Bone Friendly Foods

Want to boost your bone power?

Healthy bonesAs 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.
–   Yogurt
–   Cheese
–   Soy
–   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.
–   Bananas
–   Almonds
–   Avocados
–   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
–   brocoli
–   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?

– S.O.
POB Agency

Healthy Holiday Eating (and Drinking)

Holiday cookiesWe definitely want you to have fun this season and we know delicious baked goodies & seasonal beverages come with the territory.  Between baking at home with your family, receiving baked goods as gifts, and attending functions with a large selection of deserts & drinks, you’re probably consuming your fair share of bulge inducing delectables.  No wonder so many people make weight-loss a part of their New years resolutions!

Here’s how you can modify a bit but still have fun and enjoy the goodies.

If you’re baking, try substituting the following:

*   Whole wheat flour, ground oats or almond meal for FLOUR.
*   Honey or Stevia for SUGAR.
*   Applesauce, mashed banana or coconut oil for BUTTER & OIL.
*   Applesauce or flax meal for EGGS.
*   Carob chips or dark chocolate chunks for CHOCOLATE CHIPS.
*   Greek yogurt for SOUR CREAM.

If you’re attending a party try the following:

*   Make the earlier part of the day extra healthy.  Have a high fiber breakfast, a vegetable filled lunch and exercise in the afternoon.
*   Eat a healthy snack before the party to ease your hunger.  We’ve heard a cup of vegetable soup does a great job.  Also try fiber filled fruit, string cheese, almonds, 4 oz. Greek yogurt or 1/2 cup of cottage cheese.
*   When you get to the party, survey and determine your options before filling your plate.  Decide which foods you like best and choose only those – don’t fill up on the others.
*   Dish out smaller portions – about 20% less than you think you might want. (How many times have your eyes been bigger than your stomach at a party)?

If you are going to indulge in Holiday Libations, here are lower calorie options:

*   Wine spritzer = White or red wine mixed with club soda
*   5 oz. of wine, 12oz. of light beer, or 1.5oz of liquor combined w/ non-calorie mixers = 120 calories each.
*   Cranberry crush = Club soda splashed with cranberry cocktail and frozen grapes
*   Guiltless hot chocolate = 1 Tbsp. cocoa powder, skim milk, low-cal sweetener, dash of cinnamon & vanilla extract
*   Apple tea = Brewed tea sweetened with a splash of apple cider and a cinnamon stick.

Do you have any tricks, tips and strategies for savoring the season without putting on the pounds?  We’d love to hear it!

Merry Christmas!!

S.O.
POB Agency