The base on which our whole body is built is the skeleton, from which we get our stability, our ability to move and function. Osteoporosis is a disease that causes these skeletal bones to become thin and fragile. It can lead to bone fractures, typically in the hips, spine, and wrist. Over a lifetime, bones naturally lose some of their density, but osteoporosis is an exaggeration of this process. Contributing factors may include a hormone deficiency (in women), low-calcium diet, lack of exercise, smoking, and certain medications.
Bone depletion, or osteoporosis, is a disease that occurs as a result of dwindling bone mass and a decrease in the levels of calcium. Along our whole life, our bones are in a continuous process of construction and destruction. However, at a young age, there is more construction than destruction. Things even out as we grow older until, in our fourth decade, destruction finally overtakes construction. As a result, our bone density drops and our bones become more prone to fractures. When this process happens in an extreme way, it is known as bone depletion. It's important to note that losing calcium also makes the bones more sensitive, even if it happens slowly. At an older age, when our balance is not what it used to be, the danger only gets worse.
Women start with a bone density that is already about 30% less than men's, and because they produce less estrogen as they grow older, they face more risk when it comes to bone depletion.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance of calcium -
Children: 500 to 800 mg per day
Youth (ages 9-18): 1300 mg per day
Adults (ages 19-50): 1000 mg per day
Adults (ages 51 or older): 1200 mg per day
Tips to Keep Our Bones Strong
- 1. Consume milk products - Every child knows that milk is rich in calcium and is essential for strengthening bones. This goes for all milk products, including cheese, yogurt etc. You can also try soy milk and other Soy products
- 2. Add nuts to your diet - Some nuts and seeds have handsome amounts of calcium. A 30 gram course of almonds contains 75mg of calcium, 30 grams of sesame seeds contains 37 mg of calcium and sunflower seeds have 33 mg of calcium.
- 3. Eat dark green vegetables - Broccoli, Chinese cabbage, arugula, parsley, lettuce, Spinach and others are excellent sources of calcium, and contain many additional health advantages.
- 4. Take the right Vitamin A - Vitamin A appears in two forms. The first is retinol, which appears in animal products, such as the liver. The second is beta carotene and it is the way the vitamin comes from plants, especially orange vegetables like carrot, squash or sweet potato. Studies have found that consuming too much of retinol vitamin A raises the risk of bone fraction, while vitamin A in its plant form, Beta Carotene, does not damage the bones.
- 5. Strengthen your bones with Vitamin K - This vitamin helps activate 3 essential proteins that are crucial for bone health. As in the case of calcium that comes from green vegetables, vitamin K also comes from teh same sources. Two daily helpings of green vegetables a day give the body as much as it needs.
- 6. Physical activity strengthens the bones - When we carry out a physical activity, we create pressure on our skeleton. A moderate pressure sends the body signals to create more bone cells, increase the density and make it stronger. Operate the body with moderation, and don't go to far with it.
- 7. Eat fish - 100 grams of sardines contain an amazing amount of over 400mg of calcium! It's recommended to consume the fresh fish of course and not the canned variety. The little bones are also edible and contain a lot of calcium. Sardines, like the salmon, are also a great source of vitamin D.
- 8. Reduce your consumption of carbonated drinks and treats - The acid that exists in some of the popular carbonated drinks raises the amount of acid in the blood. To compensate, the body uses the body's minerals, including calcium. If the calcium is not readily available in the blood, the body will take it from the bones and this will hard the density and strength of the bone.
- 9. Avoidance measures - Studies have shown that smoking harms bone density, as well as over consumption of alcohol and caffeine.
- 10. Resource allocation - We must carry out our calcium consumption in a smart way. Our body absorbs calcium best when it is no more than 500 mg at one time. So, if you are planning on consuming a large amount of calcium rich foods or drinks divide the meal to make sure the body is able to absorb all you are giving it.
- 11. Drink green tea! Green tea, full of antioxidant, helps in building bone mineral density.
- 12. Eat unpurified or natural salts, which is rich in vital trace elements.
Ayurveda for Osteoporosis
According to the traditional Indian system of medicine Ayurveda, osteoporosis is a vata disorder. This is an element or a dosha, which is condensed from element or space. Ancient texts claim that bones become porous due to an excess of air and ether, which results in this particular health condition.
To balance the vata dosha or to treat osteoporosis, Ayurveda recommends herbs like ginger, long pepper and cinnamon. For menopausal women, red pepper, parsley, sage and fennel-rich diet is advised to retain bone mineral density
Ayurveda advocates consumption of pineapples, pears and apples.
Useful Ayurvedic Home Remedis --
A] Using milk and sesame powder:
1. Take 1 cup warm milk
2. Roast and grind a handful of sesame seeds
3. Add 1 tsp of this sesame powder to milk
4. Mix well and drink daily
B] Using almond and milk:
1. Soak 7 almonds in water overnight
2. Peel the almonds the next morning
3. Blend them with cow/goat/soy milk
4. Consume this calcium-rich milk every day
|Read More about Ayurvedic Management of Osteoarthritis in our Best seller e-book - 'Arthritis Ayurveda and You'|