Learning the meaning of osteoporosis

by Gill Randall, Physiotherapist Grad Dip Phys, Banbury, UK

A few years ago, the local gym I attended did a simple heel prick test and I was diagnosed with osteopenia, the precursor for osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a condition that affects bone density and strength, so the bones become brittle and fragile from loss of tissue. In osteopenia, the protein and mineral content of bone tissue is reduced, but less severely than in osteoporosis.

Bone is alive and constantly changing. A healthy diet and lifestyle from an early age help us to maximize bone strength by ‘banking’ bone when we are young. A poor diet as children, eating disorders, and erratic diets can all affect the laying down of healthy bone. And as we age, particularly after menopause in women, there is a tendency to bone loss. Osteoporosis can tend to run in families, but whether this is due to dietary and lifestyle factors or ‘genetic’ tendencies is open to question.

I was surprised at my diagnosis, as I had had a healthy diet as a child. I did a bit of yo-yo dieting through my teenage years, but I’ve had a tendency to be overweight, not underweight, and have always been relatively active. Upon diagnosis I was prescribed calcium tablets with Vitamin D and told to do more weight bearing exercise, so I did some line dancing and an exercise class in the gym. I do have a family connection, as my mother had severe osteoporosis and had a lot of pain from it in her later years. It’s not a life threatening condition, but it can be life changing. When she lost bone density and 5 inches in height, she had constant pain, easily broke bones when she fell, and postural changes caused digestive problems.

Having witnessed my mother go through these progressive changes, I do not want this for my future, and so I want to learn what I can do to support the health of my bones.

In my sixties now, the condition is not affecting me with pain or physical changes, and I am eager to prevent this. I work and am active but my view of osteoporosis is changing. Being a student of Universal Medicine and the teachings of the Way of the Livingness, I have learnt a deeper understanding from Serge Benhayon that energetically, osteoporosis is caused by lack of self-love and deep disregard for myself. Initially my reaction was: ‘Of course I look after myself!’ But on reflection, I realized I did this after looking after everyone else. I paid lip service to looking after myself. This felt like a really old pattern of putting myself last for a very long time. I can fully appreciate this understanding: If I’m not nurturing my physical body, why should it be strong and solid to provide me with a sound bony foundation?

So I looked at my diet and felt into what types of food supported me, and noticed how my body felt after certain foods. I stopped drinking alcohol and felt immediately clearer in my head and my body. I knew that caffeine didn’t feel good for me, but did you know that we excrete calcium in our urine when we drink caffeine? I always knew I felt bloated and tired after eating bread and food with gluten, so experimented with reducing them, and found I had so much more energy. By changing my diet, my body feels more nurtured. I am giving myself more care, and I’ve started putting me first. I used to think that would be selfish, but now I can feel how self-loving this is. I’m living now by expressing myself more honestly when in conversation, feeling what needs to be said rather than pleasing people.

Living truly and supporting myself is also helping my bones.

I know as a physiotherapist that exercise is an important factor for health and bone density. Weight bearing exercise, specific resistance exercises and a healthy balanced calcium rich diet can all help bone density. But over exercising is not recommended, and it can be deleterious to people with anorexia nervosa to do extreme exercise. It can contribute to further weight loss, which could also be detrimental to bone density. High impact running, jogging or skipping can increase susceptibility to stress fractures in the feet or lower limbs. Or if people do horse riding or skiing and increase their risk of falling, this could increase their risk of breaking a bone. So the balance of exercise is important, as the present day thoughts of exercising to extreme is quite popular at the moment. My exercise changed from the gym using heavier weights to exercising gently on a regular basis with light weights and walking outside most days, loving the sunshine for the vitamin D absorption.

With this new understanding, I can feel the impact of a deeper healing from the conventional understanding of medical treatment for illness. I am learning to care for myself on a daily basis that is, in turn, supporting my physical body. This is a huge learning that I can bring into practice in other areas of my life, knowing how I can heal mental and emotional as well as physical issues I thought was going to carry with me throughout my whole life.

With a medical diagnosis and an esoteric understanding of osteoporosis, I am combining the treatment of conventional and esoteric medicine together to live in better health.

 

Read more:

  1. Osteoporosis and a lifetime of dairy consumption 
  2. The Chilling Facts about Dairy

 

 

 

833 thoughts on “Learning the meaning of osteoporosis

  1. Thank you Gill for the timely and gentle reminder to genuinely self care. I really appreciate how you sought the advice of conventional medicine whilst deepening your awareness and understanding of what caused your Osteopenia.

  2. I love how I learn something from each and every blog, for instance, I had no idea that we excrete calcium in our urine when we drink caffeine. There is so much emphasis on what foods to eat and drink that contain calcium but practically zero information about foods and drinks that have the opposite effect.

  3. In understanding Osteoporosis you have considered both a physiological and energetic mechanism and then incorporated a holistic healing approach with a traditional medicine approach and complementary approach. Love it Jill thank you.

  4. Our body is one complete whole. The only direction our body naturally heads towards is back to love. Every situation that comes up for us to look at is a re-correction back to this balance that in our choices we have tipped. Osteoporosis is a situation that reminds us to love and care for ourselves deeper, if the foundation of solid care is not built in our younger years, now is the time.

  5. I have know a few women who when given the diagnosis of osteoporosis have reacted to the diagnosis and then pushed their bodies really hard, doing lots of weight work and weight bearing classes. When done in the energy of pushing hard they miss that wonderful opportunity we always have to connect to our body and what it really needs on a moment to moment basis.

  6. ‘My exercise changed from the gym using heavier weights to exercising gently on a regular basis with light weights and walking outside most days, loving the sunshine for the vitamin D absorption.’ Exercising in this way feels so gorgeous for your body Gill, considering it as a whole integrated unit that needs, light, movement, balance and strength and all from a place of connection.

  7. Gill what you have shared is fantastic, and inspiring…by a deeper understanding of the energetic aspect of osteoporosis, you work with medicine and self work to bring healing to this condition…this in it self is a great commitment to self love.

  8. “With a medical diagnosis and an esoteric understanding of osteoporosis, I am combining the treatment of conventional and esoteric medicine together to live in better health.” This feels like a true balance and most beneficial to the body.

  9. I know, feel and see evidence all around and in me everyday that we are not simply functional beings.

    Knowing I am so much more than a physical body and thinking mind it makes perfect sense to me that “how” I think, treat myself, move, make choices (basically that everything I do & how I do it) effects me on all levels.

    My body, not only lets me know if I am not giving it proper nutrition but it shows me signs, that when I listen, let me know if I have been harming or supporting it in other ways too.

  10. Good for you Gill, combining all that is on offer today to bring a very rounded approach to your self care requires much appreciation! as you inspire all who read your story to uncover their own levels of awareness and learning in regards to their own bodies too. What an understanding you must bring to others also in the work of physiotherapy, a different angle to look at life and the relationship we have built with ourselves and our physical bodies and how normal it is that they be intertwined.

  11. This is true medicine when we work with both conventional medicine and looking at the deeper understanding of the cause of the illness such as osteoporosis in this case. Many may see this as ridiculous and or new age. But it is far from ridiculous or new age, it is the willingness to stop and reflect on our lives, how we have been living and how that could impact on our bodies. We need conventional medicine to support our bodies to get well, but for true healing to occur we need to bring to the table the energetic cause. For example we all know stress affects our bodies and our mental health therefore this shows, how we live affects our bodies and mental health. The stress is actually the energetic cause, just like living in disregard of ourselves, it is an energetic cause that ends up causing ill health in the body.

  12. This is so important for everyone to know about osteoporosis… I have found the energetics of this very interesting. I’ve had shoulder pain in my left shoulder for nearly two years and it just recently hit me that it feels like bone deterioration. I first felt panicked but then it was like a wake up call. What was I doing for my body and more specifically my bones? I hadn’t exercised for a very long time, donating money instead to the local gym, and not expecting my body to show the signs of this. I was starting to feel older and frailer in my body than the 40 years I am. Well, I’ve started to turn this around, back at the gym and taking bone strengthening tablets and my body feels stronger already. I can see how a lack of self love and disregard would be depleting to the body and bones. This is great medicine to know and consider now.

  13. Linking the choices between things like choosing not to self-love, disregarding self care, moving hard and driven etc.. to our illness’ and ailments will be a great step in understanding true medicine for humanity.

  14. It is truly amazing how a diagnosis of osteoporosis has led yourself and many others to again consider our bodies in the equation of life. Hence the thing that lead to the illness – disregard – is halted in its tracks, because regard and deep care for our body is how many have responded to the illness.

  15. Great informative blog Gill, and lovely to read how you are taking responsibility for your previous choices and how through loving changes you are now able to support and care for yourself more lovingly, knowing that those changes will help strengthen both your bones and your muscles.

  16. Two years ago I was also diagnosed with Osteopenia due to another health concern. Since then with the support of the medical professionals, esoteric practitioners and my own willingness to look at how I care for myself this isn’t something I have been struck down with and now I am the victim. Instead it has opened me up to looking at my relationship with my body and how I care for it which is constantly a work in progress but none the less something that with the approach from every angle I have come to understand, accept and work with rather than fight against or blame something outside of me for this occurring.

  17. “Living truly and supporting myself is also helping my bones” – this is a fresh and new approach to dealing with osteoporosis and combined with conventional medicine actually supports what the World Health Organization is saying about how the way we live impacts our health.

  18. Gill I love the way you have been openly honest with yourself and in your sharing. Whatever the illness or symptom there is always a message there if we are prepared to ask ourselves the questions and be honest about how we have been living.

  19. I wonder if the figures for many illnesses and disease would decrease if the priority in all our lives was to always love and care for ourselves first? I suspect they would as how we then live would naturally change.

  20. Another testimony to how conventional and Esoteric Medicine work well together to bring a whole understanding to our health issues – thank you Gill.

  21. ‘I am learning to care for myself on a daily basis that is, in turn, supporting my physical body.’ This is something we all need to do – to support and honour the body to be all that it can be to support us in this life. All too often we over ride it and over eat or drink too much and eat too much and sit too much. Yet loving ourselves is put at the low end of the list of ‘to do’s’ when it should be at the top.

  22. Thank you Gill for sharing this, the understanding I came to was that self-love is the ground level basics of how we tend to and listen to our bodies needs. From there we can plant the seeds and later become the quality of our thoughts, words and actions in life. The quality of the body reflects the quality of our expression and vice versa. And what I have found is that with Conventional Medicine and the Complementary work of Universal Medicine is that that quality is an inside and outside job (the quality of our body and our expression being one but treated from many sides)

  23. What a super support this blog is for anyone with osteoporosis/osteopenia, shared and written in a loving way, and with authority and clarity coming from your lived experience Gill. When we have an understanding of our present condition, and have a willingness to feel the choices that brought us there in the first place, true healing can begin and grace begins to flow.

  24. The effect of caffeine on calcium loss is interesting, there must be so many little effects of poor diet or under and over exercising, among many other lifestyle factors that affect bone health. It can be easy to ignore these signs, with me drinking caffeine felt pretty strongly awful for my body, but for others the effect might not feel so intense but it is still harming. To improve our health always requires a constant deepening of our willingness to listen to the signals the body is constantly feeding back to us. Amazing when we stop and feel.

  25. This is great to read and feel the truth of the medical consequences and the energetic cause. It is helping us to truly work with an illness and see what it does to our body, and what supports it best.

  26. I agree that we demand so much from our bodies and yet we don’t want to look at our own responsibility to keep the body in good shape. Illness and disease isn’t random, it is there to show us something. we can learn enormously from understanding and addressing the root energetic causes of every condition that arises.

  27. Agreed – you get the most from your treatment when there is a combination of support from the medical profession, Universal Medicine practitioners and the key element is adding yourself to the list of key influencers!
    I was particularly interested in your observation that you had a tendency to look after everyone else first… how many of us do it that way round.

  28. Understanding the energetic causes underneath our conditions is key here. Our diet and exercise contributes greatly to our health but how we are with ourselves in between makes up such a large proportion of our day.

  29. Gill thankyou for sharing your experience here and for the simple practical steps we can take to go some way to preventing the likliehood of Osteoporosis becoming a major symptom of the ageing process. To take responsibility for how we are exercising, eating and generally taking care of oursleves not only helps us as individuals but also those around us whom we would otherwise potentially become more and more dependant on if our symptoms were to deteriorate.

    1. Well said Sandra, taking responsibility for our lives and all our past choices is key so that we become aware of our eating/sleeping/exercising patterns/habits…. and whether they are truly nurturing and nourishing our bodies or not. With awareness we can make any necessary changes that the body is guiding you to make.

  30. Gill I loved hearing about how you dealt with osteopenia and have benefitted your life with the help of both Western medicine and esoteric medicine covering all aspects of health.

  31. “…With a medical diagnosis and an esoteric understanding of osteoporosis, I am combining the treatment of conventional and esoteric medicine together to live in better health…” The combination of both the conventional and energetic understanding of an aliment truly does provide holistic health care, and engage a deeper responsibility to our own health & well being.

  32. Thank you Gill for the many insights shared around osteoporosis and how we can be making changes and choices now in our lives to lessen the likelihood of a diagnosis in later life. It makes sense that nurturing and nourishing the body in a supportive way means our bones will continuously support us.

  33. I am realising the level of disregard I have lived in for over 50 years and am now practicing more self love in all forms of expression. I use the word ‘practicing’ because I am aware that I am starting with limited understanding of what self-love really is and have not had a reflection of this in my life. I have observed those around me choosing foods full of sugar, gluten and dairy, alcohol and smoking and working in a way that is disregarding of the body. There are symptoms in my body already communicating to me about the choices I have made and need to change. Observing Humanity there appears to be little out there that encourages people to re-connect to their body and to listen to what is asked of them. Everything in the media and entertainment continually encourages people towards distraction and forms of abuse. This article talks of osteoporosis but it could easily be talking about obesity, diabetes, heart health etc. Thanks Gill for bringing our attention to our body and the challenge to look more deeply and introduce true care into our way of living.

  34. A great question to ask ourselves Gill, are we truly nurturing and honouring our bodies,
    ‘If I’m not nurturing my physical body, why should it be strong and solid to provide me with a sound bony foundation?’

  35. “With a medical diagnosis and an esoteric understanding of osteoporosis, I am combining the treatment of conventional and esoteric medicine together to live in better health.”- I too have been diagnosed with osteopenia, and I am following the advice given by both my GP and naturopath. Thank you for your informative blog.

  36. I agree Gill the balance of exercise is an important factor, because we can fall into the trap of thinking we are fit and well because we can train with heavier weights, and put many miles under our feet, but the reality is that puts an additional strain on our body, when we use lighter weights and walk rather than run, our body tends to get a more all over workout at a rate that its performance increases and at the same time the body is able to support itself and not have to go into overdrive.

  37. Gill, your blog is a good demonstration of how we can use esoteric medicine alongside conventional medicine. Indeed these two forms of medicine do complement each other beautifully and by applying both we have the opportunity for a true healing, not just a cure.

  38. We are so conditioned by our society that often we do not realize that “putting ourselves last” is disregarding of our body. I certainly was under the impression that I was doing the right thing by everyone but I was not seeing that I was considering everyone else before me and this obviously was not self-loving. But why did I choose to believe this? Looking back I see that it was actually a comfortable place to hide so that I did not need to step up and fully express who I am. This always seemed too scary because of the reaction I feared from others and,having experienced that as a young child I decided that I would hold back and not take up too much space. It got so bad that people would often not hear me when I spoke because I was not projecting my voice enough to be heard. This contraction caused me to lose a lot of weight and so osteoporosis is something I need to be aware of. Thanks for your blog Gill, it presents another way for people.

    1. For a long time I did not truly look after myself and hid behind others, particularly my children, all so that I too would not have to stand and shine my light. I can feel now how much this hurt me and how much this does not help any one else either.

  39. “If I’m not nurturing my physical body, why should it be strong and solid to provide me with a sound bony foundation?” This is commonsense and yet we carry on taking our body for granted until it breaks down. Do we not realize we need a service and oil change after so many miles? And why wait for the break down? Why not give ourselves the daily care required to keep this vehicle on the road, not just limping along, but feeling vital and alive and ready to commit totally to life?

  40. Gill I too have osteoporosis and can relate to putting myself last, but only since reading your blog did I relate it to disregard. Thanks to you I am now changing this deeply ingrained behaviour and gradually getting to understand the reason why it has felt so hard to deeply care for and love myself. I appreciate how far I have come in deepening my self-care, which combined with dietary supplements and exercise is making a difference to my bone health.

  41. Interesting how a diet high in salt, sodas and soft drinks as well as caffeine can contribute to bone loss and hence to osteoporosis – but how much of this is actually known by the average person? It is super common in our society for people to have diets that are high in processed foods (which are high in salt) and to be drinking sodas and soft drinks and coffee constantly. As such are we not setting ourselves up for a weakened state of our bones?

    1. We seem to have a huge gap in society of our knowledge of what our body conveys to us, what affects it and how we can truly support it. It makes no sense given the simple choices we could be making to live a much more vital and harmonious way. Industries and governments that often make money out of pushing certain foods and drinks etc. may have to take a cut in profit, but surely that is worth the long term gain of a healthier population?

      1. If I look at the next generation that is growing up with soft drinks and sodas, lots of processed foods, fast food and drinking coffee (you can do everywhere), sitting inside with their devices, how will their health be when they are older with such a disregard for the body basically on every level.

    2. Interesting that you point this out Henrietta. Could it be possible that as a society we know but choose to sit in the comfort of this and not share the truth in our daily conversations?

  42. What a great understanding to come to Gill, ‘ osteoporosis is caused by lack of self-love and deep disregard for myself. Initially my reaction was: ‘Of course I look after myself!’ But on reflection, I realized I did this after looking after everyone else. I paid lip service to looking after myself. This felt like a really old pattern of putting myself last for a very long time. I can fully appreciate this understanding: If I’m not nurturing my physical body, why should it be strong and solid to provide me with a sound bony foundation?’

  43. Thank you Gil! I have been diagnosed with Osteoporosis a few years ago and I also follow a diet similar to your own, but you have reminded me of just how much more I can do for myself in the nurturing area of my life plus gentle weight bearing exercise .

    1. Gorgeous to feel the inspiration that can come from sharing our stories and experiences! Thank you Gyl and Roslyn!

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