Five Easy Tips For Better Bones

Healthy, strong bones are important for everyone. This is especially true for women as they age. Painless strategies for bone-building may be possible without drugs and with a little common sense. Build up your bone density and strength with these five easy tips for better bones.

  1. Get on the move! Exercise has been shown to improve bone strength. Increasing your activity level in small ways builds up over time to big benefits for your bones. Bone is a living tissue and responds positively to exercise, according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. People who exercise have better maximum bone density and strength than those who do not. Weight-bearing exercises are considered the best type for bone-building. Lifting weights, jogging, climbing stairs, hiking, tennis and dancing are great weight-bearing exercises.
  2. Pump up the calcium and vitamin D. Bone strength is improved at any age by the addition of calcium and vitamin D to your dietary plan. Speak with your physician about the correct amounts of these supplements to be sure that it is safe for you to take them. Vitamin D and calcium can also be increased with a good diet. Drink milk if you tolerate it well. Also drink fortified orange juice and consume dairy products. Other sources of calcium include broccoli, kale and soy-based products, such as tofu. Most adults should aim for 1,000 milligrams of calcium a day. Older adults may need to increase that amount to 1,200 milligrams.
  3. Dump the alcohol. A glass of wine here and there probably won't do you any harm, but drinking a couple or more glasses each day may be a problem. Heavy drinking is associated with many health-related issues, including osteoporosis, a condition in which bone density decreases and bone fractures increase. Excessive alcohol consumption can affect the balance of calcium and vitamin D in the body and actually causes the reduction of calcium stores.
  4. Stop smoking. Smoking is another factor in the increased risk of osteoporosis. Of the 44 million Americans who have osteoporosis, 68 percent are women. Smoking only amps up your risk factors, according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.
  5. Maintain a healthy weight. Just as being overweight can be harmful to your health, being underweight can also cause problems. Your risk factors of developing weak bones and osteoporosis increase when you are too thin. To remain healthy, your bones need the nutrition you get from eating the correct amount of healthy food. Speak with your doctor to determine a weight range that's healthy for you.
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