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Exercise, why it’s so important for bone health

Weight-bearing exercise helps to protect the bones and prevent the onset of osteoporosis.

By Andre Comrie

How has your exercise been going during these strange times? I know that mine has suffered a lot – it has been difficult for me to get into a routine where I have included weight-bearing exercises daily.

So why should that matter anyway?

Well, it’s a recipe for speeding up the development of osteoporosis – and when you are reaching a more mature age that’s definitely not something you want to do!

Weight-bearing exercise puts a reasonable amount of stress on the bones (and muscles) and this causes them to become stronger over time. The rate at which calcium and other minerals are packed into the bone scaffolding increases, and this overrides the natural process of leaching of the minerals – the credit/debit ratio shifts in favour of stronger bones. And stronger muscles help with balance, mobility, and general fitness.

There are several contributing factors to osteoporosis in addition to ageing and lack of exercise.

A few further thoughts about prevention of this bone disease. There are several contributing factors in addition to ageing and lack of exercise. These include a poor diet, certain medications, and other chronic conditions such as diabetes, cancer, and autoimmune diseases.

Necessary vitamins and minerals

What kind of diet supports healthy bones? It must be rich in the necessary vitamins and minerals, and there must be adequate protein.

The nutrients that are especially involved in bone health are Vitamins A, D, C, B and E and the minerals calcium, magnesium and zinc. Also strongly recommended are probiotics and Omega 3 essential oils and a good range of antioxidants.

Develop a plan for healthy eating during lockdown

I mentioned that exercise promotes the deposition of more bone. But it cannot do that job without all the supplies that are needed – the calcium and other minerals, the vitamins and the proteins which form the scaffold. So, if you are running short in any of the items in the “supply chain” everything slows down and might even grind to a halt. For me, that’s a risk I am unwilling to take.

Calcium is a crucial part of the diet to prevent this bone disease, but it’s not always easy to get enough in what you eat each day.

I personally believe that supplements are necessary to ensure that there are no nutritional gaps. I know that I am unable to ensure the full nutrient package necessary for my health from the food I prepare – very conscientiously, I might add.

For me supplements are like an insurance policy, and have become a way of life. But once again, I don’t take just any supplements – I am pretty particular about my choice. If you want to know more, please get in touch.

André at 084 506 3643

Now read: Winter’s coming, so up your immunity

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