Keep Bones Healthy – Bone Up on Bone Health
Bone up on bone health and nutrition with lifestyle changes so you can stand up for your lifetime. Osteoporosis is a silent disease. Often, people don’t even know they have it until they fracture a bone. The facts are that more than 10 million Americans have osteoporosis, most of them are women. Another 34 million Americans are at risk for bone density disease. The results of poor bone health is more profound than simply fractures however. The outcomes of the disease can even be fatal. It is important to bone up on bone health and nutrition to prevent this debilitating and potentially fatal disease.
Osteoporosis can lead to:
- Decreased mobility and function
Risk Factors of Bone Disease:
- Thin Physique
- Family History
- Specific diseases
- Specific Medications
- Sedentary Lifestyle
- Poor Nutrition
- Excessive Alcohol
- Caffeine Consumption
Bone Up Against Osteoporosis
Are you at risk for poor bone health? Do you have osteoporosis already? There is some good news. Bone loss and osteoporosis can be prevented and it can be treated. Nutrition and exercise are key to maintaining your bone health. A simple, painless bone scan can determine if you are losing too much bone density and can be a diagnostic tool in the treatment of osteoporosis. Ask you doctor for an evaluation if you feel you are at risk for this debilitating disease. Then bone up against osteoporosis with some lifestyle changes.
- Regular bone stimulating exercise is the number one most important thing you can do to maintain you bone health. Examples include weight-bearing exercises such as jogging, walking, yoga, aerobics and resistance exercises with weights or bands. In fact strength training twice a week preserves bone density in post menopausal women.
- Feed your bones with the nutrition they need. Your bone health nutrition should include protein, calcium, magnesium, potassium, copper, boron, phosphorous and vitamins A,C,D and K. Dark green leafy vegetables are over flowing with bone health nutrients. Some of these choices include spinach, kale, bok choy and chard.
- Vitamin D is found in very few foods. We get most of our vitamin D from the sunshine. Since I know you wear your sun screen, it is likely you are not getting enough vitamin D because sunscreen interferes with vitamin D production in the body. You are not alone. Approximately 60% of adults have insufficient levels of this important bone nutrient. Vitamin D is necessary for calcium absorption. Many studies have concluded that people with low levels of vitamin D have poor bone health. Food sources of vitamin D include fatty fish such as salmon and tuna, beef liver, egg yolks, and fortified milk, soy and orange juice. Yet, many doctors and nutritionists recommend vitamin D supplements. Check with your physician for dosing but most people through age 700 need 600IU (international units) per day and for people 71 and over 800IU is recommended. Simple blood tests can ascertain whether you have adequate levels of vitamin D. Again, if you think you are at risk for bone disease, bone up by asking your doctor for this important test.
- Calcium is another imperative bone nutrient. As I stated, without the vitamin D our bodies can not absorb calcium. So even if you think you are getting enough calcium, without vitamin D you may be deficient in your calcium. If your diet does not give you adequate daily calcium you doctor will likely recommend a calcium supplement to go with your vitamin D. Recommended doses are usually 1000mg for people 19-50 and 1200 mg for women over 50 and men over 70. Do not exceed over 2000mg daily as calcium supplementation has been shown to cause both heart attacks and kidney stones. Always meet with your doctor before starting an over the counter supplement regime. Supplements are medications and they can have side effects.
Now that you know the risk factors of osteoporosis and you know the potential outcomes of poor bone health, won’t you join me and bone up against bone loss. Promote your bone health with exercise, nutrition, and, if necessary, supplementation. Because, to bone up means to stand up.