How to Build Healthy Bones as You Age
As we age, our movements and reflexes become slow, we typically tend to cut back on activity, and our bones get thinner and lose their density.
Here are some easy steps you can take that may help strengthen your muscles, add density back to your bones, and protect your joints.
Maintain a healthy body weight
Although maintaining a healthy weight sounds simple, but for many people, this is a difficult task to maintain. Our joints are weight-bearing, so keeping an optimum weight is vital to our mobility and overall health. Besides putting extra strain on your knees, hips, spine, etc., high blood pressure, diabetes risk, heart problems, and all the other things we know come with carrying excess weight.
Maintain a healthy diet
Although scientists aren’t sure why, eating a healthy diet can sometimes reduce the risk of arthritis. Ensure that you have plenty of vegetables, fresh fruits, lean proteins and whole grains, and limit your intake of foods that are processed or high in sugar, salt, fat or carbohydrates. Eating a well-balanced diet is important for maintaining your overall health, as well as for your bone, joint and muscle health.
Load up the calcium
Osteoporosis (the thinning of our bones) is very common as we age, which makes our bones more susceptible to fractures. Calcium in your diet and through vitamins is one of your most important weapons against osteoporosis.
Daily Vitamin D
Vitamin D helps keep our bones healthy. It helps our bodies absorb calcium more efficiently. Spending time in the sun can also help us get more Vitamin D but be careful to avoid sunburn and always wear sunscreen.
Get up and move
Staying active is the key to continued mobility as we age; however, it’s important to know your body and its limitations. We boost our bone strength with exercises that “load” or compress them, but those activities are harder on our joints. Before starting on any exercise regimen, check with your physician, or work with a physical therapist or personal trainer experienced in working with seniors to know what would be best for you.
Lose those bad habits
Excessive alcohol consumption and tobacco can lead to bone density loss. Try to limit yourself to one alcoholic drink per day & if you smoke, find a class that can help you quit.
Speak with an Orthopedic Specialist Today
Are you suffering from a bone-related injury? Make an appointment with one of our orthopedic specialists today to start your healing journey. OrthoArizona has 21 offices throughout the Valley, each focused on quality care, compassion, and excellent customer service. Since 1994, OrthoArizona has been dedicated to compassionate care of the highest quality.
The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.