Osteoporosis Diet Mistakes to Avoid
Nutrition and bone health are closely linked. If you have osteoporosis and are not getting enough of the right nutrients in your diet, you put yourself at risk for further bone loss and a higher chance for bone breaks and fractures.
Here are seven nutrition mistakes you might be making that may worsen your osteoporosis.
You Are Not Getting Enough Calcium
Calcium is essential for healthy bones. Your body doesn’t make calcium so you must get it from the foods you eat.
The amount of calcium needed on a daily basis is 1,000 mg for people age 50 and younger, and 1,200 for age 51 or older, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Unfortunately, research shows most people are only getting half the amount of calcium suggested.
Dairy foods are the best sources of calcium, but some vegetables, especially the leafy green ones, contain up to 270 mg. Other foods containing calcium include oranges, almonds, sardines, tofu, and calcium-fortified foods, such as cereal.
You Are Not Getting Enough Vitamin D
Vitamin D is important for the development of healthy bones. You need vitamin D to absorb the calcium from your diet.
Women who take vitamin D supplements experience less bone loss than women who do not, according to a study from the United Kingdom.
The UK study looked at whether vitamin D supplements help make bones denser and stronger, and the women taking supplements had much denser bones at the end of the study than the women who did not. More dense bones means their bones are less vulnerable to fractures and breaks.
Once you have osteoporosis, vitamin D won’t help build your bone density back up, but you still need vitamin D to help you absorb calcium.
Good sources of vitamin D are natural sunlight and fortified milk, egg yolks, some saltwater fish, liver and supplements.
Talk to your doctor about getting more vitamin D in your diet or about taking vitamin D supplements. You may also want your levels checked to confirm you are not vitamin D deficient.