The Other I

October 25, 2015

Fab Fibs

Filed under: Growing Old,Just Stuff,Osteoporosis — theotheri @ 5:19 pm
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One of the more surprising – and hopeful – things I’ve noticed about my life is how often the best things and the worst things that happen to me are the same things.

Fifteen years ago, for instance, when test results showed that my bones were losing density at a dangerous rate, my doctor laid out before me the possibility of an agonizing end of life.  Frankly, this was unambiguously Bad News.

The recommendation was that I start immediately on a regime of biphosphonates.  As I’ve laid out in this blog under the topic of osteoporosis, I decided instead to radically alter my life style, changing my eating habits, started taking calcium supplements and engaging in 30 minutes of targeted exercise daily.

The Good News isn’t just that tests over the last 15 years show that I have increased my bone density and am no longer osteoporotic.

The seriously Good News is all of the other benefits that seem to be flowing from what I have called my FAB-FIBS.

I’m not talking about fabulous fibs I tell myself.  It’s my daily routine of Flexibility, Aerobic, and Balance exercises, followed by another series of Flexibility, Impact, Balance and Strength exercises.  The benefits are multiple.  My strength and energy levels have not degenerated as fast as they other-wise would.  I find that I get an amazing psychological boost from the increased serotonin generated by exercise, and just as surprising, I also find solutions to problems while I’m exercising that evade me when I think about them sitting at the computer screen.  Research suggests that I’m also reducing my chances of cardiac arrest and cancer.

Now seriously:  isn’t that really Bad News that is one of the best things that could have happened to me?

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7 Comments »

  1. Indeed. Exercise, physical and mental, works wonders.

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    Comment by Thomas J. Hubschman — October 25, 2015 @ 5:45 pm | Reply

    • I agree, we benefit from both kinds. In fact, a variety of both physical & mental exercise. If I had to do it over again, I would do a lot more sheer memorizing than I did when I was young. I thought memorizing was mostly for people who couldn’t figure answers out and so had to memorize them. Now I’m married to someone who can recite vast tracks of Shakespeare by heart, and whose memory of the work of a whole book of poets fills me with admiration — and I will admit, a splash of envy.

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      Comment by theotheri — October 28, 2015 @ 8:41 pm | Reply

  2. Amazing perseverence! When I leave the gym (go there twice a week) I feel like a kid at the end-of-the-day bell at the school:-) Wishing you sanguine health in the years ahead.

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    Comment by tskraghu — October 26, 2015 @ 1:29 am | Reply

  3. I’ve recently been diagnosed with osteoporosis and found your blog after searching online for ways to reverse osteoporosis naturally. After reading all your posts tagged “osteoporosis” and then doing more research on traditional medical treatment (i.e. pharmaceuticals) vs natural methods, I’m back to ask you about Marilyn Glenville’s book. I had considered the Save Our Bones program, but after reading once more your obvious success I’m more interested in following your plan of action. Would you recommend I begin with Glenville’s book? Any other recommendations you might like to offer me? I feel I’ve got some real hope for treating my bone loss without submitted to drugs. Thanks so much for writing about your journey, and for any advice you might be willing to give me. I deeply appreciate it. All the best ~ Nancy

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    Comment by Nancy — January 12, 2016 @ 4:29 pm | Reply

    • Nancy – thank you for your comment. I appreciate your positive feedback. Over the years, I have become convinced that osteoporosis is a result of life style far more than we or even many in the medical profession appreciate today. But the research continues to strengthen my conviction that osteoporosis is something that we ourselves can often do something about using natural methods. From what I know, these fall into 3 main groups: the appropriate supplements, exercise, and nutrition.

      The essential supplements, of course, are calcium & magnesium, preferably taken in moderate amounts several times a day because we cannot absorb more than 500 mg calcium at a time. I take a 250mg calcium/mag tablet with each meal and one at bedtime. Research about supplements is ongoing, however, and it is worth following up on it occasionally to see if there are any new findings concerning supplements that seem to increase or decrease their effectiveness. Vit K3, for instance, seems to increase absorption, while oxalates (found in peanuts, among other foods) interfere with it.

      You’ve read the post FAB-FIBS which describes my approach to exercise. The encouraging thing about exercising is that increasingly researchers are finding that moderate but regular exercise is more effective than sustained aerobic-type exercises aimed at turning oneself into a super-athlete.

      Finally, modern life styles have left a lot of us with a taste for too much sugar, and for fast food. A less acidic & more alkaline diet with a heavy emphasis on fruit & vegetables is much more apt to leave us with stronger bones and better health all around.

      What should you read? In part I would think it depends on your personal preferences. I preferred to make up my own program based on a mix of suggestions and the research with which I was familiar. Not everybody does. I found Glenville’s book extremely informative and her presentation not marked with the kind of unrealistic promises sometimes offered by those trying to sell something. She recognizes that we are each individuals, and that although there are general trends, one single approach might not bring the hoped-for results for everyone. From what I have read, Save Our Bones seems to suggest a sensible approach. However, I have not read the book nor studied the program in detail, and I question that increased bone density can be measured with the speed that some people say the program has produced.

      The most important thing, especially for someone like either you or me who prefer to take responsibility for strengthening our bones by changing our life styles, is that we don’t kid ourselves. It requires discipline. Daily discipline. It’s not overwhelmingly hard, but sometimes I have found it can be a little too easy to rationalize that “I don’t really need to exercise today…” etc.

      I, too, wish you the very best. I would be really interested to hear about what you decide to do, and even more down the line, your own assessment of your approach and whether you would recommend it to others. For myself, the paradox is that discovering I had osteoporosis has not only changed my life style so that my bones are stronger, but it has greatly improved my health and energy levels as well. I’d say it’s worth it. Terry

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      Comment by theotheri — January 13, 2016 @ 4:02 pm | Reply

      • Terry, thank you so much for taking the time to share your perspective. I’ve ordered Glenville’s book and am excited to begin my journey to reversing osteoporosis naturally. I do believe it can be done and I will, indeed, keep you posted on my progress. Again, thank you for sharing your story. Nancy

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        Comment by Nancy — January 16, 2016 @ 5:45 pm

      • Thank you again, too, Nancy. I look forward to hearing from you — once you’ve had enough experience to make even an initial assessment of your progress. And best wishes! Terry

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        Comment by theotheri — January 17, 2016 @ 11:13 am


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