What’s Better for Strong Bones… Exercise, Milk or Calcium? : Exclusive Renegade Health Interview

Wednesday Sep 28 | BY |
| Comments (29)

My mom and aunt improving their bone health… in their hips and jaws… LOL. (Sedona, AZ)

Today I have an interview with Amy Lanou, PhD…

The call was originally going to be with Dr. Neal Barnard (Amy works with him) but he was unable to make it at the last minute. Amy stepped in and brought her years of knowledge to the plate and I was thrilled to have her as a guest.

In this first part of two, she shared some tips and ideas that you can use to help keep your bones strong and avoid fractures (particularly hip fractures) later on in life.

This is not only for the ladies, guys… Men have a 6% chance they’re fracture their hip in a lifetime also.

Here’s where you can listen to Amy Lanou now (my comments on the interview follow in the copy below!)…

Amy Lanou

Click the play button to start the call:


Runtime: 24:33

Kev’s thoughts…

1. 17% of women will fracture a hip!

This is an incredible statistic. One of the reasons why women are more susceptible to bone loss than man, according to Dr. J. E. Williams is because of the hormonal changes they experience as they age.

Like Amy said, hip fractures are generally the last straw for most elderly people.

One of the things Annmarie and I stressed with our personal training clients (to their disappointment) were balance exercises. We had clients in their late 30’s and early 40’s who couldn’t balance on one leg. This doesn’t get better as you age – particularly if you don’t practice.

We would play catch with them while they were standing on one leg, do RDL type exercises on one leg (with our without weight) and have them jump and land on one leg to help build stabilizing muscles.

This type of exercise is essential to those who don’t workout regularly and athletes as well.

2. Which one will you chose for bone health? Calcium or exercise?

I loved that Amy brought up the wide gap between how effective calcium supplements are vs. the effectiveness of exercise for bone health.

I talk about this type of reasoning a lot – sometimes, I feel, to deaf ears.

For instance, we’re going to the Longevity Conference this weekend in Costa Mesa, CA. I guarantee there will be a lot of cool, cutting edge things there that you can use for your own health protocol. Buying and using these things is fine by me, in fact, probably will leave the event with some of them to try as well.

What’s not OK with me is if you buy some of these things hoping that it will improve your health and at the same time you haven’t exercised regularly (more than 2 times a week) in years.

Basically, what you’re saying is that you’d rather take the easy way out, than put all your energy into doing the thing that will likely improve your health the most.

Look, it’s your life, you can do what you want, but be sure to recognize this pattern if you fall into it.

The greatest overall health will come from exercise, stress relief, good nutrition, good sleep and great relationships. Keep those in the forefront, then spend some “fun” time doing some of the other experimental things.

3. Not enough information on local, organic dairy…

I suspected this was true, but I’ve always wondered if dairy is really the cause of all the problems, or if it’s the poor quality dairy that most people drink.

Amy shared that there just isn’t enough information to form a scientific opinion on whether raw or organic goats milk, yogurt or kefir has health benefits as opposed to the commercial milk having negative health effects.

I’ve used fermented dairy therapeutically in the past (not eating it now), and don’t agree that it’s always bad in all cases.

I do agree that the white stuff you find in the grocery store is not the same as what you could get straight from a cow or goat. I’m sure it has more health benefits.

So until there’s more study, I can’t definitely say one way or another. For my body, less or none on a regular basis is better.

4. Just because you eat it doesn’t mean you absorb it.

Your body is complicated.

Just because you eat a food doesn’t mean you absorb all the nutrients in it.

I think this is where some raw foodists and other healthy eaters get mixed up. If their digestion isn’t working properly then they may not have a chance to break down nutrients, leading to deficiencies even if they’re eating the healthiest diet in the world.

(If they’re digestion is breaking down, they’re likely NOT eating the healthiest diet in the world… for them.)

5. Try natural first, then try something more potent (in most cases…)

I liked Amy’s approach to supplementation. I think the same way.

Try natural first, then try supplements.

If you can help heal your bones without having to take 20 supplement pills a day, why bother with them.

The key to this protocol though is to know your bone scan numbers, eat a bone healthy diet, and then see if there is an improvement. If yes, you’re on the right track. If no, supplements are the next step.

Keep in mind, there are some times when jumping the first step may be warranted. For instance if you have an infection or are seriously depleted of certain nutrients.

6. If you supplement with calcium, calcium carbonate is not the answer.

I wonder how many of the studies that Amy mentioned are done with calcium carbonate as the supplemental calcium. Calcium carbonate is an inorganic form of calcium and is not a product that I would recommend.

If you do take a calcium supplement, I would recommend looking into whole food mineral supplements that contain silica, magnesium, potassium, vitamin D, K vitamins and more. Innate is a product that I’ve found to be of higher quality.

If you still only want to take a calcium supplement, make sure the source is calcium citrate. This is an organic form that your body can absorb.

7. The link between excessive physical activity and bone loss.

Amy explains how long distance athletes have been shown to have weaker bones.

This is a perfect example of how too much of a good thing (exercise) can be a negative if overdone.

She also mentioned that athletes are now being given extra minerals before their training to help balance out the acidic nature of their activities.

This again is a perfect example of how ignorant we are of our body’s signs to be in balance. Wouldn’t it make more sense to lighten up the training a bit instead of adding more the the body that’s in an already compromised state?

I’ll let you answer that one for yourself… 🙂

I want to know your thoughts: What did you think of this interview? What is your bone health protocol?

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.

Comments are closed.