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How to Keep Your Bones Healthy
Daily exercise and proper diet are two integral parts of living a healthy life. However, without healthy bones, your ability to live a healthy life becomes limited. That said, it is extremely important for individuals to retain proper bone health and avoid bone cancer. Maintaining bone health is specially important for senior citizens, as mineral density in bones begins to decline the older a person gets. However, according to MedlinePlus, by consuming certain foods, taking supplements and exercising daily, an individual can reverse the loss of mineral density in his bones and progress further down the path of a healthy life.
Step 1: Exercise
Exercise is absolutely vital in maintaining proper bone health, mainly because repeated physical impact on the body will actually increase bone density and strength, thus aiding your body in preventing broken bones. Such activities that utilize a substantial amount of physical impact on the body are cardiovascular activities, such as running, biking, sports like basketball and limited weightlifting.
Running is excellent for your cardiovascular system, as it burns carbohydrates and fat; increases muscle tone; and due to the repeated physical impact of running, increases bone strength. The same can be said for activities like biking, skiing and even surfing. If those latter activities are not to your liking, sports like racquetball or tennis are great for strengthening muscle tone as well as increasing bone density and strength.
No matter which exercises you select to help keep your bones healthy, what is absolutely vital is that you do not let your body become accustomed to a routine. If you allow your body to do so, the exercise may actually lose its effectiveness. Try switching up your physical activities as often as you can. For instance, if you walk regularly, trying swimming or playing tennis every now and then, and you may find that even this subtle change will bring notable results.
Step 2: Incorporate calcium into your diet
One of the best means by which to sustain healthy bone density is to increase your calcium intake. Dairy products such as milk, cheese and yogurt are rich in calcium and will greatly aid your bone integrity. Because dairy products are often fairly rich, alternating dairy with other healthy foods with high calcium levels, such as broccoli, spinach and kale, would be wise.
Step 3: Supplement your diet
In addition to exercise and including calcium in your diet, you can take calcium supplements and consume foods or supplements that are rich in vitamin D. Vitamin D, which helps your body absorb calcium, can be found in fortified dairy products, cod liver oil and white mushrooms. Some vitamin D can be manufactured by your body if submitted to brief (five - 30 minutes), unprotected, direct exposure to sunlight a couple of times per week.
Bone health is absolutely vital to living a healthy life. Coupled with daily exercise and proper diet, a person will be well on his way to achieving an appropriate balance of mind and body.