Foods for Strong Bones

Foods you should be eating for strong bones

Osteoporosis is a condition where bones weaken and are more likely to fracture. It is a condition that affects women more than men, typically after menopause. Even though there are many treatments for osteoporosis, there unfortunately is no cure. The best treatment is prevention.

Being active plays a major role in maintaining bone density, however, there are some foods that you can add to your diet to assist in keeping you bones nice and strong.

Calcium

One of the main minerals your body needs to maintain bone density is calcium. Calcium has many functions; it helps keep your bones and teeth strong, assists in the maintaining normal function of the heart and nerves, and assists in preventing blood clots. When we don’t ingest enough calcium in our diet, our body extracts it from our bones for these other functions, ultimately weakening our bones. It’s very important that we meet our daily requirements of calcium.

What are some good food sources of calcium?

  • Dairy products: milk, yogurt and cheese
  • Green leafy vegetables: Kale, broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts and cauliflower
  • Fish: Salmon and sardines
  • Nuts: Almonds and Brazil nuts
  • Tofu
  • Whey protein
  • Fortified breakfast cereals

Vitamin D

In addition to calcium, it is important that we obtain enough Vitamin D to keep our bones strong. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and it is necessary for calcium absorption. You could argue it is just as important as calcium in maintaining bone strength.

UV exposure is the best source of vitamin D. Getting 10 to 15 minutes of sunlight on you face, hands, arms and back without sunscreen, twice a week is enough to acquire the required amount of vitamin D. If you have trouble obtaining vitamin D from the sun, it is wise to start adding foods that contain it to your diet.

Foods that are a good source of vitamin D:

  • Fish: Salmon, mackerel and tuna
  • Eggs
  • Orange Juice
  • Soy milk
  • Fortified cereals

Protein

It is also important to add high protein foods to your diet. There have been numerous studies that have shown the positive effect a high protein diet has on bone mineral density. Studies also found that there is a significantly lower number of hip fractures in people with high protein diets.

Foods with high protein content:

  • Meat
  • Seafood
  • Poultry
  • Eggs
  • Tofu
  • Lentils

It is very important that we keep our bones nice and strong, as osteoporotic fractures are the leading cause of disability. So get active and make sure you get enough bone strengthening foods.