Your bones do a lot to help you move and function and serve as protection for your internal organs. They also store minerals such as calcium and phosphorus, which they release when the body needs them for other uses. Bone strength and size is measured according to bone density. Loss of bone strength can lead to fractures.
Menopausal women are at greater risk of developing osteoporosis. This is a bone disease characterized by rapid bone loss. With osteoporosis, bones become very fragile and fracture easily. A mere sneeze could lead to a bone fracture. There are things that you can do to improve your bone density.
5 Tips for Stronger Bones
Get enough calcium. Calcium is the building block of bones, and you can get much of it from the food you eat. If you do not get calcium from the food you eat, your body will take the calcium stored in your bones to supply the rest of the body. Over time, your bones will become weaker. Men and women under the age of 50 need 1,000 mg of calcium daily. Add 200 mg to that once you reach the age of 50. Foods rich in calcium include dairy, collard greens, sardines, salmon, soy products, and fortified almond milk, orange juice, and cereal.
Get enough vitamin D. Vitamin D improves your body’s absorption of calcium. The best way to get it is through sun exposure from 11 am to 3 pm. During winter, people who live in high latitude areas may not get enough sunlight to produce vitamin D, so supplementation may be the best option. Adults between the ages of 51 to 70 need 600 international units (IU) of vitamin D. Those above the age of 70 need at least 800 IU a day.
Get down or up to a normal weight. Maintaining a normal weight is also critical to good bone density. Exercising helps create stronger bones by regulating the weight. Some exercises can help improve your balance, such as tai chi, which also helps prevent falls that lead to fractures.
Ditch smoking and cut down on alcohol. Reduce alcohol consumption and quit smoking for they contribute to the weakening of the bones.
See a bone specialist. If you are concerned about bone loss, and you have a health condition that puts you at risk of osteoporosis, an orthopedic doctor can detect early bone thinning and provide treatment options to prevent fractures.
Bone and Joint Center in North Dakota
Our orthopedic surgeons at The Bone & Joint Center specialize in the treatment of bone and joint issues, including osteoporosis. There are many nonsurgical options available to you should you have early signs of bone density loss; bone density testing will be performed. To schedule an appointment with a bone and joint physician, call (701) 946-7400 / (866) 900-8650 or use our convenient online form.