Every one of us will inevitably suffer a natural degradation of bone density as we get older. But if we are mindful of this, it’s possible to take some pretty smart measures to enable us to maintain healthy strong skeletons.
When we are a child and rapidly growing we have more bone producing cells, to help us develop healthy strong skeletons. But as we age this decreases and instead we develop more cells which are created to tidy damaged cells.
This post highlights my top 5 ways to exercise and care for yourself in order to promote bone strength; what we can eat, and what we could avoid in order to help build a healthy strong skeleton.
If you have read any of my other posts here, you have probably realised that food is a massive part of my life and something that I am very much passionate about.
The body has a constant process of self-renewal, constantly creating new bone, muscle, blood, skin etc. I believe that what we put into it determines the quality of its rebuild. Foods that are high in simple sugars – sweets and fizzy drinks – don’t just promote tooth decay; they can also inhibit the body from being able to absorb bone friendly calcium. Salty foods can cause calcium to be lost via the kidneys.
Even if little is consumed, the body maintains calcium levels in the blood by sapping it directly from the bones, so it is a good suggestion to consume around 1200mg of calcium a day, this can be sought from milk, yoghurt and cheese, kale, broccoli, salmon and sardines.
Regularly blitzing the recommended alcohol limits is unhelpful for most bodily functions, but it also has a direct effect on decreasing your bone mass. Large amounts of alcohol can be toxic to ‘osteoblasts’ – the cells that synthesise new bone.
Too much caffeine is also thought to leach calcium from the bones and thus reduce their strength, as well as causing unsightly staining to the teeth and enamel degradation – reducing the amount of caffeine daily should do the job!
Movement and gentle impact can help to build bone strength, as well as any weight-bearing activity that makes us work against gravity! Thankfully that covers a huge number of active pursuits, but some of the most commonly recognised forms are:
* power walking
* stair climbing
* aerobics classes / boxercise / circuit training
* weight training
The beauty of the above is that your average day in the office might well dictate regularly climbing 4 flights of stairs, and a 15 minute walk to fetch your lunch. You should aim for 30 minutes of these activities a day as a great bone stimulating target.
Vitamin D is essential to helping your body absorb the calcium you’re consuming as part of your diet. It’s hard to synthesise, and is broadly produced when our skin is exposed to daylight and even more so in direct sunlight. Nowadays it’s also easy to pick up Vitamin D supplements to bolster your intake through diet.
Find out more about me by visiting my website www.clearlychiropractic.co.uk
By Caroline Mulliner
Call now 01323 722499