Osteoporosis: 8 Tips for bone-strengthening nutrition
Lifestyle and diet have a major impact on bone health. In addition to a lot of exercises, a diet rich in calcium and vitamins is a good measure to prevent osteoporosis and strengthen the bones. Adequate intake of calcium, vitamin D and vitamin K is crucial. The most important nutrition tips according to Onmeda summarized are:
- Calcium is an essential mineral that keeps teeth and especially bones strong. Onmeda recommends taking around 1200 to 1500 milligrams a day with food.
- The easiest and fastest way to cover your daily calcium requirement is with milk, yoghurt and cheese. Top suppliers are, for example, hard cheeses such as Parmesan or Gouda.
- Mineral water also ensures a sufficient supply of calcium. At least 1.5 to 2 liters of water daily is an ideal guideline. Mineral waters containing more than 150 milligrams of calcium per liter are recommended for osteoporosis.
- Another important source of calcium are green vegetables such as kale, broccoli, lamb’s lettuce, rocket, fennel and parsley. You score twice with green vegetables: They also contain a lot of vitamin K for bone strength.
- Vitamin D improves the absorption of calcium and phosphorus. At the same time, the body needs it to absorb calcium through the intestines and build it into the bones. Your skin also produces it itself with the help of sunlight. You should therefore exercise outside regularly. This vitamin is particularly abundant in fatty sea fish such as salmon, eel, tuna, halibut, herring or mackerel.
- Since vitamin C from fruit (oranges, blackberries, figs, kiwis) and vegetables improves the calcium value, it is worth mixing dairy products with fresh fruit. (muesli, drinks) or to combine vegetables with cheese (salads, gratins).
- Nuts, seeds and legumes contain other important vitamins or proteins and should also be included in the diet, especially, sesame, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, walnuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, chickpeas. Caution: Avoid phytic acid, which is contained in wheat bran, for example.
- Beware of calcium thieves: These include foods that inhibit calcium absorption or increase calcium excretion. These are primarily alcohol, foods high in salt and fat, foods with a high phosphate content such as sausage, meat, processed cheese and convenience products, dietary fibers, and foods with a lot of oxalic acid such as spinach, chard, beetroot, rhubarb or chocolate.
Bone density increases in girls up to around the age of 15 and in boys up to the age of 20, when it reaches its maximum. From the age of 30, the bone mass decreases constantly. According to the MSD Manual, the bones in young adults thicken up to the age of 30 because more bone substance is formed than broken down. Bones are strongest at this age. After that, bone density slowly decreases. You can prevent bone loss in good time by living in a bone-friendly way. Means: being active regularly, especially in sports that put a lot of strain on the bones (strength training, climbing, hiking) and a varied diet rich in calcium. These two measures help to build up enough bone substance at a young age and later to keep the loss of bone mass within natural limits. The results of a recent study showed that a person who looks five years younger than their chronological age may have a lower risk of various age-related diseases, such as osteoporosis. (Vivian Werg)
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