How often do you think about your bones? Likely not often – unless you break one or have pain.
But your bones support your body, protect your brain, heart and organs from injury, and store minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. Pay some mind to your bones to keep your whole body healthy.
Your bones are constantly changing. Every day your body breaks down old bone and builds new in its place. As you get older, your bones break down more than adding new, which is normal. But keeping your bones healthy can keep you from getting osteoporosis, which is a disease where bones become weak and more likely to break. People with the disease often break bones in the wrist, spine or hip.
Risk factors for osteoporosis include:
- Diet: Not getting enough calcium or vitamin D can increase your risk.
- Lack of physical activity: Bones stay stronger with regular exercise.
- Age: As you get older, your chances of getting osteoporosis increase.
- Smoking and alcohol: Cigarettes can keep your body from using calcium, and drinking a lot of alcohol increases your risk.
How can you help keep your bones strong? Eat a well-balanced diet rich in calcium and Vitamin D. Low-fat dairy products are a good source of calcium, and there are also supplements to add calcium to your daily diet. Foods high in vitamin D include egg yolks and fish. Stay physically active. Your bones will get stronger with exercise. Strength-building and weight-bearing activities such as walking and lifting weights are especially good for bone health.
Talk to your doctor if you have any risk factors for bone disease. Your skeleton thanks you!
Content by Lockton Dunning Benefits with info from: https://www.bones.nih.gov/health-info/bone/bone-health/bone-health-life-health-information-basics-you-and-your-family