Building bones

strong-bonesAt age 35 I found out my bones weren’t as strong and healthy as a normal 35-year-old’s. Back then, almost 20 years ago, on my first appointment with a new doctor, one of the forms I was asked to complete was a checklist of 13 risk factors for osteoporosis. I read down the checklist. Am I female? Check. Am I white or of Asian descent? Check. Am I small boned? Check. Do I have a less than average consumption of foods with calcium? I am not a big consumer of dairy products, so: check. Was there a history of osteoporosis in my family? Check. Did I have a history of long-term use of corticosteroids? Check. Did I like my wine? Check. Seven of 13, and I was just getting started. The doctor ordered a test to measure my bone density, which was quick and painless. A few days later she called and told me that I had osteopenia, a precursor to osteoporosis, in my hip bone and spine. I had thought osteoporosis was an old lady disease. I guess I was wrong, because at age 35 I certainly...