Vegan Options For Bone Health
No matter how young or beautiful we may look and feel there is nothing we can do about aging. Father time affects us all and the impact he has on us is dependent on the responsibility we take with regards to taking care of our bodies and health. Something that doesn’t feature highly in most our minds is bone density and bone health. Without strong bones, we will eventually become frail and weak as we age and that’s how things like hip replacements, due to osteoporosis, becomes common ground amongst the aged. Osteoporosis can also start from as young as 35 and can be be quite dramatic 5 to 10 years after menopause.
Of course there are many options for supplements and food we can ingest to help with bone health but in this article, we take a closer look specifically at vegan options. Vegan diets are becoming very popular nowadays with over 3.7 million people in the US are now classed as vegan according to the Harris poll undertaken some years ago. Today, that figure has increased significantly.
Bone Health Help
1. Increase Calcium Intake
We have all heard it before, calcium is responsible for proper development of bones and teeth. Such a simple sentence that led the world to increase their milk intake.
Where to find calcium:
- Canned Salmon
For vegan options you can get calcium from:
- Collard Greens (such as cabbage and broccoli)
- White Beans
- Dried Figs
- Bok Choy
- Blackstrap Molasses
- Black-Eyed Peas
- Turnip Greens
- Sesame seeds
- Orange Juice
- Firm Tofu
2. Don’t forget Vitamin D
Vitamin D works beautifully with calcium as it helps the body absorb calcium. Great vegan options for vitamin D are:
- Fermented Tofu
- Non-dairy milks such as Almond Milk
- Plant-Derived Supplements
Let’s not forget that the body naturally produces vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. Just 10-15 minutes in sunlight 3 times a week is enough sunlight exposure to get a healthy dose of vitamin D into the body. Of course eating vitamin D products and/or taking vitamin D supplements must go hand in hand.
3. Increase Potassium
Studies have shown that potassium possibly neutralizes acids which removes calcium from the body.
There have been studies in women which have shown that a high intake of potassium can improve bone health. When it comes to premenopausal women it showed that there was an 8% difference in bone density between those who ingested a lot of potassium compared to those who don’t.
Where to get potassium:
- Sweet Potatoes
- White Potatoes (with the skin on)
- Winter Squash
- White Beans
4. Cut Down on the Caffeine
Too much caffeine can interfere with the body’s absorption of calcium abilities. Rather opt for healthy tea options that are good for bones such as:
- White Tea
- Hibiscus Tea
- Rooibos (a South African tea)
- Green Tea
- Milk Thistle
5. Vitamin K
Vitamin K is not only good for helping out with blood clots but also helps the body make proteins for healthy bones.
You can find Vitamin K in:
- Pickled Cucumbers
- Green Leafy Vegetables
- Green Leaf Lettuce
- Mustard Greens
- Romaine Lettuce
- Swiss Chard
- Turnip Greens
- Brussel Sprouts
Magnesium is also important for bone health and is quite essential for the absorption and metabolism of calcium.
You can find magnesium in:
- Dark Leafy Greens
- Whole Grains
- Dried Fruit
- Beans and Lentils
7. Consume alcohol in moderation and limit smoking
Alcohol is not good for the bones as it causes bone loss due to its interference with vitamin D absorption and smoking prevents the body from absorbing calcium efficiently and this leads to decreased bone mass.
Take home message
As you can see there are a multitude of different vegan options available with regards to food options to help build bone strength and prevent bone issues as we age. Most of these foods can be found in any supermarket or grocer near by.
Very importantly, don’t forget to add exercise to your ‘bone-health-plan’. These should include resistance training, walking and stair climbing.
Another consideration to help you body age and protect your bones is to take natural nutritional health supplements, especially if you are unable to eat all these foods easily in your regular diet. There are many choices of supplements out there but here’s a company that is worth a further look, Research Verified. They offer a wide range of supplements including products specifically targeted at helping with joint pain relief, joint treatment as well as overall bone health management. Check out this Research Verified review.
Better bone health equals a stronger body. After all, who really wants to feel frail and weak just because of age. Take up the challenge and be responsible for the state of your body and enjoy delicious food along the way! Being vegan should not stop your bones staying strong and holding your body strong for many, many years to come!
©2017 DLS HealthWorks, LLC. Lori Shemek, PhD health and weight loss expert. Bestselling author of How To Fight FATflammation! and the bestselling author of ‘Fire-Up Your Fat Burn!’