Osteoporosis is a complex condition resulting in reduced bone mass and weakened internal bone structure, leading to increased likelihood of bone fractures.
Most individuals lose bone mass as a natural consequence of aging, but it is when this bone loss goes beyond what is normal that osteoporosis occurs.
It is more common in females than in males, with the condition occurring in one of every four post-menopausal women.
Dietary Guidelines That May Be Beneficial
- Consume more nutrient-dense foods including fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans, and fish.
- The following therapeutic foods include nutrients like calcium, Vitamin D, magnesium, Vitamin K, zinc, and boron that are important for bone health:
- Green Leafy Vegetables – kale, collard greens, spinach
- Whole grains – brown rice, buckwheat (kasha), quinoa, amaranth, barley, oats
- Nuts and Seeds – almonds, sesame seeds, brazil nuts, cashews, pumpkin seeds
- Legumes – soy beans, black beans, lentils, pinto beans, soybeans
- Fish – salmon, oysters, cod, mackerel
- Sea Vegetables – kelp, arame, hijiki, dulse, kombu, nori
- Fresh Fruit – blackberries, grapes, apples, bananas, peaches, pears
- Dairy Products – yogurt, ricotta cheese, cottage cheese, milk.
- Consume moderate amounts of protein (neither too little nor too much).
- Reduce consumption of alcohol, cigarettes, caffeine, and sodium. All have been shown to increase bone loss.
Nutrition and Activity
- Recent studies have shown that the risk of osteoporosis is lower for people who are active, who are not underweight, and especially those who do load-bearing, or weight-bearing activities at least three times a week.
- The best exercises for building bone are weight- or load-bearing exercises. These include weight lifting, jogging, hiking, stair-climbing, step aerobics, dancing, racquet sports, and other activities that require your muscles to work against gravity.
- Thirty minutes of weight-bearing exercise two to three times per week benefits not only the bones, it also improves heart health, muscle strength, coordination, and balance.
- If you already have osteoporosis, speak with your doctor to learn what types of exercises you can safely do to preserve bone, and to strengthen your back and hips without causing harm.
Source: National Institutes of Health
http://www.osteo.org/default.asp & http://ag.arizona.edu/maricopa/fcs/bb/exercise.html