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Happy Bones, Happy Life

We've all heard that milk makes for strong bones, what does it really mean to have strong or weak bones? How do you find out if your bones are healthy, and what can you do if they're not. Listen in to find out.
Happy Bones, Happy Life
Featured Speaker:
Angeline Williams, CRNP
Angeline joined the OACM family in 2021 as a Nurse Practitioner and head of OACM’s “Own the Bone” program. "Own the Bone" is designed for the screening, treatment, and prevention of osteoporosis and other bone health issues. Angeline works together with our orthopaedic physicians and physical therapists to provide the best approach for the identification and management of osteoporosis, and the prevention of bone fractures. 

Learn more about Angeline Williams, CRNP

Caitlin Whyte (Host): We've all heard that milk makes for strong bones, but what does it really mean to have strong or weak bones? How do you find out if your bones are healthy and what can you do if they're not? Today, we'll find out with Angelina Williams, the Head of the Own the Bone Program at the Centers for Advanced Orthopedics Orthopedic Associates of Central Maryland Division, in practice for over 50 years.

Hello, I'm Caitlin Whyte and I've Got a Bone to Fix with you. So, doctor, my first question today is just who should be watching out for their bone health?

Angeline Williams, CRNP (Guest): Actually it's important for everyone to watch out for their bone health, the young, as well as the old. Our bones function to help support our bodies as well as protect our organs. One thing people don't realize that suseptability to osteoporosis later in life is largely determined by our bone and mineral density we achieved in adolescence, to a lesser degree than genetic factors that can also contribute to this.

Host: So what exactly is a bone screening?

Angeline: A bone screening, are tests we do to help look at your bone density. The main screening tool is what we call DEXA a dual energy x-ray absorbed cometary, and it helps us to determine the quality of your bone. Also, we use other tools we call a FRAX, which is actually a tool that looks at things such as your age, your ethnicity, family history to help give us a prediction of what your outcome is for a possibly having a fracture over the next 10 years. Along with the FRAX as well as the DEXA, we can look at and see your overall bone health and determine what treatment will work best for you.

Host: So is there a way we can actually strengthen our bones?

Angeline: Yes. Our diets play a huge part in our bone health, calcium, vitamin D, along with other minerals are very important. Exercising every day, doing what we consider weight bearing exercises, as simple as walking, using an elliptical trainer, weights for those who are able to do what we call more high impact, weight bearing exercises can help. Taking supplements for those people who don't, you know, have a good diet where they get enough of the calcium and vitamin D. Avoiding salty foods, a lot of caffeine, alcohol, and as well as smoking are things that can affect our bones.

Host: And what makes a bone breakdown and become weak?

Angeline: Again, your diet can play a huge part. Sometimes there are medications that people take such as people who are on long-term corticosteroids can have a ill effect on your bones, not doing those exercises to help strengthen our bones because our bodies, when it comes to calcium and vitamin D, if our bodies are not getting it from our diet, unfortunately they can start breaking down the bone in order to achieve that because our bodies go through a process called bone resorption and bone formation. And unfortunately what happens, the bone resorption process overtakes the bone formation, and that can greatly affect our bone health.

Host: And wrapping up here, tell us a bit about the Own the Bone Program. What is that?

Angeline: The Own the Bone Program was developed in large by the American Orthopedic Association. It's goal was to educate those with osteoporosis, low bone density, and other bone disease about the steps that can be taken to improve the overall bone health and to reduce the likeness of having a first time or repeated fragility fracture.

A lot of times the orthopedic surgeon is the first person who comes in contact with these patients because they are treating the fractures and they're taking care of the bone. And a lot of times what happens is once we fix the fracture, the patient is pretty much, you know, left to go back to their primary care provider or other providers to handle this.

When the American Orthopedic Association decided we should actually own this part of patients' health since we are the first ones who come in contact with this. So, now we're starting to also treat people with fractures, but treating the reasons for the fractures, which would be the osteoporosis.

Host: Great. Well, Angelina, is there anything else we didn't touch on that you'd like to add to our conversation today?

Angeline: Again, I'd just like to tell, you know, everyone, even adolescents, as you were growing, when your mothers tell you to drink your milk, there is a reason, because milk really is one of the things that can help you have strong bones when you're young, which ultimately can affect you when you get older.

Host: That was Angeline Williams, the Head of the Own the Bone Program at the Centers for Advanced Orthopedics Orthopedic Associates of Central Maryland Division. Find out more about us online at And please remember to share and subscribe to this podcast. That's all for today. I am Caitlin Whyte and that was a Bone That's Fixed.