles to stretch quickly before contracting.This stretch/countermovement process is called the stretch-shortening cycle, or SSC. It combines lengthening-shortening contractions in three phases: the eccentric (landing/lengthening), amortization (transition), and concentric (take-off/contraction) phase. The concentric phase is shortened and therefore strengthened if the eccentric, or lengthening phase, immediately follows. This is why and how plyometric exercise intensifies the effects and benefits of muscular contraction.

Some of those benefits include stronger bones, as per Wolff’s Law, which states the now confirmed fact that bones respond to stimulation from muscle and gravity by increasing strength and density. Given that law, plyometrics are a particularly effective form of exercise for generating new bone and subsequently increasing strength and density.

Research supports plyometric moves as a form of exercise that provides specific benefits. In a study published in the Journal of Athletic Training, 20 female athletes performed plyometric exercises twice a week for six weeks. The athletes experienced “neuromuscular adaptations in the hip adductor muscles”1 that may in fact enhance knee joint stability and reduce risk of knee injury.1

“Neuromuscular adaptations” are evidenced by increased strength and size of muscles; so in plain terms, the plyometric exercises made the participants’ hip and leg muscles larger and stronger. That means that their bones were stimulated to increase in density, too.

You don’t have to be an athlete to reap the rewards of plyometric exercise. The following move can provide excellent bone health benefits for everyone.

How:

You’ll be moving back and forth for this exercise, so you’ll need a little room to your side.

  1. Begin with your feet shoulder-width apart and your elbows slightly bent.
  2. Hop six steps to one side – let’s say the right side for clarity – by lifting your right knee and pushing off to the right with your left foot. This is one hop.
  3. When you land on your right foot, immediately lift it again while pushing off with your left foot for the second hop.
  4. Repeat this for five hops to the right, bounce once on your left foot while holding your right knee high, and then reverse directions and do five hops to the left. If five is too difficult, go with three instead.
  5. Your elbows should remain bent while you pump your arms in rhythm with your hops as if you were jogging.
  6. Keep hopping from right to left until you’ve completed four sets in either direction, or eight total.

For more plyometric moves, try following up the Plyometric Hip, Core, And Leg Toner with the Plyometric Full Body Exercise
.
Don’t worry if you can’t perform exercises that involve hopping or jumping due to certain physical limitations. There are other forms of exercise that also build your bones, as you already know if you got Densercise™.

Densercise™ Is A Complete, Bone Density-Building System

The Densercise™ Epidensity Training System is built around the principles of Wolff’s Law. Each move in Densercise™ applies this law to help you build stronger, fracture-resistant bones through exercise. Along with the Save Our Bones Program’s pH-balanced nutrition, your bones can flourish and rejuvenate with targeted, density-building exercise.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

Please share your exercise experience with the community by leaving a comment below.

Have a great weekend!

References:

1 Chimera, Nicole J., .et al. “Effects of Plyometric Training on Muscle-Activation Strategies and Performance in Female Athletes.” Journal of Athletic Training. 39. 1. (2004): 24-31. Web. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC385258/

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Snack Idea: 3 Delicious No-Bake Recipes For Bone-Smart Energy Bars https://saveourbones.com/snack-idea-3-delicious-no-bake-recipes-for-bone-smart-energy-bars/ https://saveourbones.com/snack-idea-3-delicious-no-bake-recipes-for-bone-smart-energy-bars/#comments Thu, 22 Jun 2017 09:40:23 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24415 Click to continue →]]>

If you’ve been led to believe that snacking is a “no-no” if you want to stick to a healthy diet, it will surprise you to learn that snacking is encouraged on the Save Our Bones Program

You see, at the Save Institute we heartily approve the consumption of bone-healthy snacks. In fact, between-meal eating (in moderation, of course) actually serves important nutritional purposes, such as stabilizing blood sugar, increasing energy, and providing a bone-building nutritional boost.

However, with very few exceptions, most snack foods found in stores are unhealthy “junk foods” that don’t add nutritional value to your diet. The solution is to make your own bone-smart snacks, which can be a fun, simple, and delicious endeavor with recipes like the ones I share with you today.

These recipes are not only packed with bone-renewing nutrients; they are also naturally sweet to satisfy sugar cravings without overindulgence in the “white stuff.” And for Savers north of the equator, there’s an added bonus: these energy bars are no-bake, so you can avoid the hot oven in the summer heat!

First, I’d like to discuss some of the unhealthy ingredients found in most store-bought energy bars so you’ll understand why making your own is so much better for your bones and your health.

What’s In That Boxed “Energy” Bar?

Many commercially available, packaged bars are little more than candy bars disguised as health food. Here are a few ingredients commonly found lurking in your typical energy bar.

  • Hydrogenated/Partially hydrogenated oils, are frequently found in shelf-stable foods like granola/energy/breakfast bars. These altered forms of oil – also known as trans fats – have no place in a bone-healthy diet. The hydrogenation process converts liquid oil into a solid at room temperature, but it also changes the oil into a free radical, especially if the oil is partially hydrogenated.

    The way this happens is through the process of hydrogenation, which changes the fat on a molecular level, moving one of the hydrogen atoms to the other side of the carbon atoms that make up the fat. These are the trans fats that are produced as a by-product of the hydrogenation process.

    The human body does not know how to metabolize this form of fat, so it causes all sorts of trouble throughout the body, including inflammation that damages bones.

  • High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and other forms of corn syrup find their way into many commercial bars. A cheap form of quick energy and sweetening, HFCS is made from corn (obviously), and most corn crops are genetically modified. The process by which HFCS is manufactured involves a variety of chemicals. Here’s a brief rundown of how it works.

    Corn starch is acidified to break up the carbohydrates within it, but to protect it from enzymes that would degrade the carbohydrates, it’s exposed to mercuric chloride, which inhibits the action of starch-degrading enzymes present in the corn starch. Then, enzymes that can withstand high temperatures (alpha-amylase, glucoamylase, and xylose isomerase) are added so the extracted sugars will be converted into fructose. The solution is then demineralized and passed through activated carbon filters.

    Given the extensive number of steps involves in the processing of HFCS, it’s a wonder that it’s so cheap!

  • Emulsifiers, usually polysorbate 80 and/or carboxymethylcellulose, are often added to processed energy bars to extend shelf life and improve texture. But research warns strongly of the effects emulsifiers may have on human gut microbes.

    In mice, these common emulsifiers promoted intestinal disorders such as colitis, Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and even colon cancer.1,2

    A healthy gut is essential for strong bones, and healthy gut microbes play a direct role in bone health. For more on the connection between the two, I invite you to read the following post:

    Probiotics And Bone Loss: Brand-New Study Uncovers Amazing Link Between The Two

Homemade Energy Bars Are Much Healthier (And Easy To Make)!

Clearly, there are some very questionable if not downright harmful ingredients in commercial energy bars. But you don’t have to give them up altogether; the following recipes will show you how to make your own delicious versions that pack a big nutritional punch. And, as mentioned earlier, you don’t need to even turn the oven on.

Golden Chia-Apricot Bars

Alkalizing
Makes 1 dozen bars

With a subtle crunch from the chia seeds, these bars are full of alkalizing sweetness from dates and apricots.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole, pitted dates
  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Blend dates, apricots, and cinnamon in a blender or food processor until the mixture forms a cohesive mass.
  2. Add the pumpkin seeds and pulse until the seeds are broken into pieces.
  3. Press the mixture into a square pan (8”x8” or 9”x9”) lined with parchment paper.
  4. Place pan in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes before cutting into squares.

Chocolate-Cherry-Nut Bars

pH-Balanced
Makes 8 bars

Cherries and dark chocolate are a natural combination, giving these bars a true decadent taste.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • ⅓ cup raw walnuts
  • 1 ½ cups dried cherries
  • 4 or 5 whole, pitted dates
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Generous pinch of cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Grind or pulse the almonds and walnuts in a blender or food processor until they are in pieces about the size of barley grains.
  2. Add the dates, vanilla, and cinnamon and blend until a cohesive mass forms. Gently pulse in the chocolate chips and cherries.
  3. Place the mixture on a sheet of wax or parchment paper; cover with another sheet. Use a rolling pin to press the mixture out into a half-inch thick rectangle.
  4. Remove the paper from the top of the mixture, and cut it into bars. These can be kept at room temperature or in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

Spiced Nutty Pumpkin Bars

pH-balanced
Makes 8 bars

Crunchy nuts and pumpkin puree create a bone-smart way to enjoy spiced pumpkin pie flavor.

Ingredients:

For the bars:

  • 1 cup whole, pitted dates
  • ½ cup whole, raw almonds
  • 2 tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened, shredded coconut
  • ½ cup vanilla whey powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, or ⅛ teaspoon each cloves, dried ginger, and nutmeg
  • ¼ cup pumpkin purée

For the topping:

  • 2 tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut
  • 2 tablespoons chopped, raw almonds

Directions:

  1. In a food processor or blender, whirl all ingredients until they form a smooth batter.
  2. Spread and press the batter into an 8”x8” square baking pan lined on the bottom with parchment paper.
  3. Sprinkle the batter with the topping ingredients and press them in.
  4. Place in the freezer for 2 ½ – 3 hours; when solid, cut into bars. Keep these stored in the freezer or refrigerator.

Snacks Are Included In The Save Our Bones Nutritional Plan

In addition to more than 200 bone-smart recipes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the Save Our Bones recipe book, Bone Appétit, includes a 30 Day Meal Planner, which gives you daily snacks and corresponding recipes.

Eat Your Way to Stronger Bones!

Discover over 200 mouth-watering bone healthy recipes for breakfast, smoothies, appetizers, soups, salads, vegetarian dishes, fish, and plenty of main courses and even desserts!

Learn More Now →

Remember, snacks are an excellent, natural way of giving your body as many food-based nutrients as possible. So go ahead and enjoy bone-smart snacking!

And feel free to share your thoughts on these recipes and your favorite snacks by leaving a comment below.

Till next time,

References:

1 Georgia State University. “Common food additive promotes colon cancer in mice.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 November 2016. Web. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161107110639.htm
2 Benoit Chassaing, et al. “Dietary emulsifiers impact the mouse gut microbiota promoting colitis and metabolic syndrome.” Nature. 92-96. (2015). Web. 10.1038/nature14232

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Hot Vs. Cold Showers: Which Is Better For Your Bones And Your Health? https://saveourbones.com/hot-vs-cold-showers-which-is-better-for-your-bones-and-your-health/ https://saveourbones.com/hot-vs-cold-showers-which-is-better-for-your-bones-and-your-health/#comments Mon, 19 Jun 2017 02:30:36 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24401 Click to continue →]]>

When it comes to health, decisions aren’t always simple. Given a choice between behaviors (as we are lucky to usually have!), you must weigh the potential results of each option and decide which one will help you meet your goals. There can be a surprising array of outcomes from even the smallest choice, and today we’re going to look at the pros and cons of one we typically make every day: taking a shower.

Is a piping hot shower better for your bones and your health? Or is a cold shower going to assist your body in new bone formation? Today we’ll look at both possibilities and the research examining the effects of both extremes. Put on your shower caps and let’s dive in.

Some Like It Hot

What constitutes a “hot” shower? Anything from around 96 to 105 degrees Fahrenheit qualifies, and it only takes 5 to 10 minutes to reap the benefits of the soothing heat. Don’t stay in too long though, or your skin can dry out.

If you experience muscular or joint pain, hot water can ease those aches by stimulating blood flow and loosening up muscles, tendons and tissues. Finding relaxing, drug free ways to ease physical discomfort will make it easier to stay active without fearing the results. And maintaining physical activity, ideally in a scheduled exercise program, is essential to bone health, along with general wellbeing and longevity.

Plus, not using pharmaceuticals for physical relief takes the burden of removing those acidifying drugs off your body’s filtration system. That allows your liver to function at optimal levels and your kidneys to better maintain a healthy pH, keeping valuable bone-building minerals where your bones need them.

Another physical symptom that hot showers can alleviate is stiffness. Whether you wake up without your full range of motion, or find that the end of the day leaves you struggling to kneel down and tie your shoe, a well-timed hot shower can get things moving again. This is an especially useful trick for helping to get warmed up before exercising.

Relief From Toxins

There’s more than one way for toxins to enter our body, and an often overlooked route is through our skin. We come in contact with an incredible amount of different substances everyday, some intentionally and others unintentionally. Our skin is surprisingly porous, allowing for the transit of molecules in and out of our bodies.

A steamy shower opens the pores on your skin, making it easier to clean them out and for toxins and impurities to be washed away. A cold water rinse afterwards will cause your pores to contract again, helping to keep out the next batch of unwanted micro-materials!

Similarly, if your sinuses are clogged, a steamy shower can do wonders to break up phlegm and relieve congestion. Professional singers regularly fight vocal fatigue or the effects of a cold by inhaling steamy air to help keep their passages clear and moisturized.

The Science Of A Relaxing Shower

You may have observed that a hot shower can change your mood. This isn’t just the above-listed benefits kicking in. The warmth of the shower actually increases your oxytocin levels, which has the effect of reducing levels of stress hormones like cortisol, while lowering blood pressure. This was shown by a study that looked at the effects and causes of oxytocin release in male and female rats.1

As Savers know, high cortisol levels cause damage to bones. Any measure that can be taken to de-stress and keep those levels in check helps to preserve bone, and hot showers are an easy and effective way to do that. Once you are more relaxed, you may find that you can get to sleep more easily, and sleep more soundly, which is important for supporting healthy bone formation. Curiously, some people find that ending a shower by turning it cold helps them to cool down and prepare for slumber.

A Cold Shower Has Lots To Offer Too!

You might think that because hot showers offer so many benefits, cold showers must be detrimental to your health, but that’s not so. In fact, a chilly rinse can trigger a number of beneficial physical changes.

A study published in the Behavioral and Brain Functions journal recommends the use of repeated cold stress for reducing fatigue in people with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). One of the reasons this might work is explained as follows:

“Exposure to cold increases metabolic rate and transiently activates the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis as evidenced by a temporary increase in the plasma levels of adrenocorticotropic hormone, beta-endorphin and a modest increase in cortisol. The increased opioid tone and high metabolic rate could diminish fatigue by reducing muscle pain and accelerating recovery of fatigued muscle, respectively.”2

The shock of cold water in a shower was the author’s suggestion for triggering this response. While an accelerated recovery of fatigued muscle and a reduction in muscle pain is certainly valuable for those suffering from chronic fatigue, it’s also useful for anyone with an active lifestyle. A cold shower can be like a little recharge, boosting your body’s recovery.

While cortisol at high levels for extended periods is detrimental to your health, the modest and short-term increase described above is a natural and healthy reaction to a shock. That’s what cortisol is for, and as we’ll see below, repeated bracing experiences can prepare your body to recover more rapidly from them, and ultimately, help you manage stress hormones more efficiently.

Hydrotherapy – The Water Works

Technically, using a physical interaction with water for its health benefits can be called hydrotherapy. It’s a form of holistic self-care that you’ve been using your whole life! Any time you’ve thought you’d feel better after a refreshing shower, you were longing for the soothing effects of hydrotherapy.

In fact, there are many medical professionals who recommend hot or cold baths or showers as a part of addressing anxiety and depression.

Cold water is thought to be especially useful in this regard because lowering the temperature of the brain and body can relieve inflammation, reduce pain, and activate the sympathetic nervous system, which increases norepinephrine levels. Along with the release of beta-endorphins, this cold-response quite literally changes your brain chemistry to help you feel more positive. Researchers have suggested regular cold showers as a treatment for depression, and the best part it that, unlike prescription drugs, this has no side effects and doesn’t cause dependence.3

You’ve probably had the experience of a sudden cold burst of water. The jolt of energy it causes can certainly wake you up and sharpen your senses. This experience, when repeated regularly, has been scientifically shown to build up a tolerance to physical shock, including oxidative stress.4 That’s a valuable resistance, since oxidation is detrimental to bone formation.

And there’s more evidence-backed information to support this. Research conducted on people who swim regularly in the winter shows that the repeated oxidative stress of the icy dips resulted in improved antioxidative adaptation.5

What Works For You Is What Matters

Everyone is different, and everyone reacts differently to new stimuli. If you decide to see what the effects of hot or cold showers can do for you, try them out gradually. Listen to your body and don’t torture yourself trying to regulate the temperature.

Try this: begin your shower at a comfortable temperature, and then try bumping it a little one way or the other. This simple method allows you to ease yourself into an unfamiliar temperature. You only need a short time in the water for it to have an impact on your body. As little as two or three minutes in a really cold shower will do, and just a few minutes longer in a hot shower is just right.

In fact, overdoing it might undo the benefits you’re seeking. So as with most things, moderation is key.

If the idea of hydrotherapy once seemed new agey or far fetched to you, hopefully after you read this, you’ll recognize it as something as simple as taking a shower to feel better. There are a great many ways you can easily shift your lifestyle to help bolster your health, including the health of your bones.

The Save Our Bones Program is the compendium of the Save Institute’s knowledge about naturally reversing bone loss and and the evidence-backed protocols in which this very important process can be achieved. Have a look to find out the many other ways that you can start building stronger, younger bones without ever taking drugs, to live a fuller and more active life!

Stop Worrying About Your Bone Loss

Join thousands of Savers from around the world who have reversed or prevented their bone loss naturally and scientifically with the Save Our Bones Program.

Learn More Now →

References:

1 Uvnäs-Moberg K. “Oxytocin linked antistress effects–the relaxation and growth response.“ Acta Physiol Scand Suppl. 1997;640:38-42. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9401603
2 Shevchuk NA. “Possible use of repeated cold stress for reducing fatigue in chronic fatigue syndrome: a hypothesis.“ Behav Brain Funct. 2007 Oct 24;3:55. Web: https://behavioralandbrainfunctions.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1744-9081-3-55
3 Shevchuk NA. “Adapted cold shower as a potential treatment for depression.“ Med Hypotheses. 2008;70(5):995-1001. Epub 2007 Nov 13. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17993252
4 Werner G. Siems. Frederik J.G.M. van Kuijk. Ralph Maass.Rainer Brenke. “Uric acid and glutathione levels during short-term whole body cold exposure.” Free Radical Biology and Medicine. Volume 16, Issue 3, March 1994, Pages 299-305Web: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0891584994900302
5 Siems WG, Brenke R, Sommerburg O, Grune T. “Improved antioxidative protection in winter swimmers.” QJM. 1999 Apr;92(4):193-8. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10396606?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DiscoveryPanel.Pubmed_Discovery_RA&linkpos=1&log$=relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed

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Weekend Challenge: Balancing Femoral Head And Core Strengthener https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-balancing-femoral-head-and-core-strengthener/ https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-balancing-femoral-head-and-core-strengthener/#comments Sat, 17 Jun 2017 06:48:36 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24391 Click to continue →]]>

Scientific research indicates that core-targeting exercises such as the Balancing Femoral Head And Core Strengthener help to relieve chronic lower back pain. This is great news for the estimated 50% of adults who suffer from this aggravating and uncomfortable (and at times excruciating) condition.

But even if you don’t experience backaches, this weekend’s exercise is still relevant – in addition to strengthening the core, it also works the crucial femoral head, improves balance, and increases mobility in the hips.

Let’s start by taking a look at a recent study on alleviating chronic back pain with core strengthening exercises.

Why:

Exercise builds strength to achieve bone health results, ranging from stronger bones to better balance. Now you can add “decreased back pain” to that list!

Four different studies were reviewed by researchers who analyzed the specific ways in which strength and resistance training affect lower back pain. They found that in comparison with resistance training that worked superficial muscles, core strengthening exercises provided superior relief, as expressed in the quote below:

“According to the results of various scales and evaluation instruments, core strength training is more effective than typical resistance training for alleviating chronic low back pain.”1

Not only that, but the type of core exercises mattered – all types helped, but moves that worked the deep muscles of the core were more effective:

“All of the core strength training strategies examined in this study assist in the alleviation of chronic low back pain; however, we recommend focusing on training the deep trunk muscles to alleviate chronic low back pain.”1

What are the study authors referring to as the “deep trunk muscles”?

These are the deep core muscles, which attach directly to the spine and pelvis. The ones we’re going to focus on today are the transversus abdominis (sometimes called the transverse abdominis), erector spinae, hip flexors, internal obliques, and the multifidus.

The transversus abdominis lies deep in the abdominal cavity, attaching from the bottom six ribs to the top of the pelvis and then to the pubic crest at the front base off the pelvis.

The erector spinae lie directly against the vertebrae. You use them whenever you straighten your spine and extend your vertebrae, and they’re vital for correct posture. Because of their direct contact with the vertebrae, they are highly instrumental in alleviating back pain.

The hip flexors include the psoas and glutes (buttocks). The hip flexors allow you to move your legs up toward your chest, out to the side, and backward. They are also key in stabilizing your pelvis and lower back.

The internal obliques lie along your sides, and are located deep in the torso. They connect inside your pelvis, allowing you to rotate your trunk.

Lastly, the multifidus is a back muscle, attaching along your spine and working with the transversus abdominus to stabilize your vertebrae.

All of these deep muscles are worked in this weekend’s exercise, and the rotation of the leg (which you’ll see next) takes the femoral head through a significant range of motion, increasing flexibility and strength in this crucial joint.

How:

Because the Balancing Femoral Head And Core Strengthener involves standing on one foot, it’s a good idea to stand near a bed, chair, or wall as you get the hang of this exercise.

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Bring one knee up to hip level, and then bring your knee out to the side. Your thigh should be as close to straight out to the side as possible.
  3. Bring your knee back around to the front, but keep your knee bent; don’t put your foot down.
  4. Bring your knee out to the side again.
  5. Repeat this motion 10 times (or as many times as you comfortably can up to 10 times), moving fairly rapidly.
  6. Switch legs and repeat on the other side.


Since your core muscles are so important, I suggest you follow this exercise with these Weekend Challenges that also target the core:

The Densercise™ Epidensity Training System Includes Core-Strengthening Moves

If you have Densercise™, then you know that good form is important in exercise. That’s why so many of the 50+ moves in Densercise™ include the instruction to engage or tighten your core. Effective, bone density-increasing exercises like those found in Densercise™ begin with a strong core, and so does freedom from lower back pain.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

Please share your experiences with this and other exercises by leaving a comment below.

Have a great weekend!

References:

1 Chang, Wen-Dien, PhD, Lin, Hung-Yu, PhD, and Lai, Ping-Tung, BS. “Core strength training for patients with chronic low back pain.” J Phys Ther Sci. 27. 3. (2015): 619-622. Web. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4395677/

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Scientific Proof That Osteoporosis and Obesity Are Not Diseases (And Why The Medical Establishment Is Dead Wrong About This) https://saveourbones.com/scientific-proof-that-osteoporosis-and-obesity-are-not-diseases-and-why-the-medical-establishment-is-dead-wrong-about-this/ https://saveourbones.com/scientific-proof-that-osteoporosis-and-obesity-are-not-diseases-and-why-the-medical-establishment-is-dead-wrong-about-this/#comments Thu, 15 Jun 2017 10:14:07 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24388 Click to continue →]]>

One of the most frightening aspects of an osteoporosis and osteopenia diagnosis is the way the risk of fracture is presented by the Medical Establishment. When a doctor determines that you fit the pre-established parameters of increased fracture risk, instead of helping you understand how you can reduce that risk, they pronounce you with an ominous disease: osteoporosis.

Today’s post debunks that classification, using evidence-backed data and by looking at another set of risk factors that have been pathologized with the help of Big Pharma: obesity. Osteoporosis and obesity both describe physiological conditions that should be corrected, but they are not diseases, in spite of what a doctor may tell you.

First we’ll have a look at definitions of osteoporosis and the shifting use of that word, then we’ll see how obesity is a label with a similar trajectory. You’ll learn why neither really qualifies as a disease, and why that label serves Big Pharma and the Medical Establishment.

What Is Osteoporosis?

There’s much to be learned from the Establishment’s definition of osteoporosis and how it is used. Before the year 1994, there were relatively few osteoporosis diagnoses, because at the time it wasn’t considered a disease. It was a condition that was only ascribed to people who had already fractured a bone.

But then in 1994 the World Health Organization stepped in and gave new meaning to this word by defining it as a disease. The conference at which this decision was made had another host: the International Osteoporosis Foundation. This non-profit isn’t as neutral as its name implies. The corporate advisory board of the IOF contains no less than 31 drug companies and medical equipment manufacturers. These companies knew there was money to made, if only they could find a way to redefine a natural part of aging as a scary, and treatable, disease.

In fact, the Merck Manual provides the following “official” definition, also quoted in the Save Our Bones Program:

“Osteoporosis is a systemic skeletal disease characterized by low bone mass and microarchitectural deterioration of bone, with a consequent increase in bone fragility and susceptibility to fracture.”

This a very short and dense definition that has an enormous impact on the lives of thousands and thousands of people. And it wasn’t possible without some creative reimagining of the qualifications of osteoporosis.

For something to be a disease there needs to be a clear indicator, some symptom that a doctor can use to diagnose it. When age and fracture were the factors that were used, very few people qualified. So a new set of diagnostics had to be invented.

The Invention Of A Disease

At the 1994 conference, the participants decided that the way to judge whether or not someone would be pronounced with this new disease called osteoporosis was by a measure of bone mass. That’s why the phrase “characterized by low bone mass” is in the definition above. Once someone’s bone mass crosses below a predetermined threshold, a diagnosis can be made and, more importantly for the pharmaceutical companies pushing this change, drugs can be readily prescribed.

Here’s how this is summed up in the Save Our Bones Program:

“Until it was re-defined as a measure of low bone mineral density (BMD) in 1994, osteoporosis was considered an uncommon disease of fragile bones inflicting mainly the very elderly. Everyone naturally loses bone density as they age, but the new definition does not account for that. The standard reference norm on the bone density machines is that of a young woman, making it almost impossible for an older person to have a normal diagnosis. Merck’s definition categorizes osteoporosis by focusing only on the density of bones, thus completely ignoring many other factors that can contribute to bone fragility. Statistics show that there is no direct correlation between low bone density and the occurrence of fractures, and that over 85% of women turning 50 years old today will never have a fracture, regardless of their bone density.”

Surprisingly, an editorial response to a scientific study published in BMJ in the year 2000 about the increasing use of peripheral bone densitometry lays out a clear-eyed perspective on the matter. The doctor who authored this response compares hypertension as just one of many risk factors for stroke or heart attack to osteoporosis:

“Similarly osteoporosis is not a disease. As the authors point out, osteoporosis is the name given to the bone mineral density when it falls below an arbitrarily defined threshold. Osteoporosis is a risk factor; indeed only one of several risk factors which may (or may not) lead to the patient suffering a fracture.”1

This remarkably echoes the Save Our Bones Program. Unlike the definition provided by Merck, which is unfortunately applied by the vast majority of medical professionals, this view of osteoporosis recognizes that there are many risk factors for fracture, and that this danger can be addressed in multiple ways. BMI is not the only way to assess fracture risk – it’s only a fraction of the general picture.

And yet, the Medical Establishment doubled down on this misguided attempt to create clarity by providing the makers of osteoporosis drugs another way to sell their products: inventing osteopenia. This condition creates an even lower bar for scaring unsuspecting patients into taking toxic and dangerous drugs.

What is Osteopenia?

Osteopenia is basically a diagnosis that describes a risk of developing a risk of experiencing a fracture (yes, you read that right!). The definition gets even murkier when you consider that the risk-evaluation method at play is the measurement of bone density, which simply isn’t an effective predictor of fracture without considering other factors.

Consider too that even though osteopenia is supposedly a much less serious risk (being only the risk of a risk), the same drugs at the same doses, are prescribed to “treat” it. What’s the point then of even having two names, if the one-size-fits-all response is the same?

All of these reasons and more made it clear that the Save Institute needed to redefine osteoporosis to dispel the myths that surround it. This definition addresses not only the risk of fracture, but the causes of that increased risk, and the path to lowering it. This is quoted directly from the Save Our Bones Program:

“The correct definition of osteoporosis is: a condition of the skeletal system, common in middle aged and older individuals, mainly caused by the body’s attempt to correct an unhealthy biochemical imbalance by utilizing the calcium that should normally remain in the bones, causing bone density loss. However, unless certain abnormal endocrine and/or gastrointestinal conditions are present, the biochemical imbalance may be corrected by diet and lifestyle changes.”

This definition gives you back power over your life and your body. You can make changes to improve your bone quality and your health. Let go of the idea that osteoporosis is a disease that is beyond your control and only manageable through prescription drugs. It’s simply not true!

The transformation of osteoporosis from a relatively rare condition describing a risk, into a widely diagnosed disease requiring treatment, is not unique. Another argument against this redefinition of conditions is apparent in the story of obesity.

Obesity: Disease or Condition?

Obesity had for decades been considered a condition, a description of a physical state that carried risks and had many potential causes. The American Medical Association (AMA) referred to it as an “urgent chronic condition,” or a “major health concern” and a “complex disorder.”

Then, in the summer of 2013, the American Medical Association or AMA made a drastic decision: obesity was redefined as a disease. Dr. Patrice Harris, an AMA board member, explained,

“Recognizing obesity as a disease will help change the way the medical community tackles this complex issue that affects approximately 1 in 3 Americans.”2

The AMA assumably made this decision in the hopes that the reclassification would encourage doctors and patients to approach obesity with more seriousness, and ultimately stem the rise of obesity in America. However, the results might not match the goals, and the declaration of a condition as a disease is part of the problem.

First, much like the BMD scores that doctors use to diagnose osteoporosis, obesity is often diagnosed with a single, questionable metric. A Body Mass Index (BMI) score is commonly used to determine whether an individual is obese. However, this simple height-to-weight formula is imprecise and fails to consider multiple factors, like the distribution of body fat, and the general health of the patient.

The first chimes of doubt about the reclassification actually came from the AMA itself. The organization’s Council on Science and Public Health issued a 14 page report for AMA delegates to consider, and the lack of precision of BMI was a major sticking point. They wrote:

“Given the existing limitations of BMI to diagnose obesity in clinical practice, it is unclear that recognizing obesity as a disease, as opposed to a ‘condition’ or ‘disorder,’ will result in improved health outcomes.”2

The AMA delegates disregarded the council’s recommendation and decided to medicalize obesity instead.

Effects Of Diagnosing Obesity As A Disease

Just like when osteoporosis was reclassified, pharmaceutical companies stand to make an enormous profit off of these new diagnoses. Weight loss drugs that have been entering the market steadily for years suddenly have a new purpose, “curing” a “disease.” Does that sound familiar?

And just like in the case of osteoporosis, instead of lifestyle changes that could reduce the risk that obesity actually describes, patients can be encouraged to take a quick-fix drug, without ever considering the sources of the problem.

It may seem strange to you that someone would think they have to take a potentially dangerous drug to lose weight, when it’s widely accepted that for most people weight loss can be achieved through changes in lifestyle. However, consider that the context of the doctor’s office, the authority of their recommendation and the psychological impact of being diagnosed with a disease can really shake you up and change the way you think.

Being labelled obese can have serious psychological impacts like body dysmorphia, reduced self-esteem, and a sense of helplessness. Being diagnosed with a disease can make you feel like you have been struck by fate, like you’re powerless to impact your body and your health. This is obviously harmful, and clearly untrue.

An article published in Australasian Medical Journal in 2014 examines whether the AMA made the right choice by classifying obesity as a disease. Here’s the conclusion:

“Obesity has reached pandemic proportions, is strongly associated with myriad co-morbid complications, and is leading to a progressive economic and social burden. However, being obese does not necessarily equate to poor health, and evidence suggests individuals may be fat but fit. Perhaps most importantly, labelling obesity a disease may absolve personal responsibility and encourage a hands-off approach to health behaviour. This knowledge raises the question of morality, as individuals must now choose whether they will invest effort into maintaining a healthy lifestyle in order to free society of the healthcare burden associated with obesity. Given the myriad issues surrounding the decision to classify obesity in this way, perhaps a new question should be posed in order for society to continue this discussion: who benefits most from labelling obesity a disease?”3

The answer to that question isn’t “the people who qualify as obese”, so clearly, the label really ought to change. And yet, it persists, much to the benefit of Big Pharma.

The example of the misclassification of obesity as a disease reinforces what Savers already know about osteoporosis: it’s not a disease. And just like obesity, the health risks that osteoporosis labels can be reduced by changes in diet, physical activity and lifestyle.

Blood pH and Bone Health

As described above, one problem with the simplistic definitions of osteoporosis is that it doesn’t address any underlying causes of the condition. While the natural process of aging results in less dense bones, that process has very specific biochemical causes.

If we can influence that process in favor of our bones, then we can help strengthen our skeletal system.

The work of doctor Lynda Frassetto, an extensively published doctor, medical researcher, and professor of medicine at UCSF, has revealed one of these aging processes and how it affects our bodies. Here’s what she has to say:

“Some of the effects attributed to “aging” are due to the body’s attempts to mitigate the actions of a chronic low-grade metabolic acidosis associated with acid-producing foods in the diet and declining renal function.”4

The pH of your blood tends to become slightly more acidic as you age. Some of this has to do with reduced renal function in some cases, but nutrition plays a central role . Especially in the West, diets have become extremely acidifying, filled with food additives, refined sugars, processed foods, and excessive animal protein consumption. Additionally, as you age, your body’s filtration system, your liver and kidneys, become less efficient at keeping the pH in balance.4

But your body needs a balanced pH to function properly, so it takes whatever actions are necessary to rectify this imbalance. Unfortunately, one effective way to do this is bone dissolution. Alkalizing minerals are ‘stolen’ from your bones to neutralize the acid in your systems.4-5

A Nutrition Society Medal Lecture by Dr. Susan New, published in the Proceedings of the Nutrition Society in 2002, uses the extensive history of research on the relationship between bones and pH to draw the same conclusions:

“The role that the skeleton plays in acid–base homeostasis has been gaining increasing prominence in the literature; with theoretical considerations of the role alkaline bone mineral may play in the defence against acidosis dating as far back as the late 19th century. Natural, pathological and experimental states of acid loading and/or acidosis have been associated with hypercalciuria and negative Ca balance and, more recently, the detrimental effects of ‘acid’ from the diet on bone mineral have been demonstrated. At the cellular level, a reduction in extracellular pH has been shown to have a direct enhancement on osteoclastic activity, with the result of increased resorption pit formation in bone. A number of observational, experimental, clinical and intervention studies over the last decade have suggested a positive link between fruit and vegetable consumption and the skeleton.”5

These studies are further evidence that the Save Our Bones Program is exactly right about bone loss and how to counteract it. From rectifying the definition of osteoporosis, to recommending the diet necessary to reverse the acidification that steals alkalizing material from your bones, the Program is comprehensive and complete. Savers have attested to the positive impact that the Program has had on their bones, and on their entire lives.

You Don’t Have To Give Up Control Of Your Bone Health!

You do have the power to improve your life. Don’t let the language of a “disease” and a “diagnosis” frighten you into feeling like you’re helpless in the hands of fate and that your only recourse is to take osteoporosis drugs. As we’ve seen today, that language was invented by fallible people, who accidentally did more harm than good. You can overcome that barrier, as you’ve overcome plenty of others in your life, and the Save our Bones Program can help you achieve that goal.

Stop Worrying About Your Bone Loss

Join thousands of Savers from around the world who have reversed or prevented their bone loss naturally and scientifically with the Save Our Bones Program.

Learn More Now →

Keep learning about how your body works, making positive changes to your habits, and living a fuller life!

Till next time,

References:

1 Kevin Pearce, GP. “Osteoporosis is a Risk factor not a disease.” BMJ 2000; 321 Web: http://www.bmj.com/rapid-response/2011/10/28/osteoporosis-risk-factor-not-disease
2 Christopher Bergland. “Should Obesity Be Classified As a Disease?” Psychology Today. Posted Jun 19, 2013. Web: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-athletes-way/201306/should-obesity-be-classified-disease
3 Stoner L, Cornwall J. Did the American Medical Association make the correct decision classifying obesity as a disease? AMJ 2014;7(11):462–464. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4259211/
4 Lynda Frassetto, MD. “Acid-base, diet, and preventing age-related dysfunction of bone, muscle, kidney, and cardiovascular system” Presentation. NASA 10-7-09. http://www.dsls.usra.edu/20091007.pdf
5 Dr. Susan A. New. “The role of the skeleton in acid–base homeostasis” Proceedings of the Nutrition Society (2002), 61, 151–164 Web: https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/proceedings-of-the-nutrition-society/article/nutrition-society-medal-lecture-the-role-of-the-skeleton-in-acidbase-homeostasis/3F0B999D61D37947FD5F1DF17ADD36F3

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Beyond Bone Health: 3 Evidence-Backed And Surprising Health Benefits Of Regular Exercise https://saveourbones.com/beyond-bone-health-3-evidence-backed-and-surprising-health-benefits-of-regular-exercise/ https://saveourbones.com/beyond-bone-health-3-evidence-backed-and-surprising-health-benefits-of-regular-exercise/#comments Sun, 11 Jun 2017 19:00:41 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24380 Click to continue →]]>

Savers are well versed on the importance of exercise to strengthen and build bone. Wolff’s law elucidates that the stress muscles exert on bone stimulates bone growth and renewal. And this is one of the main reasons why exercise is a critical element for improving bone health and reversing osteoporosis and osteopenia.

Today we take an in-depth look at three incredible evidence-backed benefits of exercise that go well beyond bone health. From preventing deadly ailments, to increasing brain power, exercise is a powerful way to improve your overall health in very specific ways, as you’ll soon learn.

So let’s get started!

Exercise Proven More Effective Than Drugs To Keep You Healthy

Everyone knows that regular exercise is an important component of a healthy lifestyle, but the generality of those terms isn’t exactly compelling. How about this instead: exercise prevents heart disease. That’s a little more enticing. Now consider this: exercise prevents this life-altering and often deadly condition just as effectively as drugs.

A recent study published in BMJ cross-examined 16 meta-analyses of studies about the effectiveness of exercise and drug interventions on mortality. This exhaustive study included data from 305 randomized control trials of 339,274 participants.

The scientists behind the study compared the efficacy of prescription drugs to exercise on mortality in rehabilitation of stroke, diabetes prevention, treatment of heart failure, and coronary heart disease prevention.

Here’s what the study says about coronary heart disease:

“When compared head to head in network meta-analyses, all interventions were not different beyond chance: there were no statistically detectable differences among any of the exercise and drug interventions in terms of their effects on mortality outcomes.”1

Physical activity interventions were more effective than drug treatment among patients with stroke. For heart failure, treatment with diuretics resulted in fewer deaths. For prediabetes, neither drugs nor exercise were clearly effective in reducing the odds of mortality.

This is the conclusion of this scientific report:

“Although limited in quantity, existing randomised trial evidence on exercise interventions suggests that exercise and many drug interventions are often potentially similar in terms of their mortality benefits in the secondary prevention of coronary heart disease, rehabilitation after stroke, treatment of heart failure, and prevention of diabetes.”1

The study also notes that there is far more research available about the impact of pharmaceuticals than about exercise. This is no wonder, since so much scientific inquiry is driven by Big Pharma. It’s a shame that all this time and effort is spent trying to concoct drugs that wind up causing awful side-effects without offering significant benefits.

Clearly, more resources ought to go into understanding the positive impacts of natural and accessible strategies for improving our health.

Get Fit To Get Smart

It turns out that not only is it smart to stay in shape, but staying in shape makes you smarter! Now that’s a feedback loop worth getting stuck in.

Several studies have examined the relationship between specific parts of brain function and physical activity. Their results are exciting for all Savers who are already engaged in regular exercise.

One study, published in the journal Hippocampus, examines the relationship between physical fitness, hippocampus size, and spatial memory.2 We already knew that the hippocampus is an important part of spatial navigation and other forms of relational memory. We were also aware that hippocampal size can be changed by engaging in certain activities. For example, London taxi drivers, who are charged with memorizing every street in the city and how to navigate them, were found to have larger hippocampus sizes than the average person.

Having a particularly powerful hippocampus isn’t just a matter of mental vanity, it improves your memory.3 This strengthening of spatial memory helps us to maintain our independence as we age, and to keep growing and learning.

Another study, conducted at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, found that moderate exercise enhances the connectivity in important brain circuits.4 This research involved 65 people from the ages of 59 to 80 who joined either a walking group or a stretching and toning group for a full year. None of the participants were in the habit of regular physical exercise before the study.

The scientists looked at a particular brain circuit called the default mode network (DMN). This is the set of neuronal connections that is engaged when a person is passively observing something, or just daydreaming. Prior studies have associated a loss of coordination in the DMN with Alzheimer’s disease, and the decline of this brain function is common with aging.

Before, during and after the year-long study the researchers performed functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) on the brains of the participants to determine if their change in habits was impacting their DMN connectivity and performance on cognitive tasks. At the end of the year, the group who did stretching and toning didn’t see much improvement, but the walking group was a different story.

The aerobic exercise of a regular practice of walking significantly improved DMN connectivity and increased connectivity in parts of another brain circuit that aids in the performance of complex tasks. Here’s what one of the lead researchers had to say on the value of this change:

“The higher the connectivity, the better the performance on some of these cognitive tasks, especially the ones we call executive control tasks — things like planning, scheduling, dealing with ambiguity, working memory and multitasking,”4

These are certainly important parts of living life, and ones that can become more difficult with advanced age. Isn’t it great to know that moderate physical exercise can help combat this unnecessary decline?

The Requirement For Good Health

It’s clear that exercise is essential to our health. But how much is the right amount? While that answer might be a little different for everyone, one study aimed to figure out the smallest amount of activity possible to still reap the benefits of an active lifestyle.

The title of this study really says it all, “Minimum amount of physical activity for reduced mortality and extended life expectancy: a prospective cohort study.” Reducing mortality and extending life expectancy are certainly powerful incentives to get moving, and it turns out that it doesn’t even require much time.5

This study looked at 416,175 individuals who participated in a standard medical screening program in Taiwan between 1996 and 2008. Based on a physical activity questionnaire everyone was placed into one of five categories describing how much they exercised. Compared to the bottom rung on the ladder, the “inactive” group, the next lowest activity group had a 14% reduced risk of all-cause mortality and a four year longer life expectancy. That group averaged 92 minutes of exercise a week, or 15 minutes a day.5

Every additional 15 minutes per day reduced that mortality rate an additional 4%, and these results spanned ages and sexes, and included those with cardiovascular disease risks. It’s nice to know there’s room to grow, and that extra effort really does pay off.

This is great news. You don’t have to go from zero to a hundred and completely upend your routine to improve your health and extend your life. You just have to add 15 minutes of physical activity per day. The Save Our Bones Program recommends walking and weight-bearing exercises along with bone-building targeted ones. These are precisely the sort of exercises shown in the studies above to decrease the chance of diseases, increase mental capacity, and to extend the years of your life.

If you’re looking for a way to get started and put these ideas into motion, then follow this link to learn more about the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System. It’s an exercise program specifically developed to build your bones, that also provides everything you need to start a life-improving practice of physical activity. Also, the length of a Densercise™ session is the exact length of the daily recommendation of the last study in today’s article: 15 minutes.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

Clearly, you can’t keep your body and bones healthy without regular physical exercise. That’s the bottom line. If you’re ready to start improving the health of your bones and your life, today is the day to make that change!

Till next time,

References:

1 Huseyin Naci, John P A Ioannidis. “Comparative effectiveness of exercise and drug interventions on mortality outcomes: metaepidemiological study.” BMJ 2013;347:f5577. Web: http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f5577
2 Kirk I. Erickson, Ruchika S. Prakash, Michelle W. Voss, Laura Chaddock, Liang Hu, Katherine S. Morris, Siobhan M. White, Thomas R. Wójcicki, Edward McAuley, Arthur F. Kramer. ‘Aerobic fitness is associated with hippocampal volume in elderly humans.’ Hippocampus, 2009; NA DOI: 10.1002/hipo.20547
3 Diana Yates. “Physical fitness improves spatial memory, increases size of brain structure” Illinois News Bureau. Feb 25, 2009. Web: https://news.illinois.edu/blog/view/6367/206020
4 Michelle W. Voss, et al. “Plasticity of Brain Networks in a Randomized Intervention Trial of Exercise Training in Older Adults. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience.” 2010; Web: http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fnagi.2010.00032/full
5 Wen, Chi Pang et al. “Minimum amount of physical activity for reduced mortality and extended life expectancy: a prospective cohort study.” The Lancet , Volume 378 , Issue 9798 , 1244 – 1253. Web: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(11)60749-6/abstract

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Weekend Challenge: Shoulder Pain Averter And Posture Improver https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-shoulder-pain-averter-and-posture-improver/ https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-shoulder-pain-averter-and-posture-improver/#comments Sat, 10 Jun 2017 02:51:59 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24371 Click to continue →]]>

When you consider the position and operational structure of your joints, you’ll notice that stability and mobility are two key aspects that work with and against each other at the same time. For instance, highly mobile joints, such as the ankles, are closely connected to articulations that are more stability-oriented, such as the knees.

The shoulders combine both of these joint components, with the shoulder blades (scapulae) acting as points of stability while the other joints of the shoulder excel in articulation and mobility. When these two aspects are out of sync, shoulder pain can occur.

Shoulder stability and strength can both be compromised by various issues, such as poor posture and lack of use. That’s where this weekend’s challenge comes in.

The Shoulder Pain Averter And Posture Improver enhances your shoulders’ full range of motion and strengthens the scapulae, to help prevent pain and achieve better posture.

Let’s get started!

Why:

The shoulder joint is quite complex. It’s a marvel of strength and motion, with no fewer than ten points of articulation. The various muscles, tendons, and joints involved all work together to perform actions as simple as reaching over your head. Here are some of the highlights of the marvelous workings of the shoulder along with an illustration :

  • The scapulae (shoulder blades) are like the foundation of the shoulder joints. They are the point of shoulder strength, and the proper function of the shoulder relies heavily on their strength. According to research,

    “Scapular strengthening should be a part of all rehabilitation programs relating to the shoulder complex.”1

    Poor scapular function and shoulder pain can result from a variety of factors, such as lack of exercise and conditions like forward head posture or kyphosis. Research suggests that rounded shoulders and forward head posture (FHP) are particular culprits in causing shoulder pain, as is repetitive overhead motion and sustained overhead weight bearing.2

    Targeted exercises help overcome these postural problems and keep the scapulae in the right position for optimal joint function. If they’re not exercised, the muscles surrounding the scapulae become weak and/or tight, and the shoulder can feel stiff and painful.

    In addition, lack of use (often due to pain, injury, poor circulation, or other issues) can cause the tissues and tendons to stiffen and scar tissue to form, resulting in “frozen shoulder.” This condition develops slowly, and ultimately restricts movement and range of motion due to pain and difficulty of movement.

    To strengthen the scapulae and recover full range of motion, restoring upward rotation is crucial. This is the motion of lifting anything up overhead, whether it’s putting something away on a high kitchen shelf or lifting a 25-pound toddler. This motion requires the acromion – the bony prominence on the shoulder blade – to slide smoothly past the rotator cuff.

    If the shoulder is misaligned or otherwise dysfunctional, the rotator cuff tendons can become inflamed as they move past the acromion, resulting in a painful condition called impingement syndrome (also known as swimmer’s shoulder or thrower’s shoulder). The syndrome can also cause weakness and stiffness of the joint.

  • The acromioclavicular (AC) joint is less familiar than the ball-and-socket arrangement at the top of the humerus bone (we’ll look at that in a moment), but it’s no less important to the integrity and mobility of the shoulder. The AC joint is between the scapula and the clavicle, and allows you to raise your arm up over your head. It’s a gliding synovial joint, which means it acts as a pivot or strut to increase the rotation of your arm.

    The AC joint is the one that is injured in a “separated shoulder,” which is different from a dislocated shoulder. The latter involves the joint we’re going to look at next.

  • The glenohumeral joint consists of the head of the humerus, which forms the ball, and the glenoid cavity (socket) on the scapula. In shoulder dislocation, the head of the humerus is forced out of the glenoid cavity, usually due to forceful impact, causing extreme pain and loss of mobility.

    The relatively loose capsule of the glenohumeral joint is responsible for the shoulder’s remarkable range of motion, but it also contributes to the tendency to dislocate. In fact, the shoulder is considered the most mobile of all the joints in the body; but this mobility can become the shoulder’s weakness if it’s not strengthened through exercise.

These are the three main points of the shoulder, stabilized by many tendons and muscles that need to be strengthened, stretched, and used, as in today’s exercise.

How:

  1. Stand beside a wall. It does not matter if the wall is to your right or left, but for the sake of clarity, we’ll start with the right side.
  2. Stand about 12 inches away from the wall to start; the farther from the wall you are, the easier the move, so if this is too difficult, step out a bit more and try again.
  3. Keeping your elbow straight, raise your right arm out in front of you with your palm facing to the left. You’re not touching the wall at this point.
  4. Continue raising your arm until it is pointing straight up. Do not bend your back; keep your spine straight and still.
  5. Begin bringing your arm back, without touching the wall, slowly rotating your arm so that your palm is lightly against the wall. Continue bringing your arm down until your hand is approximately at hip level.
  6. Pause, and then bring your arm back along the same arc you just traced along the wall. Rotate your hand back again so your palm is facing left when you bring your arm back so it’s straight out in front of you again.
  7. Repeat this motion eight to 10 times, or as many times as you comfortably can, and then switch sides and repeat with the other arm.

To adjust the difficulty level, simply move closer to the wall for a greater challenge, or step farther away to make it easier. And remember, keep your back as straight as possible without being stiff; don’t arch your back in either direction or bend to the side.

If this or any other motion in this exercise causes shoulder pain or any discomfort, don’t continue and check with your health practitioner.

If you’d like to follow up with another shoulder exercise, try The Shoulder Positioner.

Mobility + Stability = Healthy Joints

Both mobility and stability are important for joint health, bone strength, and relief from pain. Joints need to be functional in order to build bone with exercises that strengthen your muscles, per Wolff’s Law.

Savers are familiar with its proven premise, which states that bone responds to stimulation and stress by producing more bone, thus increasing density and strength. Obviously, a joint needs to be functional for muscle stress to be applied.

The Densercise™ Epidensity Training System is based on this principle, and many of the 50+ “Densercises” focus on improving motion of articulated joints, including the ankles and shoulders. The exercises in Densercise™ combine strength and stability with mobility and range of motion, a vital balance for building bone through exercise.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

I hope you enjoy this weekend’s challenge and, as always, feel free to leave a comment below.

Have a great weekend!

References:

1 Paine, Russ, PT and Voight, Michael L., PT, DHSc, OCS, SCS, ATC, FAPTA. “The Role Of The Scapula.” IJSPT. 8. 5. (2013): 617-629. Web. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3811730/
2 Thigpen, Charles A., et al. “Head and shoulder posture affect scapular mechanics and muscle activity in overhead tasks.” Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology. (2010). PDF. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/465f/2a362462ba8d396d4de3b56254937994f686.pdf

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Cashews: The Bone-Building “Non-Nut” That Contains 5 Foundation Supplements (Plus A Delicious, Easy Recipe) https://saveourbones.com/cashews-the-bone-building-non-nut-that-contains-5-foundation-supplements-plus-a-delicious-easy-recipe/ https://saveourbones.com/cashews-the-bone-building-non-nut-that-contains-5-foundation-supplements-plus-a-delicious-easy-recipe/#comments Thu, 08 Jun 2017 07:18:54 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24364 Click to continue →]]>

Cashews are unique among nuts. They bear characteristics of both tree nuts and legumes, but they are not, botanically, either of these. They hang from fruits that look like pears but are actually a kind of apple, and the cashew is found outside the fruit, not in it! In fact, you’ll never see a cashew “in the shell,” and today you’ll find out why.

In the kitchen, cashews can be used like nuts – ground into meal, chopped, roasted, made into butter, etc. – or soaked in water to make a dairy substitute. Cashews are a most amazing and versatile “non-nut”!

So what are cashews, exactly, and what is the best way to use them? Most importantly, how do they fit into a bone-healthy diet?

Today we’re going to look at the cashew, including its place in building bones through nutrition. Also, I share a deliciously simple no-bake cashew recipe that makes an excellent snack, dessert, or party food. So let’s take a closer look at this versatile, bone-building nut, which isn’t really a nut at all, as you’ll soon learn.

Cashews Defined

Have you ever wondered how cashews got their name? It’s a funny-sounding word in English, but the Portuguese word for these nuts, caju, makes sense – it’s derived from a word that means “nut that produces itself.” The genus name, Anacardium, is no less interesting: ana means “backward” or “again,” and cardium means “heart.”

Yet the kidney-shaped cashew is the first part of the fruit to develop on the tree, and then the pedicel (flower stalk) grows into the cashew apple. Clearly, the topsy-turvy nature of the cashew caught people’s attention early on.

Botanical classification helps clarify things a bit. Cashews are actually drupes, which refers to a fruit with a fleshy exterior surrounding a pit or central seed. Apricots, peaches, and plums are drupes, as are pecans, almonds, and walnuts. So humans eat the flesh of some drupes and the pits of others. In the case of cashews, the seed or pit is consumed, although the sweet flesh of the cashew apple is enjoyed locally in areas where the tree grows, such as Brazil and India. But the delicate skin of the fruit prohibits export, so the cashew “nut” is the part most familiar to Westerners.

So why isn’t the cashew a nut or a legume? True nuts are composed of a hard shell surrounding a central seed, such as hazelnuts, chestnuts, and acorns. While cashew meats are enclosed in a hard shell, they are technically part of the cashew apple itself; they are not an independent fruit like acorns, for example.

A note about the cashew’s shell – it is different from the shells of nuts also in that it contains a toxic resin known as cashew balm, which must be removed from the cashews before they are fit to eat. The cashew balm is then used to make products like furniture varnish. This is why you will never see cashews in the shell for sale in the grocery store.

Cashews are not a legume, either. Legumes are dry fruits inside pods that split in two, like peanuts and beans. To make things a bit more confusing, cashews do split in half, but they lack other botanical characteristics of a legume.

So now that we’re clear on just what a cashew is, you might be wondering why – or if – it can help you build your bones.

Cashews And Bone Health

If you have the Save Our Bones Program, then you know that cashews are acidifying. But you’ll also be aware that cashews are a Foundation Food for their exemplary content of bone-nourishing nutrients and healthy fatty acids.

Cashews are a prime example of the role acidifying foods play in bone-smart nutrition – it’s easy to presume that a food is to be avoided entirely if it’s acidifying, but that’s not the case. There’s no need to eschew the cashew!

The pH-balanced diet described in the Save Our Bones Program is about balancing your intake of alkalizing and acidifying foods, not eating only alkalizing foods. So as you plan your meals, snacks, and desserts around the 80% alkalizing and 20% acidifying foods, make sure to include plenty of nutritious foods in that 20%, because there are many such foods that contain nutrients your bones need. Cashews are a good example.

Cashews’ Nutritional Profile

The cashew contains many valuable nutrients, but we’re going to focus primarily on the ones that support bone health.

Copper*

Chances are slim that your doctor ever talked to you about getting enough copper in your diet! Nonetheless, this trace mineral is vital for bone rejuvenation. It’s found in all body tissues, and while you don’t need large quantities of it, without adequate copper, many body systems simply can’t function properly.

Cashews are extremely rich in copper – 100 grams (about ½ cup) contain 2.2mg of copper, which is well over 100% of the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance).

Zinc*

This trace mineral is best known for its role in boosting immunity and fending off colds and flu – hence the zinc lozenges that show up in stores when cold and flu season starts. But zinc plays a myriad of roles in building bone, including fracture repair by enhancing the production of bone-building cells (osteoblasts). Research shows that increased zinc ingestion via zinc-rich foods actually increases bone mass.

To read more about this study and the role of zinc in building bone, please read this post on zinc:

One hundred grams of cashews contain almost 6mg of zinc.

Boron*

Your bones require boron to absorb calcium, and a deficiency in boron can result in a corresponding decrease in calcium and magnesium as well. Boron also influences estrogen, one of the key hormones in maintaining and recovering youthful bone density.
Cashews offer 1.15mg of boron per 100 grams.

Manganese*

With .66mg (33% daily value, or DV) of manganese per 100 grams, cashews are a fairly good source of this trace mineral, which is necessary for the synthesis of connective tissue in cartilage and bone. Manganese is indispensable for your bones, forming part of a trio of minerals (copper, zinc, and manganese) that compose Superoxide Dismutase, a crucial antioxidant your bones must have. This antioxidant is particularly effective at quelling bone-damaging inflammation via dismutation (a reaction between two molecules where one is reduced and the other oxidized) – hence its name.

Cashews contain all three of these key minerals.

Magnesium*

Two-thirds of a cup of cashews (100 grams) offer nearly 117mg of magnesium (about 30% of daily value), making this “nut” an valuabble means of combating magnesium deficiency, a widespread problem. Magnesium works synergistically with calcium, so without adequate amounts of magnesium, your bones simply can’t absorb the calcium they need.

Healthful Fats

Cashews are actually lower in fat overall than other nuts, and more than 80% of their fat content is unsaturated fatty acids. Over 65% of these fatty acids are monounsaturated fats, known for their role in preserving and promoting heart health and lowering cholesterol.

Cashews are delicious to eat out of hand; they have a sweet, meaty flavor and soft texture. But they are also scrumptious in recipes like this one, which includes other bone-building ingredients as well as cashews.

*Foundation Supplement

Chocolate Cashew-Apricot Clusters

Acidifying
Makes 20 clusters

Because these delicious, nutritious, no-bake treats are mostly acidifying, enjoy them with a glass of plain almond milk or with some fresh fruit. They can also replace granola, when crumbled and sprinkled over alkalizing, plain yogurt.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dark chocolate chips
  • 1 ¼ cup coconut milk or almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups raw cashews, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups dried, unsweetened apricots, chopped

Directions:

  1. In a medium-sized, heavy saucepan or double boiler, combine the chocolate chips, milk, and honey or maple syrup. Melt over low heat, stirring occasionally.
  2. When chocolate mixture is thoroughly melted, stir in the cashews and dried apricots.
  3. Drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto cookie sheets lined with waxed paper; refrigerate for at least 3 hours before consuming. Store in the refrigerator.

Acidifying Foods Can Be Bone-Healthy Too!

I hope today’s post helped clarify not only the definition of cashews, but also the very important role that healthful, acidifying foods can and do play in bone health. Some Savers find it surprising that Bone Appétit, the companion cookbook to the Save Our Bones Program, contains recipes that are acidifying and should be consumed with other alkalizing foods; but that’s the beauty of an 80/20 pH-balanced diet: balance, not prohibition, is the key element for success.

This “balance factor” also makes eating your way to healthy bones a fun, creative, and enjoyable experience. Bone Appétit enlivens the whole process, with more than 200 recipes for bone-smart breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and even desserts. Plus, to simplify your bone-building endeavors, it also includes clear guidelines, explanations, and a 30 Day Meal Planner.

Eat Your Way to Stronger Bones!

Discover over 200 mouth-watering bone healthy recipes for breakfast, smoothies, appetizers, soups, salads, vegetarian dishes, fish, and plenty of main courses and even desserts!

Learn More Now →

Do you have a favorite way to enjoy cashews? If you’d like to share your recipe or idea with the community, or if you have any other comments about today’s post topic, please feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

Till next time,

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6 Reasons Why Curiosity Is Important For Your Bone Health https://saveourbones.com/6-reasons-why-curiosity-is-important-for-your-bone-health/ https://saveourbones.com/6-reasons-why-curiosity-is-important-for-your-bone-health/#comments Mon, 05 Jun 2017 07:33:15 +0000 https://saveourbones.com/?p=24333 Click to continue →]]>

Many great thinkers have argued that curiosity is the bedrock of all of human civilization. Our amazing natural tendency to ask why and how, and to seek those answers has lead to wonders both large and small. From the engineering feats of skyscrapers and space travel, to the technological marvels of the internet and artificial intelligence, science and everything it offers us is fueled by curiosity.

The fields of biology, nutrition and medicine are no exceptions. The human body is a wildly complex system, and one that scientists are still figuring out, even after centuries of inquiry. We learn more every day, and research to advance that learning is going on as I write these words.

It’s curiosity that lead you here! Your desire to learn more, to understand more deeply, and to engage with the often complicated field of physiology, has lead you to the road less traveled, yet much more rewarding. If you’ve ever fretted about whether you should ask less questions or ought to blindly accept what the Medical Establishment or popular opinion are preaching, then today’s post is here to reassure you that you’re on the right track.

Curiosity is actually making you healthier, so let’s have a look at how.

1. Curious People Handle Complexity Better

A curious mind helps you handle complexity. Being able to comprehend and navigate complex information, problems and situations is a skill that serves you well in multiple parts of your life: in your work, in your relationships, and in managing your health.

The first way it does this is by making you more tolerant of ambiguity. Sometimes the answer isn’t A or B. Sometimes the answer is a little of both… and a little of neither. For a person lacking in curiosity this complexity might cause them to give up on understanding the problem. A curious mind is able to hold ambiguity and nuance while continuing to advance toward new understandings.

Complex systems like the human body contain nuanced elements like this that can frustrate a less curious mind. That frustration can lead to oversimplified and unexamined solutions: like believing that a drug can solve all your problems.

By contrast a curious mind is able, and sometimes even excited, to consider the reality of our biology: we are a many-layered set of interconnected systems influenced by a large number variables. A willingness to dive into and accept the multiplicity, the nuance, and the ambiguity involved, helps curious minds to understand more about themselves and to make smarter choices as a result.

The second way that curiosity helps you navigate complexity is through a high level of intellectual investment: curious people invest in learning and knowing.1 The accumulation of knowledge that results helps to understand complex situations and how they work.

The relationship to health here is clear: when you’re dealing with something as multifaceted and expansive as the workings of the human body, knowing more (and always wanting to know more!) helps you to make sense of it all… and make the best decisions as a result.

This super-power that curiosity gives us, the ability to conquer complexity, translates and relates to many other benefits.

2. Curiosity Helps Us Survive

While this may often prove true on an individual level, curiosity also helped human beings to survive the ages and become, well, human beings!

We are curious because the early humans who survived long enough to reproduce were curious. Their brains did something a little different when presented with something new to figure out or understand: it released a spurt of feel-good neurochemicals like dopamine. That positive reinforcement lead to a pattern of curiosity and innovation, tackling problems and creating solutions.

It’s not a stretch to suggest that curiosity is a trait that helped our ancestors live longer and support more offspring than less curious individuals. That’s the basic function of evolution: the traits that help keep the species stay alive and thrive get passed along.

3. Curiosity Increases The Odds Of Success

One study on predictors of academic performance found that intellectual curiosity is a core determinant of academic achievement.2 A ‘hungry mind’ is an essential trait for success; just as much as ability and effort. It leads to more enjoyment of participation and greater learning, engagement and performance both in academic and professional settings.

This penchant for success makes sense in other contexts as well. Curious people are naturally predisposed to look deeper and seek better answers to difficult questions. When you’re at work, that trait helps you accomplish your goals with ingenuity and depth. Research has shown the benefits of curiosity to job performance.3

When you’re putting your mind to a different task, like figuring out how best to address a health problem, the same principle applies. A curious mind will dig into complexity, accrue knowledge, and navigate nuanced solutions. That sounds like Savers to me!

4. Curiosity Leads To More Happiness

Studies have shown that people with a healthy sense of curiosity exhibit lower anxiety, more positive emotions, higher levels of satisfaction with life and generally greater psychological well-being.4

Perhaps this has to do with the way in which curiosity stimulates the positive feedback centers of the brain. Or maybe curiosity leads to figuring out how to achieve those results. Either way, staying positive keeps you well, as high levels of anxiety are detrimental to your health, including your bone health.

The acidifying stress hormone cortisol leads directly to the destruction of bone: it robs bone cells of potassium and interferes with the intestinal absorption of calcium. Studies have shown the negative relationship between between cortisol and bone health.5 If curiosity helps keep anxiety and negativity at bay, then it’s helping your bones stay strong!

5. Curiosity Builds Empathy

Individuals who are curious enough to learn about the lives and inner worlds of people different from themselves have the opportunity to build a broad base of empathy. That empathy allows for compassionate communication, the development of trust, and cross-cultural problem solving that has access to a wide variety ideas and perspectives.

The empathy that comes from learning about others also creates the opportunity to learn from others. The sharing of information within a community of people who have different experiences is a powerful resource for everyone involved. If you want a great example of this sort of community, just check out the comment section below our articles here. The Saver community has provided a wealth of support and shared experience on their journey to reverse osteoporosis and osteopenia.

6. Curiosity Improves Healthcare

Research confirms that when a doctor is curious about their patient’s point of view, both parties experience less frustration and make better decisions.6 Cultivate curious medical professionals in your life. You’re curious, and hungry to understand your health and all of the options available to improve it. You deserve a doctor who is no less curious and excited about the potential for positive change.

There are great doctors out there, and their level of curiosity is one way to identify them. If a doctor doesn’t show much interested in the way you’d like to improve your health… you should consider finding a new doctor.

And beyond your relationship with a medical practitioner, the entire field benefits from curiosity. In fact, the scientific research cited in this article wouldn’t exist without scientists who were curious about curiosity! Fortunately for us, there are a great many scientists who have used this mental motivator to conduct rigorous experiments that illuminate the workings of our bodies.

It’s that sort of research that provides information about the relationships between nutrition, lifestyle and bone health that are the basis for the Save Institute’s holistic and natural approach to building stronger bones. And while you could argue that it’s curiosity about the interplay of specific enzymes and hormones in the bone creation process that lead to the creation of risky and ineffective osteoporosis drugs, it’s also curiosity that fueled the research that has proven those drugs to be dangerous and unhelpful.

Curiosity is what lead me to write the Save Our Bones Program, and the same drive leads Savers to learn from it and apply that knowledge to build stronger bones and live fuller lives. Your curiosity is evidenced by the fact that you’re reading these words right now! And if you want to continue to deepen your understanding of how your body builds new bone, and learn how to act on that understanding, if you haven’t yet, check out the Save Our Bones Program today.

Stop Worrying About Your Bone Loss

Join thousands of Savers from around the world who have reversed or prevented their bone loss naturally and scientifically with the Save Our Bones Program.

Learn More Now →

Keep asking questions. Keep seeking better, healthier, more natural solutions. Stay curious!

References:

1 von Stumm S1, Ackerman PL. “Investment and intellect: a review and meta-analysis.” Psychol Bull. 2013 Jul;139(4):841-69. Web: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23231531?report=abstract
2 Sophie von Stumm, Benedikt Hell and Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic. “The Hungry Mind : Intellectual Curiosity Is the Third Pillar of Academic Performance “ Perspectives on Psychological Science. 2011 6: 574. Web: http://www.drtomascp.com/uploads/HungryMind_PPS_2011.pdf
3 Reio, T. G. and Wiswell, A., “Field investigation of the relationship among adult curiosity, workplace learning, and job performance.” Human Resource Development Quarterly, 11: 5–30. 2000. Web: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/1532-1096(200021)11:1%3C5::AID-HRDQ2%3E3.0.CO;2-A/abstract
4 Todd B. Kashdan , Paul Rose & Frank D. Fincham. “Curiosity and Exploration: Facilitating Positive Subjective Experiences and Personal Growth Opportunities.” Journal of Personality Assessment. Volume 82, 2004 – Issue 3, Pgs: 291-305. 10 Jun 2010. Web: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/citedby/10.1207/s15327752jpa8203_05
5 Adinoff, Allen D., M.D. and Hollister, Roger J., M.D. “Steroid-Induced Fractures and Bone Loss in Patients with Asthma.” New England Journal of Medicine. August 4, 1983. 309:265-268. Web. http://www.nejm.org/doi/pdf/10.1056/NEJM198308043090502
6 Sarah Yang. “Researcher offers steps to help doctors move past anger with patients.” U.C. Berkeley News. 08 May 2007. Web: http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2007/05/08_doctorpatient.shtml

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