Bones are very important for our well-being. They help us with mobility and protect our internal organs. They also serve as a bank for important minerals, such as calcium, phosphate, and magnesium, which support numerous organs in our body. The older you become, the more important it is to maintain
Bones are very important for our well-being. They help us with mobility and protect our internal organs. They also serve as a bank for important minerals, such as calcium, phosphate, and magnesium, which support numerous organs in our body. The older you become, the more important it is to maintain excellent joint and bone health. In this article, we will explore bone health and some natural techniques to ensure strong and healthy bones.
The antioxidant properties of vitamin C protect our bone cells from the oxidative stress and contribute to the production of bone making cells in our body.
Besides, a nutritious vegetable diet also preserves bone mass and density.
What is bone density?
Bone density is a measurement of the total amount of calcium and other minerals present in our bones. As we feed ourselves with more fibers and nutrition, the density of our bones increases.
With the deficiency of nutrients, our bones get exposed to osteopenia (a condition of low bone mass) and osteoporosis (a condition of weak and brittle bones).
Did you know that the chances of a woman suffering from osteoporosis are higher than that of a man? Well, they do!
Hence, it becomes very important for them to include vegetables in their diet to prevent bone problems and maintain bone health.
A study found that women are consuming more vegetables, such as cabbage, broccoli, kale, face, less bone-related problems than those who are not consuming them.
1. Perform Strength Training and Weight-Bearing Exercises
Different age groups have different concerns regarding their bone health. For instance, children are concerned about their growth, adults are concerned about their fitness, and seniors are concerned more about the safety of their existing bone. So how can you make them strong? Well, one way of doing so is by exercising. You can ensure your bone health and prevent bone-related problems by practicing strength training and weight-bearing exercises. These exercises strengthen bones, minimize bone loss, and also help in bone turnover.
The weight-bearing exercises include exercises like skipping, cardio, gymnastic, running, hopping, etc. The efficiency of these exercises is proven by a study conducted seniors. It was found that the bones of those people performing these exercises reported more mineral density, strength, and size of bone with a reduction in inflammation and bone turnover marks.
Studies have shown that weight-bearing exercises have increased the rate of bone production in children, including those having type-1 diabetes.
2. Consume Enough Protein
Did you know that half of your bones are made up of protein? This study shows the importance of protein for bone health.
However, high protein diets can be dangerous as they can leach calcium from bones to neutralize the inclined acidity in the blood.
So, what should be the protein consumption per day of an adult? Studies say that protein-consumption up to 100 grams and adequate amounts of calcium-rich food can satisfy the bone requirements.
It will lower the risk of bone fracture by promoting bone density and bone health. It is also found that women consuming protein regularly have higher bone density.
Protein-rich food includes meat, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, nuts, soy, beans, etc. Moreover, these diets also contain greater amounts of calories, which may help to preserve bone mass. It also promotes muscle formation.
3. Eat High-Calcium Foods Throughout the Day for better bone health.
Did you know that calcium constitutes approximately 1-2% weight of the human body, and interestingly, about 90% of the calcium is present in the bones and teeth of the body?
Studies say that it plays a major role in forming the structure and maintaining bones' hardness.
Unfortunately, people do not consider the regular intake of calcium in their diets, which is the general cause of bone problems, and if the deficiency of calcium persisted for a long period, then it could result in dental changes, osteoporosis, and brittleness of the bones. In addition, high calcium intake can decrease the chances of heart diseases.
Interestingly, its absorption rate varies in every individual depending on numerous factors. What are the recommended dosages of calcium for different age groups? Teens and older people are advised to take 1200-1300 milligrams of calcium per day, and for pregnant women, the recommended amount of calcium is 1500 milligrams per day.
What are the sources of calcium?
All kinds of dairy products, such as milk, cheese, etc., are rich in calcium. It is always a better option to go for calcium-rich food than supplements.
4. Get Plenty of Vitamin D and Vitamin K
Did you know that over 1 billion people across the globe suffer from the deficiency of vitamin D? But how is that related to bone health?
Vitamin D is important for the process of absorption calcium by the bones.
As vitamin D helps in calcium absorption, it can reduce the chances of osteoporosis. It also protects our bones against hypoglycemia by keeping an appropriate proportion of calcium in the blood.
Unfortunately, many children and adults have low bone density due to low levels of vitamin D in their bodies. Why is this the case? It is because our body can produce vitamin D naturally, with sunlight. Therefore, by exposing ourselves to sunlight for at least 10-15 minutes might suffice our bodily requirements.
There are also other sources of vitamin D, and they include fatty fish, egg yolks, milk, cheese, etc.
Vitamin K is another necessary nutrient for our body, which works with calcium to strengthen our bones for maintaining bone health. It not only increases bone mineral density but reduces the chances of fracture and increase the production rate of osteocalcin, a protein that helps in bone formation.
A study on women (above 50 years age) found that those women consuming vitamin K2 possess a good bone density compared to others. Some sources of Vitamin K are green leafy vegetables, fish, meat, cereals, etc.
5. Avoid Very Low-Calorie Diets
Do you think that by taking a low-calorie diet, you can lose weight? If your answer is yes, you're thinking in the wrong way because dropping calories is not a good option. Low-calorie diets can slow down your metabolism and create more hunger, which will lead to muscle mass loss, and that can be very harmful to your bone health. There are better and healthier ways, such as yoga, walking, running, etc.
What is the minimum number of calories needed to maintain stronger bones? Research shows that taking less than 1000 calories per day can reduce bone density in individuals.
So, always try to avoid a low-calorie diet. And if you want to maintain healthy and strong bones, you should follow a balanced diet that can provide more than 1000 calories per day.
A balanced diet should have a good amount of protein, vitamins, and minerals. Such a diet will help to build stronger bones and thus maintain bone health.
6. Consume Foods High in Omega-3 Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids are well known for their anti-inflammatory properties. They play a vital role in bone health by providing protection against aging and boosting the amount of calcium in the bones.
They also help in bone-forming and increase bone mass by reducing bone loss. Many studies have shown the benefits of long-chain omega-3 fats, which are generally found in fatty fish.
Other foods rich in omega 3 include seafood, nuts, seeds, and plant oils. Their plant sources include walnuts, seeds, chia, etc.
With omega-3, lower quantities of omega-6 to omega-3 in balanced quantities are also suggested. Their appropriate ratio to be taken should be 4:1 or lower.
7. Consider Taking a Collagen Supplement
What is collagen? It is one of the most important proteins in our bodies. Studies say that collagen boosts calcium absorption, and thus, it is great for bone health. Apart from bones, it also helps in building ligaments, skin, muscles, and many other tissues.
If you are suffering from fatigue, fever, body aches, skin rash, etc., collagen deficiency could be one reason. Moreover, its deficiency can also lead to other serious illnesses, such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and systemic sclerosis, etc.
Collagen hydrolysate or gelatin, extracted from animal bones, can be used to relieve joint pain. Besides citrus fruits, bone broth, chicken, and fish, you can also get it from the supplements.
8. Maintain a Stable, Healthy Weight
In today's day and age, one of the most difficult and challenging tasks is maintaining a healthy and stable weight, which also plays an important role in maintaining bone health.
Studies say that there is a direct relationship between weight and bone health. Therefore, we need to maintain a healthy weight. Apart from that, our bone also responds negatively to the repetitive cycle of losing or gaining weight. This also leads to the loss of bones. Hence, it is very crucial to maintain a healthy and stable weight.
Females are more likely to suffer from different bone-related problems. Postmenopause women lose estrogen, which also protects bone; the middle-aged women with excessive fat possess more risk of fracture. In younger women, reduced bone mineral density is a major problem caused primarily due to low body weight.
It is advised that everyone maintain a normal or a bit higher than normal weight for protecting and keeping good bone health.
9. Magnesium and zinc for bone health
Including magnesium and zinc in our regular diet is as important as including calcium and protein or bone health.
Recent studies on more than 70,000 women say that those women who consumed good amounts of magnesium per day have a higher bone mineral density than those who consumed less magnesium. Magnesium can be gained by eating foods such as nuts, tofu, dark chocolates, and in some seeds.
Zinc increases the cell, which formulates bones and prevents bones from breakdown. That is why zinc is essential for children's growth.
Dairy products, oysters, red meat, nuts, and whole grains are some food rich in zinc.
Bone Health is an important part of the overall health of an individual. As we have outlined, there are many natural remedies in treating and improving bone health. If you are suffering from joint-pain or feeling weakened due to long days at work and hectic schedules, try these natural methods. They can surely help you with improving bone health. They are more than just a solution. They are a part of an overall healthy lifestyle.