4 Smart Bone-Strengthening Changes
If you’re looking to reduce your chances of experiencing fractures and other issues associated with the 200-plus bones in your body, or you happen to be at risk for developing the bone-thinning disease known as osteoporosis, here are four bone-strengthening resolutions you may want to include on your personal to-do list.
1. Get More Calcium from Non-Dairy Sources
You’re probably aware that calcium contributes to strong, healthy bones. But if not being a big fan of dairy products has kept you from making calcium part of your diet, you can still up your calcium intake. Fruits, certain green leafy veggies, grains, almonds, sardines and canned salmon, and beans and lentils are also excellent sources of calcium.
2. Watch Your Alcohol Consumption
It’s fine to raise a glass to celebrate happy occasions However, the key word when it comes to alcohol and bone strength is moderation. There’s research suggesting that heavy drinking contributes to frequent fractures, decreased bone formation, and a boost in bone breakdown.
3. Add Weight-Bearing Exercises to Your Fitness Routine
If you already get exercise in the form of activities like swimming and bicycling, you’re on the right track health-wise. But what’s really good for your bones are weight-bearing exercises. From walking and step aerobics to hiking, jogging, and even dancing, there are plenty of options available.
4. Put Some More ‘D’ into Your Life
Vitamin D helps your body absorb the calcium it needs to keep your bones healthy and strong. If necessary, you may need a supplement to get your daily dose of vitamin D. But there are many foods loaded with vitamin D that could also help you out in the new year, including egg yolks, shrimp, tuna, mackerel, and similar fatty fish, and oysters. Adults typically need about 1,000 to 2,000 IU of vitamin D per day.
Concerns about osteoporosis shouldn’t be the only reason you resolve to keep your bones healthy. Getting into the habit of being good to your bones with your diet and exercise habits also means you’ll be more likely to enjoy many of your favorite activities without distracting pain. Plus, many of the wonderful things you can do for your bones happen to be equally beneficial for your muscles, ligaments, tendons, and joints.