World Osteoporosis Day, Bone Health, and You

What is Osteoporosis? (Image Source: Shutterstock)

What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a degenerative condition where a person’s bones become brittle and weak over time. This makes the person far more likely to suffer a fracture. This is a preventable, treatable and, to some degree, reversible condition.

Osteoporosis Explained in 2 Minutes | 5MinuteSchool

How to Increase Bone Density

By adopting a healthy lifestyle and taking on board key bone health measures, you will be able to greatly lessen your chances of getting osteoporosis by increasing your bone density. The primary way to strengthen your bones is through eating a healthy diet. A diet that is low in saturated fats, chemicals and processed foods and high in fiber, fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains and healthy oils will supply your bones with vitamins and minerals needed to make them stronger.

Bone Building Foods

Vegetables are excellent bone builders. Focus on those that are rich in calcium such as broccoli, spinach, collard greens, kale and turnips. All leafy green vegetables are a good choice when it comes to bone health.

Eat Bone-Building Foods (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Cut Back on Caffeine

Caffeine is not very bone friendly. In fact, it can actually lead to a loss of calcium. For every 100 mg of caffeine you ingest, you will be losing 6 mg of calcium from your bones. If you’re having 3 or 4 coffees per day, that will make serious inroads into your bone’s ability to remain healthy and strong.

Reduce Sugar and Salt Intake

Excess sugar consumption is not just bad news for your waistline; it will also make your bones weaker. Like corrosive rust, sugar can eat away at your bone density, making you far more likely to suffer a fracture. The more sugar you consume, the more calcium you will excrete with your urine.

Get Healthy: Sugar and Salt | NBC Learn

Increase Protein Intake

You probably know that protein is the key nutrient for muscle growth. Well, it turns out that it is also vital for bone health. Protein has been shown in a number of research studies to improve bone density. Both animal and plant based proteins are excellent for your bone health.

  • Eggs
  • Chicken
  • Salmon
  • Tofu
  • Yogurt

Get Out In the Sun

Vitamin D will enhance your bone density and help to make your bones bigger. That is because Vitamin D helps your body to optimally utilize calcium. The human body can produce Vitamin D on its own as long as it gets enough sunlight. Make it your aim to get 15 minutes of direct sunlight every day.

Get Out in the Sun (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Control Your Weight

The more weight you have on your frame, the harder your bones have to work to support that weight. If you have built muscle through weight training then your bones will have been getting stronger along with your muscles, but if your weight gain is pure fat, then your weak bones will become overly stressed, making you more susceptible to fractures.

Start Strength Training

Weight training has been shown to be a fantastic bone builder. As well as increasing bone density, it will actually make your bones bigger. When you work out with weights, your muscles put extra stress on your bones. The body responds by rebuilding the bones a little bigger and stronger to meet the demands of future stress.

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