Bone is crucial for the strong structure of body and health. While the requirement for healthy and strong bones are the healthy diet.
From years, healthy nutrition was responsible for the development and protection of bone health. Those nutrients are available in abundant in natural foods.
Bone health is crucial to provide protection against minor or major injury to the vital organ. A healthy bone provide protection against any external pressure.
A healthy bone is capable of absorbing most of the external pressure. But health issue arises with the weak bone as they are not able to absorb those pressure and are at high risk of fractures.
Development of healthier bones starts when we are in the womb. So it is mandatory for pregnant women to eat calcium rich foods.
At childhood, there is a quite fast development of bones. During this stage, bone development is higher that prevent development of any bone issues.
By the age 18 to 19, its development reaches at its peak 95% bone development. The growth continues in the 20s.
But by 30 these process stop. Our body stops calcium deposits leading to bone health issues.
Bone health issues arise at this period because its development stops.
Most people in the US face the problem of losing 0.5% of their bone mass every year. These rate of loss increases with age.
With the loss of its mass, the risk of osteoporosis and fractures risk increases.
Bones health issues don’t just happen with age. It is also due to an unhealthy diet that lack bone-forming nutrients. The problem also arises due to eating unhealthy foods those are increasing the loss the of bone mass.
So know the things that are good and worst for your bone health. Along with you will know the statistics that will give your proper information of bone health issues worldwide.
Bones health issues are quite a big issue. It makes it tough as it proceeds without any symptoms.
Early sign or symptom are helpful to take precaution and extra care to prevent any further health issues. But it is entirely different with bone issues.
Osteoporosis is the most common problem in elder people.
But we can’t realize the onset of osteoporosis until we face any fractures. The concern with fractures is that it takes quite long time to recover in elder people.
Osteoporosis is responsible for more than 8.9 million fractures worldwide, resulting osteoporotic fracture every 3 seconds. (1)
Osteoporosis is estimated to affect 200 million women worldwide approximately.
- Age 60 – one-tenth women
- Age 70 – one-fifth women
- Age 80 – two-fifth women
- Age 90 – two-third women
Worldwide, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men over age 50 will experience osteoporotic fractures.
10% loss of bone mass in vertebrate can double the risk of vertebral fractures while 10% mass loss in the hip can increase the risk of fracture by 2.5 times.
Prior fracture increases the risk of fractures by 86%.
The risk of the bones issue is higher in women compared to men. Women face increased risk during menopause when bone-protecting hormone level drop.
Nutrient to Build Bone
For the development of healthy bones, calcium is the most important nutrient. Without a healthy diet abundant in calcium, you can’t attain healthy bone.
As bone’s primary constituent is calcium, it is important to optimize body ability to absorb and use it.
To plays such important roles, vitamin and minerals come into light.
Low calcium is bad for our bone, but excess amount even doesn’t do good to our health. It is important to balance the calcium level without exceeding the recommended level.
For all these purposes, we need a pack of nutrients that will maintain the process smoothly.
Calcium is required in a small amount for cardiovascular contraction, muscle function, hormonal secretion through 1%.
|0–6 months*||200 mg||200 mg|
|7–12 months*||260 mg||260 mg|
|1–3 years||700 mg||700 mg|
|4–8 years||1,000 mg||1,000 mg|
|9–13 years||1,300 mg||1,300 mg|
|14–18 years||1,300 mg||1,300 mg||1,300 mg||1,300 mg|
|19–50 years||1,000 mg||1,000 mg||1,000 mg||1,000 mg|
|51–70 years||1,000 mg||1,200 mg|
|71+ years||1,200 mg||1,200 mg|
* Adequate Intake (AI)
For formation of healthy bone, calcium is required. But body don’t know how and where to use it. It needs a hormonal signal such as Vitamin D for proper formation. They are responsible for bone density.
Vitamin D role is to build bone by absorbing calcium. Calcium absorption decrease by 10-15% if our body blood level drop under 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/L). (6)
The requirement of Vitamin D varies on current blood level, geography and sun exposure.
Without Vitamin K it will be tough for the body to make the right decision while developing a stronger bone.
Vitamin C intake prevents the loss of calcium. It is highly beneficial for the elder who face bone density loss. (9)
In studies, it was also found Vitamin C reduce the risk of fracture and also quicken the healing of fractures. (10)
It suppress formation of osteoclasts (bone-destroying cells) and stimulates the production of osteoblasts (bone-building cells). Due to this process, it is helpful in constant renewal of bones, crucial to prevent fractures. (11)
Potassium is effective to counteract the increased urinary calcium loss usually caused due to high salt diet. (12)
It is also found that high salt intake increases the decay of bone by pulling calcium out of it. Potassium comes in play by limiting the damage.
It is found that 80% 0f Americans diet lack in magnesium. Lower magnesium intake increases the risk of hip fractures in both men and women. (13)
Research concluded that Magnesium in drinking water decreases the risk of hip fracture.
Top Food for Your Bone Health
A healthy diet is essential to get enough amount of nutrients. With a balanced nutrient, it becomes easy for the body to function properly.
Each variety of food is different in their taste as well as their nutritional value. It is essential to eat every variety of foods to maintain nutrient balance.
Fruits are a good source of nutrients that provide benefits against many health issues. They are loaded with vitamin and minerals that are required for development and protection.
But the list of fruits for bone-health is quite a few. It doesn’t mean that they are not contributing to bone health. They provide some or other nutrients that are required for bone development. Since few are considered while studies, we have mentioned those.
Want to keep your bones healthy and strong for long?
You should try oranges.
Researchers found that women taking Vitamin C supplement had a higher density of calcium than women who don’t.
Oranges are rich in Vitamin C that is used in collagen production. Collagen is a substance that forms the body’s connective tissues that includes bone.
Orange juice is not a good source of Calcium or Vitamin D. It is best preferred to choose fortified OJ.
Fortified OJ is healthy as it was found to increase the absorption due to its ascorbic acid content.
Another fruit great for bone is Grapefruit.
In one studies of Texas A&M University published that antioxidant effects of grapefruit increase the density of bone mass and also slow down its loss.
In studies on rats, not feed on grapefruit pulp showed 16%- 24% of calcium and magnesium loss in the lumbar spine. While rat fed on grapefruit pulp showed only 10%-16% loss. (16)
There are ample amount of vegetables that are healthy for bone.
For bone health, tomato has proved highly beneficial.
Tomato is an excellent source of Lycopene. Lycopene has high antioxidants property that proves beneficial in protecting from free radicals.
These antioxidants protect and stimulate osteoblasts that are essential for bone building cells that synthesize and deposit bone matrix. (17)
In a study, a group of women was deprived of lycopene. It was found that there was increased signs of damage to bone and unwanted changes in the bone tissues.
Broccoli is one of the best food for bone due its high Vitamin K, calcium, magnesium and potassium.
High Vitamin K and iron helps to maintain healthy bone density level. It is also said that Vitamin K is equally important as calcium, it acts better in development for bones. (18)
While calcium, magnesium and potassium in broccoli increase the calcium density in the bones.
Spinach is a high source of Vitamin K required for healthier development. It is healthy as it improves calcium and reduces urinary calcium loss.
It is also great source of bone-supporting nutrient calcium and magnesium.
One cup cooked spinach provides 25% of calcium along with other nutrients like fiber, vitamin and iron.
Note: Spinach contains a high amount of oxalate that disturbs calcium absorption.
6. Green pepper
Green pepper is the rich source of flavonoids that are found to provide positive result against osteoporosis.
In studies, a direct relation was found to increase the calcium density that protected from osteoporosis. No perfect answer is yet known, the benefit of flavonoids. But the antioxidants and inflammatory property have termed to be beneficial. (19)
Kale is the richest source of bone-supporting Vitamin K.
One cup of Kale contains 1062 micrograms of Vitamin K, which is 1300% of recommended daily intake.
It also contains bone-developing nutrients like calcium, Vitamin C, manganese, copper and Vitamin B6. (20)
8. Turnip green
Another vegetable containing a high amount of Vitamin K is Turnip green.
One cup turnip green provides 600 percent of Vitamin K daily recommended.
Along with it contains.
- 220 % of Vitamin A
- 66% of Vitamin C
- 42% of folate
- 20% of calcium
9. Bok choy
1 cup of Bok choy contains bone-supporting nutrients like
- 64% of Vitamin K
- 59% of Vitamin C
- 18% of potassium
- 17% of folate
- 16% of manganese
10. Collard green
Like kale, spinach and other green leafy vegetables, it contains an excellent source of bone-forming nutrients.
1 cup of colored green (190.00 grams) contains
- 858% of Vitamin K
- 49% of manganese
- 46 % of Vitamin C
- 27% of Calcium
There are lots of bone-developing pulses like Adzuki beans, Black beans, Butterbeans, Chickpeas, Kidney beans, etc.
For a healthy bone-development, our body need lot amount of nutrients. To fulfill those needs pulses proves to be a perfect food. They are loaded with protein, fiber, vitamin and mineral for overall development.
All these pulses have a great combination of calcium, magnesium and other bone-forming nutrients.
Soy is considered healthier due to its isoflavones content.
In studies, it was found that women eating soy had a slow rate of calcium loss and lower risk of osteoporosis. (21)
With isoflavones, potassium content is also responsible for healthier bones.
Fishes like tuna, salmon, mackerel and sardines are the great source of nutrients.
If you are non-vegan, then you shouldn’t miss fishes in your diet. They are a good source of nutrients that are required for the overall development of bone.
3 ounces of sardines contains 325 mg of calcium along with other bone-building nutrients. Along with tuna, salmon and mackerel are a good source of Calcium, Vitamin D and healthy fats.
If you want a healthier option rather than red meat, fishes are the best option.
14. Yogurt, milk, cheese
Want vegetarian source of bone-developing healthy nutrients?
Milk, yogurt or cheese are an excellent source of calcium, vitamin D.
A cup of yogurt contains 30% of calcium and 20% of Vitamin D required daily. While nutrient content of milk or cheese remains similar as milk is the basic element.
Eggs have been criticized for its high cholesterol content. Many people ignore as a large egg contain 185 mg of cholesterol.
But the whole thing is different. In studies conducted by Food and Nutrition Database Research Center at Michigan State University, participants eating four eggs has lower mean serum cholesterol than people who ate just one.
It is a good source of calcium absorbing nutrient, Vitamin B complex.
Sulfur content of egg makes it more beneficial as it is required for creating collagen. Bones are made from collagen matrix that is made from minerals and nutrients that provide strength and flexibility. With better flexibility they can resist breaking. (22)
Tips For Healthy Bones
1. Eat Beans
Eating beans or legumes are healthy for bones. They are an excellent source of bone-forming nutrients. But one of the nutrient known as phytates become the issue. (23)
Phytates interfere with body ability to absorb calcium. With this, we are not able to enjoy calcium content in beans.
To reduce phytates, you can soak those beans for several hours before cooking.
2. High Protein
Protein is the important nutrients that are required for formation of cells. It is important to meet the recommended intake.
But too much of protein is not good for bones. Eating high protein foods can lead to loss of calcium.
To avoid this, you can include high calcium with high protein foods to balance the loss.
3. Food Rich in Oxalate
Our body don’t absorb calcium properly if foods contain oxalate. Foods like beet green, spinach, and some beans contain oxalate that makes it inefficient for bone health.
4. Salty foods
Salty foods are not good for our bones. That food contains a high amount of sodium that result lose of calcium and also bone loss.
5. Wheat Bran
Wheat bran is high in oxalate, eating it with high calcium food won’t provide much benefits. Oxalate disturbs absorption of calcium.
Alcohol doesn’t interfere much when taken in moderate. But heavy drinking severely harms bone health.
Coffee, tea or soda in moderate amount is preferred. Exceeding the intake can cause severe loss of bone.
Excess smoking or tobacco is responsible for the loss of bone mass density. If you smoke, then you should quit it right now. It doesn’t do any good for bone or even overall health.
9. Weight Bearing Exercise
Want to boost your bone health?
Eating healthy food is the base of building a healthy bone. But apart from these, there is one best way to improve its strength and flexibility.
Bones are like cells of muscle.
When we put strain on muscles like doing strength training exercise, those cells are broken down. As we feed our body with cells forming nutrients, those cells are recovered, and stronger cells are formed.
Same things occur with bones.
Doing weight bearing exercise like weight lifting, cycling, etc. cause the breakdown of bone matrix. As we feed it with enough nutrients, those bone-matrix bonds become stronger by increasing the calcium density. (24)
10. Take Sun-bath for Vitamin D
Vitamin D is one of the nutrition that our body produce in the presence of sunlight.
Time to be spent in sun differs depending on regions and climate. 10-15 minutes are good to go.
Enjoy sunlight when it is warm but avoid harsh sunlight.
Are Supplements Good For the Bone?
Afte foods, another way to get nutrients are supplements. But being totally depending on it won’t do good.
Nutrients from fresh foods are the best way to fulfill our nutrients needs.
But many time when we don’t get enough from our diet, supplements are suggested.
Supplements are good in moderate amount but exceeding its intake can cause nutrition imbalance.
The issue occurs as supplements may contain high dose. While foods contain balanced nutrients required to build and even nutrients required to balance it.
That’s all about your bone-health. For the healthy skeletal system, you need to get healthy nutrients, adopt some healthy things and also avoid few of things.
Development of bones is done at the early stage which shouldn’t be neglected. Neglecting at that period do much more harm as we start to age.
But you don’t need to worry about the things. It’s never too late, but you need to take additional care.
By following a healthy diet and some physical activity like walking will slowly lead to perfect skeletal health.
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