Consuming a balanced diet with plenty of fresh and colorful fruits and vegetables, whole grains, dairy products, healthy fats, and lean sources of protein are vital to your body’s overall health and to your bone health as well. When good nutrition and a well-balanced diet is a top priority, your teeth, bones and connective tissues will be stronger. Further, maintaining good nutrition will enable you to better repair bones, cartilage, ligaments, tendons, and muscles after everyday wear and tear, injuries, and surgeries. When selecting foods that will help you to maintain strong bones, it is especially important to get enough Calcium, Vitamin D, Magnesium, and L-lysine.
Calcium is very important for building bone density. Great sources of calcium include sardines, salmon, broccoli, oranges, almonds, dairy products such as cheeses and yogurts, figs, green leafy vegetables, sesame seeds, baby carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, white beans, black-eyed peas, edamame, and tofu.
Vitamin D is also very important as it prevents bone loss, helps rebuild new bone, and enables your body to absorb calcium. It is very difficult to get enough Vitamin D from diet alone, especially if you consume a natural diet. The only foods that are naturally rich in Vitamin D include cod liver oil, salmon, tuna, mackerel, and sardines. Other foods, such as milk, cereal, orange juice and yogurts have been fortified with Vitamin D. Here in Arizona, exposing your skin to the sun twice per week for five to thirty minutes during the hours of 10 am to 3 pm will usually enable your body to produce a sufficient amount of it’s own Vitamin D. It is important to not over expose your skin to the sun without wearing sunscreen, as otherwise you pull put yourself at risk for sunburn or even skin cancer. As we get older, it is important to be mindful of the fact that our body does become less efficient at making it’s own Vitamin D. Further, a very low-fat diet will prevent a person from absorbing enough Vitamin D from the foods they eat.
Magnesium is just as important as calcium for maintaining strong bones. In fact, about fifty percent of our magnesium is found in our bones and magnesium is required to move calcium into bone and to activate Vitamin D. Bananas, dark chocolate, some fatty fish, avocados, leafy greens, nuts, legumes, tofu and whole grains are all magnesium rich foods. Magnesium is lost through the urine when your stress levels are high. Many drugs taken for heart disease and also alcohol will cause magnesium loss.
When possible, it is always preferable to get adequate amounts of vitamins and minerals naturally, mostly through your diet. If you must use supplements, always be sure to speak with your primary care provider first. Not all supplements will be beneficial, and some supplements could even be harmful to your health. Stridewell Tips
Related: Worst Foods for Bone Health
L-lysine is an essential amino acid that plays an important role in growth and development, the formation of collagen, calcium absorption from the intestines, and cholesterol regulation. When a person does not get enough L-lysine, Calcium will be lost through the kidneys. Having enough L-lysine is also very important for building our body’s collagen framework. A few foods rich in the amino acid L-lysine include canned tuna, chicken breast, roast beef, pork, parmesan cheese, eggs, nuts, and legumes.
Certain people may need to use supplementation in order to get adequate Calcium, Vitamin D, Magnesium or L-lysine. If you are elderly, have digestive problems, do not get adequate sunlight, eat a very low-fat diet, are a sedentary person, or if you consume a lot of coffee or cola soft drinks, be sure to speak with your primary care provider about using a good quality supplement containing ample amounts of Calcium, Vitamin D, Magnesium, and L-lysine to protect your bones.read article