National Healthy Bones Week is back in 2012 to encourage Australians of all ages to team dairy intake with exercise for positive bone health. Established by Dairy Australia in 1994, National Healthy Bones Week (NHRW) is a health promotion initiative that aims to educate Australians about the importance of calcium-rich foods, such as dairy. NHBW also highlights dairy's key role in building and maintaining strong healthy bones to help prevent the development of osteoporosis later in life.
A new study undertaken by researchers from the University of South Australia investigated the health benefits of dairy consumption and also calculated the healthcare expenditure in Australia due to low dairy consumption. They calculated that at least 43,000 cases of could have been prevented if Australians increased their dairy intake, saving the national healthcare system some AUD112 million, according to a new study.
However, new research published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health has shown most Australians are missing out on dairy's bone boosting benefits with 73 per cent of women and 58 per cent of men failing to consume their minimum recommended intake. The situation is worse for teenagers with 62 per cent of boys and 83 per cent of girls failing to have the recommended three serves of dairy foods daily.
On average Australians are only consuming 1.7 serves of dairy foods per day, much lower than the recommended three serves per day. A serve is equal to 250ml milk, 200g yogurt or 40g cheese. Increasing dairy intake to even two serves a day could significantly reduce the number of Australians who develop osteoporosis each year.
NHBW which runs from 19 to 25 August this year will give Australia a calcium boost with 'Free Shake Days'. The highlight is the time-honoured, classic calcium booster – the milkshake! More than just a simple and tasty way to boost bone strength, milkshakes conjure up fond memories of childhood, the local milk bar, first dates, warm summer nights and fun with friends. Dairy Australia dietician Glenys Zucco commented that National Healthy Bones Week is a timely reminder to take care of our bones and this year's 'Milkshake' theme encourages Australians to build and maintain strong bones by teaming exercise with calcium-rich foods such as milk and dairy products.
To celebrate the NHBW's 'Free Shake Days', Milk Bar and Café has jumped on the calcium-loving bandwagon and is helping the public get their daily serve of calcium with free milkshakes and smoothies in Brissy.
A Brisbane owned and family run café, it offers the local community wholesome food, organic breads, fresh salads, Merlo Coffee made on Barambah organic milk and of course, milk shakes, seven days a week. It also has a large range of items with no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.
Amanda and guests at the Milk Bar's 3rd birthday / Image courtesy of Milk Bar and Café
The owner, Ms Amanda Scott shared with me, "Remember when Gran could order a 'cup of chino' and Dad had salty hot chips and you couldn't wait to get stuck into a caramel malt milk shake? Remember when you could go to the local milk bar and feel at home, like one of the family? We do." She added "Milk Bar and Café is supporting NHBW's 'Free Shake Days' because more than anything, we recognize that MILK SHAKES MAKE PEOPLE HAPPY. We never have cranky customers buying milk shakes. And when we can get a parent to change their mind from having 'another coffee' to a milk shake – they come up later and thank us, and say that they forgot how good milk shakes can be. Nostalgia for simpler times".
During NHBW, adults and kids of all ages can head down to these participating cafés in Sydney and pick up a delicious free shake and calcium boost.
Further updates and information for participating cafés are available on the NHBW website. Resources are also available on the NHBW website including tips and information on ways to improve and maintain bone health, delicious calcium-rich recipes and calcium meal planners for all age groups, as well as great competitions and resources for schools.
Why? National Healthy Bones Week (NHBW) is back in 2012 to encourage Australians of all ages to team dairy intake with exercise for positive bone health with Free Milkshakes! So get yourself a Shake now in Brissy.