One of the reasons that healthcare is so expensive is that the option that costs more is usually pushed more than inexpensive options. Falls, particularly in the elderly, are a major cause of illness and can at times be the trigger for admission to a care facility for someone who previously lived independently. This is not just because of the fall but is usually compounded by a hospital stay, which is always debilitating. Without bones, we wouldn’t be able to move or do things to lead a physically dynamic life. Lost, broken, or cracked bones are painful, and they compromise our quality of life until they are repaired. That is why it is vitally important to maintain healthy bones throughout our lives, beginning from the time we are young and continuing through the senior years. In this article we will look upon healthy foods for your bones to keep you strong— read on to learn more.
Healthy Foods for Your Bones
Bones need calcium and other nutrients to get strong and remain so. Lacking proper nutrition, they can grow soft or weak. Eventually they begin to decay, which can lead to serious problems like fractures, falls, and immobility as we age. As the medical community becomes more knowledgeable about how to protect human bones and keep them working better for longer periods of time, they inform patients about simple but basic lifestyle changes that can have a positive influence on our skeletal framework. There are many different healthy foods for your bones, and this can set you up for living a long, healthy life.
You heard your mother say it when you were younger— you hear your doctor say it even now—“If you don’t drink your milk, your bones will get weak”. Weak bones, joint pains due to lack of calcium and other vitamin deficiencies are fast becoming common. If you are among those who suffers from either, it is important you eat healthy foods for your bones. There are plenty of bone building foods that contribute to stronger bones, lesser joint pains and healthier bodies.
Top 7 healthy foods for your bones that are rich in Calcium, Magnesium and Vitamin D, and K and are thus extremely good for your bones:
Most nuts, particularly walnuts contain omega 3 fatty acids that help in reducing bone breakdown. Brazil nuts are a great source of magnesium, much needed for bone formation and strengthening. Peanuts and almonds are packed with potassium and are an excellent source of protein which helps keep the bones strong.
Milk and most dairy products like cheese and yogurt are excellent sources of calcium. Everybody knows the role calcium plays in building strong bones, teeth and nails. Thus at least 2 cups of milk and milk products must be consumed daily to get the body’s required calcium content.
Almost all seeds like flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and even sesame seeds are extremely rich in nutrients and vitamins, specifically the bone building mineral magnesium.
4. Leafy Vegetables
Vitamin K cuts calcium loss in urine and its deficiency is known to increase the risk of hip fractures. Leafy green vegetables contain Vitamin K, Calcium and Magnesium which are crucial to bone development.
The yolk of an egg can give you about 6% of the Vitamin D required by your body. Whole eggs are thus considered very good for bones. They are also high in protein.
6. Soy Milk
Lactose intolerance is common among Americans and soy milk is thus an excellent option for all those looking to get their dose of calcium. Tofu is another food rich in calcium that can be consumed for better bone density.
Sardines, salmon and Tuna are all excellent food to consume for bone building and strengthening. These fish contain extremely high levels of vitamin D and also omega 3 fatty acids essential for health and constant bone formation.
Multivitamins and calcium supplements will provide only so much of the required vitamin content of your body. Moreover, they are expensive and not always natural. Bones are made up of live cells that break down and build up every day and to assist and speed up this process, particularly of formation, ample amount of healthy foods for your bones must be consumed. Most foods that contain Vitamin D and K or are rich in Calcium and Magnesium are perfect for strong, healthy bone.
So if our aim is to reduce fracture rates, then we should be interested in ways to prevent falls. The best way to do this is through healthy foods for your bones and regular exercises so that muscles / coordination remain as good as they can be. Recent studies have shown that older people who participate in martial arts classes or regular dancing reduce their fall and fracture rate. Both are obvious forms of exercise. In addition to this they both, in different ways, emphasize co-ordination and balance. These are important in preventing falls.
Furthermore if we are really interested in our bones then we can be doing things to care for them. Adequate intake of green vegetables for calcium and minimizing sugary foods (which leach calcium out of the bones) is important. Regular aerobic and resistance exercise keeps the bones and muscles strong. The other key component is vitamin D, which you can get from being in the sun. One of the tragedies of elder care is to see older folks denied fresh air and sunshine. Rather than giving them tablets for their bones, how about letting them sit in the sun for 15 minutes or so per day so they do not become vitamin D deficient?
So rather than see loss of bone strength as a disease needing pills, we need to see it as a consequence of not looking after our bones. Whilst sooner is better, it is never too late to start caring for your bones.
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