Foods for Healthy Bones
Calcium and vitamin D are key nutrients for building strong healthy bones. Calcium works to build your bones and teeth structure, while vitamin D improves calcium absorption. If you do not consume enough calcium, your body will take the calcium it needs from your bones which could eventually lead to osteoporosis. The best way to get sufficient calcium is to eat enough calcium-rich foods every day.
It is of course no secret that milk and other dairy products are some of the best sources of calcium and vitamin D, both of which are needed for healthy bones. If you can’t consume dairy products due to lactose intolerance or food allergies, there are other good sources of calcium such as tofu, calcium fortified juices and soymilk.
Eggs are one of the few whole foods that naturally contain vitamin D, a nutrient that is important in maintaining optimal bone health. They are also an excellent source of nutrients such as calcium, magnesium and vitamins A, which also support bone health.
Salmon and tuna are known for having plenty of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, but fatty fish is also great for your bones. A 3-ounce piece of salmon contains more than 100% of your vitamin D. Tuna is also a great source of vitamin D.
Green Leafy Vegetables
Green leafy vegetables are high in vitamin K which is critical in forming bone proteins and reducing calcium loss. Vitamin K has been shown to not only increase bone density in people with osteoporosis, but also reduce fracture rates. One cup of cooked collard greens contains more than 25% of your daily calcium.
Magnesium and calcium work together to promote bone health. 50% of the body’s magnesium resides in the bones and low levels have been linked to fragile bones. Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of magnesium.