Who Needs All That Bone Mass Anyway?

My bones have been bothering me. No, I don't have joint pain or anything. And I think that's becoming a problem. I'm pretty sure eating a balanced diet of real food is increasing my bone mass, and I'm not so sure that's a good thing.

Seriously, for women bones start gaining density at puberty and bone density will continue to build throughout your lifetime, peaking during your twenties.

Do you know what that means?!?! Bone is heavy, and this is going to show up on the scale! I don't think that's going to work for me. I mean, how will I psychologically handle seeing the number on the scale increase? Just walking around knowing I weigh more than other women will torment me to no end.

And what about my body mass index? God forbid the doctor checks my height and weight only to find out I'm overweight! You know so many physicians consider the BMI to be the holy grail of health. You may not look overweight, but if your height and weight ratio are too high, that's the final answer folks. I can't deal with that kind of pressure just for the sake of strong bones.

Then later in life, I really won't be cool when all the other women my age are popping Caltrate and Boniva like candy trying to scrape up an ounce of bone mass. They'll think I'm totally lame when they ask what I'm taking and all I can say is something like, "Oh, um, I'm not really into that stuff." Then they'll snicker behind my back and talk about how uncool I am.

The ostracism won't stop there, however. It will continue long into my golden years. I mean, what if I turn 62 one day and go in for a check-up, and my doctor dies of a heart attack when he sees how solid my bones are? I don't want to be responsible for the death of a medical professional.

And how will I identify with other folks my age? When I'm sitting around the table enjoying a festive dinner with friends, what if the conversation suddenly turns to hip or knee replacement? I won't be able to indentify with anyone in the room. They might think I'm rude when I don't participate in the discussion. They may not invite me back over again. I don't want to die friendless and alone!

So here's my plan to avoid these unpleasant experiences:

  • Weigh myself religiously. This is how I will gauge my health. If my weight goes up one ounce it's time to start dieting. I won't pay attention to my measurements or pant size. Just the scale. Oh, and maybe an online BMI calculator, too.
  • Avoid natural proteins and fats like the plague. Both are essential for fueling the bone-building process (protein for structural building material and fat to balance the hormones that control bone formation), so I'll definitely stay away from those.
  • If I do eat fats, it'll be corn oil. Corn oil has been shown to cause bone loss (check out Stephan Guyenet's post on that here), so this is an essential part of my plan.
  • I'll start seriously low-carbing it to lower my insulin levels well below normal. This slows down the rebuilding process so I'll be breaking down more bone mass than I'm replacing.
  • I'll restrict calories. I mean, gosh, if I'm avoiding protein, fats and carbs this should be easy. Crash diets are a key orchestrator of bone loss, so I'll throw some of those in there, too. More after I turn 35, when these diets will become even more effective for breaking down those bones.
  • Run several miles a day while undereating. This is sure to put me in a catabolic state, forcing my body to eat at my bone (and muscle) mass for energy.
  • I'll live a high-stress lifestyle, making sure I don't get enough sleep and that my to-do list is miles long. This should elevate my cortisol levels enough to accelerate bone loss.

In today's world there just isn't room for someone with a healthy level of bone mass. I figure this is a surefire plan to make sure I don't have to deal with becoming a bone density outcast.

I first started learning about bone density and osteoporosis in relation to diet and lifestyle from The Schwarzbein Principle book series. You can read my reviews of those books here

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday.

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