One House a Day

Over eleven years ago, Evelyn Zaklan bent over to tie her shoelace and felt a crushing pain in her back. After a visit to the hospital, she learned she had suffered a compression fracture of one of her vertebrae.

BMD (bone mineral density) testing revealed that the 54-year-old Zaklan had osteoporosis. Suddenly a disease she had previously associated “with 80-year-olds” was front and centre in her life.

Osteoporosis can be a crippling diagnosis, but Evelyn enjoyed activity too much to be stalled by fear. She started by walking to the end of her driveway, and each day progressed one house further down her street – mindful of her limitations, but resolved to challenge them.

Having just completed another intensive hiking trip to Ireland, Evelyn’s “one house a day” strategy has blossomed into an active lifestyle that encompasses tennis, cross-country skiing, triathlons, and even speed-walking in the B.C. Senior Games!

As a member of the Surrey/White Rock Chapter of Osteoporosis Canada, Evelyn offers her wisdom to others as a “Step Safe” lecturer. Having lived for many years with colitis, Evelyn also encourages her local colitis support group to take good care of their bones, and to speak with their doctor about the risk factors for osteoporosis. Medical conditions such as colitis, Crohn’s and celiac disease that inhibit the absorption of nutrients are a risk factor for osteoporosis because of the impact on absorption of key nutrients needed to maintain healthy bones.

With such an active journey towards well-being, Evelyn’s two words of advice should not come as a surprise: “Keep moving!”

 

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