Got Milk? The advertising campaign by the California Milk Processor Board raised awareness of the health benefits of milk, with one of the most prominent being its ability to contribute to building strong bones. But there’s more to building strong bones than just ending up with a milk mustache.
Bone density peaks between adolescence and young adulthood. But that doesn’t mean that osteoporosis is imminent for old age. While you age, bone density does lower, but there are ways to prevent bone loss from happening at a rapid pace by making several lifestyle choices
Lifestyle Choice #1: See Your Chiropractor
Chiropractors often treat people who are suffering from osteoporosis, but they can also help others maintain bone health. By correcting spinal misalignments with adjustments, the nervous system can function better and communicate with the rest of the body at a cellular level, affecting tissues, muscles, bones and ligaments. By maintaining properly aligned joints, the nervous system doesn’t react with pain or disease.
If bone density loss has already led to osteoporosis, seeing a chiropractor that is experienced in treating elderly patients is a good idea. The chiropractor can reduce some of the symptoms related to osteoporosis, and reduce the likelihood of future fractures.
Lifestyle Choice #2: Start Strength-Training Exercises
Since osteoporosis usually affects weight-bearing bones first, it’s important to strengthen them. While you may not completely reverse bone loss that has already occurred, a regular routine of strength-training exercises can strengthen bones and prevent fractures. Just as your muscles are built up by lifting weights, bicycling, running or walking, your major weight-bearing bones react by building new bone tissue, which increases bone density.
Lifestyle Choice #3: Eat The Right Foods
As mentioned, milk gets all the credit because of its calcium. But drinking milk isn’t the only way to increase bone density through your diet. Other foods that provide nutrients such as magnesium and alpha linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid, have been proven to help as well. Pumpkin seeds, walnuts, dark greens like spinach and kale, and beans are part of a bone-building diet.
There are also foods and dietary habits you should avoid that have been proven to reduce bone density. Caffeinated soda, a diet high in sodium, high protein diets and alcohol can interfere with calcium absorption, and over time can decrease bone density.
These three lifestyle choices can dramatically reduce bone density loss and keep you youthful.