You would be surprised to know that your bones keep changing all through your life. This means, now is the right time to think about their health. The following article discusses some essential tips to help you protect and monitor the health of your bones.
You probably don’t think about it much, but your skeleton structure is an incredible part of your body. From a total of 300 bones you had at birth to 206 bones you have by the age of 25, your bones fuse and renew, to develop a strong framework in order to protect body’s organs and help you stay fit and healthy.
Here’s What You Should Know about Vitamin D: Boosting Your Bone Health
Vitamin D popularly known as the sunshine vitamin is necessary for maintaining good bone health. A deficiency of this vitamin can lead to serious health consequences as our body loses its capacity to absorb calcium effectively.
Calcium works with Vitamin D to help support the growth cycle of bone formation, ensuring that it can be used as and when needed by the bones, teeth and other parts of the body.
You’ll come across various kinds of milk products, juices and cereal products that are sold with ‘Vitamin D fortified’ labels attached. But, the most easily available source of this nutrient comes from direct sun exposure. Exposing your skin to ultra-violet radiation prompts the body to produce Vitamin D. However, during the short winter days this source is less readily available. So, how can you support your bone health during winter?
Add a Supplement to Your Diet
This is by far the most convenient method to flag up your Vitamin D levels, especially during cold winter months. Adding a quality Vitamin D supplement, such as iOTH’s iDaily- D, can help you compliment the natural food sources in your daily meals, ensuring you get required doses of this vitamin on a day to day basis.
The Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA) of Vitamin D for girls and boys up to 18 years of age is 600 IU per day. This range remains the same for adult males and females, aged between 19 to 70 years and increases up to 800 IU in aging adults over 70 years of age.
Look What You Eat
There are certain foods that can help you get fair quantities of Vitamin D. These foods include salmon, margarine and mackerel along with other fortified milk products and UV exposed mushrooms.
However, it must be noted that you cannot fulfill your daily Vitamin D requirement through diet alone, which is why it is very important you add a daily dose of Vitamin D supplement to your diet.
This is specifically important during winter months when less sunlight is available to you and other sources of Vitamin D become more and more crucial.
Exercise Your Way to Build Bone Mass
A living tissue, your bones are constantly being broken down and rebuild in a process called as remodeling. It is up to the age of 20 – 30 years that the rate of bone formation exceeds that of bone destruction in individuals who get enough Vitamin D and the ones who exercise.
However, during later stages of life, bone destruction typically exceeds the production process. But the good news is – you can actually reduce the bone loss with age, provided you exercise on a regular basis.
This is especially true for weight-bearing exercises, including walking, running, weight lifting, playing games such as tennis, dancing and hiking, etc. These are some of the best ways to boost your overall bone health.
Guarding Against Osteoporosis
People who do not get sufficient quantities of Vitamin D or the ones, who do not perform any type of physical activities, stand at a greater risk of developing osteoporosis – a painful disease that is typically characterized by weakening of bone tissues followed by low bone mass.
If ignored to left untreated, it can lead to fractures, most commonly on the hip region, wrist or even spine.
Remember, osteoporosis can develop undetected over a period of many years. However, a proper bone mineral density test can help you detect it in its early stages, such that you can determine your risk of fractures and even monitor your response to the respective treatment.
Maximizing Safe Sun Exposure for Best Results
Natural Vitamin D is good for you and you can even get it in cold winter days as well, but for that you need to be strategic. People with moderately fair skin should enjoy the mid-day sun for 7-30 minutes to get sufficient quantities of Vitamin D daily.
However, people with darker skin tone are required to spend more time out in the sun to gain similar quantities of Vitamin D. This means you are required to spend anywhere between 20 minutes to 3 hours exposure to mid-day sun.
But, it should be noted that if you going to step out into the sun, make sure you have adequate sun protection even in winters!