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Health ... Conditions

Osteoporosis Preventative Measures

from Tonia Boterf, Helping With Aging Parents

Most of us don’t think about Osteoporosis until we see our aging parents and other seniors experiencing broken bones or spines that are bowed.

The reality is that everyone needs to start thinking of how to prevent Osteoporosis from teens and throughout their lives.

Here are some techniques and lifestyle changes you can make to improve your chance of not getting Osteoporosis:


  • Calcium is the cornerstone of strong bones. Adults up to age 50 need 1,000 milligrams per day. Beginning at age 51, women need 1,200 milligrams every day, and when men hit 71, they need to hit that mark, too. The star of Calcium sources is undoubtedly milk. Even soy milk can meet your Calcium daily needs. For those who are lactose intolerant, there are many products still available and they do contain Calcium. 98 percent of the body's Calcium resides in the bones and after age 30, bone loss exceeds bone production, so it's even more crucial to include calcium in your bone health regimen.
  • Consume Vitamin D which helps our bodies absorb Calcium and thus is another major player in building strong bones. 70 percent of women ages 51-70 and 90 percent of women over 70 don't get enough vitamin D from food and supplements. Low levels of vitamin D are linked to osteoporosis, reduced calcium absorption, bone loss, and increased fracture risk. People naturally make Vitamin D through their skin from sunlight. Most people in the United States do not live in an area where they can get enough sun without needing to supplement Vitamin D in their diets.
  • Strontium should accompany calcium, although not at the same time. Take calcium in the morning and strontium in the evening, or vice-versa. Either way, however, strontium is one key player in bone health.
  • Vitamin K activates at least three proteins and Vitamin K2 is needed to produce one of the proteins which also assist to incorporate calcium into the bones. In short, Vitamin K2 is necessary for bone metabolism and bone strength.
  • Magnesium is needed because if magnesium levels are insufficient, then calcium could just pass right on through the body and not find its way to the bones.
  • Glucosamine plays an important role in good joint health and helps promote healthy joints and cartilage maintenance.
  • Chondroitin helps to maintain joint cartilage. MSM is an organic source of sulfur and enhances the benefits of Glucosamine and Chondroitin to support cartilage health.

Nutritional Diet for Prevention of Osteoporosis:

  • Calcium-rich foods are often high in vitamin D. Sardines, herring, and salmon have high levels of vitamin D, and many calcium-enriched foods have vitamin D added. Cheese, yogurt and soy are also Calcium-rich foods.
  • Vitamin D. Good sources of vitamin D are from fortified milk. Eat mushrooms and oysters. Eggs, fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and tuna, Cod liver oil, fortified dairy products, fortified cereals, beef liver and fortified orange juice, are also all great foods to get Vitamin D. In 2010, the Institute of Medicine released new guidelines as to just how much calcium and vitamin D people need. Most adults should get between 600 and 800 international units (IUs) of vitamin D every day, and between 1,000 and 1,300 milligrams (mg) of calcium daily the higher levels are for postmenopausal women, adolescent girls, and women who are pregnant or nursing.
  • Delete as much table salt and sea salt as you can from your diet. Americans normally consume twice as much salt as they need and salt is a large contributor to destroying bone density.
  • Many soft drinks contain phosphoric acid, which can increase calcium loss. Excess phosphorus promotes calcium loss from the body when calcium intake is low. Women should only occasionally have a glass or two of soft drinks.
  • Caffeine leaches calcium from bones, sapping their strength. Minimize the amount of caffeine that you consume.
  • Protein does not dissolve bone, as previously thought. We now know that Protein is essential for strong bones. Bones are about 50% protein. Bone repair requires a steady stream of dietary amino acids, the building blocks of body proteins. The suggested daily protein intake is about 55 grams of protein a day for a 150-pound woman and about 64 grams a day for a 175-pound man. Lean meats are best.
  • Eat a healthy diet. The safest strategy is eating a diet that’s low in salt and rich in fresh and minimally processed whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. Include enough calcium and vitamin D rich foods. This includes a food rich in K1, which is found in leafy green vegetables. K2 aids with your bones’ absorption of calcium to help make them stronger. You can find K2 in a variety of different foods including egg yolks, organ meat, and organic milk.
  • Exercise regularly. Weight-bearing exercise is one of the most effective ways to increase your bone strength and help prevent fractures. These include walking, bicycling, sprints, swimming, running, tennis, using resistance bands or weight training.
  • Stop smoking
  • Decrease alcohol consumption to 2 or less alcoholic drinks a day


If you're wondering about your bone health, there's a quick at-home test you can take that will assess your overall risk of fracture. Called FRAX, it was developed by the World Health Organization to help evaluate bone fracture risk. Just plug a few numbers into the calculator -- like your age, height, weight, and some information such as whether you smoke or take steroid medications -- and it will give you a percentage risk of having a bone fracture within the next 10 years.

By being aware of how important it is to prevent Osteoporosis through keeping our diets rich in vitamins and nutrients, avoiding or minimizing negative lifestyle habits, becoming more physically active and taking supplements, you we can live a better quality of life.

It is never too late to start to improve your lifestyle to prevent Osteoporosis.

**This article is for general information not meant as medical advice. Check with your personal physician before making dietary changes which may interfere or otherwise interact with your current medications and lifestyle.

If you are stressed, overwhelmed and concerned if you are doing the best for your aging parent, or you want quality information all in one place, you are in the right place. We also want to keep your sanity level and quality of life in good shape too. Perhaps having an in-home independent living assessment by one of the best experts in the country will help you too.

Coach Tonia Boterf has over 25 yrs in the business professionally, having personally cared for 3 of her own relatives, raised a special needs child and had gathered disabilities in later life which all together enables her to ‘understand’ your situation and she can give you real concrete solutions to the issues you face.

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