Fighting osteoporosis is a matter of healthy habits. Here are some helpful tips to keep our bones healthy and strong even as we age.
Weak, brittle bones, prone to fractures and injuries, can be a warning sign for osteoporosis. In Italy, 8.1% of the population suffers from this condition, which, although not painful until -unfortunately- the bone is injured, is best prevented before being treated. There are so many good habits that help fight osteoporosis and they are all precious for taking care of the bones, keeping them healthy, robust and strong even as age inevitably progresses.
Indeed, it is precisely as age progresses that bone tissue is rapidly lost (in women, especially after menopause). And it is for this reason that knowing tips and suggestions useful for fighting osteoporosis is so important. Here are some methods and good habits to put in place to prevent this annoying condition.
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It may seem obvious, but unfortunately it is not, physical exercise, movement, cadenced and constant training are essential to prevent osteoporosis and beyond. Releasing stress, stimulating endorphins, rediscovering psychophysical well-being, making joints more elastic and regaining lost energy are just some of the many benefits of physical activity, at all ages.
Among the great benefits is precisely that of keeping the bones stronger and healthier and of decreasing the danger of fractures and injuries. Training is in fact osteogenic and therefore proves to be of great importance both when young and in mature age, especially after menopause when bone mass is progressively reduced and there is a very rapid weakening.
Get calcium and vitamin D
To keep bones in full health, even after the forties, it is essential to take calcium and vitamin D. Building blocks of bones, these nutrients are essential for keeping bones strong and robust throughout life. Fighting osteoporosis when you don’t get enough calcium and vitamin D is a losing battle. In fact, these nutrients work in synergy to strengthen the bones of the body.
While calcium helps build and strengthen them, vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium. Without one, the other could not do its job. And it is precisely for this reason that, especially as we get older, we must make sure we get enough calcium and vitamin D.
First step: expose yourself to the sun for at least 30 minutes a day and then eat a lot of foods rich in calcium and vitamin D, such as: spinach, kale, beans, fish, eggs, seeds, cheese.
We all know the harms of nicotine consumption. Stroke, heart disease, hypertension, aging and yellowing of the skin are just some of the negative effects that active and passive smoking can bring to our body and our organism. But did you know that smoking cigarettes can contribute to the onset of osteoporosis? That’s it. Smoking increases the risk of osteoporosis, especially in us women.
According to recent clinical studies, women who start smoking in adolescence are more likely to find themselves battling osteoporosis well before menopause and with more negative effects. In fact, the bone density of adolescent smokers has a lower value than the bone density of non-smoking girls.
This means only one thing: an increased risk of injuries and fractures, even at an early age. Also in this case we understand well how prevention is definitely better than cure.
Eat a grapefruit a day
Often when we come across films or TV series from overseas, we can observe how a grapefruit is often present on their breakfast tables. Well, the reason is obvious: a grapefruit a day keeps osteoporosis away. In fact, grapefruit, in addition to promoting the proper functioning of the immune system, reducing cholesterol and purifying the liver, is also able to increase the absorption of calcium and magnesium in the bones.
And thanks to the lycopene it is rich in, it improves overall bone health. Try including a grapefruit or half a grapefruit in your daily diet, you will reap great benefits.
Mind you, a good glass of wine a day is a pleasure that we can continue to indulge in, but to fight osteoporosis, not exceeding alcohol is essential. We are well aware of the physical damage that alcohol abuse brings to the body, but perhaps we do not know that decreasing the number of alcoholic drinks and glasses of wine we allow ourselves weekly can really make a difference for our bones.
Drinking no more than one / two glasses of wine a day can be enough to ensure that alcohol does not reduce bone formation or worse, lead to vertebral deformity. Moderating alcohol intake therefore proves to be the right way to prevent the whole series of unpleasant consequences deriving from osteoporosis.
Exercise is the best habit to fight osteoporosis, but a healthy diet should not be ignored either. Eating enough calcium and vitamin D, which are key nutrients for bone health, along with a range of other vitamins and minerals can significantly improve bone density. Cutting down on foods that weaken your bones such as salt and caffeine is also important. Drinking alcohol in moderation or avoiding it altogether is advised, as well as reducing your intake of carbonated drinks. Finally, maintaining a healthy lifestyle by getting enough sleep and keeping stress levels under control are great ways to maintain strong bones and slow down the loss of bone mineral content.
Are you looking to make some healthy changes to your diet but not sure where to start? Look no further, I am here to be your personal nutrition coach!
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