Monday, August 15, 2011

NATIONAL HEALTHY BONES WEEK ( 1st to 7th August 2011 )

Established in 1994, National Healthy Bones Week (NHBW) is a national campaign coordinated by Dairy Australia that acts to highlight the important role dairy foods and the nutrients they contain, can play in the development and maintenance of healthy bones and prevention of osteoporosis.

In 2011 National Healthy Bones Week will focus on the importance of a calcium-rich breakfast for bone health. This follows a new Australian study which showed children who skipped breakfast were less likely to meet the dietary recommendations for dairy foods such as milk, cheese and yogurt, which are the major contributors of calcium to the diet.

Why is calcium important?

Calcium is essential for building and maintaining strong bones. It combines with other minerals (like phosphorus) to form hard crystals that give bones their strength. Because our bodies can’t make calcium, it must come from our diet. If we don’t eat enough calcium-rich food, calcium will be taken from the bones to be used for other body functions, and over time bones will become weak and brittle leading to a disease called osteoporosis. This is why it is so crucial to have a daily supply of calcium-rich foods throughout life.


P M 24, Philippe Mouchel at 24 Russell Street is a one of a kind modern French Bistro and Rotisserie. With its fresh, contemporary take on French cuisine, and modern warehouse setting with lofty ceilings, the venue is both inviting and energized.

On the 3rd of August 2011, my son and I woke up at 7 am to the cool morning crisp air of Melbourne to start our morning walk to P M 24. After a twenty minutes walk from where we live, we were warmly invited into P M 24 by two friendly staff. In conjunction with National Healthy Bones Week, P M 24 was offering complimentary calcium-rich breakfast for anyone who turned up at its venue from 7.30 am till 9.30 am.

The smell of hot chocolate, cappuccino and latte was so enticing that we helped ourselves to a latte each. My son also got us a bottle of yogurt each with two bars of chocolate coated muesli. As I was enjoying every sip of my latte, I noticed three chefs behind the coffee bar busying preparing something that looked like sandwiches. I was right. We had a sandwich each made out of two pieces of white bread, two layers of cheese and a yummy healthy piece of ham baked in an oven. Ooooo!!!…wowwww!!!…deliciousssssss…..set of calcium-rich breakfast indeed for anyone to start off their day and naturally to keep their bones packed with needed calcium.

We now know why calcium is important to our bones. Apart from having the right diet rich in calcium, exercise and vitamin D are also equally important to maintain healthy bones. Vitamin D can be derived from supplements or from exposure to sunshine. Exercise can be in any form.

Generally, all people with epilepsy will suffer calcium loss in bone faster than people without epilepsy. The reason for this is because all anti epilepsy drugs have side effects especially calcium depletion. So, children and elderly people with epilepsy need higher intake of calcium for growing bones and prevention of breakage of brittle bones. In my case, I have not failed to pop my daily dose of 2 tablets of liquid calcium + vitamin D to maintain my bone condition which was diagnosed as osteopinia.

Thank you very much for the excellent calcium packed yummy breakfast compliments from P M 24. This healthy bone awareness week is a fabulous way of promotion of intake of calcium. I hope everyone and other countries will also follow this concept of promotion.