As we reach middle age, the bones slowly starting to thinning. This process is accelerating in women after menopause, but there is a way to slow it down. One of the best ways to protect yourself is to increase the intake of foods that allow you maximum bone mass and which can increase the density of your bones at any time of life.
Calcium is a supportive pillar of strong bones. Adults up to the age of 50 need 1000 mg of calcium per day. Since the age of 50, women need 1200 mg of calcium every day, and men need the same amount after their 70’s. The main source of calcium is milk. One glass of milk (0.25 l) contains 300 mg of calcium, regardless of whether the milk is low- fat or full – fat.
Cheese and yogurt
A cup of yogurt has almost the same amount of calcium as a cup of milk (0.25 l ~ 300 mg). About 200g of famous Swiss cheese contains roughly the same amount of calcium. If you are not tolerant of lactose, you can drink yogurt and eat hard cheeses, as they have a small amount of lactose. You can also consume dairy products that have a reduced amount of lactose or don’t contain it at all. Removing lactose from milk and milk products doesn’t reduce the amount of calcium in the product.
The rich source of calcium (Ca) is sardines. All those little fish bones have just what you need to build bone mass in your body. If you consume 85 g of canned sardines, you will get a little more calcium than from a cup of milk.
It may surprise you when you know that calcium is abundant in vegetables. Look for dark leafy green vegetables such as cabbage and kale. Favorite’s traditional food in some cultures, such as collards and leaves of beets also provide a lot of calcium. One cup of chopped, cooked beet leaves have about 200 mg of calcium.
If dairy products, sardines and leafy vegetables are not on your favorite foods list, consider enriched foods. These are products that don’t naturally contain calcium, but are enriched with different amounts of important minerals. This kind of food for breakfast is a good start – enriched juice from oranges has 250 mg of calcium, and enriched cereals provide up to 1000 mg per cup. Check the exact amount of calcium on the nutritional product table for each ingredient separately.
Supplements (additives) for natural calcium
Supplements are an easy way to make up for calcium, but some studies show that they may not be needed. If you already have enough calcium from food, taking additional amounts in tablet form will not contribute to the health of your bones. Experts say it is a small benefit of getting more than 2000 mg of calcium per day, and too much calcium leads to the formation of kidney stones. To achieve the best results and lead to the proper absorption of calcium, do not take more than 500 mg at a time. Some calcium supplements, such as calcium carbonate, is better absorbed if is taken with a meal. On the other hand, you can take calcium citrate at any time.
Salmon and other types of fatty fish provide a range of nutrients that stimulate bone building. They contain calcium and vitamin D, which helps in the absorption of calcium. They also have a high level of omega-3 fatty acids. Fish oil supplements have been shown to reduce the loss of bone tissue of older women and can prevent osteoporosis.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds can strengthen bone health in several ways. Walnuts and flaxseed contain omega-3 fatty acids. Peanuts and almonds contain potassium, which prevents the loss of calcium through the urine. Nuts also include proteins and other nutrients which play an important role in strong bones.
Reduce salt intake
It is the main culprit for taking calcium from your body. The more salt you eat, the more calcium goes through the urine. Using a moderate amount of salt in your diet, you can help your body keep more calcium and strengthen your bones.
All right, we know that the sun is not food. But under the influence of the sun, the body produces vitamin D. Without Vitamin D, our body cannot properly absorb calcium from food. Some people must use supplement of Vitamin D. The daily intake or dose recommended is 600 IU per day for most adults, and it increases to 800 IU after 70 years of age.