Essentials of Bone Health
Our bones support us and allow us to move. They protect our brain, heart and other organs from injury. Our bones also store minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. Just a few reasons why bone health is so essential to your wellbeing.
Made mostly of collagen, bone is living, growing tissue. Collagen is a protein that provides a soft frame work and calcium phosphate is a mineral that adds strength and hardens the framework. This combination of collagen and calcium makes bone strong and flexible enough to withstand stress. More than 99% of the body’s calcium is contained in the bones and teeth. Good sources of calcium include milk, cheese and other dairy products, green leafy vegetables soya beans and nuts. Good sources of vitamin D include oily fish, eggs yolks, fortified foods such as breakfast cereals and sunshine. You also need to be careful of eating foods that can be bad for your bone health such as Cola
Poor bone health can lead to conditions such as rickets and osteoporosis and an increased risk of breaking a bone from a fall later in life. Insufficient levels of calcium and vitamin D ( essential for calcium absorption ) can lead to a reduction in bone density and an increased risk of osteoporosis. In older people, the gut absorbs less calcium. Vitamin D levels also tend to decrease reducing the amount of calcium available for the bones.
How to Strengthen Bones in Old Age
There are many things that we can do to keep our bones healthy and strong as we age such as eating foods rich in calcium and vitamin D and exercising regularly. Exercise is important for preserving bone density and some of the best exercises include weight bearing activities such as walking, using free weights, resistance training, and hiking, climbing stairs or dancing. If you have osteoporosis, avoid activities that involve twisting your spine or bending from the waist such as sit-ups, toe touches or swinging a golf club. Always consult your health care provider before engaging in any strenuous activities.
The fear of falling becomes more common as people age and may lead older persons to avoid being active. Overcoming this fear can help maintain your health and prevent future falls.
It’s true that our bones lose strength as we get older, but even in later years there are many things we can do to prevent falls and fractures. Remaining active along with a healthy diet will prevent your bones from losing strength