Osteoporosis Foods rich in calcium and vitamin D are particularly good for increasing bone density. These are the most well-known nutrients when we think of bones, but others also play an important role, including vitamin C, potassium and magnesium. That’s why any diet aimed at preventing bone loss should be balanced and contain plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and lean protein sources.
Some foods are better than others in this regard, so we present 7 foods that are particularly recommended for the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis. It’s important to take this disease seriously, because even if the symptoms are painless, the result is a much higher risk of bone fractures, which take a long time to heal and can leave you vulnerable to systemic infections.
But don’t worry – these are all good foods. Number 6, in particular, is a versatile substitute for what most of us eat way too much of.
Can you guess what it is? Read on to find out the answer to this question and many others about protecting your bone health.
We tend to think of dairy products as the only source of calcium, but it’s actually found in many different vegetables. Dark leafy greens like kale, kohlrabi, bok choy, Chinese cabbage and kohlrabi contain a lot of calcium.
But that’s not all. They also contain a good amount of vitamin K, which is known to further reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
Potatoes Help Combat Osteoporosis
Lesser known than calcium and vitamin D, magnesium and potassium are no less important for bone health. Better yet, these nutrients work together to protect your bones. A magnesium deficiency can throw off the balance of vitamin D. Potassium, meanwhile, is able to neutralize acids in your body that would otherwise leach calcium from your bones.
Both sweet and white potatoes are a rich source of magnesium and potassium. Just be sure to bake or boil them rather than fry them in oil to preserve their health value.
Citrus Help Combat Osteoporosis
Everyone knows that citrus fruits are an excellent source of vitamin C. But you may not have known that vitamin C plays an important role in preventing bone loss. This is because vitamin C is necessary for the formation of collagen, the fibrous part of bones and cartilage.
For women, however, there is bad news. Studies have shown that vitamin C supplementation is more effective in maintaining bone density in men. But you shouldn’t stop eating citrus just because you’re a woman. Vitamin C is important for many things, including smooth, youthful-looking skin. Just one grapefruit or orange is enough to cover your daily needs.
Fish Help Combat Osteoporosis
Many types of oily fish contain large amounts of vitamin D, which helps the body utilize calcium. Fish also contain omega-3 fatty acids, which can contribute not only to bone health, but also to joint and cardiovascular health.
Salmon, in particular, is a good source of potassium, and canned salmon also contains calcium. The reason it contains calcium is that the small, soft bones are packed with meat. The same is true of sardines. You won’t even notice the bones, but if that bothers you, you can still eat canned or fresh salmon, mackerel and tuna fillets.
Almonds Help Combat Osteoporosis
In addition to their high calcium and potassium content, almonds are very versatile and easy to incorporate into your diet. They can be eaten by the handful as a snack, chopped and roasted to top crunchy salads or crushed with a little salt to make a tasty nut butter to spread on whole grain bread.
Almonds contain a certain amount of fat, but this should not be a cause for concern, as it is not necessary to eat a lot of them to retain their nutritional value.
Replacing refined white sugar with other sweeteners whenever possible is a good strategy. Sugar is one of the biggest threats to public health today for many reasons. As for osteoporosis, we know that sugar can weaken bones.
Molasses, on the other hand, is a natural sweetener that also contains calcium. Try substituting molasses when baking or mixing it into yogurt, oatmeal or smoothies.
Milk, orange juice, cereals and plant-based breads are often fortified with more calcium and vitamin D. Even if you don’t like dairy products or are vegan, you can still get the powerful combination of vitamins that should always be your starting point for building and maintaining bone density.
It’s a good idea to buy more fortified foods during the winter months when you don’t get much sun. When the days get shorter and it’s too cold to spend much time outdoors, you’re often deficient in vitamin D, which the body synthesizes under the influence of sunlight. Fresh leafy green vegetables, which are necessary for calcium, are also unavailable in winter.
The structure of the skeleton allows all other parts of the body to stay in place and perform their functions. Osteoporosis significantly weakens bones and is a dangerous disease, not because it is in itself painful or deadly, but because it weakens the foundation of your body. Loss of bone mass and density means that parts of your body can break at the slightest bump or bruise.
Fortunately, diet can go a long way toward maintaining or even correcting bone loss. Talk to your doctor about your risk factors for osteoporosis when you turn 50. But even before then, you should start including more of these bone-strengthening foods in your diet. Keeping your bones strong and avoiding osteoporosis is a lifelong job.