Better Bones Foundation
Rethinking the pediatric origins of osteoporosis
Project description and request for funding
A major research, education, and advocacy effort for the future concerns children’s bone health. This project, known as the Children’s Bone Health Initiative, undertakes a comprehensive rethinking of the pediatric origins of osteoporosis and practical program development. All funds and donations procured for the Children’s Bone Health Initiative will be dedicated solely to this project. All contributions are tax-exempt and all sponsors will be fully appreciated and recognized in our publications, during our lectures and presentations, and on our website. In addition, Dr. Brown would be available to make special presentations, or write individual reports, on the project’s findings and advocacy statements for sponsoring groups and agencies.
Overview of the Children’s Bone Health Initiative 2008
Step 1: Research and rethinking
For over a decade we at the Better Bones Foundation have served as a “thought leader” in the field, rethinking the true nature, causes, and best prevention and treatment of osteoporosis. Our research findings and bone health programs are available through our book, Better Bones, Better Body, our published articles, and our website, which are nationally recognized for providing state-of-the-art bone health information.
Our analysis of the causes of osteoporosis suggests that this silent crippler begins in childhood. Indeed, one-half of all adult bone mass is laid down during puberty and the teen years. Furthermore, a full quarter of adult bone mass is built during adolescence. Much of the osteoporosis epidemic among older individuals could be resolved if children were to achieve their full genetic potential for peak bone mass. Indeed, bone mass acquired during childhood and adolescence is a key determinant of adult bone health. Equally striking is the fact that an increasing number of factors, ranging from lifestyle habits to degenerative disease, now compromise youthful bone development.
Our first step in rethinking the pediatric origins of osteoporosis will be to conduct a systematic review of current literature on the topic. This review will include:
- Analysis of the theoretical discussions concerning the pediatric origins of osteoporosis
- Our comments, critiques, and additions to this body of theory
- A meta-analysis of published research on childhood bone health (retrospective, prospective, epidemiological, and intervention studies)
- Our observations on the importance and limitations of the current research
- Identification of promising areas for future research
Step 2: New materials development
With this information and anticipated new perspectives in hand, we will then undertake a practical education program to raise public awareness about the importance of building bone health during youth. We will clarify how puberty and the teen years represent a once-in-a-lifetime window of opportunity to build high-quality bone mass, and how simple interventions can maximize a child’s lifelong potential for optimal bone health.
Of special importance to this education and public awareness component will be the development of practical nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle guidelines, and self-help programs. The best of the scientific findings will be integrated into effective, manageable self-help programs. One important focus, for example, will be on family programs, and in particular mother–child programs. This is an especially important aspect of children’s bone health, as most prepubertal children at higher risk of osteoporosis in later life have mothers with low bone density. Another focus will be simple, inexpensive, proven bone-building exercise programs for family and classroom use. These exercise programs will be of special value to children without access to regular physical education or sports activities.
Step 3: The public awareness campaign
The Better Bones Foundation is a public-interest endeavor focused on the exploration of the human potential for bone health optimization within contemporary society. We freely share our research findings and innovative self-help programs with interested groups and individuals worldwide. The Better Bones Foundation does not seek proprietary ownership over the programs and educational materials within the Children’s Bone Health Initiative.
As now envisioned, these new materials and perspectives will be widely disseminated through various means, including educational seminars and presentations, all-media press releases, popular and professional articles, self-help manuals for parents and children, the Better Bones Foundation website, other internet publications, and the like. In addition, this initiative will link with, and help publicize already existing private and governmental bone health education efforts.
The budget for the Children’s Bone Health Initiative is set at $30,000, the sum of $10,000 being dedicated to each of the three project steps described above. If you, your organization, or someone you know would like to contribute to the funding of this project, please contact Dr. Susan E. Brown, PhD at 315-437-9384.
At the Better Bones Foundation we promote an all-natural approach to bone health based on the latest research and through consultation, education and outreach.
If you would like to help us further the work of the Better Bones Foundation, click here to make a donation. We are also happy to answer questions about Dr. Brown’s pioneering work in the field of bone health. Please call The Center for Better Bones today toll-free at 1-888-206-7119 to learn more.