Want to boost your bone power?
As we get older, the threat of osteoporosis become more and more real. Nearly 52 million Americans over age 50 have low bone density or osteoporosis according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation. According to them, 1 out of about 2 women and 1 in 4 men will break a bone thanks to osteoporosis.
As with most things, eating right and exercising can prevent osteoporosis but what exact foods and activities really make a difference.
Calcium is crucial but don’t be fooled that you can pop a supplement and up to par with your daily requirement. Calcium supplements are not well absorbed. It’s best to get it from food. Aim to get 1,000 mg a day if you’re under age 50; 1,200 if you’re 50 or over.
– brocoli, Kale & other leafy greens
Vitamin D is debatable on whether it makes much of a difference in bone health but many experts say you can’t go wrong with taking a vitamin D supplement. Especially if you live in northern states (like Indiana) where from October to April, you can’t get enough Vitamin D from the sun. Aim to get 800-1000 IU daily from food and supplements.
– Fatty Fish
– Egg Yolk
– Some types of orange juice
– Fortified Milk and Cereal
– Cod Liver Oil
Magnesium is a multipurpose mineral that helps your bones form and regulates vitamin D levels. According to research, supplements may help to prevent bone loss. Aim for 320 mg daily.
– Black beans
– Whole wheat bread
– Brown Rice
Vitamin K helps blood clot but it also plays a role in bone health. BUT, experts don’t recommend taking a supplement. Instead, aim for 90 mcg daily from food sources.
– Leafy Greens: Spinach, Kale, Romaine, & Lettuce
– Brussel Sprouts
If you want to tackle two or more of the above with one snack, try spinach. Just 1/2 cup gives you 122 mg of calcium, plus bone building magnesium and vitamin K. Also snack on almonds. Just 1/4 cup offers 94 mg of calcium, filling fiber and healthy fats.
What do you eat to keep your bones strong? Have you or someone you know been diagnosed with osteoporosis?