Food and Exercise Tips for Bone Health

All about Super Food and Exercise for Bone Health

Bones set the foundation for life as we know it in our bodies. They give us shape, help us to stand tall, and keep everything in place. It’s important to give them as much love and attention as we can. Through diet and exercise, you can build up your bones to be bigger and stronger.

Defining Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis, or porous bone, is a condition where the body’s bones become weak and brittle. When healthy, the body removes and creates new bone tissue perfectly. In osteoporosis, the body is getting rid of bone tissue faster than it can make more. This leads to bones that appear porous and increases the chance of fracture.

Foods for Bone Health

The foods eaten day after day can have a big impact on your bone health. Regularly choosing fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds, low-fat dairy, and fish are some of the best foods to try.

Fruits: Papaya, orange, raisins, banana, plantains, prunes, grapefruit, strawberries, pineapples…

Vegetables: Spinach, kale, collard greens, mustard greens, broccoli, potatoes, bell peppers, brussels sprouts…

Legumes: Chickpeas, black beans, pinto beans, kidney beans, lima beans, black-eyed peas…

Whole Grains: Oats, brown rice, barley, millet, bulgur, buckwheat…

Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, pecans, walnuts, pistachios, cashews, Brazil nuts…

Dairy Products: Low-fat or non-fat yogurt, milk, and cheese

Fish: Canned sardines, salmon, mackerel, and tuna

In the interest of bone health, it’s important to note there are some foods that could put a damper on your efforts to build stronger bones. Limiting your salt intake, moderating your alcohol and caffeine intakes, and limiting your intake of soft drinks are some additional recommendations.

Exercising for Bone Health

Bones become bigger, stronger, and denser the more you place demands on them. If you do not engage in an activity that puts stress on your bones, then they do not receive any messages that they need to be strong. Those who do not exercise run the risk of having lower bone mass or density.

When you engage in weight-bearing exercise, your brain sends a chemical message to your bones that tells them to be ready to handle the weight and impact.

There are two types of exercises that are important for building and maintaining bone mass and density: weight-bearing and resistance exercises.

Weight Bearing Exercise

Weight-bearing exercises are those that make your body work against gravity, such as running, walking, stair-climbing, dancing, and tennis. These are exercises in which your feet and legs are bearing your weight. Each time your foot hits the ground you apply stress to your bones, which respond by maintaining or sometimes increasing their strength, which can be measured in terms of increased bone mineral density.

The higher the impact of the activity contact, the greater the benefit to your bones. Therefore weight-bearing exercises that include running or jumping are of greater benefit to your bone health than gentler weight-bearing exercises such as walking. Swimming and bicycling are not weight-bearing, although they are great aerobic exercises.

To maintain the bone-strengthening benefits of weight-bearing exercise, you need to keep up the exercise regularly, for the long term. If you stop exercising, the benefit wears off. Experts advise 30 minutes of weight-bearing exercise every day to maintain bone health.

Also, try the smart ways of working out at home.


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Post updated in October 2021