5 Ways to Be Good to Your Bones

Calcium is important but it isn’t the only thing to consider when it comes to keeping your bones strong and healthy. To reduce your risk of osteoporosis, make sure you’re paying attention to these 5 things.
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Calcium is important but it isn’t the only thing to consider when it comes to keeping your bones strong and healthy. To reduce your risk of osteoporosis, make sure you’re paying attention to these 5 things.

1.    Weight-Bearing Exercise

Exercise that’s done with your feet on the ground and your body working against gravity is referred to as “weight-bearing” (so swimming or cycling don’t qualify). Weight-bearing activities like jogging, team sports, aerobics and even weight lifting helps bones become stronger.

2.    Vitamin D

Calcium relies on vitamin D for absorption. While the list of foods that contain it is short (eggs, milk and salmon are some of the best sources), luckily your skin produces some of its own vitamin D when exposed to sunlight (about 10 minutes a day can do it). In addition to catching some rays, make sure you’re doing whatever you can to meet the daily recommendation of 400IU per day from diet.

Learn more about the healthy benefits of vitamin D.

3.    Bone Density Testing

Getting your bone density checked using a DXA scan is the best way to see if you have or are at risk for osteoporosis. Women over 65, men over 70, or postmenopausal woman with other risk factors should get frequent checks.

4.    Vitamin K

Some studies point to a connection between vitamin K and strong bones. Vitamin K from green veggies, cauliflower, cabbage and vegetable oils (like olive and canola) will also help regulate blood-clotting.

5.    Muscle Health

Your bones wouldn’t get very far without your muscles (and vice versa). Be good to your muscles -- stay hydrated, get plenty of vitamin C and always take a few minutes to stretch before exercising.

Tell Us: How are you good to your bones?

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Good Eats for Better Bones

An estimated 44 million Americans are at risk for, or have, osteoporosis, a disease where our bones become increasingly fragile and sometimes fracture. Though women are 4 times more likely to suffer from osteoporosis, men are affected as well. Exercise and some medications can help, but what you eat plays a vital role.

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A one-stop meal, casseroles make an easy weeknight dinner (and next day lunch). But many recipes call for cups (yes, cups!) of mayo, cans of creamy soup or lots of heavy cream—you may as well have “911” on redial for the after dinner coronary. Here are our top 5 lighter casseroles that’ll keep your waist slim and your heart in tip top shape.

Salmon 5 Ways

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Pork 5 Ways

It’s a common misconception that all pork products are bad for you. While you may want to keep your intake of fatty and salty bacon modest, lean cuts of pork are just as low in fat and calories as chicken breast (that’s where the slogan “the other white meat” came from). Pork is also one of the best sources of thiamin – an energy producing B-vitamin. So if you’re tired of the same old chicken recipes, give these five a try.

Strawberries 5 Ways

I love eating fresh strawberries all by themselves, but there many other delicious ways to enjoy them. You’d better hurry and give these 5 recipes a try as these red gems are in season for only a short time.

Tofu 5 Ways

I’m always trying to convince people to experiment with protein-packed tofu. It’s versatile, easy to use, and has only 15 calories per ounce. Don’t think you’re a fan of this soy protein? These recipes might just change your mind.

Pomegranate, 5 Ways

Whether you prefer sipping on pomegranate juice or biting into pomegranate seeds, we’ve got 5 fun ways to love this spectacular, nutrient-filled fruit.

Mushrooms 5 Ways

Super low in calories but packed with energy-producing B-vitamins and even some vitamin D, mushrooms add a flavor boost to your healthy dishes. Whether you prefer them raw or cooked, here are 5 ways to try them.

Basil 5 Ways

The basil plants in my garden are getting ready to explode – in a few short weeks I’ll have bunches and bunches on my hands. Here are 5 different ways to use this fresh and flavorful herb.