According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation, osteoporosis leads to 8.9 million fractures each year, the equivalent of one fracture every three seconds. Luckily, osteoporosis (or the loss of bone density) can be prevented. Since bone mass is created in the first 30 years of life, it is vital that we give them the best possible building blocks and then ensure that they stay healthy as we continue to age. Follow these simple tips to keep your bones healthy and fracture-free.
Consume Enough Calcium
The body constantly breaks down old bone cells and replaces them with new ones. Since calcium is the primary mineral found in bones, it needs to be consumed on a daily basis to keep them healthy and strong.
The recommended dose of calcium per day is 1,000 milligrams, with this dose being slightly higher for teenagers and older women. Nevertheless, the way your body absorbs calcium can also vary, so a consumption of 500 milligrams of calcium does not necessarily mean that all of it is absorbed. Some of the best sources of calcium include milk, cheese, yogurt, beans and sardines.
Vegetables are an amazing source of minerals, vitamins and fiber—all substances that are vital to keeping us healthy. They are also rich in vitamin C, which has been shown to encourage the production of bone-forming cells and protect bones from damage. According to Avery Hilland from SUPPLEMENTSCOUTS, it is the green and yellow vegetables in particular that promote bone growth in children and help adults retain bone mass.
“Vegetables such as kale, spinach, artichokes, turnips and broccoli are great for protecting the bones. To stay healthy, it is important that you either get your daily dose of veggies or take quality supplements.”
Do Strength Training and Weight-Bearing Exercises
Exercise, and in particular strength training and weightlifting, can go a long way to promoting bone cell growth and maintaining muscle mass. Some of the main benefits of regular workouts include increased bone size, better bone mineral density and less inflammation.
Some of the best weight-bearing exercises for strengthening the bones include walking, jogging and climbing stairs. Resistance exercises, including lifting weights, can also improve bone density.
Maintain Healthy Weight
Being overweight or too thin is not good for bone health and can increase the risk of osteoporosis, especially in postmenopausal women. Research has shown that being underweight can contribute to the reduction of bone density, while being overweight can reduce bone quality and increase the risk of fractures.
Repeated weight loss and gain, or losing a lot of weight in a short period of time, can also have a negative effect on bone health. Individuals trying to lose weight should keep in mind that low calorie diets can lead to loss of bone density. For strong bones, eat a balanced diet that consists of at least 1,200 calories per day.