Monday, January 24, 2011

Senator Pia Cayetano is Anlene's spokesperson for bone health.

When it comes to Philippine politics (which I avoid like the plague), I've always believed in two things that should be given priority to: (1) health and (2) education. That was why I immediately accepted an invitation to a bone health seminar at the New World Hotel, which was hosted by Karen Davila. Ms. Davila interviewed Anlene's new spokesperson, Senator Pia Cayetano. (Hm. That's two weeks in a row I've been in New World. I had my shoot there -- for my art exhibit -- the previous week.)

Upon entry, I was immediately offered "shooters". Of course, it wasn't alcohol. It was a 125ml pack of Anlene's chocolate flavored milk. I was to find out later how powerful that small pack is.

Cans of Anlene can be found near the cocktail tables. I actually was an Anlene drinker sometime ago. I love milk, but sadly, I am lactose intolerant. The only time I can drink milk is at night, and only if I remember.

One of the things I noticed in the room was that there were mimes that playacted as if they were doing their daily activities and then they'd be struck by bone problems. This one was supposed to be a tennis player that was suddenly rendered immobile by extreme backache.

(Boy, can I relate to that!)

While waiting for the seminar to begin, guests were prodded into having their bones examined. Shown above was a guest whose results were explained by one of the bone scan operators.

I was interested in having my bone scanned but stopped midway due to two reasons. Okay, I'm going to be an airhead and say that it required bare feet. As I have not had a decent pedicure in months, I loathed exposing my piggies. At least for now.

My second reason was that I was kind of postponing checkups till February. I spent Christmas 2010 in the ER, which were still followed by other health problems so I didn't want to jinx my first month of 2011. Still a dimwitted answer, but there you have it.

I opted to take a photo of my friend Rowena instead. Her results showed that her bones are of low risk. I wasn't surprised, really. Ro had always been a milk lover.

Gad, I really have to do that bone scan. I'm afraid for my bones...among other ailments. Ro is a few years older than me but I suspect her body age is much younger than mine.

Here's the shocking part: "Osteoporosis has no cure." That visualization of a spine fracture made me mentally scream, "Yowch!!"

I downed milk as if it were water as a kid (in fact, I hated water and substituted milk for it), but developing lactose intolerance and introducing myself to coffee as an adult might have done some irreparable damages to my skeletal system.

Anyway, we were coaxed to sample the hi-calcium buffet before the seminar began. My fellow bloggers and I were kind of worried because hi-calcium normally meant kidney trouble. Good thing we were served fresh fruit juices and lots of water. Plus, I was also pleasantly surprised to find that the buffet was actually well-balanced. There were plenty of fruits and vegetables. Nice!

I started off with the corn and malunggay soup. I don't know if I mentioned this before but I've recently learned to love malunggay because of all its health benefits.

For my main course, I got myself some mushrooms, broccoli, seafood, vegetarian lasagna (ooh, I love this best), some roast beef and chicken. This lunch was very filling and went  well with the guava juice I was given.

Now these sweeties were what really rocked my world that day. All of them were made with Anlene milk. The chocolate flan tasted exactly like the shooter I was given at the entrance. That creme brulee was also pretty good, while the leche flan had a creamy texture to it. Who knew you can actually cook with Anlene?

After a while, host Karen Davila began introducing matters of bone health.

I honestly didn't recognize her at first, since I rarely watch local television. (I did tell the other bloggers that my TV is meant for videogaming only.) I do remember seeing her on TV when she was about 15 years younger. I must say that even though she was pretty almost two decades ago, she is so much more beautiful now than she was back then. I wonder if taking good care of her health -- and a keen sense of humor -- had something to do with it.

Then she called Sen. Pia Cayetano to the stage. I learned so much that day, which was only expected of a woman like the senator.

My discoveries:
  1. Your bones start to deteriorate at age 25. Meep!
  2. Women's bones are more fragile than men's. They become even more fragile when women have babies because, as we all know, babies are dependent on their mothers' internal calcium supply.
  3. Well, the "no cure for osteoporosis" thing is seriously freaking me out, that's why I went back to drinking milk followed by two glasses of water at night.
  4. Weight-bearing exercises stimulate bone growth. Whoa! More reason to exercise now.
  5. There are three fun ways to get our body to produce endorphins (the "happy chemicals"): consumption of chocolates, sex, and exercise. Both Sen. Cayetano and Ms. Davila then encouraged everyone to do the three on a regular basis. Hihihi!
Focusing on the lovely and smart senator, I was floored when I found out that she's 44. She's so pretty and svelte...and she's not averse to sharing her beauty secrets. For one thing -- and for me the most shocking part -- Sen. Cayetano is a triathlete.

She's into Ironman.

(Okay, the geek in me keeps thinking about Tony Stark in the gold-and-red suit but you have to admit, the analogy to Stark's personal battle against health problems isn't too far off.)

What struck me most was her story about her late grandmother, who used to be so independent until a fractured hip turned her life upside down. I know how it feels like to have your independence curtailed by health problems so that really tugged at my heart strings.

I'm very happy that Sen. Cayetano was chosen to be the spokesperson for bone health because I will confess now that I voted for her. It was her stance on women's health, particularly the Reproductive Health Bill, that earned my vote. She admitted during this talk that her fight for the prioritization of health bills can be an awfully lonely road. She pointed out that our budget for health has been slashed to half what the World Health Organization recommends (at least 5% of the GDP). It still pains me to see that our government is cutting down budgets for health and education so...I hear, ya, senator!

Aaaaand this was the yummy Anlene Concentrate chocolate flavored milk that was offered as a shooter. 

I only love chocolate when I can drink it as I find them too bothersome to chew. This was so deliciously creamy I had to stop myself from grabbing more than one. You'll see why I was practicing restraint when you check the back of this pack.

For a 125ml drink, this provides about 650mg of calcium. That's more than 3/4th of our daily calcium needs. If we don't intake vitamin D and magnesium, however, all that calcium will go to waste. Our bones absorb them better if supported by the vitamin and mineral I just mentioned.

Anyway, when Sen. Cayetano mentioned that she will begin using Anlene for her coffee, I thought that the idea isn't half bad. Maybe I should start doing that, too.



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4 comments :

  1. I'm so blind, I swear I did not notice any of the mimes. XD

    ReplyDelete
  2. Haha, tatlo sila. One was by the shelf, the other one was walking with a cane. :D

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  3. My mom is an Anlene drinker! And you know how I love milk hehe Anlene gives bone density scanning for FREE in malls. This is a very helpful post for non milk drinkers hehe

    xoxo
    MrsM

    ReplyDelete
  4. Seriously??? Free bone density scanning, huh. Sige, I'll be on the lookout for those...after my long-awaited pedicure. Haha! Thanks for the info, Michelle!

    ReplyDelete

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