'Vivian Answers Day' #1 - Save Our Bones

Question & Answer #1

What do you think of Reclast? My Dr has ordered this for me to help strengthen my bones.

-Mabel M.

Dear Mabel,

Reclast (zoldedronic acid), also known as Aclasta outside of the US, is an intravenous bisphosphonate. So the same applies to Reclast (including their nasty side effects) as to any other bisphosphonate drug, except that the IV provides a 6 month dose. In fact, the large IV dose can cause severe flu-like symptoms right after it's administered, including aches and pains. So if you don’t react well to the drug, you are basically stuck with it.

But the bigger question is why tamper with bone metabolism and take a chance with the potentially nasty and even life-changing side effects? Especially if there is a natural and drug-free way to increase bone density such as the Osteoporosis Reversal Program.

Best regards,

Question & Answer #2

I have multiple myeloma and am on lose dose revlimid and decadron. Once a month I get and infusion of Zometa. I’m told it is the best thing to keep tumors from attaching to my bones.

What do you think?

-John N.

Dear John,

Zometa is the same drug as Reclast, but given in a different dose and approved for different conditions, which include myeloma. I recommend that you follow your oncologist’s advice.

Wishing you all the best,

Question & Answer #3

I have a knee replacement – total – and it works perfectly…only, I am allowed NO pounding motions or jumping and landing…I DO a lot of walking, but those heel-pounding exercises for the hip are not a possibility for folks with knee replacements…what do you suggest as another exercise for hip joints that does not require the pounding of heels?

-Carol H.

Dear Carol,

An exercise that you can do to increase hip bone density is called the ‘Chair Squat’. You only need a regular chair to do it:

Stand in front of chair with feet hip-width apart. With core tightened and back straight, squat toward the chair, raising your arms in front of you as you lower yourself into the chair. Without using your hands, raise yourself slowly out of the chair using the hamstrings and glutei until you are in original position.

Best regards,

Question & Answer #4

I’m 54 and diagnosed with severe osteopenia in the spine and hips – I exercise regularly, drink alchol moderately, don’t smoke and eat a healthy calcium enriched diet – my GP is insisting I take a low dose of HRT to prevent spinal fractures in the future same as my mother and grandmother before me. I’ve tried Protelos (strontium ranelate) and after reading your book came off it – I want to give myself every possible chance of a healthy skeleton without the use of drugs is HRT my best chance though? I have a vibrating plate machine (Galileo 900) am I likely to cause myself more harm than good as suggested by my doctor?

Many thanks.

-Jacquie W.

Dear Jacquie,

First of all, the word ‘severe’ next to the word ‘osteopenia’ sounds like an error. Remember that osteopenia is not a disease (even by mainstream medicine standards). And since you have the Osteoporosis Reversal Program, you must know that there is no need to supplement with hormones.

The vibrating plate is still shrouded with controversy. For example, people with spinal injuries, such as slipped discs or pinched nerves may increase damage by using the machine. Perhaps that is what your doctor is referring to. I recommend you discuss with your doctor why he thinks that the vibrating plate is not for you. I can’t determine that from a distance.

Warm regards,

Question & Answer #5

I am following the program to increase my bone density. How long does it take for bones to be rebuilt or at least when should I have another density test to check out the results?

-Lorene C.

Dear Lorene,

I understand that you must be eager to know if your bones are improving, but it is impossible to predict the timing of the density increase. There are many factors that may affect the time it takes for your bones to rebuild themselves. Anything from stress levels to previous drug therapies you might have taken could affect the timing.

But you can rest assured that you are doing what’s natural to your bones and to your body. Don’t forget that the goal is to prevent fractures… so by following the Osteoporosis Reversal Program, you are empowering your natural bone metabolism. If you wish to get another bone density test, I recommend you wait at least one year from the time you got started on the program.

I’m sure you’ll have excellent bone density results.

To your health,

Question & Answer #6

I am 67yrs. In 2008 I was diagnosed with Osteoporosis after a bone density scan determined an AP Spine T-score of -2.5 and Left Femur -2.1. After 1 year of hard work by attending a gym 3 days per week, taking extra calcium and being very conscious about a healthy diet, a further bone density scan today has shown no further deterioration. I believe my efforts have paid off.
My doctor is keen for me to take Protos as I have I also have stomach problems (acid reflux,
hiatus hernia and stomach ulcer) also and was recently on Nexium for two months. My doctor would like me to continue on Nexium and commence taking Protos. I am not happy about this as I’m very much against taking this medication and will only agree to take Nexium when it is absolutely necessary.
I have always been opposed to prescribed medication and always look for a natural therapy solution. Do you think I should start taking Protos? I would much appreciate your opinion on this matter.

I do not want to do this.

-Marion E.

Dear Marion,

Congratulations on your bone health efforts and results. In order to make a decision about taking Protos (or not taking it), keep in mind that to most doctors “curing” equals “prescribing”. This is important because you do have more options to increase your bone density than taking Protos.

Additionally, and this topic is covered in the Osteoporosis Reversal Program, taking Proton Pump Inhibitor drugs like Nexium hinders the absorption of important nutrients and bone healthy minerals such as calcium. That’s because stomach acid is absolutely essential for proper digestion, and drugs like Nexium reduce its production. Here’s an idea for you: try the Osteoporosis Reversal Program and don’t risk ANY undesirable side-effects.

Always trust your instincts!

Question & Answer #7

With a hernia I am unable to take Fosamax, Reclast, etc., and am being pushed into taking a new drug (“Prolia” by needle) every six months … Prolia is VERY new in Canada, but I would be interested in hearing any feedback on that drug from anyone who has tried it outside of Canada … am still undecided which route to go, as I lead a very healthy lifestyle, eat well, exercise 3 times week, and take vitamin supplements. Am 55 with Osteopenia.

-Shirley L.

Dear Shirley,

Prolia is not indicated for osteopenia, which is a ‘precursor’ to osteoporosis. It sounds as though you may not have yet read my blog post titled Prolia (denosumab): My Review. I strongly recommend you take the time to read it.

In a nutshell, Prolia is a new type of injectable drug designed to treat and prevent postmenopausal osteoporosis for patients considered to be at high risk of fractures. Like bisphosphonates, but using a different pathway affecting the immune system, Prolia de-activates osteoclasts, which in turn stops bone remodeling. Common sense dictates that when bones don’t renew themselves (as they should), they can actually be more prone to fracture.

Now more than ever, knowledge IS power.

Question & Answer #8

Age is 87. Started on Miacalcin & last 8 years or more on Actonel. Nothing works as last score was -3.5. Now they want me on Forteo shots & I refused.At my age don’t think anything will work. Do you?

-Robert W.

Dear Robert,

Quite the contrary! I think that the Osteoporosis Reversal Program can help regardless of age.

You see, drugs work AGAINST the body. They interrupt and alter normal and necessary biological processes. On the other hand, the Osteoporosis Reversal Program works WITH the body and actually helps insure that all the necessary body processes take place. I can’t emphasize this enough.

Believe in your bones and believe in yourself.

Question & Answer #9

I notice in your comments on Milk you mention two products that you use. These products to the best of my knowledge are not available in Australia. If I were to purchase your book does it only contain products that are only available in the USA? If so how valuable would it be to me.


Dear Barry,

The Osteoporosis Reversal Program does not require using products that only exist in the USA. It is a nutritional, lifestyle, and exercise program that gives you vast options and substitutions. For example, I am assuming you ask about almond milk, and perhaps it is not available in Australia. Well, you could make your own, or substitute it with organic soy milk or rice milk.

To a simple life!

Question & Answer #10

I am also very confused about the ‘milk issue’. Why are we encouraged to drink milk and consume dairy products from an early age if it is supposedly not good for us? Have generations of people been wrong?


Dear Trudy,

I am sorry to say that indeed, generations of people have been wrong. But then again, circumstances have changed. (Check out my very detailed blog post on milk titled ‘Debunking the Milk Myth: Why Milk is Bad for You and for Your Bones’).

In the not so distant past milk was neither pasteurized nor homogenized. Cows were grazing in the open fields and were not fed an unnatural diet of genetically modified corn. They were not given antibiotics or synthetic growth hormones. Additionally, people were not eating processed foods loaded with bone harming chemicals. So even if someone drank milk back then, it would not have the same terrible consequences as it does now.

Be well and stay curious,

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Comments on this article are closed.

  1. Karen

    Hi Vivian,
    Thanks for the forum. I’ve been following your program for a few months now and am really hoping for good results! I too, have Celiac disease and am wondering about the correlation between that and my osteoporosis. I am gluten free, will my intestines absorb calcium? My Dr. gave me a prescription for Calcitonin, to bypass the intestines. Is there anything extra that you could recommend I should do in addition to following your basic program already? From your book you don’t recommend the Calcitonin, but I’m wondering in my case would it help?

    Thank you, Karen.

  2. Barbara Schmidlin

    Vivian: Wrote to you and lost the first, due to the fact that Icouldn’t see the bottom area. I took Forteo and since have had many problems. Pain in the right leg bones in my buttock area. I have severe pain in my back rib cage next to the right shoulder blade. I have 7 fractured vertebrae. The pain moves around to the front to the left side also below the ribs
    Had an Xray – they saw no fracture in the spine. Today, Nov. 13, 2010 has been approx.
    11 days of sever pain. I wonder if I have a Fracture in the rib cage on the right side between shoulder blades and alone with that perhaps Fibromyalgia. Neither one has been present before. When I stopped Forteo after 18 months my Doctors insisted that I get on Reclasp. I did not want to. I prefer a wholistic approach. I have received your book the other day. Any other suggestions as to what to do about the servere pain when I get up out of a chair or turn the wrong way or lie down? If it is a broken rib (on the right side between the shoulder blades) what can I do?
    Open to any suggestions you can offer. Thank you. Barbara S

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Barbara,

      It’s important to consult a medical professional about unexplained pain. If it’s a fracture, your doctor or naturopath can advise you. There’s no way I can diagnose you remotely.

      Also, please be aware that I’m not a doctor. 🙂

  3. Marie

    Dear Vivian,

    I want to switch my calcium source to organic and algae as you have recommended. I am currently taking calcium from inorganic.

    However, I have hyperthyroid and have to avoid algae which is a rich source of iodine for thyroid hormone.

    Is there any other organic and a good source of calcium instead of organic or from algae?

    I await for your answer.

    Please also reply to my email so that I won’t miss your post for the answer.

    Thanks so much,


  4. marie

    This is a comment to Barry. I live in Australia as well and you can find the Almond milk here. It is at the Coles in the health food section of the store. It is not with the long life milk or the chilled milk. It comes in organic or non.

  5. Juliet

    I noticed on another website that someone recomended NOT drinking “fizzy water”. I drink soda water regularly (carbonated water or club soda). Is this acidic? Should I only drink tap water? I hope someone can help. Thanks, Juliet

  6. Carla Gless

    My question is about vitamins. Do you prefer one brand over another? Who makes the best with the highest quality available? I hope you can state your preference on vitamins. I have heard different things about vitamins and would like to know if I am buying good ones. Thank you.

  7. Ruth Ann Rollins

    I love your information and want to conform to new healthy habits that’s been described in your program. I find that I really need to belong to an active group in my area that is doing the same program. I so need the encourgement to stay on target. If you can help me with this, THANK YOU! I live in the Lansing, MI area

  8. Sherry Gates

    Because organic milk should not have the hormones and antibiotics as regular milk does, do you still feel that it is harmful?

  9. Estelle Kushner

    Dear Vivian,
    You stated that you wrote an article on Prolia. How can I read it? My doctor really wants me to take it.I am also taking stontium citrate. Am I hurting myself? Also what about calcium and heart attacks. Thanks for any info you can give me.

  10. Sharon

    The questions were very interesting and I would not have thought of at least half of them. the answeres bring to light many of the things I had not thought of. thank you


  11. Joan

    Enjoyed reading all the comments but a bit shocked as i am taking Actonal a year and a half now don’t have any problem with it at the moment and hoping my next scan will be better interested in your book how do i get it and how much dose it caused.

  12. Roma

    There are always so many conflicting reports tht it becomes difficult to know what is good and what isn’t. I try to follow your program but sometimes cheat a little. I mostly eat plenty of vegetables and sometimes some fish and I think this is a pretty sensible diet. I was taking calcium tabs but having read reports of the ineffectiveness and also the side effects _ sometimes serious, have stopped taking it. It seems that taking supplements can only help to a degree, but the best way to live is to eat natural foods rather than chemically produced tablets. I do hope I am doing the right thing.

  13. Mary Klatt-Saar

    Do you feel it is a waste of time to have bone density test taken?

  14. Catherine Ash

    Should i take STRONIUM RENELATE and or ALGAECAL i beleive these are good for bone building. I am not on any medication. I am following Osteoporosis Reversal Program. My Dr does not agree that it will work. I will not takle drugs.

  15. Joan Kuchta

    I see this book jacket and it confuses me. I have already spoken to one of your CS Reps, Jan about the fact I don’t have this book. In reality I do but the cover is different and it is paperback where the yellow one with the orange flower covering the human body looks like a hardback. She confirmed the yellow one is just for advertising purposes. Well, as much as I like your program and what you are doing for us, this picture of the book jacket I have just previously described is misleading. She assured me I have a current book though. Why don’t you eliminate the yellow one and put a picture of the actual one?


  16. patricia miller

    Dear Vivian, Thank you for the opportunity to share and get information from you and the Save Our Bones Community.
    A year or two ago I spoke with you and bought your book which I was very impressed with and TRIED to follow the diet you perscribed. I must admit I did not stick to it as I’d hoped. Instead I thought my doing the “Be Bone Wise” video put out by the Osteoporosis Foundation, my walking 3 miles a day 5 days a week and the supplements I take 2X daily(including strontium, bone-up, Vit K,C,E D3,Bcomplex,flax and fish oil, coQ10 magnisum,lysine,boron,red yeast rice, folic acid, methyl caps(for homosystein)and bone jointw/chrondriton,glucosamine and Msm, would be enough. I WAS WRONG!
    When we spoke my hip T score was similar to yours,-2.75 & -2.84. Now it is -3.76 & -3.72 (spine still not too bad at -0.55.
    Well, as you can imagine, my Doc wants me to start taking the drug Forteo and Prolia since the bone loss is so great I need to RE-BUILD bone and she thinks the drugs are the only way.
    Since 1997 I have had bone density scans every year or two and for awhile there was an improvement but since 2/08 there has been a drastic loss.
    I know you don’t approve of strontium and would like to hear your comments re that again. Thinking I’m may be taking too many supplements that could possibly be causing me to lose bone (killing my bones with “kindness” or should I say ignorance).
    I have never taken any of the drugs that have been perscribed to me over the years(fosamax etc)thank Goodness! Have read the infor re Forteo and Prolia and the side effects I’m reading about from patients taking it is very scary.
    I AM APPEALING TO YOU FOR YOUR OPINION OF WHAT YOU WOULD RECOMMEND I DO. I expect you will continue to veto taking these new wonder drugs but wondering if by committing myself to following your food diet WOULD THAT ACTUALLY BUILD NEW BONE or is the bone loss too great. As you have heard many time before the Dr. says I will end up in a wheelchair soon.
    Thanking you in advance for your attention to this matter and all of the hard work you are doing.
    Patricia Miller

  17. Cathleen A. Zanghi

    I only drink organic milk because I LOVE MILK. I was born and raise on a small dairy farm in Wisconsin in the 50’s and my dad prided himself in keeping a “pure” herd. I drank unhomoginized, unpasturized milk during my childhood to age 18.

    Is organic milk acceptable?

  18. Vera hartman

    What do you know about EZorb calcium????

  19. Janet Hempton

    Hi Vivian,In your comments you mentioned that it is best to not take any of the OSTEOPOROSIS DRUGS.I almost died from a Boniva shot.It was not fun.I had a terrible reaction,so I would emphasize the danger of those drugs.Go on Vivian’s Osteoporosis Reversal Program.It is a whole lot safer.My best to you.Janet

  20. elizabeth melgerejo

    leo todos los comentaerios que puedo y algunos alpican a mi caso, tengo osteoporosis hace anos, y quisiera saber como encontrarel calcio de algas rojas que mencinonan, segun parece de NUEVA ZELANDA,o si hay en otro lugar por favor necesito la direcion o lugar donde encontrarlo, tengo el libro de Vivian pero no refiere donde.gracias a todos por su ayuda. elizabeth

  21. Georgia

    The questions and answers have made me more aware of the problems from using perscription drugs.We were all born with plants surrounding our land,NOT with chemical drugs clinched in our tiny fists.
    When the questions/answers stopped 4-5 months ago,I stopped reading this newsletter.Now that they are back…SO AM I !!!!!

  22. Audrey Cooper

    According to Wikipedia, there is an association between the intestinal damage done by gluten and the body’s inability to absorb calcium.
    Please discuss the association between, coeliac disease, a gluten-free diet, and calcium absorption.

  23. Ruth

    Living at present in Queensland, Australia. Last week I bought Almond milk from “Go Vita” No doubt it is also available in other Healthfood stores.Just keep looking.

  24. susan capin

    I have read my copy of the Osteoporosis Reversal Program
    and forgot what you said about calcium. I have
    acid reflux and stayed off the medications for one month and I developed burning in my throat. I cannot eat any spicy foods. My doctor wants me to take Prilosec if my symptoms worsen. I really am
    not willing to do this. Vivian, what remedy do you suggest? I have tried Bragg’s apple cider vinegar, taking digestive enzymes. I have never
    taken bisphosphonates for my osteoporosis. I take Vitamin D and other supplements. I did not
    know you had a question week because I have been pre-occupied with my Mother’s health care. She
    is 98. I feel like I can only eat bland foods.
    What do you suggest?

    • Robin

      My son had a really horrible case of acid reflux for years and nothing he tried fixed it. Then he read about green juice fasts (you make juice from greens and a piece of carrot or apple several times a day and drink it) and their alkalizing effect and decided why not-he had nothing to loose. He chugged through, got himself a juicer, bought organic greens, juiced them for a week and noticed all sorts of benefits…such as his acid reflux much improved. He felt so much better he kept it up, started eating alot of salads and improved his PH along the way to the point where he never has bouts of it any more. Youl can read more aobut this idea on the web- and if you are signed up for roku should watch the documentary Forks over Knives which will open your eyes in many ways.I watched it and have given up my favorite food; cheddar cheese for the sake of my bones.

  25. Mary Lou Vitek

    Vivian, I am trying to go on your suggested diet. I am using your book and another book I have just puchased. Are you familiar with this book: BUILDING BONE VITALITY by Amy Joy Lanou, PhD. and Michael Castleman? They agree with everything you say in your book THE BONE HEALTH REVOLUTION except they don’t think we should take calcium supplements, but should get calcium from food. They do talk about taking Thiazide Diuretics instead of other osteoporosis drugs. what do you think of this drug for osteoporosis? Thank you, Mary Lou Vitek

  26. Earlene Lown

    I have purchased all the supplements in your book and have been on some of them for a while after my own research and before purchasing your book. I do not see you recommending DHEA which is also good for bone growth – why not? Also, I read above that someone stopped taking Strontium after reading your book, I only saw that you shouldn’t take it within four hours of taking calcium – is there a problem with taking the Strontium?

  27. Daphne

    Dear Vivian,

    I’m glad I found you on the Internet,your info gives me knowledge and power to share with friends.

    God Bless.

  28. Valerie Williams

    Adding to the interesting comments I would like to say that positive and early diagnosis is the most important factor and taking the right drug-free programme right from the start if it works for you. I never dreamed I would get osteoporosis having taken lots of exercise, never smoked, moderate alcohol, little milk as I’ve always disliked it. I was diagnosed finally 10 years ago at 74. After taking two post menopausal type drugs in turn, which I couldn’t tolerate because of side effects, I have been taking Actonel for the last five years and endured at least five spinal fractures and a large hump. Obviously the drug is not helping in any way. Where do I go from here?

  29. Ann Schell

    Hi Vivian,

    I ordered your free handbook a few weeks ago and still haven’t received it. Can you please send it to me as I am anxious to read it. May even purchase your Osteoporosis Reversal Program.


    Ann Schell

    P.S. God bless and keep up the good work that you do informing us about saving our bones.

    • Jim

      Go to top of this page, right hand side, enter your name, your email address (if you don’t have one, get some one to help with this). Then press the “Get it free” button. You will find it in your email inbox.

  30. Kelsey Fickling

    Thanks Vivian for the 10 answers – I tried several times to ask a question but something was happening and my question didn’t stay on the page. I told you that I was going to have a bone density scan soon – I am booked now for 23rd September – so I’m hoping and praying for a great result – I’ll let you know !! Many blessings – Kelsey Fickling, AUSTRALIA.

  31. Cathie Hodgson

    ALthough my mother had severe osteoporosis, my bones were fine until I reached menopause and experienced major life changing shocks which resulted in depresssion and a nervous breakdown. I believe the stress was responsible for my bone loss. I feel like a Magnesium sponge, as though i cannot get enough of this mineral. I have been taking large amounts of Orthoplex OptiMag which is predominantly magnesium in powdered form. I take 1000 mg of Calcium citrate and double that of magnesium along with all the co-factors Vit B complex, D, zinc, boron etc and I still suffer from cramps. I also take digestive enzymes. This concerns me as it indicates either magnesium or calcium deficiency. Not a good indicator for my bones. Any ideas??
    My diet is good, lots of green leafy veges, vege juices.

    I was diagnosed with severe osteoporosis and had several rib and thoracic fractures and a lumbar compression. I have been riding my bike to work and increased my hip bone density by 5% but dropped in my spine 0.05%- obviously not enough jumping!!! When I ride pushing down on the pedals creates cramps in my toes which will not go away while i am riding. I do not know what to do anymore.


  32. Jilli roberts

    Barry asked about Almond Milk in Australia (answer/question no. 9).
    You can get it in Australia. I buy Pureharvest organic almond milk manufactured in Victoria. It is sold in health stores throughout Australia. I haven’t seen it in the big supermarkets though my local village store in southern Tasmania sells it.

  33. Tracey Duke

    Dear Vivian,

    What do you think of the sugar substitue – Xylitol? Is it more acid or alkaline? And is it any good for us?

    Thanking you,


  34. Muryal Braun

    Thank you for your great answers to the above questions. I hope everyone reads your blog as it is one of the few that tell it like it really is.
    I am very concerned about the fact that doctors are not educated in natural remedies that could save many from the horrible side effects of the dangerous so-called “bone density” drugs.

  35. Shula

    Thank you, Vivian, for continuing with Q & A, I always learn something new from this.


  36. penelope

    I heard/read soy is bad for your health. The dangers of soy. Google it. The controversy of soy.

    • Muriel Hess

      In today’s world, with toxic chemicals routinely added to soil, animal foods and plants meant as food, in addition to genetically modifying food plants with unresearched and unknown consequences, all in the name of profitability, a person interested in Health must seek out organic or biodynamic foods to ensure more purity and greater harmony with our bodies’ natural processes.

    • Dwhite

      I lived on soy milk and tofu for over 20 years and still ended up with osteoporosis when I finished menopause. Now I am totally allergic to soy products, including any beans, lentils or almonds. They all set off severe migraines. This has meant going back to dairy products.

      • Robin

        Try almond milk; it tastes good, is high in plant based calcium,and you can use it just about any place you used to use soymilk. Just don’t get the sugared one-get unsweetened-you can always add stevia or xylitol if you want it a bit sweeter.

  37. Pat H.

    My doctor put me on a daily injection of Forteo for osteoporisis. What do you know about this drug.

  38. Ellen Johnston

    Hi Vivian and all, first of all thanks Vivian for all your hard work keeping us all informed and pressing us to do the same. I too have osteoporosis but I rather treat it like having bad breath, do what I can to correct it and continue on…I did find the powdered red algae natural calcium in New Zealand and am able to order it on line. Tastes a bit like what I would imagine dirty socks might taste like but I can sprinkle it on any food, dissolve it in anything and get on with my day. I am waiting for 1 year for my next bone scan and by following your program I am hopeful. The postal service did examine the parcel when it arrived in the US as one of the bottles safety cap had been broken but I did get it so it must have passed muster. From the aroma they probably wondered why anyone would want this stuff. I have friends that were skeptical because it has not been sanctioned by or for sale in the US but hey, we don’t have everything and if it helps, that is what counts. So those of you that have been looking for the powdered red kelp calcium check out Life Stream in New Zealand. They were great to do business with. Good health to us all…..

  39. Jean van Driel

    Vivian – many thanks for your continued interesting articles. re the question from Barry in Australia – I live in Australia and would inform you that Almond Milk is available in either the long life milk section or the health food section of Coles Supermarkets.
    Hope this helps.

  40. Mary

    I also heard that bisphosphonates are causing hip fractures and thankfully I made the decision years ago not to follow doctor’s continued advice to take them.
    Vivian, thank you for providing us all with guidelines re osteoporosis – it’s helpful to know someone is on our side.

    • Patti

      this article was in our Erie Times News paper today

      Published: September 20. 2010 12:01AM
      Fosamax may boost risk of fractures
      A class of popular osteoporosis drugs may increase the risk of rare, but painful thigh bone fractures.

      A task force convened by the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research to study the link between bisphosphonates and the unusual femur fractures concluded that the drugs’ labeling should be updated to reflect this increased risk, WebMD reported.

      The panel conducted a thorough literature review (which included published and unpublished case studies) and identified 310 such fractures. Ninety-four percent of people who sustained these fractures had taken bisphosphonates for more than five years.

      The findings are published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research. The Food and Drug Administration has been waiting for the report of the task force before making recommendations about bisphosphonates and the unusual fractures.

      The bisphosphonate class of drugs includes Aclasta, Actonel, Aredia, Bondronat, Boniva, Didronel, Fosamax, Fosavance, Reclast, Skelid, and Zometa.

      — from wire reports

  41. Kathie Roberts

    Would just like to mention for those who are worried about not drinking milk —well cows and horses only let their babies drink milk until they are a few monthes old -then they go onto grain or greenery . The animal kingdom only drinks milk until they able to fend for them self so why should we drink it into adulthood. Could be the animals are smarter then us !!!

  42. Joyce

    I really found all questions were very informative and that I am not alone with my problems and doubts about rx drugs. After 3
    non-unions and maybe more I am very scared.

  43. Marilyn

    I would like to obtain a copy of your book in the UK. Is this possible?

  44. Marilyn Y. Bollinger

    I am almost 70 years young, and have many things that are wrong including osteoperosis. I am seeing my neuoligist next week. I was diagnoised with Parkinson Disease 1 yr. ago. The took the 2 pills I was on, slowly away and Said I now have a Parkinsonism, because I always fall. So far I have not broken any bones yet. I started falling backwards about 5-6 years ago, and it has been getting worse. No one would listen to me when I told them I was just losing my balance. My regular GP knows about my falls. I am taking Fosamax along with Janumet for Diabeties and along with about 10 other pills. So there is plenty of “poison” in me! What should I do next?
    Marilyn from Nebraska

  45. esther

    Hi Vivian,
    As always, I looke forward to reading your email. I just picked up my latest dexa results and am very disappointed. My scores are getting worse, not better. Have you ever heard of a product called Ultimate PH Balance made by BioNutritionals (you add it to water to alkalinize the water? Also, what do you think of wearing a weighted vest for the back? I look forward to your answers. Thanks.

    • Robin

      1/4 teaspoon of baking soda stirred into a glass of water (ours are probably 12 oz glasses) will turn that acid glass of water into one that is alkalizing insted.It also helps a bit with acid stomach and isn’t harmful or expensive.

  46. Ms. L.

    Hi! Vivian,

    What If You Think You Might Have Bone Loss, But Have Never Been Diagnosed With Osteoporosis, And Can’t Afford A Bone Density Test, What Can I Do? Anything?

    LOVE, MS L.

  47. Faith

    Here is a comment for question #6 Manuka Honey is good for acid reflux.One of the strongest and most effective kinds of honey is manuka honey (made from the manuka flower). This honey has proven itself the most effective cure for acid reflux. Clover honey and other honeys are effective as well, but to a slightly lesser extent. Researchers have even discovered that manuka honey has been shown to prevent and fight some of the super bugs currently invading hospitals.

    I found this information at naturalnews.com

    Hope this is helpful
    Best of health

    • Ellie

      How much honey do you need to take?

  48. virginia nichols


  49. Sandy Fortini

    Thanks, Vivian, for letting us look at comments of others who are either on the program or have had other problems and are considering your answers.

    My body feels better using your food chart and exercise ideas. Am hoping you will get to my previous questions about the recipes in the back of the book as time goes on.

    It feels good to be off all osteoporsis drugs and working on my own. I feel so much safer and the way you have created the program seems sound and well researched.


    Sandy Fortini

  50. elucia

    How is bone loss related to ciliac disease? Your diet and recovery program seem very similar.

    • elizabeth melgerejo

      quiero alguna recomendacion especifica para los celiacos, mi nieto desde pequenito lo diagnosticaron celiaco, y no tiene el crecimiento ni el desarrollo de los demas ninos de su edad, va a cumplir 15 anos y parece de 8 o 10 anos, espero sus consejos, gracias elizabeth

  51. jean

    interesting help to me, and am eagerly awaiting your reply. Thank you fror all your help.

  52. Norma

    ‘Popular Osteoporosis Drugs Linked to Rare Fracture’ was the headline on CTV News in Vancouver B.C. Tuesday, September 14th that introduced a story about bisphosphonates and their potential danger for some individuals.
    To see the story visit: https://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/Health/20100914/bone-drugs-bisphosphonates-100914/

    • Joan

      Thanks Norma,
      Looks like this is the beginning of a big stink. I haven’t seen this in the US news anywhere. It would probably cause some headaches to the drug companies who are pushing this poison on women.

  53. Skippy

    To Sandra Mishier with the uneven leg lengths. My name is Skippy Mardon and I have had a similar difference in leg length because of a birth defect. You need to become friends with a COOPERATIVE shoe repair man. Have him put several layers of a light foam on the sole and also build up the heel. I have 4 layers on the sole. Have him CUT a V between the heel and the sole. IMPORTANT: Put on the shoe and make a pen mark where you bend your toes. Then have the shoeman make a cut into the sole at least 2 layers deep at the pen mark. Then make another similar cut halfway between the V-cut and the first cut. Sand off the TOE part a bit for easier walking. I have done this with dressy shoes, sneakers, sandals, etc. This summer I did a lot of walking around Germany with no problem. Find me on Facebook. Skippy Mardon

    • Pres

      Good luck. Germany is supposed to be the BEST country for your type of shoe construction. I am retired because of the toxins here in the USA. I used Germany to get the finest materials and tools. I should know as I worked in and around the experts in O&P.

  54. Nicola

    One weight-bearing exercise I do (and believe me I am not an exerciser by nature!)is simply to jump up and down on the spot (gently) imagining using a skipping rope. Keep knees “soft”. I do about 15 jumps – and repeat up to 4 times a day. I am 57 and have osteoporosis.

  55. Joyce Martin

    I have scleroderma (Crest) and was on Actonel for 5 years prior to finding this out, till my esophagus quit working. I cannot take calcium supplements or any supplements as my stomach cannot tolerate much anymore. I have to take prevacid highest dose twice a day just to control reflux or it burns my esophagus. I am allergic to dairy and to many foods including fish. I am discouraged as I can’t take supplements or find a way to take calcium. I am supposed to have Reclast but have refused and two doctors don’t really understand my reluctance even though I have no peristalsis muscles and my stomach doesn’t close. I’m very discouraged. With a lack of sunlight in northern Canada for half a year and an allergy to sheep oil, I can’t get vitamin D either. HELP! I am really counting on the body’s ability to heal itself cause I can’t find a way for the medical profession to help me. I find I am unable to tolerate soy milk, find rice milk too sweet and so now I am going to try oat milk. I also have diabetes (type 2) so have to watch my diet. Any advice you can give me……..and I did write last time……….would be greatly appreciated. I joined the program, bought the book, but I had no phone call from you.

    • michele flynn

      twin labs makes a sublingual D3 K2 supplement. It disolves under the tongue. There are also liquid calcium, magnesium supplements, Natural Vitality has a calcium magnesium powder that disolves in water. I hope you can still drink water.

    • Sandy Fournier

      I have gone from a -3.8 in my hip to a -2.5 and a -2.8 in my spine to a -2.0 with no drugs!! I follow a good diet, take supplements and started a community garden plot 3 yrs ago. It’s working.

      • deb

        I am also interested in knowing what diet and supplements you are taking to get such great results. CONGRATS TO YOU!!


      • Kathy Oehlberg

        I am very interested in know how long it took you to raise your T scores. Also, did you just follow the save our bones program.


  56. Judy Lansing

    Last night on the Canadian CTV news the lead story, which was about 3 minutes long, was about femur fractures linked to Fosamax and Actonel.
    The doctor who published these results has real good research to back up his claim and, in the worst case, is calling for a large warning in the literature/packaging/labeling and, in the best case, removal of these drugs from the market.
    These fractures resist healing and take an extreme amount of time to respond and the health-care costs are huge.

    • Trudy

      You are right, Judy! This program also aired in Germany (late at night!)a few months ago and finally convinced my mum to get off ACTONEL, which I already did after reading Vivian’s book last year.
      How can we trust our health practitioners if they keep ‘feeding’ us poison?
      Cheers, Trudy

    • bj hutter

      I also want to add to the extremely bad side effects of taking Fosamax. I now have a receding gum line and bone loss in my mouth!!!

  57. Bob

    I’m a physically active 67 year old disabled combat veteran who was recently diagnosed with osteoperosis. I’m an above the knee amputee on my right leg. The neck of my left femur showed a T score of -3.4 from the bone density test. My doctor prescribed 70mg of alendronate sodium once a week. I took the first dose, was constipated, and postponed taking the second dose. She reduced my dosage to 35mg, but I haven’t taken it yet. I’m in a quandry about how to proceed next. I came across your website but have not yet purchased your program. There are alot of negative comments about these drugs on the internet, yet there are many people taking these drugs who seem to be doing fine according to my doctor. Who am I to believe about all this? In addition, I occasionally take an antacid called Omeprazole. How should I proceed next to navigate my way through this osteoperosis business? It’s stressful.

  58. susan lipsett

    I am terribly excited by this website.
    When will the next opportunity be presented for asking questions?

    • Monique Dawes

      My question is this: I went to a vegetarian fair and tried their T-zone whole body vibrator. This is suppose to help with a lot of things, mainly the bones and osteoporosis, I am interested in purchasing the machine but wanted to know if anyone knew about the benefits of the machine and if it really works for strentening our bones?


  59. Marianne Schorer

    In response to question #8 where bone drugs have not improved bone density, I have discovered that for people with celiac disease bisphonates may not work and that a gluten free diet is more effective at building bones.

  60. gail smith

    I am 57 and have taken Synthroid since 1992. I have been diagnosed with osteapenia and wanted to know how your plan will work with the Synthroid.

  61. Barbara

    My holistic doctor tells me the key to healthy bones (and even prevention of hormonal cancers) is feeding the thyroid with iodine–an ingredient not found in most diets. (Iodized salt doesn’t help, but in fact works against the thyroid due to the aluminum and dextrose added for easier pouring and taste.) Kelp/seaweed is the best source. Further, the thyroid makes calcitonin, the hormone needed to absorb calcium. Since I had a complete thyroidectomy in 1995, I have no thyroid to feed. At age 58, I’m active and have been a vegetarian for 6 years, yet my bone density gets worse. I switched to Armour from Synthroid a year ago. My two questions are: 1. Do you know if Armour (pig thyroid) has calcitonin in it? 2. Do you know of anyone who has rebuilt bone without a thyroid?

    • Salita

      I have had a complete tyroidectomy too, I would also like to know if I am not building new bone.

  62. Judy Gerber

    This comment is directed to Shirley, who said she had an x-ray and it didn’t show a coccyx fracture: I had unknowingly broken my coccyx bone 2.5 years ago, and then 2 years later I had a fall, which made it so bad, that I have had to sit on a donut, or not sit at all. X-ray showed nothing. Bone scan showed nothing. The only thing that showed it was a CT scan. I have since had physical therapy, and now I can sit normally. Check out https://www.coccyx.org

  63. Sally

    Am I the only young person with osteoporosis??? I am constantly reading on this site about woman in their 70’s and 80’s complaining about their osteoporosis. Don’t get me wrong it is a terrible disease and everyone no matter what age has a right to want to get better, but believe me if thats the only problem I have when I’m that age I would be relieved and thank god I’m still alive. I have osteoporosis and I am only 25. I was diagnosed at 17 years of age, yes that is right 17. They are very weak t score -3.5 in hips and spine so I don’t even know if I will be alive in my 30’s or 40’s. Many I could get some advice from someone besides the ‘you could be dead soon’ that doctors say!!.

    Thank you. From ‘grateful to be alive Sally’.

    • michele flynn

      has your parathyroid gland been checked? You make no mention of your diet, but a diet that is too vegan is linked to osteoporosis.

  64. Lynda Hollington

    Since I can’t seem to be able to ask a question, I’m voicing it here. If milk doesn’t give you calcium, how do children’s bones and teeth grow healthy and strong when the major source of calcium they get is milk?

    • Robyn

      Three quarters of the world population do not drink milk after they are weaned
      and they have good strong teeth. ( think african children)

    • Trudy

      I would like an answer to that question, too!

      • Irma

        Trudy, children get the calcium from foods. There is a completly list at SAVE OUR BONES PROGRAM

      • Irma

        Trudy, children get the calcium from food like broccoli, spinach, almonds, bananas, peas, beans,etc.etc.

  65. Susan

    Very interesting report on the National News Oct. 12th. The drugs perscribed for osteoporosis are directly linked to hip fracture.

  66. Rosemary Pratt

    I am currently buying almond milk in Australia from Aldi , I think $3.99 Au a litre . Not cheap but very tasty!! I have replaced my bed time hot milk and honey night cap with hot almond milk and honey. I do add just a little water to make it go further and reduce the “richness” of this milk.

  67. Iris

    Vivian, I want to thank you for being honest about the PERSONAL phone call when joining your Save our Bones program. To be perfectly frank, I had my doubts 🙁 However, you did call and we did have a good conversation. I did not feel that you were in a hurry. Even though there is so much information in your program if anyone will not become overwhelmed and just begin to add & subtract to line up with the information you give so freely, then overall changes will be made. I have not had another bone scan since I started the program but KNOW I am feeling better and confident in the results of my overall health. Thanks again for the integrity of your work. GOD BLESS!!!

  68. Shirley Landgren

    I’m very interested in your replies to the questions posed by each of the people in todays entrys.

    I took Actonel for two years and it caused me much esopageal and gastric pain. I stopped it several years ago and I still have to occasionaly take Zantac to prevent certain foods from burning my stomach.

    My MD ‘more or less’ insisted that I try Reclast. That was a year and a half ago, and as a result I am still experiencing discomfort in my coccyx. This pain was a new symptom after the Reclast. I had an x-ray and it showed no fractures. It feels as though I was kicked in that area. Needless to say, I intend to stick to the Osteoporosis Reversal Program. Thank you so very much for being there for “us”. (Shirley)

  69. Jean

    Hi, Vivian – I’m happy you decided to answer all the questions submitted. I’ll continue to look for mine. We learn from your answers to each others’ questions; thank you so much for your research and your thoughtful answers. I’m a regular fan of People’s Pharmacy on NPR, and recently heard a program on osteoporosis, with Michael Castleman. Most of his ideas seem to be much the same as yours; are you familiar with PP and/or his book?

  70. Helen Herring

    I would like to know how long it takes after stopping Actonel (having taken it for 5 years and) for the bones to start renewing themselves???? I have started on an Alkaline diet and stopped all dairy food except for a small amount of goats cheese, cut out wheat/corn carbs, reduced consumption of meat etc and upped fruit and veges, I am also using Alkaline water at home and drops when I go out. I also use Almond milk, but buy the powder and make up my own as the made up item is quite expensive. I am also getting advice from a herbalist as to supplements ie vital greens etc. Is there any way to assess the ongoing condition of the bones (bone density just tests strength)????

    • Salita

      What is Alkaline water & the drops you speak of?

      • Judy K

        You can google alkaline water. You can download a free
        ebook from Kangen Alkaline water. You can pick up info
        from the ebook but I didn’t buy a Kangen water puri-
        fier (too expensive and it wastes water). I buy limes
        or lemons and squeeze the juice from one into a quart
        of water and drink that off and on in the morning to
        help keep my system slightly alkaline. Basically fruit
        and veggies are alkaline forming for the body; while
        meats/sweets/grains are acid-forming. keep reading.

  71. Ann

    I truly appreciate the “Ask Vivian” forum. Thank you for taking the time to answer all of our questions.

  72. Elizabeth M. Wright

    SANDRA: Have you thought about changing doctors?
    Seems to me that your present doctor is
    responsible for your leg length, no matter
    what he says… Good Luck… our prayers
    are with you…
    Blessings… Elizabeth W.

  73. Denise

    I have osteoporosis, which I managed to reverse from -3.4 to -2.5, through diet exercise, resistance weights, calcium supplements. 2 yrs ago I became ill, developed malnutition from severe diarrhea, and then developed a breast cancer. My bone loss increased to -2.8 because of lack of exercise. I am in recovery, but recently had a very severe reaction to arimidex, with terrible sciatic pain and joint pains. The Dr wants me to take tamoxifen next since I refuse to take fosamax or boniva. How can I protect my bones and get stronger?

    • Judy K

      I also had breast cancer 3 years ago. along with osteopenia. I’m going to do Thermography instead of Mammograms and stop taking Aromasin (I
      first took 2 years of Tamoxifen, which is kinder to bones). I want
      to do the SAVE OUR BONES program and eat a healthy diet with good
      supplements and that should take care of these problems plus any others I might have on down the road. I am 68. I would like to know what others might think of juicing for veggies, but not fruits.

  74. Ela

    Hi Vivian, Thanks for the book. I can only regret I have started my study on osteoperosis on internet so late and got your name so late. I am 60 and have started my bones scans since my early 40ties, due to family osteo. And how I regret it now! I was told I have osteopenia and hypercalcuria, so I cannot take any calcium supplements nor eat any diary products. And at least the latter was the right D’s decision as now to current knowledge too much calcium is not really helping us at all! But in 2003 however (still in osteopenia stage!) was prescribed Fosamax which after 1 month intake ruined my stomach so I stopped straight away. But as my scans showed my bones were deteriorating in 2007 I was scared enough to start taking Bonviva, which I did for 1 year. I had to stop due to dental surgery. After that 1 year of taking the drug scan showed a little improvement, but now I’m not certain if it was at all right after what I read in your book! I had a year break and I did scan this year which showed further dropping of density, worst in spine: T scores were -2.64 worse are L1-2.94,L2-3.27. Hips are ok. So I was made scared again and restarted Boniva again, but I took twice and THAT’S IT! I won’t touch any of these drugs again. But I have one important question in connection with that. You do mention about it in your book, but please can you answer me more specifically, how long I will have this poison in my system? What to do , what to take extra to detox it? I have been on healthy diet – the one you mention – nearly all my life, but obviously there is something which causes this running the calcium with urine out of my body. I dont know why. I’m still on non diary diet, try to eat as miuch as possible balanced alcali-acid diet and I take Magnesium (400), Vit D3 1500ui and Qo10 . The big issue for me will be exercices, as besided walks I didn’t do much more. And I will start, promise. To summarise my Bonviva intake – I was taking it 2007-2008 for 1 year and now last 2 months I took 2 pills. I’ll be awaiting your reply, although I understand everybody are writing to you like to the only GURU they can relay on. And I am Vivian. Thanks a lot. Best regards
    Ela (originally from Poland, now UK)
    PS I would really welcome from you a good reciepies, your bones program’s eating guide book! For me it would be brilliant to have it, it would make things so mich easier.

    • Andrea

      Hi Ela
      I’m 48 and also have hypercalciuria. I’m on a diuretic which doctor says may help save some bone. I have osteoporosis of the spine but i’m following Vivian’s program and hoping to see good results on my next bone scan.

    • Virginia Hudson

      To Ela- I am no doctor, but since you are 60, it might be a good idea to determine if there is an underlying medical condition causing the bone scan results. I am thinking that hypercalcemia means something is amiss. Note-Last night’s news report here in Kansas City links bisphosphonates to upper femur fractures in 94% of those fractures. Wow!

  75. Irma

    Dear Vivian; since I received your e-mail about calcium can cause heart attack I sttoped taking it; I wonder if organic calcium will do the same harm.
    My Regards,

    • Yvonne White

      From what I’ve read, it seems that INorganic calcium such as calcium carbonate can cause heart disease if too much is taken. Especially if one isn’t taking enough magnesium. The magnesium balances the calcium and keeps it in solution so that it goes where it belongs, mostly in the bones, instead of in the soft tissues such as the heart.

    • Joyce Gasser

      Where do I get organic calcium? I’m taking Garden of Living Living Calcium. Is that organic and absorbing?
      Let me know. Thanks.
      Joyce Gasser

      • Irma

        Joyce, you can get organic Calcium at
        Whole Foods Stores; Organic Markets or
        Pathway Pharmacy’s

      • Joyce Gasser

        I see my question, but where do I find the answer, Where do I get organic calcium?

  76. sandra mishler

    I started taking Instaflex on September 2,2010. I had a total hip replacement in June and the doctor made a mistake. My leg is now one and three forths inches longer. The doctor was angry at me and said because I am only 5 feet tall and they don’t make them my size. He never told me that before the surgury. Now he says I need to replace my other side to equal out my legs. But I have NO pain and I refuse to do another surgury. Is there any way you know of to equal my leg lengths out again. It is very painful to walk so lopsided. I am having pain and muscle spasams. My Internest said its from the length difference. I wish I would of never had the replacement. Any advice would be appericated Vivian. I thank you in advance for any help.

    • Georgia

      My orthopedic did the same to me!!

      Went to a podiatrist and he reccommended “Orthotics”
      [inserts under the heels/arches]and became balanced after removing insole on right shoe.
      Orthotics are the answer to orthopedic mistakes.

    • Kay

      Please check into a special shoe to build up your short side! You will have more problems walking around lopsided.

  77. susan todd

    I thought reclast was supposed to last a whole year but you say just 6 mons. Explain.

    • susan todd

      I thought reclast was supposed to last a whole year but you say just 6 mon. Explain. I need to know ASAP

  78. Marcia H

    After being diagnosed with Osteoporosis I started Fosamax, but quit after reading about Save Our Bones. My doctor put me on a high dose of Vitamin D (50,000 units) once a week to actually be taken with the fosamax as I had a low vitamin D test result. I decided to continue taking the vitamin D only for a little while to see if it helps. Any harm in this? I’ve been taking it for 4 weeks.

  79. Sheila Tavenor

    I am 62 years old and have osteopenia. I stopped taking calcium supplements recently because of the health scare. My question is is soya milk safe for women to take on a daily basis or should I swwitch to almond milk but I find it rather sweet.
    Thank you for all the information.

  80. Alcide Buteau

    My wife is now on Actonel after being on Fosamax for years. I receive your regular e-mails. I wish my wife could read your e-mails and eventually your Program but she would not be able to undestand everything since she is not fluent enough in English. Do you plan to publish your e-mails and your Program in French in the near future ?

  81. Laurita Hollingsworth

    Your program seems to be on target, but finding the supplements in the correct amounts is quite difficult. Is there a specific supplement(s) that you recommend or do you market such supplements?

  82. Teresa Taylor

    Hi Viviene, I already use soya milk and products and have for a long time, in fact my doctor suggested I use these instead of hormone treatments, I do feel much better for using them and fortunately I have never liked milk, so used to have it only rarely.

    I find your answers very helpful, please keep up the good work.

    Best wishes to everyone


  83. Jean Whittle

    Vivian, almond milk is available in Australia, at least it is here in Sydney where I live. It is made by a company called Pureharvest.

    Jean W.

  84. June Glover

    Thank you, Vivian, for your answers all of which are useful and interesting. I did not get around to asking a question but the one I would have asked has been answered it was about whether all these things actually work once you are in your 8os.
    I am 83 and I take up all your suggestions on being drug free and on diet and lifestyle; and I exercise as much as possible so I was happy to read that this does help even in advanced age!
    Thank you for all your good work.
    Very best wishes June

  85. yvonne maxwell

    Hi there
    I have paid for save our bones program and am looking forward to receiving same. I have been diagnosed with advance osteporosis and really worry about a fall. Im an active walker and even though I suffer from dystonia , I try to keep up an upbeat approach to my ills. I am not happy with Fosamax or Bonviva and each month they lie in the cupboard unopened. Many people have advised me stay away from advice on the internet and be wary in case the info is hocus pocus. However, something strong drew me to your notice and I really hope that it will help me build up the bone content again.
    I am a mature student , studying Spanish and would love to correspond in Spanish with someone of my own age 54 in Spanish. Muchisimas gracias y que te vayas bien.
    Saludos de Irlanda

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