Lifestyle Changes People Should Adopt For Healthy Bones And Joints


National Bone and Joint Day 2022: We see a lot of people the age of 50 years and above with some bone and joint pain. These could be avoided if proper care of bones and joints is taken in the early years of life.Also Read – Understanding How Obesity Can Impact Your Bone and Joint Health

One in three women and one in five men above the age of 50 suffer from osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a reduction in bone mass- Bone Mineral Density (BMD) which leads to micro-damage to the bones and increases susceptibility to fracture. We built bone mass throughout our early years in childhood and adolescent life, whereas during old age we tend to lose bone mass. Most people achieve their peak bone mass by the age of 30. Women, especially post-menopausal are more prone to develop osteoporosis. Also Read – How to Protect Your Joints From The Cold Weather?

That is why if proper precautions are not taken during young age it may lead to a severe weakening of bones in later years of life. Also Read – Yoga Asanas: Practise These 6 Bone Strengthening to Keep Osteoporosis at Bay

Dr Anup Khatri, consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Global Hospital, Parel Mumbai explains that problems with joints and bones can lead to pains, discomfort, fractures and also stooped posture or hunch back, etc.

So, here we bring to you some lifestyle modifications, which if adopted at a young age can keep your bones and joints healthy-

  • Nutrition – A balanced diet which has fruits, vegetables, cereals, pulses and dairy products is needed for a healthy life. Dietary minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium and vitamins such as vitamin D are necessary for good bone health.
  • For adults ages, 19 to 50 and men ages 51 to 70, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is 1,000 milligrams (mg) of calcium a day. The recommendation increases to 1,200 mg a day for women age 51 and older and for men age 71 and older.
  • Milk, cheese, yoghurt, dark leafy vegetables, chicken, and boiled egg are rich sources of calcium and phosphorus.
  • Your body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium. For adults ages 19 to 70, the RDA of vitamin D is 600 international units (IUs) a day. The recommendation increases to 800 IUs a day for adults age 71 and older.
  • Milk, soya, mushrooms, cod liver oil and egg yolk are rich sources of vitamin D. Vitamin D are also produced under the skin in sunlight.
  • For muscle wellbeing – vitamin E, essential amino acids, levocarnitine, etc are helpful. If needed visit a trained nutritionist.
  • Exercise – Burning calories through exercise is equally important.
  • Workout for at least 30 minutes (adults) to 60 minutes (children) every day helps to keep muscles and bones strong.
  • Cycling, weight training, endurance exercises, and walking uphill with a light backpack are a few good routines for good bone strength. Exercising also strengthens your muscle strength and helps to maintain good posture and gives good stability to joints. Physical activity to specifically benefit bone health should involve loading (stressing) the skeleton.
  • In children above 8yrs and adolescents, weight-bearing and short intense activities like gymnastics, basketball, volleyball, running, jumping, dancing, and soccer can be included in regular routine.
  • For adults, walking, jogging, climbing stairs, and weight training increased gradually, and recreational activities like hiking, tennis and also balance training should be included as routine.
  • Pilates and yoga help with flexibility and core strength.
  • Weight loss if you are overweight. Overweight people are more prone to develop arthritis and osteoporosis.
  • Caffeinated drinks like cola or other fizzy drinks reduce calcium absorption. So, to absorb dietary calcium, one should avoid such caffeinated drinks.
  • Intake of tobacco and alcohol can reduce bone mineral density. So stop smoking, tobacco chewing and alcohol.
  • Correct posture while sitting and standing helps to prevent back and other joint problems.

Every person above 45 years of age should get Bone Mineral Density (BMD) test done. Especially post-menopausal women should check it at regular intervals.

“You don’t stop exercising because you grow old.
You grow old because you stop exercising.”

-Anonymous



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