Chocolate or fruit?

Type 2 diabetes/Arthritis/Body aches/ Muscular pains/ Osteoarthritis/ spondylitis/Osteoporosis is mostly caused by lifestyle choices.

High milk diet 'may not cut risk of bone fractures'

Drinking lots of milk may not lower the risk of fracturing bones

But............Opposite pattern -

When fermented milk products such as yoghurt were considered, the opposite pattern was observed - people who consumed more had a lower risk of fractures

"We know that low calcium intake (less than 400mg a day) is a risk factor for osteoporosis.

"Individuals should still be encouraged to consume a balanced diet from the five key food groups of which milk and dairy are key."

BMD/DEXA scan reports

Sunshine can slow weight gain and diabetes symptoms'

Lead author, Dr Shelley Gorman, from the Telethon Kids Institute in Perth, Western Australia, said the findings showed that sunshine was an important element of a healthy lifestyle.

"They suggest that casual skin exposure to sunlight, together with plenty of exercise and a healthy diet, may help prevent the development of obesity in children."

"It raises critical questions for us humans - are the effects the same in our children and ourselves, and, if so, can they be applied to prevent obesity, treat metabolic syndrome and save vast amounts of pharmacological treatment?

Perhaps it is just a little sunshine that we require."

Why I take the stairs at the BBC

Stair climbing is officially classed as "vigorous exercise", burns more calories per minute than jogging and improves cardiovascular fitness and muscle strength.

Apparently you burn one and a half calories for every 10 upward steps and one calorie for every 20 steps down.

Even a small amount of activity can make major health gains, and this is what the population really needs to be taught.

Every action, even a single step on a stair or standing up for a few seconds, can put you on a positive path to better health.

Brain 'can be trained to prefer healthy food'

One study has even found that if you have more plants and flowers around your house you are not only more likely to have a diverse array of bacteria on your skin, you are also less likely to be allergic

Can you make your way to fitness easily achievable?

OR Can you cheat your way to fitness?

We drive everywhere, avoid the stairs, pack our houses with labour-saving devices and email colleagues rather than walk down the corridor to talk to them.

We are a slothful lot and the most common reason given for not doing enough exercise is lack of time.

But what is enough exercise?

Most health experts recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity a week.

Any activity will help but it has to be moderate, vigorous or high intensity if you really want to reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer and obesity.

Then we moved outside, to see how much energy they would burn through doing typical outdoor chores like washing the car, cleaning windows, mowing the lawn or planting flowers.

And if you were wondering, one of the best all-round activities seems to be gardening.

Childhood obesity has become a global epidemic, but it is not easy to treat.

Now a scheme proven to help children shed pounds by asking them and their families to make numerous lifestyle changes has been adopted across Denmark.

Have the Danes cracked childhood obesity?

A typical weight loss programme

The child's doctor creates a tailored plan with 15-20 strategies, which could include:

1 - No crunchy muesli or fruit yoghurts for breakfast - choosing oatmeal, dark brown bread, meat and fish instead

2 - No fast food or white bread for lunch; choose brown bread, meat, fish and vegetables instead

3 - Portions served up in the kitchen - no pots and pans at the dining table

4 - Plate proportions for dinner should be: half vegetables, a quarter brown rice, pasta or potatoes, and a quarter low fat fish or meat

5 - Wait 20 minutes before having second helpings - this allows time for the body to feel full

6 - Feel satisfied after each meal

7 - Only two pieces of fruit per day

8 - Fast food only once a month

9 - Sweets only once a week

10 - Snack only once a week

11 - Limit juice, iced tea, cocoa, soda or lemonade to once weekly - only half a litre in total

12 - Cycle or walk to school

13 - Organised physical activity eg dancing, handball or gymnastics

14 - Free physical activities like walking/biking after school, walking the dog or trampolining

15 - Screen time (television, computer or tablet) limited to two hours per day

16 - No television/computer access until 5pm

17 - Set a regular, early bedtime

The programme requires the whole family to embrace it.

How much better is standing up than sitting? (October 2013)

Calorie burner: How much better is standing up than sitting?

Can walking while working make you live longer? (January 2013)

Treadmill desks: How practical are they?

"The health consequences of prolonged sitting... include not only obesity but also hypertension, hyperlipidemia - high cholesterol if you like - cardiovascular disease, certain types of cancer, poor or low mood, a predisposition to diabetes,"

People of all ages should be encouraged to take more exercise according to a report by England's chief medical officer.

Sir Liam Donaldson says that exercise is a key factor in reducing the risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

Adults should take 30 minutes of moderate exercise five times a week, children and young people 60 minutes.

Possible activities include walking to work or mowing the lawn.

How can I cut down on sugar?

"We need to reduce sugar intake but should not swap from sugar to fat", said Prof Susan Jebb of the University of Oxford.

"A greater proportion of our plate should be fruit and vegetables and more fibre-rich carbohydrates and whole grain."

Health benefits of a vegetarian diet

Waistlines 'grow an inch in a decade' in US

Carrying too much fat around the middle (waist) can increase the risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer.

Amy Thompson, senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, said more people were carrying extra weight around the middle, including in the UK.

"This increases your risk of heart disease and stroke, but losing weight and reducing your waist size is doable," she said.

"Try cutting down on the calories and getting more active, but don't try to lose weight too quickly.

"Slow and steady weight loss - around 1-2lb [1kg] each week - is healthier."

Sugary drinks warning signs change habits of US teens

The most effective sign said it took five miles to walk off the 250 calories in a sugary drink.

Brain repair 'may be boosted by curry spice'

Risk Factors for Osteoporosis

Risk Factors You Can Change

Daily walking for 30 to 45 minutes with or without Walking aids

If you have OA of your hip or knee, when walking try using a cane (walking stick). Hold it in the hand on the opposite side of the body to the affected joint. This takes some pressure off the affected joint and helps to ease symptoms in some cases.

Diet - Vitamins, minerals, calcium should be obtained from natural dietary resources and

not by 'vitamin tablets/capsules' which can increase your risk of 'medicinal side-effects'.

Fruits, Salads, green vegetables/leaves, Sprouts -250 grammes

Curd/Yoghurt -250 grammes,

Lemon juice with little salt/sugar.

Water -5-6 lit per day or more, daily slow sustained yoga type physiotherapy exercises as given in website is essential for good health of bones and body.

Daily brisk/speed walking for 1 hour, getting enough vitamin D from your diet, sunlight will decrease your risk.

Cycling outdoors and non-gym outdoor exercises such as brisk walking, using stairs at home and office, walk at work bring overall improvement in health, well being besides controlling and curing many diseases such as Hypertension, diabetes, depression, cancer, osteoporosis, arthritis, muscular pains and joint pains.

Physical activity. Not exercising and being inactive or staying in bed for long periods can increase your risk.

Smoking. Smokers harm their blood circulation, damage all tissues in body by free radicals of smoke and absorb less calcium from their diets.

Medications. Some commonly used medicines can cause loss of bone mass. These include steroids used to control arthritis and asthma; some drugs used to treat seizures; some cancer drugs; and, too much thyroid hormone.

Low body weight. Women who are very thin – and small-boned – are at greater risk for osteoporosis.

Risk Factors You Can't Change

Gender. Women are at higher risk for osteoporosis than men. They have smaller bones and lose bone more rapidly than men do because of hormone changes that occur after menopause.

Age. Because bones become thinner with age, the older you are, the greater your risk of osteoporosis.

Ethnicity. Due to differences in bone mass and density compared with other ethnic groups, Caucasian and Asian women are at the highest risk for osteoporosis.

Family history. If a family member has osteoporosis or breaks a bone, there is a greater chance that you will too.

History of previous fracture. People who have had a fracture are at high risk of having another.

How Is Osteoporosis Diagnosed?

Osteoporosis is often called "silent" because bone loss occurs without symptoms. You may not know that you have osteoporosis until a sudden strain, bump, or fall causes one of your bones to break.

Stooped posture, back pain, and back fatigue.

Bone density test (BMD test): This test is a measure of how strong – or dense – your bones are and can help your doctor predict your risk for having a fracture. Bone density tests are painless, safe, and require no preparation on your part.

Bone density tests compare your bone density to the bones of an average healthy young adult. The test result, known as a T-score, can tell you whether you have osteoporosis and helps predict your risk for having a fracture.

DEXA Scan (Dual X-ray Absorptiometry) : The most common osteoporosis test is dual X-ray absorptiometry -- also called DXA or DEXA. It measures people’s spine, hip, or total body bone density to help gauge fracture risk

How Can I Lower My Chances of Getting Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis treatments include the “basic CDEF’s” -- calcium(C), vitamin D (D), weight-bearing exercise (E), prevention of Falls (F), and bone-friendly medicines.

A balanced diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, a regular exercise program, and, in some cases, medication can help protect your bones and slow bone loss

Nutrition :

People over 50 should get 1,200 milligrams of calcium daily. To do this, make foods that are high in calcium part of your diet. The most concentrated food sources of calcium include:

  • dairy products such as low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheeses.

If you have a diet that does not contain enough calcium, calcium suppliments can help fill the gap, ensuring that you meet your daily calcium requirement.

Calcium tablets and Vit. D injections should be considered later if dietary intake is not adequate as natural dietary calcium and sunshine is best for health

Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium. Exposure to sunlight causes your body to make vitamin D. Some people get all the vitamin D they need this way. However, many older people, especially those who are indoors most of the time and/or live in northern areas, are not getting enough vitamin D.

It is recommended people aged 51 to 70 should have 400 IU of vitamin D daily. People over 70 should have 600 IU.

Exercise :

Exercise can make bones and muscles stronger and help slow the rate of bone loss. It is also a way to stay active and mobile.

Weight-bearing exercise is often an option for osteoporosis patients, and it might even help your bones, as this article explains.

Check with your doctor before starting a new fitness program.