5 ways to prevent Osteoporosis naturally …

Often when we see bones, they are dry and brittle but in our bodies they are living, growing tissues made of a soft collagen framework and minerals for strength and hardness, to be strong and flexible under stress. Bones can be thought as a bank where you deposit and withdraw tissue. When growing, we deposit new bone faster than old bone is withdrawn, but after age 40, bone withdrawals can begin to go faster than deposits, leading to Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis increases our risk of fractures and breaks but, in many cases, is preventable.

How can I prevent Osteoporosis?

1. Diet

Calcium, magnesium and vitamins D, E and K2 can be used to support bone health. Find them in nuts and seeds; yoghurt and other dairy products; sardines, salmon, tuna; eggs and green leafy vegetables. Include 3+ servings of calcium rich foods in your daily diet. If your intake isn’t reaching the RDI of 1000mg (1300mg for women over 50 years), try a supplement of 500-600mg calcium with your evening meal.

2. Vitamin D

Vitamin D is made in the skin from sunlight and is needed to help calcium absorb into the body. An indoor lifestyle or careful sun protection can lead to deficiencies. Although we still need to “slip, slop, slap”, a walk with arms exposed for 7 minutes mid-morning or mid-afternoon in summer (up to 40 minutes in winter) is likely to help maintain adequate levels.

3. Activity

“Exercise is necessary for helping to build strong bones and muscles, but your bones respond better to particular types of exercises” Greg Lyubomirsky, Osteoporosis Australia.

Jogging, brisk walking and tennis are good weight-bearing exercises. Balance training (such as tai chi) may also be useful in preventing falls.

4. Limit alcohol to less than two drinks a day

5. Don’t smoke

    Talk to your doctor if you are concerned about your bone density and see more information at  www.osteoporosis.org.nz.



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