Our bones gain mass by around the age of 30. But bone density decreases from the age of 40 at the latest. Weaker bones are a natural sign of age. If the bone loss takes place more quickly, doctors speak of osteoporosis. Here we’ll consider a few tips to strengthen the bones.
Osteoporosis: Women Are Particularly Affected
90 percent of osteoporosis diseases are hormonal. In women, the sex hormone estrogen acts as a bone protector, in men it is testosterone. Since the hormone levels in women during and after the menopause drop significantly faster than the testosterone level in men, more women are affected by bone loss. Every third woman develops osteoporosis immediately after the menopause. A healthy lifestyle can help slow bone loss and aid in bone building.
Tip 1: Foods For Strengthen Bones
Calcium-rich foods include:
1. Milk and dairy products such as yogurt contain 120 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams.
2. Cheese contains between 400 to 900 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams.
3. Vegetables like broccoli and kale contain more than 80 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams.
4. Nuts like hazelnuts and Brazil nuts contain more than 100 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams.
5. Calcium-rich mineral water contains more than 150 milligrams of calcium per liter.
But calcium and vitamin D are not the only important foods for building bones. Magnesium is also important. About 60 % of the overall magnesium in our body is in our bones. It helps to regulate bone metabolism. Nuts, legumes, and whole-grain products contain a particularly high amount of magnesium. Spinach tops the magnesium list for vegetables and bananas and raspberries for fruit.
Tip 2: Avoid Calcium Robbers To Strengthen Bones
Just as there are good suppliers of calcium, there are also calcium robbers who either hinder the incorporation of calcium into the bones or pull calcium out of the bones. If you have a good calcium supply, you do not have to do without the ‘calcium predators’ completely. However, you should eat them in smaller quantities or at a sufficiently large distance from foods rich in calcium.
The following substances are among the calcium robbers:
Phosphate: Ingested in too large quantities, phosphate breaks down calcium from the bones. It is found in abundance in ready meals, fast food, cola and lemonades, processed cheese, meat extract, and yeast, often also in meat and sausage.
Oxalic acid: It binds calcium and prevents it from being absorbed through the intestines. Oxalic acid is abundant in black tea, spinach, and amaranth.
Table salt: Sodium promotes calcium excretion. The saltier the menu, the higher the excretion in the urine. To strengthen your bones and maintain bone strength, you should use salt sparingly.
Tip 3: Bones Need The Sun
A calcium-rich diet alone is not enough, however, to meet the body’s calcium needs. Calcium intake is one pillar, calcium utilization is the other. For the body to be able to process calcium, it needs vitamin D. Vitamin D helps absorb calcium from the gastrointestinal tract into the blood. It also regulates calcium metabolism and promotes the incorporation of calcium into the bones.
With the help of sunlight, the body can produce vitamin D itself on the skin. If you stay outdoors regularly, your body can cover up to 90 percent of its vitamin D requirements itself. Exposing yourself to the sun for a total of about five to 25 minutes a day with your face, hands and larger parts of arms and legs uncovered fulfills the daily need for Vitamin D.
In contrast to the body’s own production, vitamin D intake through diet plays a relatively minor role. The reference value for vitamin D intake is 20 micrograms per day if the body does not produce it naturally. The vitamin D requirement can be covered with 100 grams of herring fish or 125 grams of salmon fish.
This is how much vitamin D can be found in the following foods:
1. Herring Fish: up to 25 micrograms per 100 grams
2. Salmon Fish: about 16 micrograms per 100 grams
3. Chicken egg: about three micrograms per 100 grams
4. Mushrooms: about 1.90 micrograms per 100 grams
5. Cheese(Gouda): about 1.30 micrograms per 100 grams
6. Butter: about 1.20 micrograms per 100 grams
Tip 4: Strengthen Bones With Exercise
Exercise is at least as important as the supply of calcium and vitamin D. Adequate exercise is the be-all and end-all of osteoporosis prevention. Bones have to be stressed so that they do not feel superfluous. Too little exercise leads to bone mass being broken down. Movement includes not only everyday exercise and endurance sports but also weight training.
Tip 5: Strengthen Muscles
Regular muscle training strengthens and supports the skeleton, promotes a sense of balance, and is good for fall prevention. This can reduce the risk of broken bones. Muscles and bones are closely related as fewer muscles mean less bone stability.
Choose a sport that you enjoy. This will keep you motivated longer and support your bones in the long term. If you already have osteoporosis, ask the doctor to treat you which types of sport and which amount of training is suitable for you.
Tip 6: Beware Of Alcohol And Cigarettes
Caution is advised with alcohol and cigarettes. The contained toxic substances intervene in bone metabolism, promote the breakdown of bone mass, and block bone formation. In addition, inflammation in the joints is promoted and the absorption of important nutrients such as vitamins and minerals is inhibited.
Tip 7: Check With The doctor
If you are unsure about your bone health or would like to know whether your body is supplied with sufficient calcium and vitamin D, make an appointment with your orthopedic surgeon or family doctor. If you have osteoporosis or a nutritional deficiency, your doctor may prescribe you nutritional supplements to strengthen your bones.
You should not take dietary supplements without consulting your doctor, to avoid an oversupply of nutrients and possible side effects and interactions. Excessive calcium intake from dietary supplements can harm the cardiovascular system. It is also possible that calcium negatively affects the way drugs work, such as antibiotics.