We require calcium and vitamin D from diet and supplements since our bodies don't make them. The RDA for calcium varies with age, but is roughly 1300 mg per day.
Vitamin D should be 400 IU for children and 600–800 IU for adults. "Vitamin D may be gained via sunshine exposure and dietary sources including fatty fish, eggs, and fortified dairy products."
"Regular exercise, particularly weight-bearing activities like walking, running, dance and tennis, may help maintain bones healthy. Weight training and resistance exercise can also promote bone density."
Weight-bearing activities "increase endurance, balance, coordination, and general health," says the NIH. Weight-bearing activities for 30–45 minutes four times a week improve bone mass.
Doctor. Joy believes bone builds more bone when loaded. "Runners and soccer players have denser bones than swimmers and bikers. The main takeaway is to stay active."
Dr. Joy also notes that regular exercise reduces the chance of falls and fractures, a rising worry as we age.
Consider that tobacco and alcohol lower bone mineral density. High-sodium and caffeine-containing diets and beverages may also damage bones.
Dr. Laing advises adults to follow national alcohol recommendations of two drinks for males and one for women.
According to the CDC, a serving of alcohol is 12 ounces of beer (5% alcohol), 8 ounces of malt liquor (7% alcohol), 5 ounces of wine (12% alcohol), or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof (40% alcohol) distilled spirits or liquor (such as gin, rum, vodka, whiskey).
You can't chose your parents, but you may evaluate their health and make changes depending on their conditions.
"Most of our bone health is controlled by our genetics," so if your parents and grandparents had or have problems like osteoporosis, make sure you check in with your primary care physician about your bone health.
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