Because 70 % of our bone future is due to heredity, you’re at larger danger for osteoporosis when you’ve got a household historical past of the illness — however that doesn’t imply you possibly can’t help form the health of your bones.
We actively construct bone till our mid-20s, then we begin to slowly lose bone mass. One in 2 women, and 1 in four males, age 50 or older will break a bone due to osteoporosis. Until they break that wrist, hip or vertebrae within the backbone, odds are they’ll do not know they’ve osteoporosis. In women, that danger of bone loss briefly accelerates for about 5 years post-menopause. While it’s greatest to develop bone-healthy habits in childhood, you’ll be able to take motion at any age to enhance each bone and muscle health, even when your genes could also be working towards you.
Why is muscle necessary? Maintaining muscle as you age makes it extra doubtless which you can cease a fall — and stop a fracture — for those who lose your stability.
1. Don’t worry calcium
You know that calcium is necessary for robust bones — however you might also be involved that calcium dietary supplements improve the danger of heart problems. Andrea Singer, M.D., F.A.C.P., C.C.D., National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) trustee and medical director, says that calcium consumption from meals and dietary supplements that doesn’t exceed 2000-2500 milligrams (mg) per day ought to be thought-about protected from a cardiovascular standpoint, based mostly on a current rigorous evaluation of the proof by the NOF and the American Society of Preventative Cardiology.
2. Supplement calcium well
The NOF recommends that women underneath age 50 get 1,000 mg of calcium per day and women 50 and older get 1,200 mg. Men age 70 and youthful want 1,000 mg per day, these 71 and older want 1,200 mg. “Obtaining calcium from food sources is preferred,” Singer says. “Supplemental calcium can be safely used to make up any shortfalls in your diet.”
Three. Look past the apparent
Calcium-rich meals past dairy merchandise embrace canned sardines and salmon that also have their bones, tofu made with calcium, tempeh, calcium-fortified soymilk, and a few darkish leafy greens. Collard greens, broccoli rabe, turnip greens and kale are the most effective of the bunch.
four. Don’t block calcium
Spinach and beet greens include oxalic acid, which makes their calcium unavailable to us. Cooking significantly reduces oxalic acid, and consuming a meals with oxalic acid doesn’t have an effect on absorption of calcium from different meals you eat throughout the identical meal. One meals that may block calcium absorption is wheat bran — in case you eat wheat bran cereal with milk, you’ll solely take in a number of the milk’s calcium.
5. Load up on produce
A eating regimen wealthy in fruit and veggies creates an surroundings within the physique that forestalls bone and muscle breakdown. Antioxidants and different vitamins, like potassium, in produce help forestall calcium loss. Produce and plant meals embrace nonetheless extra vitamins that Singer says are good for bone health, together with magnesium and nutritional vitamins Okay and C.
6. Stock up on vitamin D
Vitamin D is important for absorbing calcium, however it additionally helps construct muscle. When uncovered to the solar, your pores and skin produces vitamin D. However, most of us shield our pores and skin from the solar. Food sources embrace fatty fish, and fortified meals corresponding to milk and most soymilks. Mushrooms include variable quantities. Taking 800-1,000 IUs of supplemental vitamin D with meals is really helpful for osteoporosis prevention for those who don’t get sufficient via eating regimen, particularly when you reside in northern states the place vitamin D manufacturing from sunshine publicity could also be restricted.
7. Power up with protein
Adequate — however not extreme — protein is sweet for each muscle and bone. Divide your weight in kilos in half to estimate your protein objective in grams. So, should you weigh 150 kilos, goal for about 75 grams of protein per day.
eight. Calm Inflammation
Omega-Three fatty acids, each EPA and DHA from fatty fish and ALA from walnuts and flax seed, can help scale back irritation within the physique–necessary, as a result of irritation can speed up bone loss.
9. Get — and keep — lively
Weight-bearing train — strolling, operating, power coaching — stimulates bone-building exercise and builds and maintains muscle mass. Exercises that help enhance stability may also help keep away from falls.
10. Avoid “bad to the bone” behaviors
These embrace smoking, and extreme consumption of alcohol, caffeine and sodium, all of which may improve calcium loss. Yo-yo weight-reduction plan has additionally been proven to scale back bone density.
Carrie Dennett, M.P.H., R.D.N.