Building Bone Density- I watched a webinar on the latest research on osteoporosis and also what is most helpful for building bone density. I have a major history of osteoporosis in my family and I am at major risk given I had an eating disorder when I was growing up so this is important information for me to share. What I learned is that it takes 9 fruit and vegetable servings daily to benefit you to build bone density and volume.
Some of the most important produce to consume included prunes, onions (root) and dark leafy greens (kale, bok choy, collards). Definitely get off bone robbing medications like proton pump inhibitors, corticosteroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories. Vitamin D tends to be more helpful than Calcium supplements which have been linked with some negative cardiovascular risks.
I recommend Vitamin D3 at a level of 3200 iu in the winter. Vitamin D has been shown to help with balance and mood. It is best to get your calcium through foods (broccoli, dark leafy greens, figs, sesame seeds, etc) and non-dairy milks (soy, almond, hemp, macadamia nut, coconut ). Onions, leeks and garlic were helpful to build bone density. In terms of the amount of calcium in food you should get, the data varies across the board. The UK sets the rate at 700 mg. Rates in NA are higher but as long as you are eating plenty of fruits and vegetables you will get enough calcium. Your body will absorb more calcium if you are not taking in as much. Dairy helping bones is largely a myth.
Lastly consistent exercise to build bone density and prevent falls is most important. Moderate to high intensity is important for exercise. Jogging, walking or doing stairs. A weighted vest has been shown to be helpful. Balancing and strengthening exercises are key. Doing resistance training to build strength is also imperative 3- 4 x/week.
The doctor that led the webinar was not a fan of the medications which have negative side effects and don’t build bone enough. Focus on fall prevention and balance vs pharmaceuticals. Make sure you check with your doctor before you make changes.
To discuss anything related to your health care needs, please book an appointment with me at Parallel Wellness. Dr. Robin Vinge, ND 4032321283
References: Dr. Greger webinar on Treatment and Prevention of Osteoporosis