brainwashed into telling our students that MILK WAS A PERFECT FOOD. But
today I know that these government posters and pamphlets failed to mention that
milk was a perfect food for CALVES -- not humans.
It has taken over a half century to dispell this propaganda which the
industry was pushing and still does today. Thankfully though, I don't see
any more of those silly celebrity milk mustaches any more, and I believe that more
and more doctors are beginning to realize that milk is NOT a perfect food. I will
not fault the good people of the past who took this position probably through ignorance,
but I think today there is compelling information for us to go beyond milk and dairy
for health reasons.
In the recent past I found some doctor articles on the internet taking the
position that milk is not good for us, and today I was reminded of this because of
an article I spotted on Care2 by Becky Striepe entitled "4 Best Foods for your Bones
(and the 4 Worst!)."
This notion of milk not being the best for our bones should make us take a
good look at the oriental countries where for a long time they consumed very
little dairy if any, and the incidence of osteoporosis among women I believe was
non-existent. Sadly, I think that this will change as many of them are now adopting our
meat and dairy diet.
As a senior, I looked forward to reading what this writer said, even
though as a vegan, I don't use any dairy products. Would I learn something new from
her? Was I doing something wrong for my bones? I didn't think so, but I read the
She reminded us in the first paragraph that the dairy industry is spending
billions of dollars to convince us that their products are important to bone
health. Yes, she admits -milk is high in calcium but reminds us that magnesium is just as
important for our bones as is calcium but that dairy products are NOT rich in this
vital nutrient. Nor does milk contain Vitamin K- another important nutrient for bone
Here are the foods which she lists as the BEST FOODS for bone health:
1. DARK LEAFY GREENS such as kale and collard greens contain calcium,
magnesium, and vitamin K. I have to admit that I should buy more of these greens even
if I will only use them in smoothies. But I have been taking calcium, magnesium, and
vitamin K as supplements for my bone health.
2. SEEDS -- She advises us to sprinkle some seeds on our salads for some
bone-building power. What could be easier? She suggest pumpkin seeds. I have
been using sunflower seeds but will try the pumpkin seeds next time I grocery
3. NUTS -- She says we should snack on a handful of nuts daily to protect
our bones. I do this one already. I like to augment whatever meal I have with them
though I believe once a day is enough because they are highly caloric. She also
suggests adding them to soups or salads, on top of casseroles, or even puree them to
make creamy vegan desserts. And she adds that walnuts give the most
bone-protection power. I think Dr. Oz once said that he eats 12 walnuts every day.
4. BEANS -- Beans are not only a cheap source of protein and calcium but
they are a cheap way to round out a meal. Black beans she notes are especially good
for building bone health, but reminds us that all beans are packed with nutrients to
keep our bones healthy.
Most vegans, including myself have been incorporating these foods in our
meals. So, we are doing something right for our bones while remembering that our
lifestyle not only is healthy, but compassionate as well.
I recently had a fall in a dark auditorium on Holy Thursday. At my age, a
broken hip was more than likely. But no, thank God -- I suffered only a
sprain to my left
foot. I was shocked to find out that it would take weeks to heal but today it is
Now -- THE WORST FOODS FOR BONE HEALTH.
1. DAILY PRODUCTS. She said that she too was surprised as most people
will be to read this. I was not surprised because I had read before that dairy
products can actually leach calcium from bones and will increase your risk of fractures over
time. It would seem that my use of soy instead of dairy kept me from realizing a more
serious fall in that darkened auditorium where I mistook two steps for one.
2. SALT. Well I guess we shouldn't be too surprised re this. I think
most healthful diets suggest restricting salt intake. It may increase bone fragility and
a Japanese study found that women who ate more salt were four times as likely to
fracture a bone.
3. COLA. Research has found out that carbonated beverages or soda pop are
bad for your bones Scientists believe that probably the phosphoric acid in
cola depletes your bones.
4. TOO MUCH PROTEIN. Surprised? Although we need protein to stay
healthy, TOO much of it is bad for our bones. But the research is not clear on this
finding since the group who ate less protein ate a plant-based diet. So we don't know
whether it is the amount of protein or the type of protein that is causing the damage.
I hope you have learned something from Striepe's article. Even though some
of it was not new to me, there were some aspects that I found new and interesting.
And of course, that as a vegan, I do follow a diet devoid of milk and dairy
products. I believe this is doing something right for my bones, for the environment, and for