Simple Lifestyle Adjustments Your Bones Will Thank You For

Simple Lifestyle Adjustments Your Bones Will Thank You For

We’ve got a lot to thank our bones for. They give us the ability to move, create our physical structure, and hold our muscles in place. And they store calcium — a mineral associated with bones and teeth; but it’s also vital for nerve function, healthy heart rhythms, muscle contracting, and blood clotting. 

Bones do this amazing work by continually breaking down old bone and replacing it. This process, known as remodeling, occurs at a startling pace when we’re young. However, it typically peaks around age 30, and then starts to decline. Once this happens, you start losing more bone than you gain, which puts you at risk of osteoporosis and fractures.

Fortunately, you can keep your bones healthy, even past 30.

Dr. Edward R. Dupay, Jr. brings more than 30 years of medical experience to Orthopedic Associates of Southwest Florida, P.A. in Fort Myers. He specializes in comprehensive, patient-centered orthopedic care and helps people recover through nonsurgical and minimally invasive techniques.

If you want to protect your bones, Dr. Dupay recommends making these simple lifestyle adjustments.

Watch your diet

You probably know calcium is essential for healthy bones. However, that doesn’t mean more is necessarily a good thing. In fact, getting too much calcium can also cause problems. Instead, focus on the recommended dietary allowances based on your gender and age, for example:

The best way to reach your calcium requirements is through foods like dark leafy greens, tofu, low-fat dairy products, almonds, and sardines or canned salmon with bones. And don't forget the vitamin D, which helps your body absorb calcium.

Move your body

Need another reason to exercise? Do it for your bones. Engaging in daily weight-bearing exercises, like jogging, walking, and even climbing stairs helps build strong bones and muscles, while slowing bone loss at the same time. 

Aim for 30 minutes of weight-bearing exercise at least 3-4 times each week for the best results — and keep things interesting by trying as many activities as possible, like weight lifting, dancing, and racket games like tennis and squash!

Avoid risky habits

It’s no secret that smoking puts your health at risk. But did you know it can actually weaken your bones and lead to osteoporosis? That’s because tobacco products contain chemicals, like nicotine, that cause some crucial changes in your body that impact your bones, such as:

But smoking isn’t the only risky habit you need to ditch. If you want to protect your bones, it’s also time to limit your alcohol consumption. For women, that means stopping after one drink each day, and men at two.

Know your risks

Finally, never underestimate the importance of knowledge. Learning to recognize your personal risks of bone loss can help you make the additional changes you need to stay strong and healthy no matter what.

Factors that impact your bone health include:

Dr. Dupay also recommends talking with your primary care provider to learn more about your bone health and risks of future problems. Taking this important step can help identify additional changes you can make to protect your bones in the years to come.

Do you need orthopedic care? Contact Orthopedic Associates of Southwest Florida, P.A. in Fort Myers to schedule a consultation by calling 239-768-2272 today. 

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