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Drinking Milk For Strong Bones? Here’s Why You Should Stop Believing This Myth Today

Drinking Milk For Strong Bones? Here’s Why You Should Stop Believing This Myth Today

When we think about the benefits of milk we immediately think of bones and teeth. Children are encouraged to drink more to promote healthy bone and teeth growth while women are told to drink more to ward off osteoporosis. But is drinking milk actually as healthy for our bones as we’ve always thought?

study found that countries with the highest dairy consumption, which includes most of the Western world, have the highest rates of osteoporosis. So if milk is so good for our bones, then why are more people who consume dairy products suffering from bone fracture incidence? This offers a contradiction that seems to show drinking calcium-rich milk may not be as great for our bone health than we originally thought.

The Problem With Milk #1: Animal Protein

Yes, milk is packed full of calcium but the problem lies with the fact that it’s animal protein. When our bodies digest animal protein, it acidifies the sensitive pH level and since our body is continuously keeping an optimal balance, it triggers a biological correction and works to get it back on track.

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The problem is that calcium is a great acid neutraliser so our body takes the calcium from the bones in order to keep the pH level balanced. So ironically, we drink milk to get calcium which then causes the calcium contained in our bones being taken out to lessen the acidity: drinking milk is actually depleting our calcium reserves rather than adding to it.

The Problem With Milk #2: Pasteurisation Process

Cow’s milk is obviously designed for calves and for us humans to be able to digest it efficiently, it needs to go through a pasteurisation process which involves applying heat to destroy pathogens in food, in order to kill disease-carrying germs and preventing milk from going sour too early.

The problem with pasteurisation is the process also destroys the goodness in milk including the probiotics, vitamin C, iodine and enzymes needed to allow the body to absorb calcium. As a result, the milk we drink whether it’s whole, 1%, 2% or skimmed, all go through this process and ends up in our stores.

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The Research

Many scientific studies back up the claims that drinking milk is actually detrimental to our bone health. They are, in fact, starting to outweigh the number of studies that say milk helps to reduce bone fractures and conditions like osteoporosis.

The 12 year-long Harvard Nurses’ Health Study based on nearly 78,000 women showed those between the ages of 34 and 59 who consumed calcium through milk and other dairy products broke more bones than those who rarely drank milk.

The authors of the study comment that ““These data do not support the hypothesis that higher consumption of milk or other food sources of calcium by adult women protects against hip or forearm fractures.” 

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Another long-term study from Sweden involved following 61,433 women and 45,339 men between 11 and 20 years for bone health and dietary habits. They also found there was no link between increased milk consumption and lower risk of bone fracture – instead it was the opposite. They did hint that low-lactose fermented milk products such as yoghurt and cheese didn’t have such a detrimental effect on bone health as drinking milk.

Calcium-Rich Alternative Foods

The best route to take for your bone health is to not only eat calcium-rich foods but also alkaline-rich foods to make sure the acidity levels in your body don’t interfere with the calcium already present in the bones.

Calcium-rich foods include:

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  • Broccoli (86 milligrams in 2 cups raw)
  • Dark green, leafy vegetables such as kale (101 milligrams in 1 cup raw, chopped)
  • Almonds (75 milligrams per ounce (about 23 whole almonds)
  • Bok Choy (74 milligrams per 1 cup shredded)
  • Figs (121 milligrams per 1/2 cup dried) 
  • Sardines (351 milligrams in one 3.75-ounce can)
  • Tofu (434 milligrams per half cup)

Many cereals and other food products are fortified with calcium which can be a great addition to your diet.

Alkaline-rich foods include: garlic, spinach, broccoli, carrots, lettuce, green beans, beetroot, courgette (zucchini), grapes, apples, kiwi fruit, berries, blackcurrants, figs and dates.

Featured photo credit: stock.tookapic.com via pexels.com

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Jenny Marchal

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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