We are constantly told to be active and exercise regularly. It is a benefit to our overall health.
There are clinically proven studies to suggest it helps with preventing the loss of calcium in our bodies as we age.
At this current time, there are millions of people across North America who are unaware that they have Osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is the loss of density in our bones and this ‘quiet destruction’ can be happening within our bodies while we are totally unaware it is going on. Not all who suffer from this disease are of old age or, just females. This debilitating disease is not gender specific.
Through a healthy diet and active lifestyle, Osteoporosis may be delayed or maybe someday preventable for most. Although there are some who cannot control the fact of having this disease.
There are some factors that could determine if you are at a higher risk of potentially suffering the early onset of this disease.
Things such as:
*Family History /Other bone diseases
*Caucasian European/ Far Eastern ancestors
*Low Body-fat count or Petite frame
*Hysterectomy or have never had children
*Have gone through early Menopause (men do this too, believe it or not) 🙂
*Allergies to dairy products (lactose intolerant)
These are just ‘Risk factors’. This is not a guarantee that you will get this disease. It just suggests you are at a higher risk of suffering from Osteoporosis. Thus, you should take extra precautions to prevent the onset of this disease.
And, for those who suffer, you can somewhat alleviate the symptoms, and slow this “quiet destruction” of your bones.
These types of exercises may not directly strengthen your bones. Although, they can help with improving your coordination, flexibility, and muscle strength. Doing this sort of daily exercise can improve stability and lower your risk of a fall, or injury.
Balance and coordination exercises such as Tai Chi strengthen your leg muscles and help you stay steadier on your feet. Posture exercises can help you prevent or slow the “sloping” shoulders that can happen with osteoporosis and lower your risk of spine fractures.
Routines such as yoga and Pilates can improve strength, balance, and flexibility in people with osteoporosis. But some of the moves you do in these programs — including forward-bending exercises — can create a risk of a fracture. If you’re interested in these workouts, talk with your doctor and ask your physical therapist to tell you the moves that are safe and those you should avoid.
Exercise can benefit almost everyone with osteoporosis. But remember it’s only one part of a good treatment plan. Get plenty of calcium and vitamin D in your diet, stay at a healthy weight, avoid cigarettes and alcohol. You also may need to work with your doctor to figure out the best ways to stay healthy and strong.
Calcium is the most prevalent mineral in the body. Average recommended daily intake is 1000 mg/day.
Calcium is required for muscle function, nerve transmission, vascular tone, and hormone secretion. Even though our body requires less than 1 % of total body calcium in order to perform these functions, the other 99 % is stored in bones, where it supports bone structure and function. The problem with a lack of calcium occurs mainly when people get older.
During the growth stages of children, going through puberty and growing into the teenage years, the growth of the bone formation and density surpasses the bone degeneration levels. This process of development slows to a more equal level in early adulthood up to our mid to late ’40s. However, after age 50, especially with post-menopausal women, bone destruction exceeds bone growth, leaving them weaker and vulnerable to fractures.
On average most women receive enough calcium in their daily diet and calcium supplements have not proven to reduce fractures in ‘otherwise healthy’ postmenopausal women. Therefore, the U.S. Preventative Task Force doesn’t recommend supplemental calcium.
A slip and fall could have devastating effects on a person who suffers from Osteoporosis. There are over 1.5 million fractures reported to hospitals every year due to a weakened bone structure of the average citizen today. The best way to avoid this problem is to eat dairy products such as milk, yogurt, and cheese, or calcium-fortified fruit juices, cereals, and other foods. But…
Not everyone can do this either. So most often turn to supplemental options.
Who should consider calcium supplements?
Even if you eat a healthy, balanced diet, you may find it difficult to get enough calcium if you:
*Follow a vegan diet
*Have lactose intolerance and limit dairy products
*Consume large amounts of protein or sodium, which can cause your body to excrete more calcium
*Are receiving long-term treatment with corticosteroids
*Have certain bowel or digestive diseases that decrease your ability to absorb calcium, such as inflammatory bowel disease or celiac disease
In these situations, calcium supplements may help you meet your calcium requirements. Talk to your doctor or dietitian to determine if calcium supplements are right for you.
Calcium has also proven to be linked to Vitamin D and its effect on how the body absorbs calcium. Even if you do take in the daily required calcium, you may still have weak bone structure and density due to a lack of Vitamin D.
Vitamin D helps our body to absorb calcium. In order to obtain the proper amount of Vitamin D you need to expose yourself to sunlight periodically, minus the sunblock, and choose Vitamin D enriched foods in your daily diet.
Some people, however, can’t or don’t do this. For this reason, many foods are supplemented with Vitamin D, such as milk, bread, pastries, oil spreads, breakfast cereals and some brands of orange juice, yogurt, margarine, and soy beverages. A few foods naturally contain small amounts of vitamin D, such as canned salmon with bones and egg yolks.
The RDA for vitamin D is 600 international units (15 micrograms) a day for most adults
There are, however, 2 exceptions:
Babies who are breastfed only mother’s milk should receive 200 IU/ day of supplemental Vitamin D because human milk has none and Babies get minimum sun exposure.
Adults older than 65 should receive 800 IU/day. Studies have shown promising results in reducing the high risk of bone fractures by increasing the daily requirements for seniors older than 65 yrs of age.
Last, we have folic acid, a B-complex vitamin necessary for the production of red blood cells. Without proper levels of folic acid, you can develop anemia. Research has shown that folic-acid deficiency in women during pregnancy can also cause severe birth defects. To avoid folic-acid deficiency, it is recommended you consume 400 micrograms/day.
Foods rich in folic acid include vegetables such as lettuce, turnip greens, spinach, broccoli, okra, and asparagus; fruits such as bananas, melons, lemons; and, orange juice. Beans of all sorts, yeast, mushrooms, beef liver and tomato juice.
Although there are plenty of sources of folic acid, many women weren’t getting enough folic acid in their diets during pregnancy. So in 1998, the FDA required manufacturers to add folic acid to bread, breakfast cereals, flours, pasta, white rice, baked goods, crackers, and some grains. As a result, it is now almost impossible to become folic-acid deficient.
Regardless, it is recommended that Women of childbearing years should take 400 micrograms of folic acid daily, either through food consumption, supplements or both if needed. As always, consult your physician to be sure what is best for you.
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