How often do you think about bone health? It can be easy to forget about keeping your bones healthy, but good bone health contributes to good overall health. Fortunately, it’s easy to keep your bones healthy, and there are several things you can do to improve your bone health. Here are a few things that you can start doing to improve your bone health today.
Learn about your bones
Some of the most common health problems that affect Americans – such as back pain, arthritis, and osteoporosis – are related to the bones and joints. Focusing on promoting good bone health can decrease your risk for debilitating conditions.
As a child and adolescent you gain bone mass, or bone density, faster than you lose bone mass. The age at which you reach peak bone mass varies, but typically occurs during a person’s 20’s. After this point, you begin losing more bone mass than you gain.
It’s important to promote good bone health by strengthening your bones and preventing bone loss at all ages.
Calcium helps strengthen your bones and vitamin D helps your body use the calcium in your diet. Consuming foods that are rich in calcium and vitamin D is an important part of promoting good bone health.
Regular exercise can help improve your bone health and keep your bones stronger longer. Weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening exercises specifically have been shown to help keep bones healthy and strong.
Also consider adding stretching, balance training, and mobility exercises to your workout routine as these exercises can help prevent falls and injuries.
Alcohol consumption increases your risk for developing osteoporosis.
Smoking is detrimental to your health in many ways, and it can also prevent your body from properly using the calcium in your diet. Like drinking alcohol, smoking increases your risk for osteoporosis.
Visit your doctor
Be sure to see your primary care doctor at least once a year for a regular wellness exam. Regular meetings with your physician can greatly improve your health, and can help detect bone health problems early on.
Ask your doctor about a bone density test.